Golden Pass Panoramic and Classic – A Train Ride through Paradise!

(Last Updated On: August 26, 2017)

We were ecstatic as we peeped through our flight window and the scenic vistas of Swiss Alps made us hold our breath. It was the last day of December when we landed in Switzerland and it had snowed heavily. We were so elated that we could not wait till summer to explore the beauty of this paradise on earth. But we were a bit skeptical too as our daughter was just 6-months-old and it was going to be her first snow. We were looking for best and safe options when we stumbled upon the Golden Pass route train ride.

The best way to experience the surreal locations of Switzerland without feeling the chill of the freezing breeze and without having to trudge through the layers of snow is the train ride through Golden Pass route. The scenic route winds through the picturesque landscapes dotted with pretty wooden chalets, snow-capped mountains, sloping hills of pine forests dusted with snow, shimmering lakes and the hazy overcast skies.

Our journey started early morning from Geneva to Montreux, where the Golden Pass route train commenced and heads towards Zweisimmen. We had a Swiss day pass which is issued to the Swiss residents but the Eurailpasses and Swiss Rail Passes work fine as well all through the entire route of Golden Pass. The views on the way to Montreux were as always mesmerizing with the stunning snow-covered Lavaux vineyard terraces sloping into perpetual blue Lake Geneva and the thatched roofs of the chalets painted white with snow.

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

The Golden Pass scenic route runs from Montreux all the way upto Lucerne. ‘Panoramic’ and ‘Classic’ are the two trains that you can experience on the route from Montreux to Zweisimmen. Though the regular trains also run on this route, Panoramic and Classic trains are specifically designed to make the Golden Pass experience richer.

We boarded a Golden Pass Panoramic train from Montreux. The ‘Panoramic’ trains have large windows offering a perfect unobstructed panoramic view as the name suggests, throughout the journey. The vistas from the train windows were so entrancing that it was as if a multi-dimensional movie was being played on the screen.

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

The Panoramic train ride was an amazing experience. We wanted to experience the Classic train ride as well for the rest of the journey. The Classic train was an hour behind the Panoramic train schedule so we thought to get down at Gstaad and use this time gap to explore Gstaad. Gstaad is a lovely hill town and favorite resort of many celebrities including Bollywood. The little charming town of Gstaad is a calm town lined with lovely wooden chalets with a backdrop of towering snow mountains. Though most of the wooden chalets were residences, several of them housed brand showrooms.

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

The fresh pristine air of Gstaad had already drifted Chhavi into a deep slumber. We enjoyed a quick stroll around Gstaad and boarded the Classic train to continue our journey to Zweisimmen which was around 30 min from Gstaad.

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

The coaches and the windows on the Golden Pass Classic trains have a vintage feel. It was as if we were riding back in time. A remarkable experience indeed with more of the picturesque landscapes.

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

Both the ‘Panoramic’ and ‘Classic’ trains have a bar and food coaches available which aren’t available on the regular trains. The trains from Zweisimmen to Interlaken are all regular trains, and the trains from Interlaken to Lucerne are again the Golden Pass Panorama trains.

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

As the train leaves Interlaken Ost the beautiful Lake Brienz was ubiquitous. As the color of the lake changes from turquoise to emerald we cannot but gawk in awe. The landscapes now had more of the greenery with a gentle sunny glow over the verdant meadows and rolling green hills. The train also passes through the Hasley Valley which was a reminiscence of our day trip to the wonderful Aare Gorge, a wonderland carved by the mighty Aare River.

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

GoldenPass Train Route Switzerland

Geneva to Lucerne takes around 3 hours of train journey on normal route and around 6 hours on the Golden Pass route. We reached Lucerne by noon had our lunch and boarded a train back to Geneva. The Golden Pass had us travel not only through the diverse landscape of Switzerland but also through the diverse population from French-speaking region of Montreux to German-speaking region of Zweisimmen.

The Golden Pass train journey is one of our favorite trips to take in the Swiss winters. It was an incredible experience where the journey was no less a destination. It is also a great way to experience the wonderful Switzerland if you are traveling with a baby and do not want to head into the freezing cold outside. Read our experiences in our post tips for traveling with a baby. Have you taken a ride through the GoldenPass route in Switzerland and experienced the wonderment?

19 thoughts on “Golden Pass Panoramic and Classic – A Train Ride through Paradise!

  • February 22, 2017 at 7:41 pm
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    I’ve heard so many great things about the Golden Pass, but didn’t get to do it myself. Indeed, when I was in Switzerland the only part of it I visited was Lucerne, and it was the summer. The landscape takes on a real wintry magic when the scenic mountainside is coated in snow. Great pictures! Ultimately, a train ride through Switzerland’s picturesque landscapes is one of the simpler pleasures you can undertake in the country πŸ™‚

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  • February 22, 2017 at 7:44 pm
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    Agghhh, Switzerland is so gorgeous. When I visited I really wanted to do one of the iconic train trips like this one, but I ended up falling in love with these two little villages, Murren and Grindelwald, and extending my stay in both of them! Next time, and there will be a next time, I’ll have to do the golden pass.

    Reply
  • February 26, 2017 at 12:37 pm
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    Train journeys are beautiful. Switzerland is so picturesque. It is totally a winter wonderland. The lakes, the landscape everything looks pristine. We specially enjoyed train travel in Switzerland when we were there. We had availed of the Eurail 3 country pass and had a gala time traveling around Switzerland.

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  • February 26, 2017 at 1:05 pm
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    Whoa! Journey of a life time! The interiors of the train look so good and exteriors – the scenic sights are something beyond gorgeous! You have captured some heart melting memories of your hubby and kid. πŸ™‚

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  • March 1, 2017 at 2:31 pm
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    The views on the Golden Pass route looks just phenomenal. I didn’t know that Gstaad was frequented by Bollywood celebrities. 6 hours compared to 3 hours on this route is something I would prefer doing as well. I have never been and now it has entered my bucketlist.

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  • March 1, 2017 at 3:35 pm
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    these views are not just panoramic. they seem out of this world. I have heard a lot about the golden pass route and your post just reaffirms all of that. will definitely take this route when I go to Switzerland

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  • March 1, 2017 at 6:31 pm
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    Gorgeous country, gorgeous pictures. My plans to visit Switzerland have been cancelled twice and this post made my heart ache so much. Yet, it was so good to see the pics. Special love to the baby, gave an adorable touch to the pics πŸ˜€ the train ride seems lovely! <3

    Reply
  • March 1, 2017 at 10:05 pm
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    Oh boy! It must be an experience of a lifetime! The panoramic view from the train’s window is surreal. It looks like a winter wonderland. Gstaad gives a perfect vibe of the old town hill station! I’d love to experience that ride someday in my life!

    Reply
  • March 1, 2017 at 11:28 pm
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    I’ve always dreamed of doing a trip like this, especially in the snow! I think it makes it look so much more incredible. You have taken some really beautiful photos and I can’t imagine how many other amazing landscapes you saw that never made it into the post!! Very jealous of this trip!

    Reply
  • March 1, 2017 at 11:59 pm
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    What an amazing trip! The scenery is simply breathtaking and a wonderful option to travel in the Swiss Winter. That train looks perfect to do that, with those big windows. Congratulations for the photos. They’re perfect!

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  • March 2, 2017 at 8:21 am
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    Those views really are astounding. It’s so wonderful to travel by train, especially when in Europe. Could go for some of that fresh mountain air right about now.

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  • March 2, 2017 at 8:25 am
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    I have heard about the beauty of Golden pass and your pictures are depicting the same. Your pictures are beautiful especially the one of a dad and daughter. I loved the train interiors and exterior with those glasses for a panoramic view. I will love to experience this once for sure.

    Reply
  • March 2, 2017 at 9:45 am
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    I love train rides and your Golden Pass route reminds me of a similar kind of train I took in Norway. It’s so beautiful to go slowly on the rails and just admire the nature. Switzerland is a country full of amazing scenery in any direction you turn your head. I love the vintage trains and their wooden decor with big windows, it makes it look so cosy.

    Reply
  • March 2, 2017 at 11:03 am
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    Switzerland is definitely one of our favorite places. Their panoramic trains are must do things. Your article shows some beautiful places out there.

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  • March 2, 2017 at 1:49 pm
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    The winter landscapes are mindblowing. I have never seen anything like that before and I sure would remember this voyage for it. The train does have a vintage feel and looks very comfortable. You have managed to capture a memory for life.

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  • March 2, 2017 at 11:46 pm
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    Bookmarked!! Omg, this looks so incredibly beautiful πŸ™‚ Like a winter wonderful and so cosy, too. I will try to do the route later this year πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ Thanks for the inspiration! X

    Reply
  • March 3, 2017 at 8:29 am
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    I love trains. Trains give you the real sense of journey and are much more comfortable than anything else. This is something that I need to include in my future plans. Love the views through the train window, especially that of the lake.

    Reply
  • March 3, 2017 at 9:49 am
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    Switzerland is such an amazing country, I’ve heard so many good things about it. I’m in love with these stunning, fairy landscapes! I haven’t been there but definitely, I should go there soon πŸ™‚

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  • March 3, 2017 at 7:41 pm
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    Switzerland is truly a heaven on Earth. Swiss Pass is a life saver. The thing that makes me happy is that you travel with your little angel!! This is adorable. The family that travels together, stays happy forever. May you guys cover a lot more destinations with Chhavi. πŸ™‚

    Reply

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