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Travel Info & Tips By Train to Swiss Ski Resorts
One of the older RhB trains heads towards St Moritz

By Train to Swiss Ski Resorts

How to travel to 20 ski resorts in Switzerland by train from Basel, Geneva and Zurich, including how to buy the optimum tickets or train travel passes.

| Last Updated: 1 day ago
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It won’t come as a huge surprise that Switzerland has a very number of ski resorts that can be easily accessed by train.
Add in the fact that that trains depart at least hourly on all the routes that serve the resorts and the train become the obvious means of accessing the slopes.
Not forgetting that the journeys themselves are usually stunning.

Both Geneva and Zurich Airports also have stations plugged into the country’s network of express train routes, but a quirk of the Swiss rail system is that it isn’t possible to take a direct train from either of these airports to a ski resort.
Fortunately the connections between the trains usually couldn’t be simpler; so much so that it can be worthwhile using a rail pass so that you can experience multiple resorts on an itinerary.

You can also use the Concierge service to plan your train journeys to/from a Swiss ski resort from anywhere in Europe.

As for what gear would be most suitable when rushing down the mountains, check out this independent review of the current best ski pants / trousers.

ShowMeTheJourney has focused on how to access 20 popular resorts from Basel, Geneva and Zurich by train, as these cities are the most popular entry points to Switzerland.

On the resort guides, if there are 'FIND OUT HOW' links for journeys from only one or two of these cities, it's because those cities have the easiest access to each resort by train.*
So, for example, if you'll be heading to Adelboden, try and take a flight or train to Zurich, as this resort has much easier access by train from Zurich, than from Basel or Geneva.

*You’ll see that the final leg of the journey can be by bus, because resorts which have straightforward bus connections with the trains have also been featured.

1. Aletsch Arena:

From Genève Airport/Genève = train + train + cable car
Total transfer time = around 3hr 30mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Zurich Airport = train + train + cable car
Total transfer time = around 3hr 45mins

From Zurich HB station = train + train + cable car
Total transfer time = around 3hrs
FIND OUT HOW

From Basel SBB station = train + train + cable car
Total transfer time = around 3hrs 15mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Milano Centrale station = train + train + cable car
Total transfer time = around 3hrs 15mins
FIND OUT HOW

To access the resorts in the Aletsch Arena by train, connections are required at Brig/Brigue station.
But despite being comparatively distant from the cities in northern Switzerland, it's a comparatively easy rail journey; Brig has hourly direct express trains from both Geneva and Zurich airports.
These trains also call at the city centre stations in both Geneve and Zurich.

Connecting in Geneva is a particularly good option if you will be travelling to Aletsch Arena by train from Lyon.
While connecting at the the main station in Zurich is a good option if you'll be heading to Aletsch Arena by train from Munchen/Munich or from Stuttgart.

If you want to take the train from destinations to the north of Switzerland to Aletsch Arena, then travelling via Basel makes for an uncomplicated journey.
There is a direct IC train every other hour from Basel to Brig - and in the hours when there is no direct train there are guaranteed connections available at Bern for the Basel <> Brig journey.

Though if you can take the first ICE of the day direct from Berlin to Switzerland, which also calls at Frankfurt (and other cities), then good connections will be also be available in Olten into an EC train on to Brig.

2. Adelboden:

From Zurich Airport = train + train + bus
Total transfer time = around 3hr 15mins

From Zurich HB station = train + train + bus
Total transfer time around 2hr 50mins
FIND OUT HOW

Accessing Adelboden by train involves connecting into a bus service at Frutigen station which is served by regional (IR trains) from Bern station
These trains also call at Spiez for easy connections to/from Interlaken and from Montreux via Zweisimmen.

If you'll be flying into Switzerland, then target Zurich airport, as it has the fastest and most frequent airport to Adelboden transfers; there are 2 x direct IC trains per hour between the station at Zurich Airport and Bern, for connections on to Frutigen.

However, there also 2 x trains per hour from Geneva Airport to Bern, though the train journey will be longer (target the trains heading to St Gallen for the best connections), but if you can find a good flight deal, travelling via Geneve can be a good option.

If you want to take the train to Adelboden from destinations to the north of Switzerland, then travelling via Basel also makes for an uncomplicated journey; this article includes details of how to travel from London to Adelboden by train
There are 1 or 2 x fast IC trains per hour from Basel to Spiez station, with easy connections on to Adleboden via Fruitigen.

There are also hourly trains to Frutigen which take the spectacular route from Brig and connections are available in Brig from trains which travel to and from Milano.

3. Andermatt:

How to take the train to Andermatt

From Zurich Airport = train + train + train
Total transfer time = around 2hr 45mins
Take the trains on route/line S24 heading to Zug, which usually depart from Zurich Flughafen station at 09:34; 11:34; 15:34; 17:34 and 19:34
And then connect at Zurich HB into the route, which can be accessed by clicking the ''Find Out How' link below.

From Zurich HB station = train + train
Total transfer time around 2hr 10mins
FIND OUT HOW

Andermatt is located on the beautiful MGB railway route between Zermatt and Disentis/Muster via Brig and Visp.
Thanks to straightforward connections being available in Visp; Andermatt is a simple journey by train from Geneva.

However, if you'll be flying into Switzerland, Zurich Airport is closer to Andermatt, so the end-to-end transfer from there will be faster.
The speedier connections from Zurich are made possible by the short, but useful railway, which MGB also operates between Goschenen station and the station in Andermatt.

Goschenen station now once again has direct trains from Zurich.
Don't be put off by the connections as the journey is particularly spectacular.

Goschenen also has direct trains from Basel, which connect with the trains on to Andermatt..
So if you want to take the train to Andermatt from destinations to the north of Switzerland, then travelling via Basel is a viable option; though depending on the timings of your departure and arrival in Basel, your fastest end-to-end journey may involve an additional, very straightforward, connection at Arth-Goldau station.

4. Arosa:

How to take a train to Arosa

From Zurich Airport = train + train
Total transfer time = around 3hr 45mins
There are now direct trains from Zurich Flughafen to Chur
They depart from Zurich Flughafen at 23 mins passed each hour and have a 20min connection in Chur into trains on to Arosa.

From Zurich HB station = train + train
Total transfer time around 2hr 30mins
FIND OUT HOW

Arosa has particularly easy access by rail, thanks to a well located station and trains which travel through the streets in Chur city centre, thereby enabling easy transfer to/from the express trains at Chur station.

Some of the express trains on the spectacular route to Chur are German ICE trains, which travel from Hamburg via Hannover and Frankfurt (Main) - so Arosa has particularly easy connections by train from central and northern Germany.

If you will be heading to Switzerland on trains which call at both Basel and Zurich then aim to make connections in Zurich HB station, because there you can guarantee that the connection into the train on to Chur will simply involve walking from one train to another.
The express IC trains to Chur will depart from the same street-level part of of the station that the trains from France and Germany use.

Those IC trains to Chur don't depart from the station at Zurich Airport/Flughafen, but the quickest option for making a transfer to Arosa from Zurich Airport by train, is to make a connection at Zurich HB station.
Particularly if you target the trains which arrive at the same part of Zurich HB station that the trains on to Chur will leave from, thereby ensuring a simple as can be transfer.
More details are available by clicking on the 'Find Out How' link above.

However, there are now direct regional (IR) trains from Zurich Airport to Chur, but they take an indirect route; they initially head north to travel via St Gallen, so this is a slower option than making a connection between trains at Zurich's main city centre station.
If you do opt to take the trains via St Gallen, check the ticket validity when booking.

5. Champery (& 6. Les Diablerets & 7. Leysin):

From Genève Airport/Genève to Champery = train + train
Total transfer time around 2hr 30mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Genève Airport/Genève to Les Diablerets = train + train
Total transfer time = around 2hr 25 mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Genève Airport/Genève to Leysin = train + train
Total transfer time = around 2hr 15 mins
FIND OUT HOW

The railway route between Geneve/Geneva and Brig via Lausanne provides easy access by train to numerous ski resorts in Valais including Champery and Les Diablerets and Leysin; so if you will be flying into Switzerland and heading any of these three resorts, targeting Geneve Aeroport is by far the best option.

And if you want to head to the stations in Champery or Les Diablerets or Leysin by train from London or from Paris there are straightforward connections available in Lausanne; although some journey options you will find online will route you via Geneve/Geneva (from London and from Paris - it doesn't particularly matter which of these stations you use to change trains.

In order to access all three of these resorts, you'll need to make connections in Aigle; the trains to Aigle commence their journeys in the station at Geneve Aeroport before calling at the main stations in Geneve and Lausanne.

However, the route to Aigle is more complicated from Basel and Zurich; if you travel from Zurich you'll need to connect in Lausanne for a train on to Aigle, while from Basel connections are required in Biel and Lausanne.
So other ski resorts have easier access by train from Basel and Zurich.

Although in common with the other resorts in Valais, these three resorts are all easily accessible by train from Milano/Milan thanks to straightforward connections being available in Sion, into trains on to Aigle.

8. Crans-Montana:

From Genève Airport/Genève = train + funicular
Total transfer time = around 3hrs
FIND OUT HOW

Crans-Montana is accessed by a funicular railway.
In Sierre the base station of the funicular which leads up to the centre of Montana is a 3 - 5 min walk from the railway station.

The trains on the funicular railway depart every 30 mins, with one service per hour being non-stop to Montana in 12 minutes, while the other makes multiple intermediate stops, so has a journey time of 20 mins.

Sierre has a frequent service of direct express trains from Geneve, which commence their journeys in the station at Geneva Aeroport and also call at Lausanne.

And if you want to head to Crans-Montana by train from London or from Paris there are straightforward connections available in Lausanne, though some journey options will route you via Geneve/Geneva (from London and from Paris); it doesn't particularly matter which of these stations you use to change trains.

9. Davos & 10. Klosters:

To Davos

From Zurich Airport (option 1) = train + train
Total transfer time to Davos = around 3hr 35mins
There are now direct trains from Zurich Flughafen to Landquart
They depart from Zurich Flughafen at 23 mins passed each hour and have an 11min connection in Landquart into trains on to Davos

From Zurich Airport (option 2) = train + train =train
Total transfer time to Davos = around 2hr 35mins
Take the trains which depart Zurich Airport at 15 mins passed each hour (the trains heading to Luzern) and you can get to Davos an hour faster, if you're willing to make two connections instead of one.
Connect at Zurich HB into the journey described on the 'Read More' button below.

From Zurich HB station = train + train
Total transfer time = around 2hr 20mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Basel SBB station = train + train + train OR train + train
Total transfer time around 3hr 20mins
FIND OUT HOW

To Klosters

From Zurich HB station = train + train
Total transfer time = around 1hr 50mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Basel SBB station = train + train + train OR train + train
Total transfer time = around 2hr 50mins
FIND OUT HOW

Davos and Klosters are located along the same railway line, which is operated by RhB, the journey to Davos is 30 mins longer.

Those trains to the two stations in Davos - Dorf and Platz and the two stations in Klosters - Dorf and Platz, connect at Landquart station with the express trains following the beautiful Zurich <> Chur route - so to travel between northern Switzerland and these two resorts by train, go via Landquart and not via Chur.

Some of the express trains which call at Landquart on route to Chur are German ICE trains, which travel from Hamburg via Hannover and Frankfurt (Main) - so Davos has particularly easy connections by train from central and northern Germany.

If you will be heading to Switzerland on trains which call at both Basel and Zurich then aim to make connections in Zurich HB station - because there you can guarantee that the connection into the train on to Landquart will simply involve walking from one train to another.
The express IC trains to Landquart will depart from the same street-level part of of the station that the trains from France and Germany use.

Those IC trains to Landquart don't depart from the station at Zurich Airport/Flughafen, but the quickest option for making a transfer to both Davos and Klosters from Zurich Airport by train, is to make a connection at Zurich HB station.
Particularly if you target the trains which arrive at the same part of Zurich HB station that the trains on to Landquart will leave from, thereby ensuring a simple as can be transfer.
More details are available by clicking on the 'Read More' button above.

However, there are now direct regional (IR) trains from Zurich Airport to Landquart, but they take an indirect route; they initially head north to travel via St Gallen, so this is a slower option than making a connection between trains at Zurich's main city centre station.

11. Engelberg-Titlis:

To Engleberg by train

From Basel SBB station = train + train
Total transfer time = around 1hr 50mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Zurich Airport (option 1) = train + train
Total transfer time = 2hr 43min
There are now direct trains from Zurich Flughafen station, the station at Zurich Airport, to Luzern - they depart at 15 min passed each hour.
In Luzern these trains have a 45min connection into trains to Engelberg.

From Zurich Airport (option 2) = train + train + train
Total transfer time = 2hr 15mins
Take the trains which depart from Zurich Flughafen station at 38mins passed the hour and you'll arrive in Engelberg at the same time as that other option from the airport.
However, you will need to make an additional connection at Zurich HB station into the route described by accessing the 'Read More' button below.

From Zurich HB station = train + train
Total transfer time = around 1hr 50 mins
FIND OUT HOW

Engelberg-Titlis is a good choice if easy access by train is a key criteria for selecting a ski resort.

It's one of the closest resorts to the cities of northern Switzerland, so has exceptionally simple rail links from both Basel and Zurich.
If you will be flying into Switzerland to access Engelberg-Titlis then Zurich Airport is a much better option than landing in Geneve, particularly as a fairly recent development is the introduction of direct trains between Zurich Airport/Flughafen and Luzern/Luzern.

Simple connections are available at Luzern station into the smart 'Luzern-Engelberg Express' trains - and Luzern has frequent trains from Zurich and from Basel.

If you want to take the train from destinations to the north of Switzerland including Amsterdam, Koln/Cologne, London and Paris then travelling via Basel makes for an uncomplicated journey - this article includes details of how to travel from London to Engelberg by train.

Luzern also has daily direct trains from Frankfurt (Main)

12. Grindelwald

To Grindelwald by train

From Zurich Airport = train + train + train
Total transfer time = around 2hr 55mins

From Zurich HB station = train + train + train
Total transfer time = around 2hr 40mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Basel SBB station = train + train
Total transfer time = around 2hr 40mins
FIND OUT HOW

Interlaken Ost station offers easy connections with trains to and from Grindelwald, but an anomaly of the Swiss railway network is that Interlaken is served by direct trains from Basel via Bern, but it doesn't have direct trains from Zurich.

Some of those trains from Basel to Interlaken are German ICE trains, which provide direct connections from Berlin and from Frankfurt (Main), plus there is also a daily direct EC train to Interlaken from Koln/Cologne so Grindelwald has exceptionally easy access by train from central Germany.

If you want to travel to Grindelwald station by train from other destinations to the north of Switzerland including Amsterdam, Koln/Cologne, London and Paris, then travelling via Basel makes for an uncomplicated journey.

Though connecting at the main station in Zurich and travelling on via Bern and Interlaken is a good option, if want to head to Grindlewald by train from Munchen/Munich or from Stuttgart.

If time is on your side and you want to experience one of Switzerland's most beautiful journeys, then head to Grindelwald from Geneve by taking a train from there to Montreux in order to follow the 'Golden Pass' route to Interlaken.

13. Gstaad:

To Gstaad by train

From Genève Airport/Genève = train +train
Total transfer time = around 2hr 30mins
FIND OUT HOW

Gstaad is located on the spectacular 'Golden Pass' route taken by MOB trains travelling between Montreux and Zweissimen.
Montreux is typically connected to Geneve by 2 x trains per hour, which commence their journey at the station in Geneve Aeroport and take only around an hour to travel along the northern shore of Lake Geneva.

So when travelling to Switzerland, Geneva provides by far the easiest access to Gstaad.
If you want to head to Gstaad station by train from London or from Paris there are straightforward connections available at the main station in Geneve/Geneva.

However, the route to Montreux, where connections are available to Gstaad, is more complicated from Basel and Zurich; if you travel from Zurich you'll neeed to connect in Lausanne for a train on to Montreux, while from Basel connections are required in Biel and Lausanne.
So other ski resorts than Gstaad have easier access by train from Basel and Zurich.

Though the EuroCity trains from Milano to Geneva via Lausanne call at Montreux, so Gstaad has particularly easy access by train from northern Italy.

14. Lax-Flims-Valera:

From Zurich Airport = train + train + bus
Total transfer time = around 2hr 25mins

From Zurich HB station = train + bus
Total transfer time = around 2hrs
FIND OUT HOW

From Basel SBB station = train + train + bus OR train + bus
Total transfer time = around 3hrs
FIND OUT HOW

The ski resorts of Laax-Flims-Valera aren't directly served by trains, they don't have stations, but the required bus connections at Chur station are very straightforward, because they depart from a terminal that's located directly above the trains - there are escalators and elevators that provide step-free access.
connecting between train and bus in Chur

Some of the express trains on the spectacular route to Chur are German ICE trains, which travel from Hamburg via Hannover and Frankfurt (Main).

If you will be heading to Switzerland on trains which call at both Basel and Zurich then aim to make connections in Zurich HB station - because there you can guarantee that the connection into the train on to Chur will simply involve walking from one train to another.
The express IC trains to Chur will depart from the same street-level part of of the station that the trains from France and Germany use.

Those IC trains to Chur don't depart from the station at Zurich Airport/Flughafen, but the quickest option for making a transfer to Chur from Zurich Airport by train, is to make a connection at Zurich HB station.
Particularly if you target the trains which arrive at the same part of Zurich HB station that the trains on to Chur will leave from, thereby ensuring a simple as can be transfer.
More details are available by clicking on the 'Read More' from Zurich button above.

However, there are now direct regional (IR) trains from Zurich Airport to Chur, but they take an indirect route - they initially head north to travel via St Gallen, so this is a slower option than making a connection between trains at Zurich's main city centre station.
If you do opt to take the trains via St Gallen, check the ticket validity when booking.

15. Saas Fee / Saas Grund:

From Genève Airport/Genève = train + bus
Total transfer time = around 3hr 15 mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Zurich Airport = train + bus
Total transfer time = around 3hrs

From Zurich HB station = train + bus
Total transfer time = around 2hr 50 mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Basel SBB station = train + bus
Total transfer time = around 3hrs
FIND OUT HOW

The twin resorts of Sass-Fee/Sass-Grund don't have stations, but they are still an easy option if you want to travel to a Swiss ski resort 'by train'.
That's because the bus connections depart from just outside Visp station, which happens to be a major junction on the Swiss railway network.

As a result there are usually 2 x trains per hour to Visp from the station at Geneve Aeroport and an hourly express train service from Zurich Flughagen/Airport.
Plus there are trains which depart every other hour from Basel.

So if you'll be heading to Saas Fee and Sass-Grund from Paris or London you can travel by train via either Basel or Geneve.
From The Netherlands the optimum connections will involve travelling via Basel, while from Germany you can make connections in either Basel or Zurich.

Though if you can take the first ICE of the day direct from Berlin to Switzerland, which also calls at Frankfurt (and other cities), then good connections will be also be available in Olten into an EC train on to Visp.

There are also 3 x trains per day from Milano to Visp, the trains which will be heading to Basel via Bern call there; and one of these trains travels beyond Basel via Karlsruhe and Mannheim to arrive in Frankfurt (Main).
Though when travelling south in the opposite direction, the train from Frankfurt (Main) to Italy takes a different route, so connections to Visp will required at stations in Switzerland.

16. St Moritz:

To St Moritz by train

From Basel SBB station = train + train OR train + train + train
Total transfer time = around 4hr 15mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Zurich HB station = train + train
Total transfer time = around 3hr 20mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Zurich Airport (option 1) = train + train + train
Total transfer time = 3hr 43mins
Take the trains which depart from Zurich Airport, at 15 mins passed the hour to Zurich HB - the main station in Zurich
Then from Zurich HB station you will be following the route described below, with a second, very straightforward connection between trains in Chur.

From Zurich Airport (option 2) = train + train
Total transfer time = 4hr 35mins
Take the trains which depart from Zurich airport at 23 mins passed the hour and you can travel direct to Chur, so will only have to make one connection
However, the trains from the airport to Chur take a roundabout route, hence this end-to-end journey being around 50 mins longer.

If you want your journey by train from a Swiss airport or city to a ski-resort to be as beautiful as possible, then heading to St. Moritz is a good option

and the transfer to/from the express trains at Chur station usually couldn't be simpler.

Some of the express trains to Chur are German ICE trains, which travel from Hamburg via Hannover and Frankfurt (Main) - so St Moritz has particularly easy connections by train from central and northern Germany.

If you will be heading to Switzerland on trains which call at both Basel and Zurich then aim to make connections in Zurich HB station - because there you can guarantee that the connection into the train on to Chur will simply involve walking from one train to another.
The express IC trains to Chur will depart from the same street-level part of of the station that the trains from France and Germany use.

Those IC trains to Chur don't depart from the station at Zurich Airport/Flughafen, but the quickest option for making a transfer to St. Moritz station from Zurich Airport by train, is to make a connection at Zurich HB station.
Particularly if you target the trains which arrive at the same part of Zurich HB station that the trains on to Chur will leave from, thereby ensuring a simple as can be transfer.
More details are available by clicking on the 'Read More' from Zurich HB button above.

However, there are now direct regional (IR) trains from Zurich Airport to Chur, but they take an indirect route; they initially head north to travel via St Gallen, so this is a slower option than making a connection between trains at Zurich's main city centre station.
If you do opt to take the trains via St Gallen, check the ticket validity when booking.

17. Verbier:

From Genève Airport/Genève = train +train + cable car
Total transfer time = around 2hr 30mins
FIND OUT HOW

Verbier is a good example of a Swiss ski resort, which at face value seems complicated to access, with two trains required plus a connection into a cable car, but in actuality it couldn't be simpler, because the connections are as seamless as can be.

If you will be flying into Switzerland and heading to Verbier targeting Geneve Aeroport is by far the best option as there are usually 1 or 2 x trains per hour direct from the airport to Martigny, the mainline station that provides the access to Verbier
And if you want to head to Verbier by train from London or from Paris there are straightforward connections available at the main station in Geneve/Geneva.

However, Martigny isn't served by direct trains from Basel or Zurich - if you travel from Zurich you'll need to connect in Lausanne for a train on to Martigny, while from Basel connections are required in Biel and Lausanne.
So other ski resorts have easier access by train from Basel and Zurich than Verbier does.

Although in common with the other resorts in Valais, Verbier is easily accessible by train from Milano/Milan - thanks to straightforward connections being available in Sion, into trains on to Martigny.

18. Villars:

From Genève Airport/Genève= train + train + train + cable car
Total transfer time = around 2hr 35 mins
FIND OUT HOW

Villars is slightly trickier to access by train than other popular resorts in the Valais canton because the train services on the the railway route between Geneve/Geneva and Brig to Bex; the connecting station for Villars have been altered.
Bex is now in effect part of the long-distance commuter network from Geneve, with the positive that it is now served by a regular service of hourly trains, but it no longer connected to Geneve-Aeroport by direct trains.

Though if want to head to Villars station by train from London or from Paris there are straightforward connections available at the main station in Geneve/Geneva - this article includes details of how to travel from London to Villars by train

However, Bex isn't served by direct trains from Basel or Zurich; if you travel from Zurich you'll need to connect in Lausanne for a train on to Martigny, while from Basel connections are required in Biel and Lausanne.
So other ski resorts have easier access by train from Basel and Zurich than Villars does.

19. Wengen:

To Wengen by train

From Basel SBB station = train + train + train
Total transfer time = around 2hr 50mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Zurich Airport = train + train + train + train + train
Total transfer time = around 3hr 15mis

From Zurich HB station = train + train + train + train
Total transfer time = around 2hr 50 mins
FIND OUT HOW

Interlaken Ost station is the gateway to reaching Wengen by train, but an anomaly of the Swiss railway network is that Interlaken is served by direct trains from Basel via Bern, but it doesn't have direct trains from Zurich yet.
Direct trains from Zurich to Interlaken will be available from December 11th.

Some of those trains from Basel to Interlaken are German ICE trains, which provide direct connections from Berlin and from Frankfurt (Main), plus there is also a daily direct EC train to Interlaken from Koln/Cologne so Wengen has exceptionally easy access by train from central Germany.

And If you want to travel to Wengen station by train from other destinations to the north of Switzerland including Amsterdam, Koln/Cologne, London and Paris, then travelling via Basel makes for an uncomplicated journey - despite the volume of connections.
Both escalators and elevators give access to the tracks/platorms at Basel SBB station, there are also step-free connections at Interlaken Ost - then at Lauterbrunnen the train from Interlaken arrives across the platform to the train on to Wengen.

Though connecting at the main station in Zurich and travelling on via Bern and Interlaken is a good option, if you want to head to Wengwen by train from Munchen/Munich or from Stuttgart.

20. Zermatt:

To Zermatt by train

From Genève Airport/Genève = train + train
Total transfer time = around 3hr 45 mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Zurich Airport = train + train
Total transfer time = around 3hr 25mins

From Zurich HB station = train + train
Total transfer time = around 3hr 10mins
FIND OUT HOW

From Basel SBB station = train + train
Total transfer time around 3hr 20mins
FIND OUT HOW

Despite a location in the corner of south-west Switzerland, Zermatt has comparatively simple access by train from Switzerland's main cities.

Connections are required at Visp station which has direct express trains, which depart at least hourly, from both Geneva and Zurich airports.
These trains also call at the city centre stations in both Geneve and Zurich.

Connecting in Geneva is a particularly good option if you will be travelling to Zermatt station by train from Lyon, while connecting at the main station in Zurich is a good option if you'll be heading to Zermatt by train from Munchen/Munich or from Stuttgart.

If you want to take the train from other destinations in Germany or The Netherlands to Zermatt then travelling via Basel makes for an uncomplicated journey.
There is a direct IC train every other hour from Basel to Visp; and in the hours when there is no direct train there are guaranteed connections available at Bern for the Basel <> Visp train journey.

Though if you can take the first ICE of the day direct from Berlin to Switzerland, which also calls at Frankfurt (and other cities), then good connections will be also be available in Olten into an EC train on to Visp.

When travelling by train to Zermatt from London or Paris, you will see journey options which will involve travelling via either Basel or Geneve.

As Visp station also has express trains from Milano, Zermatt also has easy connections from northern Italy.

Booking the train journeys:

Buying Swiss Train Tickets at the Station

Using Saver Day Passes:

The national rail operator in Switzerland is SBB, but the railways to the ski resorts are operated by independent companies.
It’s why you have to change trains, you take an SBB train from the airport or city to a junction station, and then make a transfer to a non-SBB train.

Now that the Swiss Transfer tickets have been discontinued, the best ticketing option for reaching a ski resort by train can be a Saver Day Pass, particularly on the routes with lengthy airport/station to resort transfers.
Though something to watch out when travelling to Wengen is that you don't have a Half Fare Card and therefore pay the full price for the Saver Day Pass, you won't receive a discount on the final part of the journey after Lauterbrunnen.

They are not train departure specific, so can still be used in the event of a journey to Switzerland being delayed.
These Saver Day Passes are valid on the SBB trains AND also give free travel on most mountain railways.
On the day the pass is valid for, you can simply hop on the vast majority of Swiss trains and on the buses too; and it is this lack of restrictions which often makes these passes a good option for accessing ski resorts.

Though as they’re only valid for one day’s travel, the clue is the name, you’ll need to purchase another Saver Day Pass for your return journey.

Saver Day Passes are also cheaper the further ahead you book them, they're available from 60 days in advance, book them while the cheapest rates are still available and its possible to save more than 50 CHF.
The train tickets will also be discounted, with the cheaper rates being available the further ahead you can book, so once you've found the ticket price, the end-to-end journeys will be available on SBB, it's worth comparing it to the Saver Day Pass rate.
If the Saver Day Passes are slightly more expensive, factor in the freedom they provide of not being committed to a specific train departure.

Saver Day Passes must be booked ahead of the travel date, so they won't be an option if you buy tickets at the station on arrival in Switzerland

Using Tickets:

SBB will also sell tickets online for the end-to-end journey you will be taking: the SBB train (s) + the other train(s).
But it's worth checking the prices against the costs of a Saver Day Pass, no matter how far ahead you will be booking; both the tickets and the passes will be available from 60 days ahead.

As our reams of text explain here, if you’re not Swiss, booking tickets online with SBB has more quirks than typical booking sites.

When looking up ticket prices on SBB, the two key things to be aware of are:
(1) the price you will initially see on SBB needs to be doubled if you don't possess a Swiss 'Half Fare Card' - more info is available on our guide to Swiss Tickets - and...
(2) You can see if discounted tickets are available for specific departure.

However, these discounted 'Supersaver' tickets are train departure specific and can’t be refunded or transferred to a later departure, so won't be valid in the event of a flight delay etc.

Or if you opt to book tickets to your ski resort on arrival in Switzerland, the SBB ticket desks at stations will USUALLY sell tickets for the end-to-end journey = the SBB train + the train you will be connecting to.
More info about this is available here

Booking the end-to-end ticket at the first Swiss station you arrive at, will be more expensive than booking in advance online, though it won't cost more than opting to book separate tickets for the SBB train and then the train on to the resort at the interchange station.
So by purchasing end-to-end tickets, you can avoid having to buy tickets against the clock at the junction station, when changing trains.

The independent railways don't sell discounted tickets for their standard train services, so for those that have online ticket sales, you won't save money by booking ahead.
On the discounted 'Supersaver' tickets, you only save on the part of the journey by the SBB mainline trains.

To Switzerland by train:

Trains to Switzerland

To Basel

Details of international trains to Basel from Amsterdam, Berlin, Frankfurt (Main), Hamburg, Koln/Cologne, London, Lyon, Marseille, Munchen/Munich and Paris are available HERE.

Connect at Basel SBB station for journeys to:

*If you will be heading to Grindelwald or Wengen from Berlin, Frankfurt (Main) or Koln/Cologne, a better option is to take a train from Germany to Interlaken - see below.

To Brig and Visp:

Brig has direct trains from Milan and the trains heading to Basel also call at Visp.

Until recently on Saturdays during the ski season, there was also a direct Lyria train from Paris to Visp and Brig and this train also called at Aigle, Martigny and Sion, but this service has now been discontinued.

To reach these destinations from Paris you can take a train from Paris to Lausanne and then connect there for trains on to Brig via Aigle, Martigny, Sion and Visp.

There is now a daily direct train to Frankfurt (Main) via Freiburg (Breisgau), Karlsruhe and Mannheim which departs from Brig at 13:20 and Visp at 13:26, but there is no corresponding service in the opposite direction from these cities in Germany TO Brig and Visp.

To Chur and Landquart:

Chur and Landquart are destinations of two ICE x trains per day which travel from Hamburg via Frankfurt (Main) - details are available HERE.

Connect at Chur for journeys to:

  • Arosa
  • Laax-Flims-Valera
  • St. Moritz

Connect at Landquart for journeys to:

  • Davos
  • Klosters

To Geneve

Details of international trains to Geneve/Geneva from London, Lyon, Marseille and and Paris are available HERE.
(There are no direct trains to Geneve/Geneve from Belgium, Germany or The Netherlands).

Connect in Geneve for trains on to:

Click the names of the resort for details of the train journey on from Geneve.
Though when travelling to these resorts from Paris and London alternative (faster, but less frequent) connections will also be available if you change trains in Lausanne and not Geneve.

To Interlaken:

Details of international trains to Interlaken from Berlin, Frankfurt (Main), Koln/Cologne and Paris are available HERE.
Connect at Interlaken for trains to Grindelwald and Wengen.

To Zurich:

Details of international trains to Zurich from Amsterdam, Berlin, Frankfurt (Main), Hamburg, Koln/Cologne, London, Munchen/Munich, Paris and Wien/Vienna are available HERE.

Connect in Zurich for trains on to:

Click the names of the resort for details of the train journey on from Zurich.
*= If you will be heading to these resorts by train from Amsterdam, Berlin, Frankfurt (Main), Hamburg, Koln/Cologne, London and Paris, the quickest and easiest option is to travel via Basel; see above.

Don't want to ski in Switzerland?

We had put a 'how to travel to Italian ski resorts by train' on our to do list, but then we spotted RailEurope has already published an excellent guide

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Author

Simon Harper

I wanted to share my passion for train travel and explain how anyone can take the fantastic journeys I have taken.

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This second version of ShowMeTheJourney is exciting and new, so we are genuinely thrilled that you are here and reading this, but we also need your help.

We’re striving not to let anything get in the way of providing the most useful service possible, hence a facility has been set up with DonorBox which can be used to support the running costs and make improvements.

Instead of advertising or paywalls, your financial support will make a positive difference to delivering an enhanced service, as there’s a lot of ideas which we want to make happen.

So if you have found the info provided here to be useful, please consider saying thank you.