What's in this guide?

  1. What is the Swiss Travel Pass?
  2. Where can I go with my Swiss Travel Pass?
  3. How do I travel in Switzerland by train?

If you want to explore Switzerland, why not use public transport? Buy your Swiss Travel Pass and enjoy unlimited travel on trains, buses, boats or cable cars.

What is the Swiss Travel Pass?

The Swiss Travel Pass allows you to travel freely throughout Switzerland, by train, bus and boat. Also, you’ll benefit from these advantages:

  • Unlimited travel by train, bus and boat
  • Unlimited journeys onboard the panoramic trains
  • Unlimited access to Swiss public transport in more than 90 cities
  • Free admission to over 500 museums
  • Access to the following mountain railways: Rigi, Stanserhorn and Stoos
  • Discounts of up to 50% on other mountain trains
  • Offers of up to 30% off SBB rail offers

How do I get my Swiss Travel Pass?

To take advantage of this exceptional pass, you must be a non-resident of Switzerland or Liechtenstein.

There are two options to choose from when buying your Swiss Travel Pass:

  • Adults (over 26) from 232 CHF. Choose between the Swiss Travel Pass and the Swiss Travel Pass Flex.
  • Young people (under 25) from 164 CHF. Choose between the Swiss Travel Pass Youth and the Swiss Travel Pass Flex Youth. Young people have the same advantages as adults but benefit from a 30% reduction on the initial price of the Pass.

If you are a holder of the free “Swiss Family Card”, children aged 6 to 16 can travel for free. However, the child must be accompanied by at least one parent. For children under 6, trips are free.

Where can I travel with my Swiss Travel Pass?

With a Swiss Travel Pass, there are many possible excursions by boat or train. For more inspiration, check out our guide to the most scenic trains in Switzerland.

The Grand Train Tour

Do you want to discover Switzerland? Good news! The Grand Train Tour offers you the opportunity to travel through Switzerland with different public transport: fascinating panoramic lines or relaxed boat cruises. Switzerland by train, bus and boat is a wonderful experience. Embark on a circuit of almost 800 miles and enjoy all the landscapes of the country: lakes, mountains, etc. Additionally, the complete tour can be experienced with just one ticket - the Swiss Travel Pass.

The Grand Train Tour offers a few different options:

  • History of Water – a trip of 3 days and 2 nights to discover the lakes and rivers of Switzerland.
  • Glaciers and Palm Trees – a 4-day, 3-night trip that combines mountains and palm trees.
  • Discovering Hidden Treasures – a 3-day, 2-night journey on the iconic Gotthard route.
  • The Classic – a 7 day and 6 night trip through the most famous cities of the country: Montreux, Zermatt, St. Moritz and many more…
  • The Best-Of – a trip of 5 days and 4 nights on the Glacier Express and Golden Pass lines.
  • The Original – a trip of 8 days and 7 nights. This trip offers you a complete tour of Switzerland with the most beautiful panoramic trains in Europe.

To find out more about the Grand Train Tour of Switzerland, find all the information on the SBB website.

The Glacier Express

Dubbed the slowest express train in the world, the Glacier Express takes you across the Alps in around eight hours, passing through 91 tunnels and 291 bridges.

The Glacier Express offers a journey for the senses, from the Engadine to the Matterhorn. On its relaxing journey between the dazzling town of St. Moritz and the equally sophisticated town of Zermatt, the Glacier Express delights you with its scenic attractions and state-of-the-art technical achievements. With its oversized panoramic windows, the Glacier Express offers you breath-taking views of unique landscapes.

What you need to know:

  • This route is fully covered by the Swiss Travel Pass (Flex). In addition to a valid ticket, a seat reservation is required (max. 90 days in advance).
  • The train is subject to a supplement: 14 May - 23 Oct 2022: long section 49 CHF, short section* 39 CHF. 

*The short sections are: St. Moritz - Chur - St Motitz, Chur - Andermatt – Chur, Andermatt - Brig – Andermatt, Brig - Zermatt – Brig

Bernina Express

This premium panoramic train connects northern and southern Europe, passing through the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Rhaetian Railway (between Thusis and Tirano). This bright red train masters every ascent, offering unparalleled views of not only mountains and glaciers, but also palm trees.

Crossing the Alps on the Bernina Express is certainly one of the most spectacular ways to do it. Along the way, the Bernina Express travels over the Landwasser Viaduct, also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

In total, the train passes through 55 tunnels and 196 bridges on its journey from Chur to Tirano. During your journey, discover marvellous sites, such as the Montebello curve with a view of the Bernina massif, the Morteratsch glacier, the three lakes Lej Pitschen, Lej Nair and Lago Bianco, Alp Grüm and the viaduct Circular from Brusio.

That’s not all – a Bernina Express gift box filled with Lindt chocolate hearts and 100% organic iced tea awaits you.

What you need to know:

  • Distance: 89 miles
  • Travel time: between 4 hours and 4 hours and 30 minutes
  • Departure and arrival: departure is from Chur or St Moritz (Switzerland) and arrival at Tirano station (in Italy).
  • If you wish to travel on Bernina Express trains, you must reserve your seat (maximum 90 days in advance). You must pay a supplement to the Swiss Travel Pass when making your reservation. This additional cost varies according to the time of year and is between 20 CHF and 26 CHF).

Lucerne–Interlaken Express

This Express train journey connects 2 cities with each other: Lucerne and Interlaken. On the program for this journey: alpine panorama, lakes with turquoise waters and numerous waterfalls that adorn the landscape along the way.

Lucerne and Interlaken are undoubtedly two of the most popular tourist destinations in Switzerland. But the most beautiful thing is the journey between them: board the train in central Switzerland, sit back and relax. Once in the Jungfrau region, be swept away by the splendour of the landscape, all in just under two hours.

This panoramic train is the first section of the Golden Pass line, which goes from Interlaken to Montreux. This section is also part of the Grand Train Tour of Switzerland. Along the way, the premium scenic train passes five crystal-clear mountain lakes as well as several waterfalls and rivers. Shortly before Meiringen, the train switches to cogwheel technology and climbs up to the Brünig Pass. After the descent, it arrives in Brienz, a popular starting point for boat cruises on the eponymous lake. Also worth visiting: the Ballenberg open-air museum.

What you need to know:

  • Departures every hour in both directions. Trains that make Interlaken Ost – Lucerne run from 07:04 to 20:04 and trains running from Lucerne to Interlaken Ost travel from 06:06 to 21:06.
  • This journey is covered by the Swiss Travel Pass (Flex). Seat reservation is recommended but not mandatory. The price for reserving a seat varies according to the seasons and is between 10 and 14 CHF.

Gotthard Panorama Express and Rigi Railways

Departing from Lugano or Bellinzona, this trip takes you to the heart of Switzerland, to Arth-Goldau. Along the way, enjoy Wassen Church from three different angles; thanks to the daring route of the railway and its many looping tunnels.

On board a steamer or a modern motorboat, you can continue your journey unencumbered via Flüelen, crossing Lake Lucerne. Many places steeped in history, such as the Rütliwiese, the Schillerstein and the Tell Chapel, welcome visitors with their original Swiss charm. In the afternoon, the port of Lucerne welcomes travellers. The port is located next to the famous Pont de la Chapelle. If you wish, you can stay on the panorama train to Arth-Goldau with direct access to the Rigi railway network, where you can board a mountain train and begin your ascent. This Rigi train ride gives you 360-degree panoramic views of the lakes of Lucerne, Zug, and Lauerz, among others.

The Gotthard Panorama Express and Rigi routes:

  • Lugano/Bellinzona to Flüelen by train. From Flüelen to Lucerne by steamer.
  • Lugano/Bellinzona - Arth-Goldau by train with connection to the Rigi railways.

The route can also be done in the opposite direction.

What you need to know:

  • The journey time of the Gotthard Panorma express is between 5 and 5 hours and 30 minutes depending on the choice of your route.
  • The Gotthard Panorama Express operates Tuesday to Sunday from April 15 to October 16, 2022. Find the exact departure and arrival times.
  • This journey is fully covered by the Swiss Travel Pass(Flex). The Gotthard Panorama Express only offers 1st class on the Gotthard line between Arth-Goldau/Flüelen and Bellinzona/Lugano. 2nd class bookings are not available. 
  • Reservation: on the panoramic train between Arth-Goldau/Flüelen and Bellinzona/Lugano, an additional CHF 16per person is charged in addition to a valid ticket for the chosen route. Travelers with a 2nd class ticket should also benefit from an upgrade.

More info about Rigi:

  • Arrival: boat or bus to Vitznau, then rack railway to Rigi Kulm; train or bus to Art-Goldau, then rack railway to Rigi Kulm; boat or bus to Weggis, then aerial cable car to Rigi Kaltbad.
  • Travel time to summit: 33 minutes from Vitznau to Rigi Kulm; 37 minutes from Goldau to Rigi Kulm; 10 minutes from Weggis to Rigi Kulm.
  • Fully covered by the Swiss Travel Pass (Flex)

How do I travel in Switzerland by train?

Do you want to explore Switzerland by train? Excellent choice! This trip is an opportunity for you to enjoy sumptuous landscapes in an authentic and environmentally friendly way. With Trainline you can compare train tickets from many train companies, including SBB, for journeys in Switzerland.

SBB's modern and extensive rail network connects the major Swiss cities:

SBB InterCity trains reach a maximum speed of 124mph and offer First and Second class, as well as a restaurant car.