Geneva, Yvoire France, Zermatt, St Moritz and Luzern, featuring the Glacier Express Panoramic Train Tour
SPLENDORS OF EUROPE offers this ten day luxury escorted tour to Switzerland featuring Geneva, Yvoire, Zermatt, St Moritz, and Luzern. This is a small group tour of Switzerland that includes walking tours and excursions which highlight Switzerland’s lakes, mountains, history, architecture, art, churches, rustic villages and museums. On this tour the journey is as interesting and fun as the destinations. Two professional escorts ensure that everyone in our small group of 12 or less has a personally rewarding experience. Travel in Switzerland is by first class panoramic train, cogwheel mountain train and luxury lake steamer. The famous Glacier Express panoramic train is enjoyed across the Alps of Switzerland between Zermatt and St Moritz. The Wilhelm Tell Express luxury lake steamer is also enjoyed the length of Lake Luzern on this exceptional tour. This tour includes visits to all the best sights. Travel across the exquisite Alps and Lake Luzern of Switzerland with SPLENDORS OF EUROPE and you’ll enjoy breathtaking scenery daily. You'll have the best vacation trip ever. Visit the hotel, restaurant, and tour photo galleries at the end of this page.
SWITZERLAND and the ALPS
Switzerland offers great beauty and diversity in a small country. Modern metropolitan centers, sophisticated resorts, and sleepy Alpine hamlets are all surrounded by the impressive beauty of the Alps with their snow peaked mountains, picturesque valleys, and clear Alpine lakes. You will experience four of Switzerland’s most stunning locations on this exceptional tour; Geneva, Zermatt, St. Moritz, and Luzern. You will also visit the beautiful village of Yvoire in France.
An exciting array of scenic transportation and excursions are included on this tour. This tour features an unforgettable journey aboard Switzerland’s outstanding panoramic train the Glacier Express. You’ll also enjoy scenic mountain train and cable car excursions near the Matterhorn where you’ll travel to spectacular mountain summits for incredible views of the surrounding peaks and glaciers. You will also visit extraordinary Alpine lakes and enjoy a cruise aboard an elegant lake steamer on beautiful Lake Geneva and stunning Lake Luzern.
The luxury world class accommodations on this tour are exceptional in every way. The dining venues are unforgettable, often boasting award winning chefs serving gourmet cuisine in intimate settings with stunning views of spectacular scenery.
The Glacier Express
The Glacier Express is Switzerland’s premier panoramic train excursion, offering unparalleled views from large picture windows. Crossing central Switzerland, this fascinating seven and one half hour rail journey, passes over 291 bridges and through 91 tunnels and over the Oberalp pass at 6,670 feet. You’ll see lush Alpine pastures, rushing mountain streams, unspoiled mountain forests and Glaciers. On board you will enjoy first class accommodations and the haute cuisine in the elegant surroundings of the stylish dining car.
Geneva is an inviting international city rich in history and culture. It is situated at the southern tip of Lake Leman (Lake Geneva) where the Rhône exits the lake. You’ll enjoy commanding panoramic views of the waterfront and the French Alps nearby. In town you will visit the old historic left bank of the Rhône. Here you’ll discover the 16th century cobbled streets with a pleasant mix of museums, churches, shops and restaurants.
Yvoire is located on a strategic point of land between the “small lake” and the “large lake” on the French shore of Lake Geneva, Count Amédée V the Great, built fortifications their beginning in 1306, during the war between the Dauphiné and Savoy. Later after a change of power, Yvoire became a sleepy fishing village. Today its a charming well preserved medieval village with a fine castle, ramparts and fortified gateways.
Yvoire has been part of the association of the Most Beautiful Villages of France for the last 20 years and is now ranked as "Four Flowers" with Geraniums and Pansies spilling out of every window. Here you’ll enjoy exploring the tiny cobbled streets, shops, restaurants, and panoramic views of Lake Leman (Geneva).
You will enjoy the unspoiled car free village of Zermatt. Located in a narrow mountain valley of meadows and trees, its weathered wood chalets, geranium filled flower boxes and ancient stone roofed houses contribute to its inescapable Alpine ambiance. It’s from the twisting pedestrian streets you will first see the awe-inspiring Matterhorn, that tooth shaped icon of Switzerland. The Gornergratbahn, a 5.5 mile cog wheel train excursion takes us up close to the Matterhorn and further up to Gornergrat station for a broader perspective of the areas expanse of 24 glaciers and the highest peaks in the Alps.
ST. MORITZ SWITZERLAND
Internationally acclaimed for its winter sports events and the famous Cresta run, St. Moritz is a glamorous resort town year round. With 322 sunny days a year, St. Moritz is the sunniest place in Switzerland. The natural mineral springs started a 500 year old reputation as a healing spa resort now offering every manner of spa experience. There are plenty of temptations from the many upscale shops and boutiques in town too. Here you can relax in style and enjoy a bit of pampering before continuing your journey.
LAKE LUZERN SWITZERLAND
You’ll enjoy first class passage aboard an elegant lake steamer on Switzerland’s Lake Luzern. The views of the surrounding mountains are stunning. The lake is surrounded with fiord like cliffs and alpine mountains. Charming story book little villages cling to small meadows at the edge of the lake. On board chefs serve delicious meals and refreshments in wood paneled dining salons which you’ll enjoy while taking in the spectacular Alpine lake scenery.
Located on Lake Luzern where the powerful Reuss river exits the lake, Luzern presents itself as a proud culturally rich and historical town. Wooden covered bridges, stone towers, and cobbled pedestrian areas provide an inviting setting to explore. The town also has a number of fine churches and restaurants.
12 Day Itinerary
SATURDAY - International flight to Geneva International Airport
SUNDAY - Arrive In Geneva. Quiet afternoon walk in old town.
Your escorts greet you at the airport and check you in at our beautiful hotel.
Relax before lunch on the terrace where you’ll get acquainted with your escorts and fellow travelers. Enjoy a relaxing afternoon walk along the lake.
This evening we enjoy welcome cocktails at our hotel before we savor dinner at an exceptional restaurant.
Each evening your escorts can assist you with information about evening entertainment opportunities.L+D
MONDAY – Discover Geneva
This morning we take a walking tour through the cobble stone streets of old town Geneva. Here we visit Cathedral St.-Pierre. We also make a visit to the museum of Art and History.
We enjoy lunch al fresco in old town.
This afternoon, your escorts will take you through the shopping district to explore the many fine specialty shops. We enjoy the terrace of a café or salon de tea for refreshment.
Tonight we take pleasure in a memorable dining experience in old town Geneva. B+L+D
TUESDAY - Geneva to Yvoire
This morning we board our lake steamer and take a scenic cruise to the medieval village of Yvoire. We check into our lake side hotel and enjoy lunch. This afternoon we explore the this lovely village and enjoy the shops, views and all the flowers. B+D
WEDNESDAY - Yvoire to Zermatt.
We board our ship in Yvoire and cruise Lake Geneva enjoying lunch on board. We arrive in Lausanne where we board a train and make the scenic journey to Zermatt. We cross the Forclaz Pass, and enjoy a scenic ride through the Rhône valley, with the Berner Alps to the left, and the Pennines Alps to the right.
We continue up the narrow valley and arrive at the resort town of Zermatt. Here we check into our charming mountain chalet hotel as we catch our first view of the famous Matterhorn.
We enjoy a terrace lunch surrounded by the mountains. This afternoon enjoy a relaxing afternoon orientation walk through this charming Alpine village and hear about its history, and the famous Matterhorn expeditions of the past.
This evening we luxuriate over an elegant gourmet dinner in one of Zermatt’s best restaurants and marvel at the Matterhorn in anticipation of tomorrow’s excursion. B+L+D
THURSDAY - Zermatt, the Matterhorn, and a high Alpine excursion.
This morning we experience first hand, the fascinating world of Alpine peaks, glaciers and expansive ice fields. We make the 43 minute ascent to the Gornergrat on Europe’s highest tunnel free railway, the Gornergratbahn.
The ride offers an ever-changing panorama of glorious Alpine scenery beginning with slopes of verdant forest gradually ebbing to a rocky summit where we find the civilized Gornergrat hotel (10,286ft). From the terrace you will be able to enjoy breathtaking views and hot refreshments. From here you will see the tallest mountains in Switzerland including Monte Rosa and the Dom at 14,911ft, but the splendid isolation of the nearby Matterhorn will command your attention.
Below, a river of ice called the Gornergletscher will fascinate you with its immense size and its crystal blue icy sculptures. For those who desire to explore further, a cable car takes us up to the Hohtalligrat, and the world of eternal snow and glaciers at Stockhorn ice station (11,178 feet).
Upon our return to earth, a memorable lunch is enjoyed where we regale about our high Alpine adventure. This afternoon we return back to earth to further explore the car free village of Zermatt. A wide assortment of wonderfully weathered Alpine shops, restaurants, and chalet style hotels complete with geranium filled window boxes provides a pleasant afternoon of browsing.
Dinner is at your leisure tonight with a wide array choices just steps from our hotel.B+L
FRIDAY - Glacier Express from Zermatt to St. Moritz.
After a leisurely breakfast at our hotel we board the Glacier Express for an idyllic ride through central Switzerland.
You’ll see weathered timber houses with their geranium filled window boxes and green Alpine pastures surrounded by snow covered peaks. You’ll see lush Alpine pastures, rushing mountain streams, unspoiled mountain forests and glaciers.
Lunch is enjoyed on board in the dining car while enjoying the view of the passing countryside. On this amazing journey the train passes over 291 bridges and through 91 tunnels. We arrive in St. Moritz where we check into our splendid hotel.
An orientation walk around St. Moritz is our prelude to dinner at the charming restaurant.B+L+D
SATURDAY - Explore St. Moritz
Explore St. Moritz at your leisure.
Plenty of possibilities including boutique shopping, lake activities, and the world famous spa facilities for some heavenly pampering.
Tonight we enjoy dinner with a spectacular view and a sunset at the Berghotel Panorama Restaurant. Located at 8000 feet we travel to the Berg via a funicular. The restaurant offers regional cuisine surrounded in genuine mountain ambiance while offering the breath-taking views of St. Moritz and the towering mountains nearby. B+D
SUNDAY- Scenic Journey from St. Moritz to Luzerne
Today we take the return journey on the Glacier Express from St. Moritz to Andermatt. We see the mountains from the opposite direction now illuminated by the morning sun. Refreshments are enjoyed onboard while enjoying some of the world’s best scenery.
In Andermatt we change trains and make the scenic journey to Fluelen at the end of Lake Luzern. Here we board the romantic William Tell Lake steamer. On board chefs serve a delicious lunch which we savor while taking in the gorgeous scenery. B+L+D
MONDAY Discover Luzern
Today we make a walking tour around Luzern in the morning. We cross two splendid covered bridges, visit two interesting churches, and an unusual Glacier Garden museum and end up in the old town pedestrian zone with plenty of interesting shops. After lunch your free to explore the beautiful town on your own. A lake cruise to nearby Weggis is also a possibility. B+L
TUESDAY Discover Mount Pilatus
This morning we head fo Mount Pilatus and enjoy a thrilling cable car ride. From the top of the mountain enjoy a commanding view of the Lake. This afternoon your free to continue your exploration of Luzern on your own.
This evening cocktails and dinner is enjoyed tonight at one of Luzerns outstanding restaurants where we regale about our wonderful adventure in Switzerland. B+D
WEDNESDAY Transfer to ZURICH International Airport and your return flight home or extend your stay in Europe with the next tour. B