Conquering Switzerland In 2.5 Days

On a recent weekend trip to Switzerland, I found much to see and many different cultures to experience. I suggest using these four tricks to make the most of your time in Switzerland.

switzerland train
PHOTO MAURA LEWANDOWSKI

1. To save some dough, eat al fresco. 

It turns out that the rumor that everything in Switzerland is more expensive is painfully true and obvious even from inside the airport.  If you find yourself stressed about the cost of food in restaurants, I recommend picking up some ready-made lunch or dinner items at the local grocery and dining outside. I really enjoyed my salad and quinoa mix, and it was a great way to people watch and enjoy the scenery.

swiss mountains
PHOTO MAURA LEWANDOWSKI

2. Kill two birds with one stone: take a train.

In my two and a half days in Switzerland, I visited four different places in different parts of the country. I was able to see a lot of the country because I took trains everywhere. You should take advantage of train travel in Switzerland not only because you get from point A to point B, but you also get to view some beautiful scenery. You may be tempted to buy the expensive Golden Pass ticket, but trust me, you can see some magnificent views from the regular train and save a few euros!

swiss food
PHOTO MAURA LEWANDOWSKI

3. Take the train but make sure it’s the correct one! 

When you take the train in Switzerland, be sure to check you are on the train that will take you all the way to your destination. When I was traveling to a small city outside of Interlaken, I was very surprised when the man who checked my ticket told me I was on a train bound for a different city than the one listed on my ticket. Apparently, the train had split at one stop and half the train headed west and the other half went east. The conductor was very kind and let me off at the next stop and told me that a train would come by to take me the correct destination. Be sure to learn from my mistake and read the signs posted on the train doors about which cars are bound for which direction, or you might also find yourself accidentally visiting Lütschental, a tiny town with a great view!

4. Visit Lauterbrunnen and The Horner Pub. 

If you want to experience a small mountain town with fabulous waterfalls and a glorious view of the Alps, Lauterbrunnen is your destination of choice. Lauterbrunnen is just a quick train ride from Interlaken and is a great place to go for lunch and relax for a bit. There isn’t too much to visit in Lauterbrunnen, but there are countless spots for picture taking and basking in the glory of the Alps. To warm up a bit, I recommend a pit stop at The Horner Pub. As the sign says, The Horner Pub is the best bar in Lauterbrunnen…because it’s the only pub in the town. While I dined on my scrumptious lunch of tomato soup and a pint, only locals surrounded me and filled my ears with very fast German. In my opinion, a trip to Lauterbrunnen and The Horner Pub is a great way to experience authentic German-Swiss culture.

Switzerland
PHOTO MAURA LEWANDOWSKI

Maura Lewandowski

Maura is from Pittsburgh, PA and loved visiting Lisbon. When it comes to traveling, she's a planner. She does research before she arrives at the destination and makes sure she can fit in as much as possible.

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