Best fares for two specific Bernese Oberland trips

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RicWalLar
RicWalLar
8 posts
new member
Apr 29, 2019 - 12:43 PM

I am finding it hard to work out the most economic way of doing 2 specific trips during our stay at Camping Breithorn in Lauterbrunnen Valley. My wife & I have 3 nights there in our motorhome mid-May, so 2 full days. The trips are:

(1) Lauterbrunnen to Jungfraujoch (& back!) which has been an ambition of mine for well over 50 years and

(2) Lauterbrunnen to Grindelwald then First, walk down to Grindelwald & train back to Lauterbrunnen.

I assume that the Half Fare Travelcard + standard tickets for each is the answer (also to cover bus from campsite to the station?). As these trips are obviously weather dependent we'd ideally like to purchase when we arrive.

Does this seem like the best way of going about this? Any advice gratefully received.

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
6568 posts
expert
Apr 29, 2019 - 5:00 PM in reply to RicWalLar

Hi RicWalLar-

Welcome to my Swiss Alps!

Since you are traveling by motorhome, can I safely assume that you will not be using the trains , buses, lake boats, etc. elsewhere in Switzerland to any significant degree?

That can make the answer easier. The forum moderators are the experts, and will probably send you to this page.

www.myswissalps.com/sw issrailpasses

I always defer to their more knowledgeable answers.

That said, your idea seems like the right one one to me.

I don't know if there is any regional pass that would be a better deal.

<"As these trips are obviously weather dependent we'd ideally like to purchase when we arrive. Does this seem like the best way of going about this?">>

Yes.

One comment on your proposed journeys.

If your knees are not in good condition, you will find the walk from First down to Grindelwald ...an 1130 meter descent .... to be taxing.

map.geo.admin.ch/?topic=swisstopo&lang=e n&bgLayer=ch.swisstopo .pixelkarte-farbe&layers=ch.swisst opo.swisstlm3d-wanderwege&zoom=6&E=26 47622.60&N=1166146.42

Quite few years ago, when I was a bit younger than you, I walked down from Kleine Scheidegg to Grindelwald. Slight greater altitude change. I was not in good shape. My knees and legs were very very sore for 2 or 3 days afterward. I don't know your fitness level, so I'll just pass on my experience for you to consider.

And, in mid-May, it is possible that the upper parts of the trail might still be blocked by snow. That area gets a lot of sun, so it may be OK.

In passing, I might mention that the major Alpine passes generally do not open until early June.

Slowpoke

Last modified on Apr 29, 2019 - 5:02 PM by Slowpoke
Arno
Arno
13925 posts
expert &
moderator
Apr 29, 2019 - 5:05 PM

Hi RicWalLar,

I agree that the Swiss Half Fare Card is likely to be the best option. You will save money on those trips, but also on bad weather alternatives like a trip to Bern or Lucerne (much easier to reach by train than motorhome), and most other excursions you might be doing elsewhere in Switzerland. You'll find all details here: www.myswissalps.com/sw isshalffarecard.

These alternatives might be worth to know about:

RicWalLar
RicWalLar
8 posts
new member
Apr 29, 2019 - 5:34 PM in reply to Slowpoke

Thanks for this advice, confirming my thoughts.. We won't be doing any other trips which could justify different travel passes as our itinerary is just for this period in Switzerland. 30 years ago we did the walk down from First with no problem but I have just realised that we're 30 years older 🙄 And while we're reasonably fit for 71 & 68, the point about the knees is well worth considering, thank you.

As regards mountain passes being open, presumably we can get to Italy after our Swiss adventure? Andermatt the best route to Lake Maggiore? We're talking about 19 May or thereabouts. We last did it in early June 1989 but I don't recall the route, except we stopped at a glacier which we could go into.

Thanks, Richard

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
6568 posts
expert
Apr 29, 2019 - 5:39 PM in reply to RicWalLar

<<"Andermatt the best route to Lake Maggiore? We're talking about 19 May

or thereabouts. We last did it in early June 1989 but I don't recall the

route, except we stopped at a glacier which we could go into.">

I have no opinion. There are, of course, routes available all year long.

Let's see what others say.

Slowpoke

RicWalLar
RicWalLar
8 posts
new member
Apr 29, 2019 - 5:41 PM in reply to Arno

Thanks also, Arno for this advice. We won't purchase any pass or tickets until we are there and can see what the weather is like. One of the main wishes, as well as Jungfraujoch, is to see the flower meadows, which we remember on the walk down from First were fantastic. If there are any other, less strenuous options, it would be good to know.

Thanks, Richard

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
6568 posts
expert
Apr 29, 2019 - 5:51 PM in reply to RicWalLar

<<"is to see the flower meadows, which we remember on the walk down from First were fantastic. ">>

Not sure, but you may be early. I tend to think of June for the wild flowers in the Alps. Altitude should make a difference.

Slowpoke

Steph
Steph
1786 posts
top member &
moderator
Apr 30, 2019 - 8:14 AM in reply to RicWalLar

Hello Richard,

Nice to hear you're back to explore an area you visited years ago. Superb advertisement.

To check out alternative hikes in the Grindelwald area look at the following link:
- www.myswissalps.com/gr indelwald/activities

Happy planning. We're here for further input.

Best,
Steph

RicWalLar
RicWalLar
8 posts
new member
Apr 30, 2019 - 1:53 PM

So, it seems that if we just did the Jungfraujoch trip from Lauterbrunnen we could use a 1-Day Saver Pass, costing CHF75 but to get this we have to buy a Half-fare Card costing CHF 118, total CHF193.

The full price ticket to achieve the same thing is CHF189.60. In other words, virtually the same cost. And the Saver Day Pass doesn't give any discount so would not be relevant.

Even with all its complexities (and boy is it complex!) it seems not to be very conducive to a short stay. Maybe that's the idea. Not very happy planning at all, I'm afraid, Steph.

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
6568 posts
expert
Apr 30, 2019 - 2:00 PM in reply to RicWalLar

Stay longer ;-)

Better chance to have good weather, too.

Slowpoke

RicWalLar
RicWalLar
8 posts
new member
Apr 30, 2019 - 2:12 PM in reply to Slowpoke

I'd love to stay longer, but we have a lot of other stuff to fit in on this trip and, to be honest, it is a teensy weensy bit expensive in Switzerland!

Steph
Steph
1786 posts
top member &
moderator
Apr 30, 2019 - 7:21 PM in reply to RicWalLar

Hello RicWalLar,

Well planning is half the trip, I'm afraid this will be up to you! Sorry to hear you're not content.

For a Saver Day Pass you DON'T need to have a Swiss Half Fare Card, this simply offers you a cheaper one. Check:
- www.myswissalps.com/sa verdaypass

Steph

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
6568 posts
expert
Apr 30, 2019 - 7:33 PM in reply to RicWalLar
RicWalLar
RicWalLar
8 posts
new member
Apr 30, 2019 - 9:21 PM in reply to Steph

Thanks Steph, but the Saver Day Pass evidently doesn't give any discounts for Jungfraujoch. I think we've decided that it's not going to happen and we'll enjoy looking at it from the Mannlichen - Kleine Scheidegg - Wengen walk which we did a couple of times before many years ago and on each occasion was a superb experience. So I'll research whether the Saver Day Pass is worth using for the trip up there from and back to the valley.

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
6568 posts
expert
Apr 30, 2019 - 9:35 PM in reply to RicWalLar

<<"I think we've decided that it's not going to happen and we'll enjoy

looking at it from the Mannlichen - Kleine Scheidegg - Wengen walk which

we did a couple of times before many years ago and on each occasion was

a superb experience.">>

The chances of doing that walk in mid-May are slim. Average target date for opening is June 15th. Considerable variation... say +/- two weeks. But mid May is very unlikely.

Check Arno's comments in this thread:

www.myswissalps.com/fo rum/topic/hike-from-grutschalp-to-murren

And:

en.swisswebcams.ch/suc he/ort/m%C3%A4nnlichen -6935774/

I'd certainly not plan on it.

Slowpoke

Last modified on Apr 30, 2019 - 9:39 PM by Slowpoke
Maria
Maria
818 posts
top member
May 1, 2019 - 5:45 PM

Hi Richard

In my view, it would be a real pity if you don't go to Jungfraujoch, it's the same as going to Egypt and not seeing the pyramids :D ok maybe not quite, but still :)

Perhaps a Good morning ticket might help? It is available on your dates! www.jungfrau.ch/shop/e n/good-morning-ticket-jungfraujoch

You could also save money on the second day, by hiking and minimising cable cars. I am sure people who know the area well could make a suggestion.

You should read up on the link provided by Slowpoke, although I see you are already saving on accommodation: www.myswissalps.com/pl antrip/doityourself/sa vemoney

I would also use the spreadsheet on our website to compare the above against the Jungfrau Travel Pass which should cover the areas you are considering: www.myswissalps.com/tr ain/ticketspasses/prac tical/chooserailpass

I really hope you get to go!

Maria.

RicWalLar
RicWalLar
8 posts
new member
May 1, 2019 - 6:52 PM

Hi Maria

Thanks for your advice. It helps make these decisions even harder! Yes, visiting Jungfraujoch has been an ambition for me (not my wife) since my parents first visited in the late 50s and I stayed at Beatenberg on a school skiing trip in about 1959 (we had wooden skis). My 3 visits since have sort of sealed that desire. This will probably be my final visit to Switzerland and it's true that I should go for it (my wife says forget the cost). So, if the weather looks good & as the high paths seem likely to be snowed in and the flowers seem not yet to be showing their heads (it does seem we got the timing a bit wrong) then I guess we'll bite the money bullet and go for it!

Thanks again,

Richard

RicWalLar
RicWalLar
8 posts
new member
May 2, 2019 - 8:57 AM in reply to Maria

Hi again Maria

Thanks for the Good Morning Ticket link (which says 2018 but it seems to still apply to 2019). I could not find a link to this offer anywhere else on the junfrau.ch website.The price is much better and as we are early risers it may well be the best bet.

In the booking panel it gives a choice of stations to start from (ours would be Lauterbrunnen) so presumably the itinerary it creates provides the necessary timing to reach Kleine Scheidegg in time for the period of validity?

Thanks again

Richard

Maria
Maria
818 posts
top member
May 2, 2019 - 8:43 PM

Hi again Richard

Yes I think they just haven't updated the date, as the German version doesn't say that. Jungfraujoch is its own destination so that might be why.

As it says there you need to board Kleine Scheidegg to Jungfraujoch leg only at 8 and 8:30am. You can use the timetable to plan your travel (be sure to use the advanced timetable to see all the stops and what train you would need to get on): www.myswissalps.com/ti metable

You can go there from Lauterbrunnen no problem.

Maria.

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