Grand Tour - Western and Central Part
Picture-book perfect and straight to the heart.
Important: The recommended time for the Grand Tour of Switzerland is between April and October, as long as the Alpine passes are open. The closing of the Alpine passes during winter can imply huge changes in the planned itinerary. However, alternatives such as tunnels or car-train services are available.
Please inform yourself about the road conditions under http://www.alpen-paesse.ch before you leave.
For any last minute request for a departure within the next 10 days, please contact us by telephone.
Picture-book perfect and straight to the heart.
Grand Tour - Western and Central part
After arrival pick-up your car at the airport and drive to your hotel to check-in.
Fondation Beyeler might be Basels most famous museum, but it is by no means the only reason to visit Switzerlands cultural capital. With more than 40 renowned exhibition venues, the city has the highest concentration of museums in the country, several of which count among Europe's finest. Open-air works by celebrated artists also define the cityscape. In striking contrast to the Old Town, the city flaunts cutting-edge architecture from the likes of renowned architects such as Herzog & de Meuron, Mario Botta and Richard Meier. The Rhine flows right through its heart and enchants with its romantic and refreshing bathing spots.
Overnight in Basel.
Day 2: Basel – Neuchâtel (ca. 121 km)
Beyond the city gates of Basel lies the wild expanse of the Jura and Franches-Montagnes. Open meadows and fo¬rests and the mystical Doubs Nature Park on the French-Swiss border shape the heights between Saignelégier and La Chaux-de- Fonds. The town was the cradle of the Swiss watchmaking industry and the birthplace and workplace of Le Corbusier. Together with the neighbouring town of Le Locle, it was awarded UNESCO World Heritage site in 2009. Neuchâtel, called Neuenburg in German, has a rich cultural and architectural past. The Castle and the Colle¬giate Church (built in the Gothic style in the Middle Ages, a Reformed Church), which can both be seen from afar, are the city's landmarks.
Overnight in Neuchâtel.
Day 3: Neuchâtel – Gstaad (ca. 111 km)
From Neuchâtel continue your drive to Fribourg, which is nestled on a rock promontory and surrounded by the Saane River. It is one of the largest medieval towns in the country. Over 200 unique Gothic facades from the 15th century impart incomparable medieval charm to the Old Town. Drinking a cup of coffee in a leisurely fashion, admi¬ring the old facades and beautiful fountains, listening to two local languages or gazing from the 74-meter spire of the Cathedral far into the countryside - this is an experience enjoyed in Fribourg. Further on your way you will pass the Greyerzer (Gruyère) region, with its rolling green landscape and home to the world-famous Gruyère cheese. The picture-book medieval town of Gruyères is perched on top of a small hill.
Overnight in Gstaad.
Day 4: Gstaad – Lucerne (ca. 315 km)
Before you go on to Lucerne enjoy the beautiful scenery of the chalet village Gstaad, which attracts countless stars and starlets. Continue your journey to Interlaken. Enjoy a lake cruise on the turquoise Lake Brienz and neighbouring Lake Thun that are situated in the spectacular mountain setting of the Bernese Oberland. From Interlaken you can experience the majestic Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau summits, together with close-up views of the longest glacial flow. The Jungfrau railway travels from the heart of the mountains to Europe's highest mountain station at 3454 me¬ters altitude. If you have some time left before you head to Lucerne, Bern is the place to spend it. Not many cities have managed to retain their historic features quite as successfully as Bern, the capital of Switzerland. The old town of Bern is an UNESCO World Heritage Site and thanks to its 6 kilometres of arcades - the locals refer to them as ‚Lauben' - boasts one of the longest weather-sheltered shopping promenades in Europe.
Overnight in Lucerne.
Day 5: Lucerne – Zürich (ca. 140 km)*
Lucerne is the gateway to central Switzerland at Lake Lucerne and it is embedded within an impressive mountainous panorama. Thanks to its attractions, its souvenir and watch shops, the beautiful lakeside setting and the nearby ex¬cursion mountains of Rigi, Pilatus and Stanserhorn, the town is a destination for many travel groups and individuals on their journey through central Switzerland. One of the highlights along the Grand Tour lies in Lucerne - the Chapel Bridge. The covered, wooden pedestrian walkway on the Chapel Bridge was built in the 14th century. In 1993 the bridge burned down but it was reconstructed true to the original. This large fire hit the international headlines. Do visit this landmark bridge. Drive to Zürich and check in to the hotel.
Overnight in Zürich.
*Departing from Basel possible too.
Day 6: Departure
As a «metropolis of experiences» by the water, with a magnificent view of the snowcapped Alps on the horizon, Zü¬rich offers an unique mixture of attractions – over 50 museums and more than 100 art galleries, international fashion labels, Zurich designs, and the most flamboyant and lively nightlife in Switzerland. Recreational activities range from a visit to the riverside and lakeside bathing areas in the very heart of the city, to a spectacular hike on the Uetliberg mountain. One of the recommended Grand Tour attractions is the Grossmünster, which is an Evangelical Protestant church in the Old Town of Zürich, and is one of Zürichs most famous landmarks. Construction of this Ro¬manesque church was begun in 1100 and it has been rebuilt and renovated several times since.
Drive to Zürich airport for car drop-off at the airport.
West and Central Grand Tour of Switzerland
- 5 x overnight stays with breakfast in Basel, Neuchâtel, Gstaad, Lucerne, Basel or Zürich (1 night in each destination)
- Rental car
- Grand Tour of Switzerland Road Map from Hallwag
- Swiss Coupon Pass with "2 for 1" Dine & Discover offers en route worth over CHF 4500
Good to know
- The Grand Tour attractions in the day to day itinerary are a selection, total there are 44 highlights to explore.
- Book the Swiss Half Fare Card and save up to 50% for most trains, buses, boats and mountain railways as well as public transport in 75 Swiss towns and cities.
- Additional rental car categories on request
Swiss Coupon Pass
Swiss Coupon Pass