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If you will be planning a holiday in Interlaken take care with your choice of rail pass, because how Swiss Travel Passes can be used in the Jungfrau Region differs from how they can be used anywhere else in Switzerland.
They only provide for a 25% discount on:
How InterRail (and Eurail) passes can be used in the Jungfrau Region is even more restrictive, they also only give a 25% discount on those three railways, plus they only give a 50% discount on the trains between Interlaken and Grindelwald, Lauterbrunnen and Mürren.
So if you will be panning on spending time in Switzerland on a multi-country itinerary with the 'Global' type of Eurail and InterRail pass, other locations in Switzerland will provide better value for money.
Though a somewhat odd feature of using Eurail, InterRail and Swiss Travel Passes from Interlaken is that they cover longer journeys to the likes of Luzern, Montreux and Zermatt.
Hence the three rail passes profiled below can be a better choice when holidaying in Interlaken and exploring by train.
Interlaken is at the center of the area in which the Berner-Oberland Pass can be used, so it can be a great option when taking a holiday in Interlaken.
It covers the full cost of travel on many routes and services on which users of Eurail, InterRail and Swiss Travel Passes can only travel at a a discount, or by paying the full price.
The railways fully covered by the Berner-Oberland Pass, which other rail passes also include at no extra cost, include:
The Berner-Oberland Pass and the Swiss Travel Pass both give a 50% discount on the cable car between Mürren and Schilthorn.
Routes on which Berner-Oberland Pass users can travel at a 50% discount, but in contrast are fully covered by the Eurail, InterRail and Swiss Travel Passes, include:
Berner Oberland Pass users can also travel between Eigergletscher and Jungfraujoch on tickets which are around 50% of the usual cost of the end-to-end journey from Interlaken.
The only rail pass which fully covers one return journey to Jungfraujoch is the Top of Europe Winter pass.
Aside from that it is valid on the same railways and cable cars as the Jungfrau Travel Passes - see below
A full price Adult pass valid for 3 days is priced at CHF 249 (around €245) which at face value seems expensive, but as a full price return ticket by train between Interlaken and Jungfraujoch will cost more than CHF 200, the pass is actually good value for money.
Using Top Of Europe passes for three day trips, for example to (1) Jungfraujoch, (2) Schynige Platt and (3) to ride the Grindelwald First cable car, will save more than CHF 200.
Between Interlaken and Europe's highest station at Jungfraujoch, the Jungfrau Travel Pass is a match for how the Berner-Oberland Pass can be used between these two locations.
So the the Jungfrau Travel Pass covers;
In line with the Berner-Oberland Pass, users of the Jungfrau Travel Pass can also travel between Eigergletscher and Jungfraujoch at a special price, but only during June to August.
So the area of validity is smaller than the Berner-Oberland Pass, but this is reflected in the cheaper cost of a Jungfrau Travel Pass.
Summer 2023 prices;
There are multiple delightful railways and attractions which are strung along the the Zentralbahn which connects Interlaken with Luzern/Lucerne - which in itself a beautiful journey
They are, west to east:
Interlaken is also on the 'Golden Pass route' taken by the new Golden Pass Express service.
If it is sold out, or if you want to avoid paying the more expensive charges to travel by it, hourly alternative connections are available by changing trains in Spiez and Zweisimmen.
The route on to Montreux from Zweisimmen by the MOB Railway is wonderful.
Also many of the trains operated by the MOB, which don't incur additional charges, are charmingly unconventional; its 'Belle-Epoque' trains resemble miniature versions of The Orient Express!
Oeschinensee is a beautiful lake surrounding by multiple Alpine attractions including hiking trails and a mountain coaster ride.
As this guide to visiting Oeschinensee explains, it can be accessed by taking a funicular, which is around a kilometer walk from Kandersteg station.
The journey from Interlaken to Kandersteg only requires one change of train in Spiez and the journey on from Spiez happens to be rather lovely.
Interlaken Ost is a junction station, with two routes other than the Bernese Oberland Railway, which is why choosing accommodation in the town within easy walking distance of this station is the way to go.
Those two other railways which serve Interlaken are;
Connections are available at Spiez with trains to and from:
I wanted to share my passion for train travel and explain how anyone can take the fantastic journeys I have taken.
This is one of more than 100 train travel guides available on ShowMeTheJourney, which will make it easier to take the train journeys you want or need to make. As always, all images were captured on trips taken by ShowMeTheJourney.
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