If you have been to Switzerland before, then you probably already know that this incredible country always leaves you wanting to return. It’s just so incredibly beautiful!
If this is your first time planning a trip to Switzerland, don’t make the mistake of just visiting the cities and thinking that you saw the best. There is so much more to see and do in Switzerland! Visiting just a few bigger cities (no matter how beautiful) doesn’t do this country justice. The same with the most popular mountain destinations – they are well worth more than a day!
And while it might be tempting to see ‘everything’ on your first short trip, often, you’ll have a much more enjoyable trip if you just choose a few areas and explore them a bit deeper.
Switzerland is one of our absolute favorite countries in the world. Since we live in Belgium, it’s not that far away for us, so we visit Switzerland very often. Usually at least twice a year – hiking in summer and skiing in winter. In this guide, we feature just a few of our favorite places in Switzerland – the ones we visited most recently and found the time to write about…
If you don’t find the info you are looking for, you can always leave a reply on one of our guides and we might be able to help you out with some advice. We haven’t been everywhere (that would be absolutely impossible), but we have spent a lot of time in various destinations all over the country and know many areas quite well.
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Switzerland Travel Tips & Destination Guides
BERN & BERNESE OBERLAND
- Interlaken area:
- Jungfrau Region:
LUCERNE & CENTRAL SWITZERLAND
- Lucerne area:
- Hiking in & near Zermatt:
- Geneva: Best Things to Do in Geneva
- Affordable Skiing in Switzerland
- Skiing in Engelberg
- Skiing in Wengen-Grindelwald
- Jungfrau Region in Winter
If you are just visiting the Swiss cities and several of the most popular mountain destinations, you do not really need a car. You can easily visit all the most popular places in Switzerland by train. The most popular option is the Swiss Travel Pass which includes unlimited travel on trains, public buses, and boats. If you live in Europe, you can also opt for Switzerland Interrail Pass (trains only).
However, if you want to get a bit off the beaten path and explore more places in a short time, having a car will often be easier and cheaper (trains are really expensive in Switzerland). Also, there are so many amazing areas in the mountains that would be very difficult to see without a car. Sometimes it might make sense to rent a car for just a part of your trip as well. Here you can find the best deals for car rental.
Driving in Switzerland can be a bit challenging because traffic is often very busy, there are roadworks on the highways all the time, and you have to be very careful not to speed because they have cameras all over the place and the fines are really high. Furthermore, often, you spend half of the time driving in tunnels with not much to see. But when you leave the main highways and get into the mountains – the scenery is amazing!
Good to know: When driving on the highways in Switzerland, you need to have a vignette showing that you paid the toll. It costs 40 CHF and is valid for the whole calendar year. If you arrive in Switzerland by car, you can buy it at the border and if you rent a car, it should already have a vignette. In winter, you’ll need winter tires (obligatory!) and snow chains in the mountains.
If you find the train system overwhelming and don’t feel like driving by yourself, you can also consider organized tours. There are all kinds of day tours from all the major cities in Switzerland that allow you to easily visit the most popular places without having to plan much.
TIP: For tours and tickets, check the GetYourGuide website. It has a great selection of tours and tickets for all the most popular places in Switzerland. Furthermore, their customer service is amazing and they have the most flexible cancelation policy on the market. This is where we book all our tours when we travel.
Most Popular Tours
Below are some of the most popular tours in Switzerland. For a complete selection, see here.
Best Time to Visit
There is no bad time to visit Switzerland and all seasons have something special and unique. You can visit the cities at any time of the year and also some popular mountain peaks such as Mt Titlis, Jungfraujoch, Klein Matterhorn, or Gornergrat are accessible 365 days a year.
The best time to visit Switzerland for winter activities is from the end of December to late March. For outdoor activities and hiking in the mountains – come between late May to September – early October.
Spring can also be really nice, but mostly in the cities and the valleys. It can still be quite wet and muddy in the mountains.
READ ALSO: Best Time to Visit Europe
If you are planning a trip to Switzerland, don’t forget to bookmark this page so that you can reference back to it when you need more info about specific places. Are you on Pinterest? Pin this image!