Switzerland travel tips

Switzerland - so close and yet so far from us. A bucket list destination for everyone who likes spectacular nature and outstanding regional cuisine. In Switzerland you will definitely get your money's worth. Yes and the costs - that's a topic in Switzerland, but more on that later.

Short Facts

Currency

Swiss Francs (CHF)

Language

German, French, Italian, Graubünden Romance

Inhabitants

8,57 Millions

Price level

$$$

Hotelempfehlung Schweiz

WHY TRAVEL TO SWITZERLAND?

We have pushed a trip to Switzerland for a long time. How so? We don't really know that either and are still asking ourselves this question. Switzerland is only a few hours drive from our home in Bavaria. Already on the way to our first destination in Grindelwald we realized what we had missed so far. From the autobahn alone, in some parts of Switzerland you will see more immense nature than in other countries after hours of hiking in remote areas. On the route from Lake Constance to the Bernese Oberland you will find emerald green lakes, waterfalls that shoot out of the rock faces and snow-covered four-thousand-meter peaks.
Hotelempfehlung Schweiz
1-Tages-Tour Grindelwald

SIM card - travel tips Switzerland

Roaming charges were abolished in the EU a few years ago. Internet surfing with the national treaty is no longer a problem. Not so in Switzerland. EU roaming does not help you in Switzerland. It is best to deactivate data roaming a few kilometers before the Swiss border and prevent a hefty bill at the end of the month. We didn't buy a Swiss SIM card anyway, but instead booked 2 gigabytes of Swiss data for 15 euros from our domestic provider. Maybe not the cheapest option, but sufficient for us in this case.

Money

Schweizer Franken, Bezahlen in der Schweiz
Although Switzerland is in the heart of Europe, it is not a member of the European Monetary Union, so that the official currency there is not the euro, but the Swiss franc. We mostly paid by credit card, which wasn't a problem. We had withdrawn some cash from an ATM for hikes and food in the huts. The price level in Switzerland is relatively high compared to neighboring countries.

Culinary

One thing in advance. We were very surprised by the Swiss cuisine - in the best possible sense. We expected world-class cheese and chocolate, but who would think that in this land of mountains and cold winters there are also great grape varieties that make excellent wines. We have also found regional tropical fruits and Swiss sturgeon caviar. Of course, we were also lucky that our hotelier in Grindelwald is a real food enthusiast and has taken us into the secrets of Swiss cuisine. So if you fancy Swiss cuisine with Swiss products at a very high level, then take a look at our article about the Boutique Hotel Glacier in Grindelwald.
Hotelempfehlung Schweiz
Hotelempfehlung Schweiz
Hotelempfehlung Schweiz

TRANSPORT AND TRAFFIC IN SWITZERLAND - TRAVEL TIPS

As already mentioned, a trip through Switzerland is an experience - especially for a flat country. The beauty of Swiss nature is unmatched. You should always allow yourself some buffer time for the drive, because there is a small photo stop at every nook and cranny. Depending on the route you choose, you have the opportunity to choose a so-called car transport. We didn't know what it was beforehand either. Car transport are car trains. You drive up on the train by car and let the train drive you through a tunnel. This usually saves you a lot of time, but you may miss a breathtaking drive because the mountain passes are usually really spectacular. The prices for the car transport are relatively high at 25 to 30 francs for the short journey, but it's also a cool experience. If you have the opportunity, be sure to drive the Furka Pass. The nature there is huge and beautiful. You need an annual vignette to use the Swiss motorways. The price for the vignette in 2020 is forty Swiss francs. You can buy the Swiss vignette at rest stops at the border, among other places.

HIGHLIGHTS IN SWITZERLAND

At this point we would like to introduce you to two places in Switzerland that are already well known, but we liked them a lot.

Zermatt and the Matterhorn

The alpine village of Zermatt is located in southeastern Switzerland in the canton of Valais. Only the peaks of the Monte Rosa massif separate Zermatt from Italy. Zermatt is a car-free city. You can only travel by car to Täsch, which is five kilometers away. There are several ways to get from Täsch to Zermatt.
Hotelempfehlung in Zermatt, Schweiz
Schweiz Stadt
The cheapest option that we have chosen is the Täsch-Zermatt shuttle train, which leaves every 20 minutes during the day. There is a parking garage next to the train station, the Matterhorn Terminal Täsch. Here you can book your parking space online [ad]. The journey to Zermatt takes twelve minutes. We couldn't take our eyes off the beautiful surroundings. Past crystal-clear, rushing streams with a view of the Matterhorn. An alternative - but significantly more expensive - is a taxi or limousine service for the transfer from Täsch to Zermatt. When you arrive at the train station in Zermatt, most hotels offer a free pick-up service by e-cart. Alternatively, e-taxis are available at the train station.
Von Täsch nach Zermatt mit der Bahn
Von Täsch nach Zermatt mit der Bahn
You can really do a lot in Zermatt. Glacier skiing all year round, mountain biking or hiking. We decided on the 5-lake trail and the hike on the Gornergrat. Both hikes were breathtaking. Let your mind wander in nature, always with a view of the world-famous Matterhorn. In our blog post Gornergrat vs. 5-Lakes Walk you can read more about it. There are so many more great hikes in the Zermatt area. Take a look at the Zermatt tourism website.
Gornergrat oder 5-Seenweg, Zermatt
Gornergrat oder 5-Seenweg, Zermatt

Grindelwald and Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau

The journey from Germany to Grindelwald takes place via Interlaken. From there it's another 20 minutes, past rushing mountain streams and thundering waterfalls. The trio of Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau are right outside the door.
Hotelempfehlung Schweiz
Hotelempfehlung Schweiz
The legendary Eiger north face is the stuff of legends. With the Aletsch Glacier you will also find the longest glacier in the Alps on the Jungfraujoch. In Grindelwald you can let off steam in terms of action and adventure. Take a break down the mountain on a scooter bike or fly into the valley on the zip line. But even if you like it a little quieter, you will get your money's worth here. The hike to the Bachalpsee should be wonderful. Unfortunately we couldn't test it ourselves because of bad weather.
But the highlight in Grindelwald is probably a ride on the cogwheel train to the Jungfraujoch. Up there on the glacier there is snow in both summer and winter. So think of warm clothing and plan a whole day for the experience. Buy the tickets either at the stations of the cog railway to Jungfraujoch in Interlaken, Grindelwald, Grindelwald Grund or Lauterbrunnen or online.The mountain station is the "Kleine Scheidegg", where the summit lift starts and you have to change trains. There can be a lot going on here. The journey from Grindelwald to the Jungfraujoch takes around two hours one-way, including waiting time when changing trains.
1-Tages-Tour Grindelwald
Ausflug Grindelwald
When we arrived at the mountain station on the Jungfraujoch, we were amazed at what the Swiss had built here at an altitude of almost 4,000 meters. Souvenir shops, a Lindt chocolate world, an ice cream world with great sculptures. For us, the highlights were the Sphynx viewing platform with a view of the Aletsch Glacier and the hike in the snow to a hut. The hike at an altitude of over 3,000 meters takes about 1.5 to 2 hours round trip and is somewhat arduous due to the high location, but worth all the effort.
1-Tages-Tour Grindelwald
Ausflug Grindelwald
Ausflug Grindelwald
Ausflug Grindelwald
Our Jungfraujoch travel tips Switzerland: Be sure to take a look at the current weather forecast before you buy tickets for the Jungfraujoch. The best is of course a day with bright sunshine, so that you can fully enjoy the magnificent view. Because nothing is more annoying than spending 200 francs on the tickets and then looking up at a white wall of clouds and fog. The summit webcam may also help you with the decision. Book a seat reservation for a few francs, because trains from several valleys meet at the Kleine Scheidegg transfer station. Here it can happen that you don't get the first train and have to wait half an hour for the next. Parking at the Grindelwald Grund train station is chargeable. If you have a hotel nearby, it is better to walk the few meters. Because the ticket is already expensive enough.

Climate - travel tips Switzerland

We visited Switzerland in early summer - i.e. June. The weather was perfect on most of the days. As everywhere in Central Europe, this time is highly recommended for outdoor activities. The temperatures were warm in summer even at higher altitudes. Switzerland is probably very well attended in early summer, but there were no crowds in summer 2020 due to the Covid 19 pandemic.

CONCLUSION - TRAVEL TIPS SWITZERLAND

Switzerland has cast a spell over us. We were really pleasantly surprised and can very well imagine visiting this country and especially its breathtaking nature again soon.

Index

Other posts you may be interested in:

Hotels in Switzerland

Our hotel recommendations for you.

Travel Planning

Travel planning made easy. With our file for download, you have everything at a glance.

ITALY
travel tips

La dolce Vita applies 100% here.

Hiking in Zermatt

5-Lakes way vs. Gornergrat

MONTENEGRO travel tips

A natural jewel on the Mediterranean.

Packing lists

Our packing lists for download for your next trip.

MALTA
travel tips

Culinary highlights and great beaches.