Zürich / Zurich to Grindelwald by train

How to take the rail journey from Zurich to Grindelwald

Don't be put off by having to make connections between trains, the timetable is arranged so that making the connections is as simple as possible.
And if anything out of the ordinary occurs, tickets will be available on the next train(s) to depart.



From Zürich HB / Zurich main station to Grindelwald

Travel Information

1 x optimum connection every other hour

Change trains in: Interlaken

Interlaken is where the network of mountain railways in the Bernese-Oberland connect with SBB's national rail network.

Changing trains at Interlaken Ost station:

You will have around 8 mins to make the connection between trains at Interlaken Ost station, but again the connection is virtually guaranteed, in terms of the arrival and departure times of the trains.

You can be sure of making this connection, if you book tickets that are valid for the end-to-end journey.
Eight minutes may not be enough time to buy a ticket for the BOB train on to Grindelwald from the manned ticket desks at Interlaken Ost station.

Though if you will be travelling with any type of rail pass, including Swiss Day Passes, you'll need to go into the ticket office, to buy a discounted ticket for the train to Grindelwald.

Changing trains in Bern:

Changing trains in Bern:

In the hours when no direct trains are available from Zurich to Interlaken, there will be trains from Zurich heading to Brig which will connect in Bern for trains on to Interlaken.

On arrival at Bern station the easiest means of transferring to the platform/track/gleis that the train on to Interlaken will be departing from, is to use the bridge which spans the station
If you board the train to Bern around three - six coaches back from the front of the train, you will then be adjacent to this bridge when you disembark from the train on arrival at Bern.

The alternative route via Luzern:

If you have a valid rail pass, an alternative, more scenic, but longer option is to travel to Interlaken from Zurich via Luzern.


Booking Tickets:

Tickets can be booked online for this end-to-end journey.

‘Individual tickets’ can be used on any train(s) on your travel date, but they tend to be comparatively expensive.

Supersaver tickets are cheaper, the portion of the journey by the SBB train can be discounted by up to 50%, but these tickets are train departure specific, see our Swiss Tickets guide for more advice on how to book these tickets

If you book a Supersaver ticket and a flight delay etc, causes you to miss a train you are booked on to, you will have to book another full-price ‘Individual Ticket(s).
You can then apply for a refund of the Supersaver ticket, but the application costs CHF 10.

Using Saver Day Passes:

Now that the Swiss Transfer tickets have been discontinued a Saver Day Pass may save you money, if you can book at least a couple of weeks ahead (usually), so that you can obtain the pass at a discounted price.

They can be cheaper than tickets for the end-to-end journey, though they are more likely to be a money saver if you will be making a day return trip between Zurich and Grindelwald, even if you can book in advance.

They can be used on;

  • the trains between Zurich Fughafen/Airport or Zurich HB station and Bern
  • the trains between Bern and Interlaken Ost
  • the trains between Interlaken Ost and Grindelwald - though they provide for a 25% discount on this leg of the journey, you will need to pay the balance in the ticket office at Interlaken Ost station.

They are not train specific, so can still be used in the event of a journey to Switzerland being delayed.
Though as they’re only valid for one day’s travel, the clue is the name, so if you will be travelling back on another date, you’ll need to purchase another Saver Day Pass for your return journey.

Though they need to be booked at least a day ahead of your travel date, so won't be an option if you book tickets at the station on arrival in Switzerland.
They're also cheaper the further ahead that you book.

Where to book
Ticket Provider Approximate Cost

SBB Guide

SBB is the main national rail operator in Switzerland, but tickets for journeys by the other significant operators including BLS and SOB can be be booked on the SBB website.

SBB also sells tickets for journeys to many destinations which involve a combination of SBB trains and services provided by the many independent operators who serve the Alpine resort towns.
However, if you will be making a long-distance return day trip, look out for he possibility of SaverDay passes being cheaper than tickets.

Though if you download the SBB app, booking tickets on SBB's mobile services can be simper than using the website.
Also watch out for the fact that booking international tickets can be comparatively quirky.

Trainline *

Trainline Guide

Happy rail *

Happy rail Guide

Happy Rail is a Netherlands rail ticket agency which sells tickets for both national and international journeys within a range of countries including Belgium France, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland.

HappyRail doesn't charge booking fees in the conventional sense, but if you're not Dutch you can expect to pay additional transaction fees, which will be added to the total cost.
That's because the most common form of online payment used in The Netherlands is 'iDEAL' and HappyRail doesn't charge a transaction fee for 'iDEAL' payments, but only Dutch residents can sign up to 'iDEAL'.
Other forms of payment include Visa debit cards will incur a fee.

Journey Features

Scenic - YesLake views

Good to Know

From Zurich Flughafen/Airport

All but the first of these daily direct trains to Interlaken also departs from the station at Zurich airport.

Between Thun and Spiez Between Thun and Spiez
Looking down over Faulensee south of Spiez Looking down over Faulensee south of Spiez
South of Faulensee South of Faulensee
Approaching journey's end Approaching journey's end

This is a journey of four distinct parts:

  1. Between Zurich and Olten the train will travel through a series of towns.
  2. Then between Olten and Bern, for most of this part of the journey the train will be travelling at up to 200 km/h on Switzerland's fastest railway.
  3. The train will reverse direction on departure from Bern and the highlight of the journey between the Swiss capital and Thun occurs as soon as the train departs Bern station and crosses the River Aare.
  4. The scenic highlight of the journey is between Thun and Interlaken as the Thunersee is on the left of the railway, so due to the reversal in Bern, sit on the right on departure from Zurich to make the most of these views.
... this video was taken from a train travelling in the opposite direction.

Then for the final 15 mins of the journey, after departure from Spiez, the train descends down to travel right by the shore of the Thunersee.

Journey Features

Scenic - YesLandscape (Hills / Mountains)River views
The river valley to the right after Wilderswill The river valley to the right after Wilderswill
On the left between Zweilütschinen and Lutschental On the left between Zweilütschinen and Lutschental
On the right between Lutschental and Burglauenen On the right between Lutschental and Burglauenen
From the right near Burglauenen From the right near Burglauenen
From the right after Schwendi From the right after Schwendi
Nearing Grindelwald Nearing Grindelwald
Arriving in Grindelwald Arriving in Grindelwald

This is a delightful journey, particularly after the train has departed from Wilderswill - sit on the right (when facing the direction of travel) for the best of the views.

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