Lucerne is one of the beautiful cities in Switzerland. The two major draws for tourists to Lucerne are the Chapel Bridge and the Lion monument. But there is so much more to explore in the charming city of Lucerne. One of the top things to do in Lucerne is to do day trips from Lucerne to the amazing places around the city. These places are well connected with Lucerne city center and make it easy and convenient to visit the places. Some of these places can be reached by cable cars and cogwheel trains which are the best mountain rides in Switzerland. The ascent offers incredible views of the surrounding mountain scenery and the city of Lucerne. Here are some of the best day trips from Lucerne which you should not miss.
Lucerne to Mount Titlis – Popular Day Trips from Lucerne
Mount Titlis is a popular snow resort and a top tourist destination in Switzerland. Mount Titlis is an easy day trip from Lucerne. To visit Titlis one has to take a train from Lucerne to Engelberg and then a series of the cable car from Engelberg to Titlis summit. The train from Lucerne to Engelberg takes about 45 minutes and then another 30 minutes to the summit.
The 360 deg revolving cable-car is a unique experience offering incredible views of the alps. At the summit, there are plenty of attractions. There is a glacier cave decorated with ice sculptures, there are a couple of restaurants and also a chocolate shop. You can ride the Ice Flyer Chair Lift or enjoy a thrilling walk on Europe’s highest suspension bridge. There is a snow park which hosts a myriad of snow activities for kids as well as adults.
Mount Rigi Kulm – Queen of Mountains
Mount Rigi was one of our best day trips in Switzerland. Popularly known as the ‘Queen of the Mountains’ Mount Rigi offers some breathtaking views of the Alps, lakes, mountains, and villages.
The summit Rigi Kulm can be reached either from the village of Vigznau or Weggis. Both Vigznau and Weggis are well connected by ferry from Lucerne ferry terminal (Bahnhofquai) next to Lucerne train station.
If you get down at Vigznau you will have to take a cogwheel train up to the summit Rigi Kulm. The cogwheel trains are amongst the oldest mountain railways and offer some of the amazing views during the ascent.
From the other stop Weggis you will have to take a cable car to the intermediate station of Rigi Kaltbad and then continue your journey to the Rigi Kulm by the cogwheel train. Rigi Kaltbad has a resort if you are looking to spend some time surrounded by lush nature or if you are looking to stay back for the night.
Lucerne to Mount Pilatus – Must do Day Trips from Lucerne
Mount Pilatus is a popular mountain massif overlooking the city of Lucerne. The summit offers remarkable views over the city and the surrounding from several vantage points dotting the summit. There are two ways to get to the summit which are best Swiss mountain rides offering great views along the ascend.
You can take a bus from Lucerne to Kriens and then gondola up to the summit of Pilatus. At the intermediate station Frakmuntegg from Kriens, there is an option to ride Frakigaudi which is the longest toboggan run in Switzerland with a length of 1,350 m.
The other option to reach Pilatus Kulm is to ride the world’s steepest cog railway which takes about 30 minutes. There is good connectivity of ferries from Lucerne to the town of Alpnachstad which is the starting point for the cogwheel train to the summit of Pilatus Kulm. If you are a good hiker then there are several hiking routes from Lucerne to the top of Mt. Pilatus.
The summit has a restaurant, hotel and several hiking trails starting from the summit.
Lucerne to Lake Brienz – Traditional Swiss Village
Brienz is a small charming village on the shores of Lake Brienz about 1 and half hours train ride. One of the most beautiful villages in Switzerland Brienz is known for the wood carving tradition. You can walk around the village of Brienz which has beautiful chalets decorated with bright colored flowers and interesting wood carvings. On the shores of the lake, there are several other attractions like Iseltwald Village and the gorgeous Giessbach Falls. The Giessbach Falls can be reached by a funicular from Giessbach See funicular station. On the summit, there is the 19th-century Grand Hotel Giessbach.
Ballenberg Museum is an open-air museum displaying over 100 Swiss traditional buildings. The museum is about 15 minutes bus ride from Brienz train station. Brienz Rothorn is another popular attraction to plan on your visit to Lake Brienz. A 100-year-old cogwheel steam train takes you to the summit at a height of 2244 m.
Lucerne to Interlaken – Beautiful Resort Town
Interlaken is a beautiful resort town and one of the most popular places to visit in Switzerland. The town is located between the two stunning lakes of Switzerland – the Lake Thun and the Lake Brienz and hence the name. There is good connectivity of trains from Lucerne to Interlaken which takes around a couple of hours. One of the top things to do in Interlaken is to visit its old town which is set along the Aare Gorge in a scenic location. The old town has many wooden chalets decorated with bright flowers, sculptures, and cowbells. Other top attractions in the town are Tourism Museum, Weissenau Castle, Kursaal Garden, and Casino Interlaken and Interlaken Monastery.
If you can manage the time you can also plan a visit to Harder Kulm is a summit which offers incredible views of the Interlaken town, Thun and Brienz Lakes and the magnificent peaks of Eiger, Monch, and Jungfrau. The cable car station to reach Harder Kulm is located about 5 minutes walk from the Interlaken Ost Station.
If you have already explored the town of Interlaken, Interlaken also makes for a perfect base to explore the beautiful location of Bernese Oberland. There are many places which can be done on easy day trips from Interlaken. There is good connectivity with public transport.
Lucerne to Bern – The Charming Swiss Capital
The Swiss capital Bern is only 1 hour 30 minutes train ride from Lucerne. One of the most popular cities to visit in Switzerland, Bern offers its visitors with a myriad of attractions. Bern has historic landmarks, well-preserved medieval architecture and plenty of shopping opportunities. The two major historic landmarks of Bern are located in the Bern Old Town – the clock tower Zytglogge and the 15th-century Gothic Bern Cathedral.
The Einstein House with an exhibition on artifacts related to the life of the great physicist is a must visit. If you are visiting with kids there are many parks in the city, the most popular being the Bear’s park where you can watch the bears frolicking and bathing in the Aare River.
For shopaholics, the city of Bern has flea markets and branded shops for a splendid shopping experience.