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Switzerland in November 2012

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Switzerland in November 2012

My boyfriend and I are planning to take a trip around Switzerland from 2-10 November 2012. Basically I am following the suggested 10 day itinerary on the www.myswitzerland.com website and have modified it according to our interests.

We will start our trip from Geneva instead of Basel because our home base will be in Geneva (He flies out of Geneva on the 11th). We would like to maximise our trip while it still being relaxing, so ideally a longer stay in either in 1 mountain town like Zermatt or a resort town like Lugano and day trips along the way.

I apologise in advance if the itinerary seems incoherent and inefficient as the itinerary is a work in progress, any suggestions on our overall trip and specific legs of our journey are much appreciated:


a. 2 November: Day trip from Geneva to Montreux

• Chillon Castle

• Rochers-de-Naye: If we’re doing Jungfrau and Zermatt, can we skip this one?

• Overnight stay in Montreux, is it worth it?

• Option 2: I was thinking of pushing the day trip to Montreux at the end of our trip, and from Geneva take the train to Montreux and transfer to the Golden Pass to Interlaken and spend the night there.

b. 3 November: Interlaken – Jungfraujoch - Zermatt

• Depart Montreux for Interlaken via Golden Pass early morning and go directly to Jungfraujoch, day trip.

• From Jungfraujoch, descend to Interlaken and take the train to Zermatt.

• Spend night in Zermatt

c. 4-5 November: Zermatt and Matterhorn

• Various peaks (Rothorn, Sunnegga, and Schwarzsee)

• Alpine hike from Riffelalp to Findeln valley

• Option 2: An alternative for this leg is Jungrfrau and Bettmerhorn I feel it's a shame if we are not able to see Matterhorn from Rothorn or hike from Zermatt to Sunnegga

d. 6 November: Zermatt – Lucerne - Zurich

• Depart Zermatt for Lucerne

• City tour of Lucerne

• Take afternoon train to Zurich and spend night here

• Option 2: 6-7 November: Zermatt – Lugano

i. Depart Zermatt for Lugano

ii. City tour of Lugano

iii. 3 Castles, Defencive Wall in Bellinzona

3 Castles, Defencive Wall in Bellinzona

e. 7 November: Zurich - Basel

• City tour of Zurich

• Taken afternoon train to Basel and spend night here

f. 8-9 November: Basel - Geneva

• Tour of Old Town

• River cruise of Rheinfelden

• Return to Geneva

g. 10 November: Geneva

• Day trip of Geneva (J’deau, CERN, United Nations)


Upon doing my research, I found out that lifts to areas with a good view of the Matterhorn are closed early November and won't upon until the last week in time for the winter season (e.g. Rothorn, Sunnegga), just want to confirm if this is true. The same is true for lifts in Jungfrau, the lifts to Grindelwald-Männlichen are closed during the days we plan to visit. We also want to hike the trail from Zermatt-Findeln-Sunnegga.

In light of the fact that some of the important areas of Zermatt and Jungfrau are closed during our trip, would it still be worth it to visit these Zermatt and Jungfrau?

3. St. Moritz

Should I even consider this at all? I have read about how beautiful St. Moritz is, but unless we are spending a ski vacation here, I feel it might not be worth it.

Thanks all for your inputs.

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1. Re: Switzerland in November 2012


There is a lot to take in in your post. I'm not sure I have taken it in, maybe I am confused by your various options.

It is possible to have a great Swiss holiday in early November, but please don't count on high altitude hikes. There may well be snow in the higher regions. If you want to include hiking, consider the valleys. Sometimes early November can bring out the crisp autumn air, and you may have wonderful, sunny weather. But you can't count on it, so a good November holiday would be quite a simple one with lots of bad weather options but still ready to take advantage of those gorgeous crisp autumnal days.

With the time you have, I would suggest no more than 3 bases that connect sensibly by train routes. For example

Montreux, Interlaken, Lucerne.

This would take the scenic goldenpass route. In November, Interlaken may well be the best option for a base in the area. If the weather is fine, head for the Lauterbrunnen Valley for hiking, or on a clear day to the Jungfraujoch. If the weather isn't great, Bern is beautiful and has some great museums. While in Montreux of course you must visit the Chateau de Chillon. You can also see Gruyeres without the hoards of summer tourists.


Montreux, Locarno, Lucerne. The train from Montreux to Locarno connecting at Domodossola passes through the stunning Centovalli, and Locarno could be relatively mild. From there you can travel the William Tell Express train and boat journey which operates all year. (it's described in www.lakelucerne.ch or google William Tell Express) If the weather is nice hiking at Rigi Kaltbad is a possibility.

You mention St Moritz. This area is dry and we have experienced lovely early November weather sometimes. But it is very far from your start and end point of Geneva and I discounted it for that reason.

Good luck!!

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2. Re: Switzerland in November 2012

Thanks Swiss fan! I decided to cut a lot of places out of the itinerary because it's just too complicated (e.g. Swiss Italian region, St. Moritz, and Lucerne). Have decided to make Grindelwald as our base in the Alps and go to Jungfrau.

Two things:

1. We also plan to go to Zermatt just for a day trip from Grindelwald, any suggestions on good fondue places to eat there? If not, places to get good local food?

2. Another thing is I am also looking at the most economical way for our transportation, while I have a demi-tariff, my boyfriend will be flying in from the US. Any suggestions what kind of card I should get him? We will be traveling around Switzerland from 2-10 November (9 days).

Thanks :)

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3. Re: Switzerland in November 2012

You should plan to stay at least one night in Zermatt. It will also increase your chance of getting some clear weather to see the Matterhorn. If you really are planing to go there and back in the day, check the local weather forecast before leaving Grindelwald. Not all restaurants will be open in early November, but I would recommend the Stockhorn for local atmosphere and fondue.

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4. Re: Switzerland in November 2012

Hmmm, I see. So between Grindelwald and Zermatt in November, what would be the better base? I found this great B&B in Grindelwald but now that I've read all these posts between Grindelwald and Zermatt I'm torn.

5. Re: Switzerland in November 2012

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