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Swiss Classic Train Europe, Switzerland
Fay says, “The Swiss Classic Train is unique in the Luxury Train Club; of keen interest to rail fans, it could be the unusual and unexpected gift to train enthusiasts of all ages, perhaps as part of a wider visit to Switzerland’s superb on-time rail network.”
In 1912 the Bern-Lötschberg-Simplon railway was opened between Spiez and Brig. Electrified from the outset, its completion marked the culmination of a railway link from Northern France to Italy, avoiding the German occupied territories of Alsace-Lorraine.
With its horseshoe loops on the northern ramp, 16km Lötschberg tunnel (then the third longest in the world after the Gotthard and Simplon) and magnificent panoramic southern ramp descending to the floor of the Rhone valley, it was not only a wondrous engineering achievement but also a rail route of unparalleled scenic beauty.
The Swiss Classic Train aims to recreate the ambience of express train travel over the Lötschberg in the immediate post Second World War era.
Catering for all classes, the train comprises Pullman, First and Second Class carriages, a Restaurant Car and a Bar Car. Whether on the Lötschberg or elsewhere (for the train has a number of special routes elsewhere), a trip on the Swiss Classic Train is a truly memorable experience.
Membership is free, requiring just a subscription to our newsletter on the Club site. Gifts secured when booking made, and sent on final payment.
- Ask for any available discounts
- Until 31 May: Gift from Osprey, from their range of small leather goods.
The First Class carriages offer at-seat dining in compartments and open saloons.
Whether in the open saloons or the private compartments, travelling First Class in the Swiss Classic Train is everything the first class traveller expects – convivial, private and comfortable.
This is a splendid carriage with enormous armchairs manufactured to the same designs as the chairs in pre-war “Trains de Luxe” like the Etoile du Nord and the Cote d’Azure Pullman, now seen in the Venice-Simplon-Orient Express.
Travelling in the Pullman Car, particularly when enjoying a meal, is an experience in itself. With uninterrupted views from the large picture windows, the Swiss Classic Train Pullman Car recaptures the lost ambience of a more genteel travel era. The Pullman Car is suitable for wheelchair passengers, being fully accessible throughout.
Anyone can use the Restaurant Car on the Swiss Classic Train. Bright, open and classless, it is one of the two meeting points for socialising and fun; the other is the Bar Car.
This is the social hub of the train, whether for drinking, dancing, listening to the live piano music or all three!
Steam from Zürich over the Gotthard to Lugano
Special two-day rail trip from Zürich to Lugano and return, with steam locomotive.
Programme and Fares
2013 to be advised
- The Swiss Classic train leaves Zürich HB Station hauled by a steam locomotive At Erstfeld the train divides. An electric loco proceeds ahead up the North ramp towards the Gotthard tunnel, hauling the first class portion of the train, while the steam-hauled part (Dampfsteigzug) with the restaurant car and second class follows. At Wassen, the steam loco parades alongside the train. At Göschenen, the train combines and proceeds to Lugano, steam-hauled with the electric engine assisting through the Gotthard tunnel and down the South ramp. Note: First Class passengers booked to travel on the Dampfsteigzug from Erstfeld to Göschenen will transfer to it at Erstfeld.
- The steam locomotive hauls the (optional) morning excursion train from Lugano to Luino and back to Bellinzona. Early afternoon, the Swiss Classic Train leaves Lugano hauled by the electric engine to Bellinzona. At Bellinzona, the train divides. The electric engine with First Class carriages proceeds up the South ramp to Airolo, stopping at Biasca and again at Faido for a run past by the steam locomotive. The steam loco and the Dampfsteigzug follow to Biasca and on up the South ramp. Between Bellinzona and Biasca, our steam train runs parallel with the steam-hauled Verbano Express. At Airolo, the train recombines for the onward journey to Zürich. Note: First Class passengers booked to travel on the Dampfsteigzug from Bellinzona to Airolo will transfer to it at Bellinzona.
Day 1 09:00 Depart Zürich 15:00 Arrive Bellinzona 15:30
Day 2 13:05 Arrive Lugano Depart Lugano 13:40 Depart Bellinzona 15:00 Depart Biasca 20:00 Arrive Zürich
Two days’ 1st class travel with reserved seat in the Swiss Classic Train Overnight stay with half board at the 3 star Continental Parkhotel in Lugano Lunch (Saturday) and cold meal (Sunday) on the train. Commentary by railway specialist Guide during the whole journey. Detailed documentation for the whole journey.
Inclusive price per person sharing a twin room, CHF 540
Supplements- Dampfsteigzug from Erstfeld to Göschenen on 20 October or Bellinzona to Airolo on 21 October (for those purchasing the full First Class Package) CHF 25 per person – Single room CHF 30 -
Cancellation insurance and emergency cover CHF 21 per person
Optional steam hauled excursion to Luino 21 October CHF 40 per person
Booking and Reservations
All prices are at publicly-quoted rates.
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