Plan a 7 Day Trip to Switzerland (Spring and Summer Seasons)

Plan a 7 Day Trip to Switzerland -

Plan a 7 Day Trip to Switzerland

In this post, I am taking you on a journey to plan a 7 day trip to Switzerland during the spring and summer seasons. But first, let’s start with a canvas that will help paint you a picture of Switzerland and how you can get the most out of this post!

Plan a 7 Day Trip to Switzerland - Switzerland tourist attractions -

Switzerland in All Its Beauty

When you hear about Switzerland, you may rightly be picturing endless natural beauty of Swiss Alps and lakes. More than that, Switzerland has an abundance of richness in its history, fantastic architecture of new and old, uncompromising infrastructures and highly efficient public transport system.

Best of all, you can seize the opportunities to enjoy the breathtaking scenery and rich culture that Switzerland has to offer in all its seasons, especially in Spring and Summer (at least for this post).  

Let’s first talk a little bit about the different activities for each season in Switzerland.

  • Winter: During winter (Dec – March), the spiked mountains of Swiss Alps engraved in snow will give you a breathtaking experience, yet offer activities for both skiers and non-skiers.
  • Spring: And as the season warms into spring (April to June), Switzerland offers spectacular endless horizons of green mountains mixed with the beauty that lies in the remains of winter. Spring will offer the opportunity for beautiful hiking experiences and scenic train rides.
  • Summer: And as June ends and July begins, the summer months take over for a ripe season of experiencing mountain excursions (think Cogwheels and Cable cars) as well as the fullest outdoor adventures: hiking, paragliding, skydiving, flying fox, etc. In other words, be prepared to go all out for the adventures of a lifetime and be immersed in the beautiful Swiss Alps of the summer months!

How to Get the Most out of This Post?

1. Swiss Travel Pass: Buy an 8-Day Swiss Travel Pass and it will cover you for your entire train journeys in Switzerland, including free and discounted mountain excursions! (We used this ourselves and saved quite a few hundred dollars by the end of our trip)

2. Make it Your Own: Although the 7-day trip planned here seems to be recommending a 1-night stay in each of the cities in Switzerland, we have created this in a way that allows for flexibility according to your travel style. Perhaps, you may want to stay in certain places more than 1 night if something suits your preferences more than others.

  • For example, you may want to take the Glacier Express (from Zermatt) and stay in St. Moritz instead of going to Jungfrau region right away. (See Destination #3: Zermatt below)

In other words, make it your own! All of the destinations and activities highlighted below are the things we believe will cater to all types of travelers: solo, couples, with friends, with families etc. You can choose to make the activities your very own!

3. Start at Geneva or Zurich?: Although this post starts out the trip in Geneva (Southern region of Switzerland) and end in Zurich (Northern region of Switzerland), you can reverse the itinerary posted here and do it the opposite way! Yes, it will work!

Jet D'eau Geneva Water Fountain Lake Geneva -

Destination #1: Geneva

Geneva is located in Southern Switzerland and at the southern portion of Lake Geneva (“Lac Leman”) and houses one of the largest Switzerland’s major airports.

If you choose to land in Geneva, you’ll be making your travel plans and make your way up towards the north of Switzerland, finally finish at Zurich.

Since it’s the day of your arrival, it’s a place worth staying to relax and explore. The city is only 4 kilometers from the Geneva Airports and there will be quite a few things you can do around there.

Activities & Opportunities for photo-taking:

  • Go to Lake Geneva for an amazing stroll & have a look and experience the public bath (Bains des Pâquis) on lake Geneva.
  • Take a cruise on Lake Geneva from Lausanne to Vevey (~2.5 hours round trip)
  • Palais des Nations (“Palace of Nations”) is the place where the United Nations office is within Geneva! 
  • The world-renown Geneva Water Fountain (Jet d’Eau) that propels water up to the sky at up to 140m high! (Situated at the lakeside in Eaux-Vives district)
  • Mont Salève (take cable car up to 1,100 in 5 minutes!)
  • Take a stroll through Bastions Park (Parc des Bastions), experience the reformation wall (stone wall that remembers the Protestant Reformation) & see St Pierre Cathedral nearby.

Recommended Tours in Geneva:

Bear Pit Bern Bear Park -

Destination #2 in Bern

Bern is a city that one can enjoy the ancient architectures. It has been preserved since 1911 its original design has remained until today. Bern is a city that reflects how Switzerland historically was back then.

Activities in Bern – the City of Bears?

  • As you walk through the city of Bern, you may find that many items and attractions around the city decorated with bear shapes!
  • First, you can visit the famous Clock Tower (Zytglogge), dating back to the 13th century!
  • In the same area, you can visit the Cathedral of Bern and the Parliament House!
  • Then head down to Einstein Museum in Bern (he used to live there!) & inside the same museum (Bernisches Historisches Museum) where you can find archaeological artifacts dating back as far as 1 million years ago!!! And there are also both permanent and temporary exhibitions with free tours to really understand the history of Bern in under an hour!
  • If time allows, go to the Natural History Museum nearby, which houses exhibitions of exotic as well as native animals to Switzerland.
  • Living and alive bears? Visit the Bear pit/park, which is the city’s living emblems because there are bears that actually lives in the large-sized enclosure since 2009! Although historically, bears have been in the area since the 1500s!

Recommended Tour in Bern

  • This 50-minute tour of the Zytglogge (Clock Tower) is not to be missed if you’re already going to see the Clock Tower because you will have a tour guide to show you the inside of this magnificent clock tower since the 1300s!
Zermatt Matterhorn -

Destination #3: Zermatt (Car-free town)

From Bern, it’s easy to connect to Zermatt, which is a town surrounded by 38 beautiful mountain peaks (all of them standing at over 4,000 meters high!). Besides that, Zermatt is a car-free city, which means that you will see horse carriages around! Even hotel pick-ups are in horse carriages.

Activities in Zermatt

  • Matterhorn is one of the most incredible places that you cannot miss while in Zermatt, even in Spring and Summer seasons. Imagine being there and immerse in the Alpine flowers in the midst of the green mountains! 
  • Have some fun as you board the Gornergrat Bahn cogwheel for an ultimate experience!
  • Also don’t miss the Gorner Gorge, which dates back to the last ice age! Yep, it’s also family-friendly!
  • Lots of spring hikes available for you and loved ones!
  • Lastly, you can also opt-in for the Glacier Express (Zermatt > St. Mortiz/Davos). In this route, you will get to experience and see scenic views of many cities along the way, especially the famous Rhine Gorge (Switzerland’s version of the Grand Canyon). In the summer they have special afternoon trains with 2 routes available (Brig to St. Moritz or Chur to Zermatt) with options to go shopping in Zurich, Luzern or Bern!

Recommended in Zermatt

Jungfrau Grindelwald Interlaken -

Destination #4: Jungfrau Region (including Jungfraujoch – Top of Europe)

Jungfraujoch boasts for having the highest Railway station in Europe and has been nicknamed as the “Top of Europe”. Amazing in Winter and awesome to visit in Spring and Summer as well! As you aim to visit Jungfraujoch from Zermatt, you will be traveling up (north-bound) by train (hopefully using the Swiss Travel Pass) passing through Brig, Interlaken and hopefully staying in Wilderswil or Grindelwald.

Activities in Jungfrau Region

  • Your journey to the Top of Europe in Spring / Summer can fill your day with scenic train rides and hikes as well!
  • On the way to Top of Europe, feel free to alight at Kleine Scheidegg to see the stunning views of the 3 mountain peaks: Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau.
  • While on the Top of Europe, you can also enjoy a stroll around the Ice palace, and buy some chocolates at the Lindt chocolate place there.
  • Another famous attraction that you can also consider during Spring and Summer (not available in Winter) is Schynige Platte, which dates back to the 19th century (7 km train through the green forests up the mountain from Wilderswil, which is a small town along the train stops from Interlaken to Grindelwald). If you love the laid back experience, this may be for you!
  • If you want to hang around this area for another day, you can take the once-in-a-lifetime experience of hiking 6 hours in Schynige Platte to First!

Recommended Tours in Jungfrau

Depending on where you stay, you have the following 4 options to travel up to the Top of Europe:

Option 1: Top of Europe – round trip tickets (self-guided)

Option 2: Interlaken to Jungfraujoch (Top of Europe) (Benefits of this tour: (1) Travel from Interlaken to Grindelwald by Coach (2) Multilingual guide)

Option 3: Luzern to Jungfraujoch (Top of Europe) (Benefits of this tour: (1) Travel from Interlaken to Grindelwald by Coach (2) Multilingual guide)

Option 4: Zurich to Jungfraujoch (Top of Europe) (Benefits of this tour: (1) Travel from Interlaken to Grindelwald by Coach (2) Multilingual guide (3) On the way back, descend via car-free Wengen to Lauterbrunnen where the coach bus will take you back to Zurich)

Luzern things to do old chapel bridge -

Destination #5: Lucerne (or Luzern)

A trip to Switzerland is definitely not complete without visiting Lucern (or Luzern), a town with its many major attractions, such as the Lion Monument and the old town bridge. Located less than 2 hours from Interlaken by train. I believe that every visitor, including myself, will not only be mesmerized by the glorious views of Lake Luzern, but will remember it for a lifetime. (Well, at least for me and partner!).

Activities in Luzern

  • Famous Attractions: Explore the famous attractions: walk along the old town bridge into the actual old town (in German, it’s called “Altstadt”), visit the Lion Monument (“Lowendenmall”) and the Meggenhorn Castle (15 minutes from Luzern city; recommended on a weekend for visitor entry (but limited, so be there early)). 
  • Lake Cruise: Take a Lake Cruise on Lake Luzern with multiple stops along the entire! You can hop on and off throughout the day! If you’re like me and have a Swiss Travel Pass, it’s free! Super awesome way to spend a chilled and quiet day on a romantic cruise with your partner as well!
  • Mount Rigi: The lake cruise also stops at a station called Vitznau, which is the place where you can take a Cogwheel train up to Rigi Kulm (top of Mt. Rigi)

Recommended Tours in Luzern

Luzern Mt. Pilatus Cable Car -

Destination #6: Luzern – Mt. Pilatus (May to October)

Since you’re already in Luzern during Spring or Summer, why not pay a visit to Mt. Pilatus! They really have activities that cater to all ages: from thrilling rope parks to exploring the legendary dragon trail. Oh, and did I mention that you can even experience an awesome special stay on the mountain to watch ibexes up close as well. 

Activities in Mt. Pilatus

You’ll have 2 major experiences on your journey here:

Your first experience is when you decide to travel to Mt. Pilatus via either the steepest cogwheel railway in the world (board it at Alpnachstad lake cruise stop along Lake Luzern) or via the Gondola & Aerial cable way at Kriens Pilatusbahn (Kriens is 20 minutes southwest of Luzern by bus)

Your second experience is when you’re on Mt. Pilatus. There are so many things you can do on top of Mt. Pilatus, and here are a few:

  • Hiking (the easiest trail is around only 3.2 km, taking you less than 1.5 hours to complete)
  • Rope park: if you’re seeking some thrills up top, there are about 10 rope routes you can take there!
  • Summer Toboggan near the Fräkmüntegg mountain station: the longest in Switzerland! Please note: only opens April to October!
  • Dragon Trail: take the trail through the mythical story of dragons with healing powers, believed to have lived during the middle ages.   
  • Ibexes Safari (June – October & reservation required): this is 2 days and 1-night trip to see Ibexes up close! Please note that this activity is usually offered in a way where you pay to stay at an accommodation up on the mountain (usually Pilatus Kulm hotel) with expert commentary and dinner included. 

Recommended Tours in Mt. Pilatus

Let me be honest with you here: I missed my trip to Mt. Pilatus while I was in Luzern because we didn’t plan well enough to go there! 

Learn from my mistake, and please don’t miss this awesome adventure of a lifetime! I actually curated 2 tours with lots of great reviews (out of quite a few tours) for you here, so you don’t need to waste time searching:

(1) with a tour guide (2) self-guided

(1) Mt. Pilatus by Cable Car & Lake Cruise with a Guide(Depart from Luzern) – Trip Highlights:

  • Relax on the comfortable coach from Luzern to Kriens.
  • Enjoy the panoramic gondolas to Fräkmüntegg.
  • Board the aerial Dragon Ride cable car up the mountains with views of the snow-capped peaks from the panoramic windows.
  • Arrive at the top of Mt. Pilatus and hike to the summit or hike down to explore the Dragon Trail legend (where dragons with healing powers were believed to have lived in the Middle Ages).
  • On the way down, joyfully prepare for a ride of a lifetime on the world’s steepest cogwheel railway.
  • (During Summer): arrive in Alpnachstad to embark on a 1-hour cruise back to Lucerne!

(2) Mt. Pilatus Self-Guided Trip: Ride the cable car from Kriens (20-minute bus ride from Luzern) to Fräkmüntegg, and then board the “Dragon Ride” to the summit of Mt. Pilatus. On the way down, brace yourself as you ride the steepest cogwheel railway back down to Alpnachstad!

Bonus: You can also find the 10+ tours available for Pilatus here as well.

Zurich Famous Attraction Grossmünster Church -

Destination #7: Zurich

After you have experienced the best of what nature has to offer in Switzerland (and probably the world) in many of the major cities, attractions and activities, wow you have finally arrived at the capital of Switzerland: Zurich. Welcome to the city life again! And although Zurich has been viewed as one of the more expensive cities in Switzerland (in terms of food and accommodations), there are various activities that you can definitely enjoy while you’re in Zurich. 

Activities in Zurich (Laidback activities)

  • Largest clock face in Europe: this is indeed at St. Peter with the history dating back as far as the 9th century with various restoration works through the centuries to what it is now.
  • View of Zurich’s old town & more: head over and up to Lindenhof hill and take in the awesome view of Zurich, including the old town and the Limmat river.
  • Old Town: visit and explore Zurich’s Old Town (Altstadt) – sometimes it’s nice to just take a stroll and get lost!
  • River Cruise: If you’re tired of walking, you can take the fantastic and awesome Limmat river cruise (~50 minutes round trip from the National Museum to Lake Zurich and back)!
  • Colorful historical street: Not too far from the Zurich’s old town would the historical narrow streets in Zurich with paintings on the buildings arrayed in almost a rainbow fashion. This place is called the Augustinergasse.
  • Swimming Baths: Going a step further and you’re there from May onwards (to October)? Then take a dip for a swim into the outdoor pools in either free ones (Flussbad Oberer Letten or Flussbad Unterer Letten) or even ones with small fees (Seebad Enge on Lake Luzern)
  • Gelato: Since you may be at Lake Luzern, why not try some nice gelato!! Two of the highly recommended ones are: (1) Gelati am See, which is located right on Lake Luzern! (this one opens from March to October) & (2) Gelateria di Berna (four locations in Zurich).
  • Restaurant with a lake view? I would recommend trying Fischstube right on Lake Zurich.
  • Hidden places: Century-old cafe (aka “1842 im Haus Conditorei Schober”), relaxed and warm vibe with open-space terraces with views of railway tracks and mountains in the far distance (Frau Gerolds Garten)

Recommended in Zurich

Zurich’s 2-Hour Bus Sightseeing Tour:  joyfully experience (with a bilingual guide) all of the famous Swiss landmarks and historical attractions (including a University that Albert Einstein once studied in) & ride on the Dolder Bahn railway (since 1895!).

Zurich’s 4-Hour Tour with Ferry, Cable Car and Coach: see world-famous historical attractions, enjoy lake Zurich, ride on the ferry boat and ride the cable car up to (Felsenegg) see the overview of the Zurich city, the lake, and the snowcapped Alps!

You can also check out other tours here as well!

Wrap Up in Switzerland’s Spring / Summer Holidays

We hope you enjoyed the ideas for your next trip to Switzerland in Spring or Summer!

And if you read in between the lines (literally and figuratively), you can see that you can easily extend your stay for more than 7 days with the destinations that I have included here.

With so many things to do in Switzerland, especially in Spring and Summer, you can really make your next trip a 10-day or a 2-week stay with the destinations I have posted here. In other words, you can really make it your very own guide for your next Switzerland trip visit!

Besides, I have found from my first-hand experiences (as a tourist) that the spring and summer seasons typically have more activities, such as mountain excursions on the steepest cogwheel train in Luzern, that are opened during this season.

Ultimately, I wrote this post with a hope is that you can use this humble guide here as a starting point in your Switzerland vacation plans, and at least add one massive value for your next plans to visit Switzerland!

And, yes, thank you for visiting!

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Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means that if you click on the link and make a purchase, I will receive a commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you for your support, as this enables us to keep on writing and sharing the good stuff here! All opinions and thoughts are my own.

GK is a curiosity-driven traveler who discovers places through its natural beauties, histories and people's stories. A perfect travel plan for GK and his family would be a great coffee to start off the day before taking in the breathtaking views of landscapes and horizons with some hikes in between and toppling it off with some great photos of the places and people. And how can you forget great local & fresh foods to truly be immersed and inspired by what the world has to offer.

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