Scenery for the Discerning Traveler
Lucerne – the gateway to central Switzerland and perhaps, all of Europe – sits on its eponymous lake surrounded by mountainous majesty. This city is the perfect jumping off point to seeing the country’s major attractions. In Lucerne, however, the main attraction is the scenery. And the best way to see it all is by train with your Swiss Pass.
There are a few mountaintops within your reach. Care to shout from a 7,000-foot mountaintop? Take an unforgettable ride on the world’s steepest cogwheel railway to the peak of Mt. Pilatus. Or visit the royal peak of Rigi – known as the “queen of the mountains.” The Wilhelm Tell Express (feel free to hum the tune of the same name) ferries passengers by boat from Lucerne to the foot of the Gotthard pass. The boat is easily accessible, across the street from the train station. When the boat arrives in Fluelen you’ll board a panoramic train to take you to the palm-tree-packed Ticino region of Switzerland.
If you’re interested in seeing more of Switzerland, choose from one of the scenic train tours that start in Lucerne. The GoldenPass line links Lucerne with Montreux, on Lake Geneva, via Interlaken. This panoramic route is among the finest railway experiences to be had anywhere in the world. Pass edelweiss meadows and picturesque villages all while enjoy voluminous upgrades and mouth-watering meals. Take an excursion to Jungfraujoch, the highest altitude railway station on the continent. Known as the “Top of Europe” – your train will stop two miles high in the sky.
But this is more than a city with mountains. Sports soar here. Find rowing regattas, golf courses and lots of horsing around: mainly races and horse-jumping events. On Tuesdays and Saturdays, you’ll find markets galore: crafts, fish, fruits, veggies and flowers scattered around town. At Christmas, stroll through the stalls, surrounded by sparkle, cider and Swiss beauty.
Tradition and modernity stand side-by-side with ease in Lucerne. From the covered, medieval Chapel Bridge (considered to be one of the oldest in Europe) to the Swiss Museum of Transport – the most visited museum in all of Switzerland – you’ll marvel at architecture old and new.
Come see what makes Lucerne and central Switzerland tick. Now check your watch – isn’t it time you went?
Contributed by: Rachel, E-business Editor, who has experienced much more of Europe than she ever imagined, traveling by train.