Essential Switzerland

Sail down the beautiful rivers
Sail down the beautiful rivers

The following is just a suggested daily touring schedule. You will have complete control over your daily schedule and may change your plans at any time by simply telling your guide. Your time in Europe is yours to enjoy as you like!

For custom luxury travel and tours to Switzerland, please contact one of our travel experts.

Download PDF itinerary here.

ITINERARY

PRICING FROM

$7,825 per person, based on two people traveling together. Please contact Exeter International for specific pricing and availability. 

Day 1
Arrival | Lucerne

Arrival into Zurich, where you will be met by your driver for your transfer west to your hotel in Lucerne. Upon arrival, check in to your hotel and spend the rest of the evening at leisure.

Lucerne is the gateway to Central Switzerland. Founded on the banks of Lake Lucerne in the 6thcentury, the city grew up around the Sankt Leodgar Abbey, initially built in 840, The city first gained prominence as a stop along the Gotthard trade route and then eventually, as a seat in the Swiss Confederacy. Today, as the most populous city in Central Switzerland, the city is a nexus of business and culture for the region, with several world-class museums and theaters for its residents to enjoy.

Exeter Services: Arrival Transfer

Hotel: Bürgenstock

Day 2
Lucerne | Lucerne

Today, meet your guide for an overview tour of the city. Your walk will take you through some of the beautiful town squares, lined with historic homes decorated with frescoes.

Make your way to the water, where you will cross the medieval Kapellbrücke (Chapel Bridge). The bridge, centerpiece of the city, spans the River Reuss where it meets the lake. Initially built in 1365, it is the oldest surviving truss bridge in the world. Your guide will show you some of the 158 paintings that decorate the interior frames of the bridge. Painted by local artist Heinrich Wägmann in the 17th Century, they depict events from Lucerne’s storied history. Halfway across stands theWassertum (Water Tower), which predates the bridge by about 30 years. Throughout the years, the tower has served as a prison, a library, and now as home to the local artillery association.

From there, walk through the medieval cobblestone streets up to the Musegg Wall, also known as“Nine Towers”. As part of the rampart walls built in 1386, the Musegg and its nine towers soar high above the city, providing some of the best panoramic views of Lucerne, The Reuss and the lake. Today, four of the towers are open to guests, including Zytturm, home to the city’s oldestclock.

End the day with a walk to the Lion of Lucerne, a moving monument to Swiss Soldiers who were massacred when revolutionaries stormed the Tuileries Palace during the French Revolution. Hewn out of a cliffside by Lukas Ahorn in 1821, it depicts a mortally wounded lion impaled by a spear, covering a shield bearing the fleur-de-lis. Mark Twain immortalized the monument in ‘A Tramp Abroad’, calling it “the most mournful and moving piece of stone in the world”.

Exeter Services: Guide (4 Hours)

Hotel: Bürgenstock

Day 3
Lucerne - Bern - Lausanne | Lucerne - Bern - Lausanne

This morning, meet your driver and guide for your transfer to Lausanne. Along the way, you will stop in Bern to explore the charming capital of Switzerland.

Your guide will show you the late Gothic Bern Minster, a Swiss Reformed Cathedral, constructed in the 1400s, and to the Clock Tower, which is the most famous landmark of the city. You will enjoy a private visit to the top of the clock tower (Zytglogge), where you will have a chance to see the inner workings of the clock mechanism, as well as a beautiful view over the Old Town of Bern.Please note, the stairs up the Clock Tower are very narrow and steep. Afterwards, you may wish to stroll to the Bear Park to see the famous bears of Bern, or head uphill to visit the Rose Garden.

After some time for lunch, continue your drive to Lausanne. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel, and you may enjoy the remainder of the day at leisure.

Exeter Services: Transfer Lucerne to Lausanne via Bern; Guide in Bern (3 Hours)

Hotel: Beau Rivage Palace

Day 4
Montreux, Vevey & Lavaux | Montreux, Vevey & Lavaux

This morning, your driver and guide will meet you at your hotel for your day trip to Montreux, Vevey and the Lavaux wine region.

Upon arrival in Montreux, you will first be transferred to Chillon Castle in Veytaux. Chillon Castle, located on the banks for Lake Geneva, is one of the main sights in the region and the setting provide a wonderful view of the lake and the surrounding mountains. Chillon served as the summer residence, as well as fortress and prison, of the Counts of Savoy for almost four centuries. This place also inspired popular culture, such as the poem ‘The Prisoner of Chillon’written by Lord Byron. Guests may visit the dungeons, courtyards, and rooms and halls of the castle. The Castle also features a permanent exhibition and varying temporary exhibitions.

After, you will head to Chaplin’s World, an adventure dedicated to Charlie Chaplin – the man and artist. Start off at the Manoir , wher e Charlie and his wife, Oona, liv ed. Y ou will walk through the house and see things as they were when he was there. Next, head to the interactive studio before ending with a stroll in his impressive parks with unobstructed views of Lake Geneva and the Alps.

Before making your way back to Lausanne, you will stop in the beautiful Lavaux wine region. This area has been UNESCO protected since 2007 and it is the largest contiguous vineyardregion in Switzerland. The lake’s sunny and warm shores produce small and artisanal batches offantastic white wines, which are consumed entirely within the country. The hillside terraces offer breathtaking panoramic views of the Lake Leman – from St. Saphorin to Lutry, we select the most exclusive vineyards for you to taste these beautiful varieties while enjoying the picturesque scenery.

Afterwards, your driver will transport you back to your hotel in Lausanne.

Exeter Services: Vehicle, Driver & Guide (8 Hours)

Hotel: Beau Rivage Palace

Day 5
Geneva | Geneva

Today enjoy your day at leisure. We recommend you explore the city of Lausanne. Alternatively, additional touring can be arranged (please inquire for the extra cost).

Exeter Services: No Services

Hotel: Beau Rivage Palace

Additional touring upon request – Gruyères & Lausanne

This morning, meet your guide and driver to explore the region inland. You will be transferred to the medieval town of Gruyères to get a taste of the beautiful countryside and its traditions. If you are interested, your guide will take you to visit La Maison du Gruyère in Pringy, which presents the famous Gruyère AOP cheese, and where visitors can observe the process of cheese making. Depending on the season and time of the day, we might be able to arrange a visit to an artisanal cheese producer in the mountains. Please note that Swiss law is very strict in terms of respecting the production schedule during visits to artisanal manufacturers. Later, head to the town of Gruyères and enjoy a tour through the charming cobblestoned streets. You will visit the imposing castle, which has stood upon its hill since the 13th century offering unparalleled views over the valley an nearby mountains. Listed as a Swiss heritage site of national significance, it was opened to the public in 1938, and it features pieces of antique furniture, precious stained-glass windows and a collection of landscapes painted by Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot. Another interesting visit is the unique HR Giger Museum. Located in the St. Germain Castle in the center of the town, this museum contains the largest collection of Swiss artist Hans Ruedi Giger’s works. Giger designed the “Alien” thematic and as part of the movie’s special effects team, he won the Oscar for Best Visual Effects. Take this fascinating journey through his
exhibition, which comprises paintings, drawings, sculptures and even film sets. Do not miss the Giger Bar, located opposite the museum. Afterwards, return to Lausanne. If time allows, we suggest a visit of the Olympic Museum. This interactive and interesting museum comprises three floors, each one featuring an exhibit on a different aspect of the Olympics.

Exeter Services: Vehicle, Driver & Guide (8 Hours)

Day 6
Departure | Geneva

This morning, you will be met and driven to the airport to board your flight onward.

Exeter Services: Transfer

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