Lake Lucerne, the Bernese Oberland, and Lake Geneva’s Lavaux Wine Country

Note: The July 2 departure coincides with the annual Jazz Festival in Montreux.

Overview

In a land of fairytale mountain beauty, we’ve crafted a fantastic journey using the remarkable Swiss system of cable cars and cogwheel trains to bring you high into the Alps for spectacular—yet moderate—hiking adventures. Near enchanting Lucerne, hike the panoramic trails of Mt. Rigi and craggy Mt. Pilatus, and in the Bernese Oberland, follow stunning pathways that bring you to the Eiger, Monch, and Jungfrau—the magnificent North Face of the Alps—and to the otherwordly Lauterbrunnen Valley. Our grand finale is in charming Vevey, in classic Swiss wine country, for wine tasting and hikes along terraced vineyards above Lake Geneva.

Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1-4
Lucerne / Pilatus and Rigi / Murren

We hike the high trails of Pilatus and Rigi amid classic Swiss farmsteads, visit an artisan cheesemaker, and make a scenic return to Lucerne by cogwheel train and boat. In the dramatic Bernese Oberland, the sheer faces of the Eiger, Monch, and Jungfrau are the reward for our hike to Männlichen (7,687'). Another hike brings us into the immense, U-shaped Lauterbrunnen Valley, with its 3,000-foot-high walls. Overnights are in charming Lucerne and car-free Murren, where the only sounds are of cowbells and waterfalls.

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Days 5-6
Kandersteg / Lake Oeschinensee

From the gorgeous Swiss village of Kandersteg, a cable car whisks us to a high viewpoint for a delightful picnic before we head out on the trail above Oeschinensee, a turquoise lake nestled in an amphitheater of jagged peaks. Our hike in the deep Gasterntal Valley brings panoramas of the summits and glaciers of the Jungfrau-Aletsch World Heritage Site, home to the Aletsch, the largest glacier in the Alps.

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Days 7-9
Vevey / Lake Geneva

A beautiful train ride changes the scene entirely, bringing us to Lake Geneva and beguiling Montreux, with its lakeshore lined by Belle Epoque villas and a grand backdrop of the Savoy Alps. Ancient vineyards rise high above Lake Geneva’s Lavaux wine country, and we hike through vineyards from St-Saphorin to a lovely chateau above Villette. Depart on Day 9.

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Highlights

Highlights

Cable cars and gondolas do the steep climbing—you enjoy hiking and top-of-the-world views!
Spectacular rock peaks and glaciers of the Bernese Oberland, heart of the Swiss Alps
Picturesque alpine villages of Grindelwald, Murren, and Kandersteg
Wine country of Lavaux above Lake Geneva, charming Old Town of Vevey

Details

Length: 9 days
Cost From: $6495  
Arrive: Lucerne, Switzerland
Depart: Vevey, Switzerland
Lodging: 8 nights hotels
Meals: All meals included except 3 dinners
Activity: Hiking / Trekking, Cultural Adventures
Trip Level:

8 hiking days on moderate trails, 2-6 hours a day, altitudes up to 7,900 feet, van support (for luggage or if you wish to skip a day’s hike)

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