The Glacier Express - photo taken POV-style from inside the train, looking along the carriages to the front, with mountains in the distance

There’s no better way to see Switzerland than by train.

From the shores of Lake Lucerne to the Top of Europe, the best train rides in Switzerland are innumerable. Even a simple commuter train from Interlaken to Grindelwald offers jaw-dropping views that are breathtaking. Luxury train rides in Switzerland only enhance the view with fine dining, a host of convenient in-carriage amenities, and the opportunity to see Switzerland’s mountain peaks, gorges, forests, and valleys in a way no other mode of transportation can.

From quick day trips to towns you’ve never heard of to day-long excursions that allow you to sit back and spend your vacation in a state of bliss, at least one of these luxury train rides in Switzerland should be on your bucket list.

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Transalpin Express


Closeup of the transalpine express on platform with mountains in background


Route: Zurich, Switzerland to Graz Austria 

Europe’s extensive rail network means you can explore countless landscapes in a matter of hours. The Transalpin Express may not limit itself to Switzerland, but this nine-hour journey through three countries gives you a glimpse into how the Swiss Alps compare to the Austrian Alps. It has a panorama carriage for maximum views, and unlike some other luxury train rides in Switzerland, the Transalpin Express is all about the Alps. Plus, you’ll ride through Sargans, Buchs, and then over the River Rhine, granting even well-ridden Swiss travelers a view that they likely haven’t yet seen.

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The Vigezzina – Centovalli Railway


The Centovalli Railway train on track with autumnal trees in background


Route: Locarno, Switzerland, to Domodossola, Italy

Not all of the best train rides in Switzerland take you beyond the border, but the Vigezzina-Centovalli Railway does. Also known as the Centovalli Express, this route was designed for nature lovers. The narrow-gauge railroad powers along through thick forests, rugged cliffs, dark green slopes, and cascading waterfalls. Best of all, it’s only a two-hour adventure, making it an effortless day trip for those who want a spectacular train ride and to add a little Italian stopover to their Swiss vacation schedule. 


Gotthard Panorama Express


The Gotthard Panorama Express train travelling through town with mountains in background

Photo credit: @gotthardpanoramaexpress on Instagram


Route: Lucerne to Lugano

Envision the Gotthard Panorama Express as an attempt to window-shop Switzerland. This popular rail line puts two of Switzerland’s prettiest places front and center: the Italian Ticino and Central Switzerland. It’s a route that operates daily, including with standard commuter trains, so it’s accessible even for those with tight itineraries. Traveling through the 19th century Gotthard Tunnel is especially exciting, but perhaps the element of this near-six-hour excursion that really pushes it into icon territory is the included boat ride between Lucerne and Flüelen. As you can imagine,theGotthard Panorama Express route would be quite chilly in the winter, so while it does cease operations when the temperatures drop, you can still tackle the Gotthard panorama route via the Treno Gottardo in the winter months.

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Jungfrau Railway 


A photographer taking photos of the Jungfrau train. Side view of the train as it passes through the frame, mountains in the background


Route: Kleine Scheidegg to the Top of Europe

When it comes to the best train rides in Switzerland, the Jungfrau Railway is never left out of the conversation. The completion of the railway itself was a remarkable feat; the fact that you can reach 3,454m above sea level in a matter of minutes is just as unbelievable. Riding through the Eiger and Monch mountains via tunnel is unforgettable, as are the views from the Top of Europe and Eismeer station. The Jungfrau Railway operates all year round, and with so much to experience including exhibits, restaurants, and shops, it’s worth devoting a full day to this excursion. 


The Glacier Express


The Glacier Express - photo taken POV-style from inside the train, looking along the carriages to the front, with mountains in the distance


Route: Zermatt to St. Mortiz

Switzerland knows how to do slow travel the right way and the Glacier Express proves it. This eight-hour journey may only traverse three cantons but this popular luxury train in Switzerland still delivers an equal measure of quality and quantity. From Zermatt to the holiday resorts of St. Moritz, you’ll leisurely look out of your carriage window and see sights like the Rhine Gorge, the Matterhorn, the Oberalp Pass, and the Landwasser and Solis spiral tunnels and viaducts. The Glacier Express shuts down between October and December, but since you get book tickets three-month in advance, it allows you to plan your Swiss vacation around this century-old railway experience. 

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The GoldenPass Express


Close up of the Golden Pass Express train at sunset

Photo credit: @goldenpassexpress on Instagram


Route: Interlaken and Montreux

The GoldenPass between Central Switzerland and Lake Geneva has long been regarded as one of the best train rides in Switzerland, thanks in equal parts to its beauty and its inclusion in the Eurail Pass. In 2023, this luxury train through Switzerland got a lavish facelift via a new “Prestige” class. The panoramic views this route was known for can now be experienced from a more private carriage with elevated, heated leather seats that can rotate 180-degrees. Champagne and caviar are also exclusively served to Prestige class passengers, adding one more undeniable reason why this grand train tour of Switzerland is always one of the best. 

No visit to Switzerland is complete without a train ride through the country’s magical landscape. That’s why Luxury Gold delivers not one but two unique train journeys on Luxury Gold’s Majestic Switzerland tour. Over the course of 10 days, you’ll experience Swiss culture, history, and cuisine, including a ride across the country on the Glacier Express, snapping photos you’ll cherish for decades. You’ll also board Europe’s highest open-air cogwheel train to Gornergrat Summit where you’ll spy the Matterhorn and Monte Rosa in the distance.