Golden Pass Train, Switzerland
The Golden Pass railway route is a rail journey made up of three segments around some of Switzerland’s most stunning scenery. The whole journey takes around 5 hours, 30 minutes, starting in the medieval city of Lucerne and finishing in ritzy Montreux on the shores of Lake Geneva. Unlike the Bernina Express and Glacier Express it’s not a direct train, instead a scenic route serviced by three different railway companies and different train types. Hop between Alpine villages, mountain passes and picturesque meadows as you explore some of the best scenery Switzerland has to offer.
Prices from: CHf16
Departing from: Lucerne, Switzerland
Journey length: 5 hours, 30 minutes
Golden Pass train route
Riding the Golden Pass route takes 5 hours 30 minutes in total, from Lucerne all the way to Montreux on the shores of Lake Geneva. Three different train companies operate the railway meaning it’s not a direct route, and passengers board three different trains on the journey. Between Lucerne and Interlaken Ost, it’s the Zentralbahn, between Interlaken Ost and Zweisimmen it’s run by Bern–Lötschberg–Simplon railways (BLS) and the Chemin de fer Montreux–Oberland Bernois (MOB) operates between Zweisimmen and Montreux. The route is fantastic throughout the year, with spring and summer bringing luscious green valleys and snow-capped mountains, autumn showing colourful trees and winter, a snow-covered landscape.
The Golden Pass train
The route is serviced by three different railway operators, meaning each train is different. The Zentralbahn between Lucerne and Interlaken Ost is modern, air-conditioned and with large panoramic windows and a restaurant car, while the trains from Interlaken Ost to Zweisimmen are comfortable yet regular passenger trains. Passengers can choose from Golden Pass Classic or Golden Pass Panoramic trains between Zweisimmen and Montreux. Classic train has Belle Epoque coaches with old-world luxury interiors while the Panoramic train is modern with panoramic windows and VIP seats at the front of the train. Regular trains also operate this route, but those marked Golden Pass will be more comfortable.
Why we love it
For passengers with limited time in Switzerland the Golden Pass rail route is an ideal way to get your fix of mountain peaks, beautiful meadows and all things beautiful Swiss scenery. The train line is also very accessible, with Zurich airport just an hour from Lucerne and Geneva airport 75 minutes from Montreux.