When you think of Switzerland, the first things that come to mind are cheeses, chocolates, and cuckoo clocks. But dig a little under the surface, and this land of breathtaking alpine scenery and storybook charm is much, much more – uber-cool cities, heartwarming traditions and folklore, attention-grabbing architecture, and hearty cuisine. With tour operator volume buys plus our low everyday prices you can save up to 40% versus assembling the same itinerary on your own! Book your Switzerland tour today with AffordableTours.com, your discounted tour headquarters. View Switzerland Tour Deals and DiscountsSwitzerland Travel Guide
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Switzerland Travel Guide
Switzerland Tours Highlights
- Marvel at The Matterhorn, an iconic symbol of Switzerland and one of the highest peaks in the Alps.
- Take the train to the Top of Europe at Jungfraujoch and admire awe-inspiring views from the observation deck.
- Visit the picturesque glacier village of Grindelwald and enjoy magnificent vistas of snow-clad mountains.
- Get active with hiking, biking, kayaking, skiing, and mountain climbing in the resort town of Interlaken, an enthralling town with acres of flower gardens.
- Explore Zürich, a vibrant, artsy city, regularly voted the most livable city in the world and one of Europe's hippest destinations.
- Stroll through medieval old town Lausanne with its stunning gothic cathedral, charming cafes, and strikingly beautiful alpine scenery.
- Admire the inspirational Chillon Castle (Chateau de Chillon) near Montreux, located on the scenic Lake Geneva.
- Discover St. Moritz, Switzerland's chic resort town surrounded by jagged peaks, glistening lakes, and lush forests.
Switzerland Tours Travel Tips
- Small towns in Switzerland are walkable with well-marked signs. Larger cities have efficient public transportation that's easy to navigate. Taxis can be expensive and are easily avoided.
- Switzerland showcases its staggeringly beautiful alpine landscape to visitors with a network of cable cars, funiculars, and gondolas. The quick ascent to high altitudes can leave you feeling lightheaded, so remember to take it easy even if you're just walking around an observation deck. Drink lots of water and remember to bring sunscreen and sunglasses.
- The tap water in Switzerland is one of the sweetest tasting and cleanest in the world. There are also many free-flowing fountains in city squares, towns, and villages. Feel free to skip the bottled water and save some money. Note, if the water is not potable, there's usually a sign saying so, for example, in train toilets.
- You can't possibly go home without a stash of Swiss chocolates. Avoid the touristy souvenir shops and airport kiosks. Instead, pick up equally delicious, if not better chocolates from a supermarket, often at a fraction of the cost.
- Switzerland has four official languages – German, Italian, French, and Romansh. Swiss German is widely spoken, as is English, so you won't have a problem with communication.
- Although it's in Europe, Switzerland has its own currency, the Swiss Franc (CHF). Credit and debit cards are widely accepted but it's a good idea to have some cash on hand to pay street vendors. Some shops and restaurants accept Euros but you will likely get change in Swiss Francs.
Switzerland Tours Things To Do
- Discover Lively Zürich
As Switzerland's largest city and affluent banking capital, Zürich oozes sophistication. Located on the shores of Lake Zürich and astride the River Limmat, the city is wonderfully atmospheric with cobbled streets and quaint cafes in the Old Town. In striking contrast, the mile-long Bahnhofstrasse beckons your inner shopaholic with avant-garde designer stores selling high fashion, jewelry, and watches. Zürich is also home to dozens of museums and art galleries. And for the little ones, there's the Zürich Zoo complete with a penguin parade and elephant park.
You Should KnowThe Zürich Card, a city travel pass, is a great way to explore everything the city has to offer and save time and money too. You can purchase a card with a validity of 24 or 72 hours and enjoy unlimited 2nd-class travel by bus, tram, train, boat, and cableway in Zürich and the surrounding areas, free or discounted admission to dozens of museums, a River Limmat cruise, and a 50% discount on the Zürich Old Town Walking Tour.
- Visit Captivating Lake Lugano
Strategically located on Switzerland's border with Italy in the canton of Ticino, Lake Lugano offers visitors a tantalizing taste of the Mediterranean. Thanks to the mild climate, the area is resplendent with citrus, fig, and palm trees, set against a breathtaking backdrop of densely wooded mountainsides and snow-capped peaks. The sun-splashed piazzas of the small towns surrounding the lake have a decidedly Italian ambiance.
You Should KnowFor panoramic views, ride one of the two funicular railways on Lugano's mountains – the Monte San Salvatore and the Monte Brè – which offer spectacular vistas of the surrounding alpine countryside. You can also take the Brusino-Serpiano cable car or rent a boat on the lake.
- Admire Europe’s Largest Waterfall
The awe-inspiring roar of the water at the Rhine Falls (Rheinfall), the largest in Europe, has to be experienced to be believed. Located in Schaffhausen, the falls span 150 meters and spill over a six-story ledge of limestone dating back to the Jurassic era. A boat will take you out to the middle of the waterfall where a mighty rock stands proud, having withstood the elements for thousands of years. Boat trips also take guests to the picturesque Wörth Castle located on a river island. Visitor platforms jut out partially over the falls, allowing you to view the natural spectacle up close. And if you're feeling especially daring, you can rent a canoe.
Best Time To VisitThe Rhine Falls are at their most spectacular in the summer months of June and July when they swell in volume from the melted snow.
- Take a Scenic Train Journey
Switzerland has more than 3,000 miles of railway tracks. That's a lot for a country that measures 135 miles by 220 miles. This is why there's no better way to experience the magnificent alpine views than from a scenic train journey such as the Golden Pass Line, the Glacier Express, the Bernina Express, and many more. Ride past mirror-like lakes and lush alpine meadows, climb through high mountain passes, and enjoy stunning views of the Alps, getting off the train now and then to explore historic castles and charming mountain villages.
You Should KnowThe Swiss Travel Pass is a smart buy if you're touring Switzerland. The pass covers not only trains, but also boats, buses, and some mountain lifts across the country. Note that while you can hop onto most Swiss trains with your Swiss Travel Pass, the scenic train routes require a paid seat reservation.
- Explore Charming Zermatt
Imagine horse-drawn carriages and quaint chalets against a strikingly jagged peak shaped like a shark's fin rising dramatically in the background. That's the hypnotically beautiful mountain village of Zermatt for you, situated at the foot of the legendary Matterhorn (4478 m) in the Valais Alps. An unforgettable excursion that's a must-do in Zermatt is the Gornergrat Bahn, the highest open-air rail in Europe, which carries visitors on a 30-minute ride through larch forests and steep ravines to arrive at a viewing platform where the scenery defies description.
You Should KnowZermatt is a car-free alpine village and is a great place to enjoy the incomparable Swiss scenery. However, it's a popular tourist resort and can get quite crowded in both the summer and winter seasons, so book accommodations early to avoid disappointment.
- Get Active in St. Moritz
Situated in an alpine valley surrounded by verdant forests, towering snow-capped mountains, and crystal-clear lakes, St. Moritz is an elegant resort town that is quintessentially Swiss. This superb year-round destination gives summer visitors the chance to enjoy sailing, hiking, horseback riding, golf, and mountain climbing. And as a town that's twice hosted the Winter Olympics, St. Moritz is no stranger to the entire gamut of winter snow sports, including skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing, and bobsledding.
You Should KnowYou can ride the Glacier Express from Zermatt to St. Moritz, a 7.5-hour journey through pristine mountain landscape and picturesque alpine meadows, crossing nearly 100 tunnels and 300 bridges over steep gorges. With large picture windows and an average speed of just 24 miles/hour, this narrow-gauge train journey is ideal for photography and a great way to tick off three items on your bucket list – Zermatt, St. Moritz, and the Glacier Express.
- Relax in Beautiful Lucerne
With a car-free medieval Old Town on the shores of the sparkling Lake Lucerne, surrounded by mountains, with waterfront promenades, sun-drenched plazas, bubbling fountains, and a historic covered bridge – it's no wonder that Lucerne is a tourist magnet. The city's most famous landmark and the centerpiece of the town's landscape is the 14th-century Chapel Bridge, one of the oldest covered bridges in Europe. Also worth visiting is the Swiss Transport Museum with its collection of exhibits of all forms of transport.
You Should KnowThe Lucerne area is a wonderful place to relax and take in the beautiful views. Ride the Mount Stanserhorn CabriO cable car for a 360-degree panorama from the open-air sun deck. Head to Mt. Rigi for stunning viewpoints. Or ascend to the top of Mt. Pilatus by aerial cableway and descend on a cogwheel railway, taking a boat back to Lucerne.
- Immerse Yourself in Swiss Gastronomy
Before you head home with a suitcase full of chocolates and cheeses, don't miss the chance to experience Switzerland's marvelous gastronomic traditions. You can tour the finest cheesemaking regions in the Alps, easily recognizable by the iconic Swiss dairy cows with leather collars and tinkling bells, grazing in tranquil alpine pastures, nibbling on wildflowers, grasses, and herbs that make Swiss cheeses so flavorful. And after you've seen how the cheeses are made, sample some authentic Swiss fondue, a delicious dish of melted cheese served in a communal pot and eaten by dipping bread with long-stemmed forks, best accompanied by a dry, white wine.
You Should KnowThe Emmental Cheese Route (short version 22 miles, long version 50 miles) can be completed on a bicycle or e-bike and will take you through rolling farmlands. Stop at the enchanting Burgdorf Castle and visit the Emmental Schaukaserei (show dairy), a museum that showcases the history of cheese production as well as live cheese making.
Switzerland Tour Packages
Like many European countries, the temperatures in Switzerland vary by region. This means you can choose the type of trip you would like based on the time of year you travel in. Switzerland is known for its picturesque hiking trails, but it is also a popular destination in the winter months for its snow-covered mountains and winter sports available. Switzerland is the perfect destination for any time of the year!
- Summer - July to August - Best Season
The peak tourist season in Switzerland is during the summer months of July and August. With average daytime temperatures in the 70s, this is a great time to join a Switzerland tour. However, be prepared for crowds at popular attractions.
- Spring and Autumn - May to June/September to October - Shoulder Season
The shoulder seasons of spring and autumn (May and June, September and October) are perhaps the best time to visit Switzerland. Daytime temperatures range from 60-70F and the mad rush of summer tourists is missing.
- Winter - December to March - Good Season
If you love winter sports, then the colder months from December to March are the ideal time to visit Switzerland. Even if you're not into skiing, provided you're willing to brave the cold (daytime temperatures of around 35-45F), you'll be rewarded with spectacular views of a winter wonderland and delightful Christmas markets.
Switzerland Tours Frequently Asked Questions
- Do I need a visa or vaccinations before traveling to Switzerland?
U.S. citizens do not need a tourist visa for visits of 90 days or less to Switzerland. Your passport should be valid for 6 months after your planned departure from Switzerland. There should be at least one blank page in your passport for the stamp. There are no vaccinations required before joining a Switzerland tour.
- What’s included on Switzerland tours?
Switzerland tours include accommodation, transportation, many meals, all the must-see highlights, and top-rated attractions, as well as the services of a tour director. Many Switzerland tours also include authentic dining experiences and exclusive sightseeing with knowledgeable local guides.
- What’s the best Switzerland tour?
The country is packed with amazing sights and experiences and you can't go wrong whichever Switzerland tour you choose. Just pick the one that suits your vacation dates and duration.
- How much do Switzerland tours cost?
Switzerland tours start at around $250 per person per day. You can combine your Switzerland tour with a longer European adventure. Call us today for the best deals and unmatched prices on Switzerland tours.
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Reviews for Switzerland Tours and Vacations
This tour operator delivers what they promise. We keep coming back for more.
Fast paced as tour covers 5 countries/8 cities in 9 days. Lots of walking. Lots of bus rides going from location to location. Great way to see a lot in short period of time. Tour director and driver were great. Optional events also very good and reasonably priced.
Exemplary service from Insight's Tour Director and Coach Driver who did their utmost best to meet all the needs of our group of diverse travellers. Our Tour Director was kind, helpful, patient and highly knowledgeable. The coach was comfortable, spacious and clean. I had a fabulous vacation and hope to go on another trip next winter!
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