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seabreezer

Options from Basel?

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Taking the Uniworld Amsterdam to Basel next Sept. and we are looking for suggestions after Basel. We haven't yet decided from where to fly home and we can train it or drive to see some notable sights. Thoughts?

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Lucerne is lovely, and Zurich is nice although it's a big city by comparison. Zurich has lots of flight connections.

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Hello seabreezer,

 

as you are happy to take trains you could be adventurous (well, a little) and go all the way to Paris and fly home from there. A high speed train from Basel takes you into Paris in less than four hours. Those are called TGV in French.

 

notamermaid

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Lucerne and Interlaken are both must do's, you can come back to Zurich for flights or any other major City and or add train trip to Paris

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I was just in Paris for the umpteenth time so no need to go there this trip…does anyone know how long the train trip would be to Munich? Also, how far is Lucerne from the Zurich airport? Thinking of avoiding the city of Zurich.

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I was just in Paris for the umpteenth time so no need to go there this trip…does anyone know how long the train trip would be to Munich? Also, how far is Lucerne from the Zurich airport? Thinking of avoiding the city of Zurich.

 

We are taking a train from Basel to Montreux on Lake Geneva and spending four nights there as our base. Day trips by train or lake steamers are easy transports to all of the gorgeous lakeside cities or towns...Geneva, Lausanne , ,and lots of trains to many quaint towns (Gruyeres) even a two hour train trip to Chaminox in France.

They even have a beautiful wine area and a very famous Castle (Chillion ) .

Can you tell I am getting very excited?

Flying home from Geneva airport.

 

Have fun planning!

Robin

...

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Robinlynn, that sounds so fun...when are you going? We are going on the Sept. 13 Uniworld sailing and it will be Sept. 25 by the time we disembark...do you know how cold it might be by then on Lake Gneva? I am thinking it may be getting late in the season to really enjoy boating on it.

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Robinlynn, that sounds so fun...when are you going? We are going on the Sept. 13 Uniworld sailing and it will be Sept. 25 by the time we disembark...do you know how cold it might be by then on Lake Gneva? I am thinking it may be getting late in the season to really enjoy boating on it.

 

Our Viking River cruise ends on May 17th in Basel. The weather near Lake Geneva is supposed to be quite mild in spring and fall, not too cold at all.

The weather in this region of Switzerland is considered temperate...

There are these really wonderful old-fashioned or modern type steam boats, that go all around the lake to all of these wonderful towns and cities.

I am still doing my research about them and all of the places they visit. I believe some offer the hop on hop off option.

 

And of course the wonderful Swiss trains....in addition to short train rides, there are very special train offerings , such as the Golden Pass and the Chocolate Train ride with all kinds of unique trips offered as day trips , going into the mountains, along the lake, even a short trip to France, near Lyon.

 

I got all of this information on Trip Advisor. Just put in Montreaux, Geneva , or Lausanne, and look at Things to Do. A lot of overlap of the same attractions in all 3 cities, since they are fairly close to each other.

 

We went to Switzerland as part of our very first trip to Europe over 30 years ago and loved it. It is such a beautiful country , and I am thrilled that we are revisitng in again as a wonderful way to end this river cruise vacation.

 

Good luck and have fun planning . I am sure whatever you choose will be great!

 

Robin

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I spent quite a bit of time working in Basel.

It's a small, clean city sharing a border with France and Germany. So, the area offers some great food, and interesting culture it is not often you can stand on the boarders of three countries at once.

If you are into fine dining, rent a car and drive to some of the world's finest eating spots in the Black Forest. Enjoy a spa, too.

While in Basel, enjoy walking through the "downtown" area, which is truly a gem. Be sure to visit the city hall. There is something about walking across the bridge over the river into the center that you have to go "wow, beautiful".

Another thought is to rent a car and drive to Zurich. If you enjoy beautiful scenery, you will love the ride. Driving is very easy in Switzerland, Germany and France. The roads are great.

Suggest you pick a village on the way to Zurich, and enjoy a meal in a local inn. To me, these small villages are what I like about Switzerland the most.

Zurich is not a large city compared to Paris or New York, but it has all the bad things those cities have. I remember the shock of seeing graffiti in Zurich the first time. It goes along with the fact the city has an area called Needle Park.

Whatever you do, enjoy it.

QUOTE=seabreezer;40906037]Taking the Uniworld Amsterdam to Basel next Sept. and we are looking for suggestions after Basel. We haven't yet decided from where to fly home and we can train it or drive to see some notable sights. Thoughts?

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Hello seabreezer,

 

as you travel up the Rhine you might consider continuing further upstream - which you cannot do on a large cruise ship - by car to the spectacular Rhine fall at Schaffhausen. Or take the train along )part of) the river to Lake Constance from which the Rhine emerges and then flows towards Basel. The source of the Rhine is deep down in the Alps. The Eastern end of Lake Constance borders on Austria and the Bavarian Alps.

 

notamermaid

Edited by notamermaid

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Thanks for all the suggestions. We will probably head towards Lake Geneva with an excursion to Interlaken on the way.

We spent a week in the Bernese Alps. If you are going to Interlaken, take the train to the top of the Jungfrauhoch. The view is fantastic!The routing is Interlaken, Wengen, Kleine Scheide. The pictures and story are on our website. We are always happy to answer any questions.

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Thanks for all the suggestions. We will probably head towards Lake Geneva with an excursion to Interlaken on the way.

 

With that in mind, you might want to check out the Golden Pass train

(you can find it on any Swiss Rails site). It is a special panoramic train with breathtaking views and it goes, I believe, from Basel (?) or Lucerne to Interlocken and on to the Lake Geneva area. I have read it is an amazing train ride.

 

I looked into doing this, but we only have 4 days in Switzerland after the cruise, and we have spent some days in Interlocken and Lucerne on a previous trip years ago.

 

I love Switzerland.

 

Good luck

Robin

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Thanks for the link to your travel stories. Switzerland looks amazing! Can you tell me what month you were there?

We were there in late June

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Thanks for the info. Now I think we need to spend more time... How long would we need to see lake Geneva area and Lucerne with some day trips? I would think we could have a few days based in each area but which to go to first? We can fly home non-stop from Zurich but is it practical to go to Montreaux first and then Lucerne?

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May I offer something completely different? We just ended a similar trip in Basel. We took Uniworld's free shuttle to the Basel Airport and rented a car. We then drove to Colmar, France (very close) and drove up the Alsace Wine Road stopping in many villages such as Riquewihr finally ending up passing Strasbourg crossing over to Germany where we hit the Black Forest Road and drove up to Baden Baden, a very elegant German City with the famous thermal baths. From there you could make your way to many great places such as the Romantic Road to Rothenburg and fly home from Frankfurt or Munich....

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Our Viking River cruise ends on May 17th in Basel. The weather near Lake Geneva is supposed to be quite mild in spring and fall, not too cold at all.

The weather in this region of Switzerland is considered temperate...

There are these really wonderful old-fashioned or modern type steam boats, that go all around the lake to all of these wonderful towns and cities.

I am still doing my research about them and all of the places they visit. I believe some offer the hop on hop off option.

 

And of course the wonderful Swiss trains....in addition to short train rides, there are very special train offerings , such as the Golden Pass and the Chocolate Train ride with all kinds of unique trips offered as day trips , going into the mountains, along the lake, even a short trip to France, near Lyon.

 

I got all of this information on Trip Advisor. Just put in Montreaux, Geneva , or Lausanne, and look at Things to Do. A lot of overlap of the same attractions in all 3 cities, since they are fairly close to each other.

 

We went to Switzerland as part of our very first trip to Europe over 30 years ago and loved it. It is such a beautiful country , and I am thrilled that we are revisitng in again as a wonderful way to end this river cruise vacation.

 

Good luck and have fun planning . I am sure whatever you choose will be great!

 

Robin

 

Great suggestions. Love, love, love the Lake Geneva area. To the OP.The rail system is excellent. Be sure to check out the passes available to see if there is an option that will meet your travel plans. The Golden Pass train ride is wonderful: Rick Steves has a description on his website. Consider making reservations ahead of time in one of the VIP seats at the front of the panoramic cars for one way - well worth the extra cost IMHO. The trip to Gryere and the chocolate factory are an easy side trip from the itinerary, depending on how far you travel on the line. There are also many lovely vineyard walks and tasting rooms in the area. Check out the Aigle Chateau. Amother consideration is a day excursion to Zermatt to see the Matterhorn. It took an entire day but was our absolute favorite memory from out entire trip to Switzerland - breathtaking! The views from the train were wonderful, and the village of Zermatt is charming. THe only consideration is that there is always the chance the summit may be clouded over. We would make the trip again in a heartbeat. We have traveled to a number of places and Switzerland is back on our list to visit again.

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Great suggestions. Love, love, love the Lake Geneva area. To the OP.The rail system is excellent. Be sure to check out the passes available to see if there is an option that will meet your travel plans. The Golden Pass train ride is wonderful: Rick Steves has a description on his website. Consider making reservations ahead of time in one of the VIP seats at the front of the panoramic cars for one way - well worth the extra cost IMHO. The trip to Gryere and the chocolate factory are an easy side trip from the itinerary, depending on how far you travel on the line. There are also many lovely vineyard walks and tasting rooms in the area. Check out the Aigle Chateau. Amother consideration is a day excursion to Zermatt to see the Matterhorn. It took an entire day but was our absolute favorite memory from out entire trip to Switzerland - breathtaking! The views from the train were wonderful, and the village of Zermatt is charming. THe only consideration is that there is always the chance the summit may be clouded over. We would make the trip again in a heartbeat. We have traveled to a number of places and Switzerland is back on our list to visit again.

 

Thanks for the suggestions. I haven't heard of the Aigle chateaux, but I will definitely check it out. I know our hotel is a short walk to the Chillon Castle, which is supposed to be very interesting with a very intriguing history.

I am plannaing on going to Gruyere and, if we can get there easily, the home where Audrey Hepburn spent her last years. I heard it has become a small museum dedicated to her and the work she did to help the poor. She has been my idol most of my life.

 

I would like to go to Lausanne and Geneva also, via the steamer boats, passing the wine region along the way. I hoped to do the Matterhorn day, but I don't think there is enough time. I promised my DH he could have some time just chilling, using some of the facilities at our beautiful hotel.

Never seems to be enough time when on vacation.

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Can't decide on basing in Lucerne or Montreaux for several days and flying home from there. It seems that both locations have easy train day trips and great sites to see. We can fly home non-stop from Zurich but if lake Geneva presents a better itinerary then We would consider the extra trouble of flying home with a stop from Geneva.

 

From either Montreaux or Lucerne we would probably hire a car to get us to the airport unless there is a direct train to the airports. Does anyone know about how long a drive it would be from Montreaux to Geneva Airport or Lucerne to Zurich?

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Thanks for the suggestions. I haven't heard of the Aigle chateaux, but I will definitely check it out. I know our hotel is a short walk to the Chillon Castle, which is supposed to be very interesting with a very intriguing history.

I am plannaing on going to Gruyere and, if we can get there easily, the home where Audrey Hepburn spent her last years. I heard it has become a small museum dedicated to her and the work she did to help the poor. She has been my idol most of my life.

 

I would like to go to Lausanne and Geneva also, via the steamer boats, passing the wine region along the way. I hoped to do the Matterhorn day, but I don't think there is enough time. I promised my DH he could have some time just chilling, using some of the facilities at our beautiful hotel.

Never seems to be enough time when on vacation.

 

Chillon Castle is a very interesting place. Be sure to rent the audioguide - it was well worth the price. The walk along the water towards the castle is lovely.

 

Can't decide on basing in Lucerne or Montreaux for several days and flying home from there. It seems that both locations have easy train day trips and great sites to see. We can fly home non-stop from Zurich but if lake Geneva presents a better itinerary then We would consider the extra trouble of flying home with a stop from Geneva.

 

From either Montreaux or Lucerne we would probably hire a car to get us to the airport unless there is a direct train to the airports. Does anyone know about how long a drive it would be from Montreaux to Geneva Airport or Lucerne to Zurich?

 

I can address the trip from Geneva to Montreaux. The train is direct from the terminals to Geneva. I think it was just under an hour. No need for a car at all. This was our first trip where we relied completely on rail travel for the entire week. It was efficient and comfortable. DH loved being able to sit back and relax, enjoying the incredible scenery. We had no difficulty at all getting to every destination we wanted. When traveling with luggage, backpacks, etc., be vigilant. As with just about any major tourist area, theft is a concern.

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I can address the trip from Geneva to Montreaux. The train is direct from the terminals to Geneva. I think it was just under an hour. No need for a car at all. This was our first trip where we relied completely on rail travel for the entire week. It was efficient and comfortable. DH loved being able to sit back and relax, enjoying the incredible scenery. We had no difficulty at all getting to every destination we wanted. When traveling with luggage, backpacks, etc., be vigilant. As with just about any major tourist area, theft is a concern.

 

Thanks for the info...I am a little confused....the train goes from the airport to Geneva but does it also go direct from the terminals to Montreaux? Or do

we have to travel Montreaux to Geneva and then backtrack to the airport?

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Thanks for the info...I am a little confused....the train goes from the airport to Geneva but does it also go direct from the terminals to Montreaux? Or do

we have to travel Montreaux to Geneva and then backtrack to the airport?

 

I am so sorry, the error is mine. I meant to say that there is a direct train from the airport terminal in Geneva to Montreaux.

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