Switzerland's Luzern and Lugano featuring the Wilhelm Tell Panoramic Ship and Train
SPLENDORS OF EUROPE offers this one week luxury escorted tour to Switzerland featuring Luzern and Lugano. This is a small group tour of Switzerland that includes walking tours and excursions which highlight Switzerland's lakes, mountains, history, architecture, art, castles, churches, medieval towns and museums. This tour has a regional focus and provides in-depth cultural and grand gourmet culinary experiences. Two professional escorts ensure that everyone in our small group of 12 or less has a rewarding personal experience. Travel in Switzerland is by first class panoramic train, cogwheel mountain train and luxury lake steamer. The famous Wilhelm Tell Express luxury lake steamer and panoramic train service is enjoyed between Luzern and Lugano on this tour. This tour includes visits to all the best sights near Luzern and Lugano. Travel to the exquisite Alps and Lake Luzern and Lake Lugano regions of Switzerland with SPLENDORS OF EUROPE and you’ll enjoy scenery like a beautiful oil painting daily. You'll have the best vacation trip ever. Visit the hotel, restaurant, and tour photo galleries at the end of this page.
Switzerland offers great beauty and diversity in a small country. Sleepy Alpine hamlets, medieval walled towns, and sophisticated resorts, are all just minutes from the impressive beauty of the Alps with their snow peaked mountains, picturesque valleys, and clear Alpine lakes. On this tour you’ll explore both Central Switzerland and the southern Ticino Region. You will visit the medieval town of Luzern and the old world resort town of Lugano. Stunning views are a daily experience on this tour.
You’ll enjoy first class service aboard the famous Wilhelm Tell Express between Luzern and Lugano. We travel aboard a classic lake steamer the length of Lake Luzern one of the most beautiful lakes in the world. We also travel aboard the panoramic train over perhaps the most spectacular rail track in the world featuring dozens of dramatic bridges and tunnels. We take scenic Alpine trains and cable cars to mountain summits near Luzern, and Lugano, all with unique breathtaking views. You’ll also enjoy irresistible gourmet cuisine and luxury world class hotels with incredible service and ambiance.
Luzern enjoys a privileged location at the head of beautiful Lake Luzern. The jagged mountains that surround the lake provide a dramatic backdrop to the city. Luzern is a romantic city of style, culture, and history. It is full of architectural and cultural gems waiting to be discovered. Wooden covered bridges, medieval watchtowers, baroque churches and a story book castle punctuate the landscape.
Located in the Ticino region of southern Switzerland, Lugano benefits from its southern facing exposure and proximity to Italy. Long a resort town, Lugano is known as Rio of the old world. Here Swiss efficiency combines with Italian style to create an exceedingly graceful environment. This location has it all, a beautiful lake, dramatic mountains, a temperate climate and an architectural style that evokes the leisure life style of the old word aristocracy. Here you will explore lovely gardens, palatial villas, exceptional museums and lovely baroque churches.
9 Day ItinerarySATURDAY - International flight to Zurich Switzerland
SUNDAY - Arrive Zurich International Airport, Arrive Luzern
Your escort greets you at the airport and gets you on your way to the hotel. We make the pleasant one hour trip to Luzern and check into our luxury hotel with a view of Luzern, and award winning restaurant. Depending on your arrival time, lunch is enjoyed in our hotel or in town.
Relax with a stroll along the lake and river this afternoon. This evening we enjoy welcome cocktails at our hotel before a fine dinner. Each evening your escorts can assist you with information about evening entertainment opportunities.L+D
MONDAY - Discover Luzern.
Breakfast welcomes us each morning in our hotel. Today we take a walking tour of old town Luzern. We start at the romantic 14th century covered Chapel Bridge with its medieval stone tower.
Nearby we see the Altes Rathaus or old town hall built in 1599 and still in use today.
Next we visit the beautiful 17th century Am Rhyn House with its fine Picasso collection. We visit the Kornmarket a medieval square once home to the grain market. We walk through the Weinmarket with its splendid fountain squares and frescoed buildings. We walk across the Spreuerbrucke, another romantic covered wooden bridge from 1408 decorated with many medieval paintings.
Next we visit the Franciscan Church with its rich wooden carvings and the vast Jesuit Church with its perfectly restored rococo interior.
We continue our walk along the river Reuss to the Culture and Congress Center at the edge of the Lake. It’s a modern glass and steel architectural masterpiece.
We enjoy a wonderful two hour lunch cruise on Lake Luzern aboard a classic steamer. From our ship, we enjoy the spectacular mountains with scenery like an oil painting that came to life.
This afternoon we visit more of Luzern starting with a visit to the Hofkirche, a monastery from 750 rebuilt in the Renaissance style after a fire in 1633. Inside we’ll see one of Switzerland’s finest pipe organs. Our next stop is the Bourbaki-Panorama. This is a large wraparound panoramic painting from the 19th century. It depicts grand scenes from the Franco-Prussian War. Next we see the Lion Monument, a tribute to 760 Swiss soldiers who died defending Louis XVI in Paris during the French revolution.
We stop and rest in the peaceful Glacier Garden carved and polished during the Ice Age.
Our last stop today is the Zytturm a clock tower from 1400 and one of the remaining nine remaining towers that formed the old town wall.
There’s time to relax, go shopping, or explore more of Luzern.
Tonight we delight in an elegant gourmet dinner celebrating our visit to Luzern. B+L+D
TUESDAY - Discover Luzern and its environs.
Today we take the dramatic cable car excursion to 6,953 foot high Mount Pilatus. Here we enjoy refreshments on the summit with sensational views of Luzern and the lake below.
After our Alpine expedition, we’ll enjoy a café style lunch in town.
This afternoon choose between exploring more of Luzern on you own, a shopping tour with your escorts, or a visit to the Swiss Transport Museum.
Dinner is at your leisure this evening with many fine restaurants to choose from.B+L
WEDNESDAY - Luzern to Lugano on the William Tell express.
After a morning of leisure, we board our lake steamer for the lovely cruise across Lake Luzern.
On board, we enjoy a three course lunch in a beautiful dining salon while gazing in amazement at the mountains that tumble down into the lake. This dramatic scenery has inspired many an artist and Poet.
We disembark in Fluelen, home of the Wilhelm Tell legend. Here we board the first class panorama cars of the Wilhelm Tell Express Train.
From our comfortable seats we enjoy the view as we enter the awesome Reuss Valley with its deep ravines and precipitous cliffs. We pass over numerous spiral and horseshoe tunnels, galleries and bridges as the train climbs to 1100 meters before entering the famous Gotthard Tunnel. After the Gotthard we enter the Leventia Valley where we cross more breathtaking bridges and passes before we arrive at the lake side resort town of Lugano.
Only a few miles from Italy this Swiss town enjoys the efficiency of Switzerland and the tasteful style of Italian aristocracy.
We check into our wonderful Hotel. Dinner is enjoyed on the terrace over looking the Lake. B+L+D
THURSDAY - Discover Lugano.
Today we take a pleasant walking tour of Lugano. We start with the Piazza della Riforma, the café tabled social center of Lugano.
We then visit the Cathedral di San Lorenzo with its Renaissance façade and rich baroque and frescoed interior. Next we visit Tassino Park with splendid views overlooking the lake and a lovely rose garden.
We also visit the 15th century Church of St Mary of the Angels with its extraordinary 1529 frescoes by Bernardino Luini. Nearby we enjoy the lovely lake side Belvedere Gardens, with its sculptures and wonderful palms and beautifully flowering plants. We take the romantic Waterfront Promenade under the lime and palm trees taking in the wonderful views.
We relax and savor lunch with a view at the terrace of the Panoramico.
This afternoon we visit the beautiful Villa Ciani and its Fine Arts Museum. Civico Park is enjoyed with its exotic plants and 1000 varieties of roses and aviary. It’s a lovely place to sit and enjoy the ambiance.
Tonight we enjoy dinner at one of the many restaurants that offer terrace dining with views of the lake. B+L+D
FRIDAY – Villa Favorita and the Olive Park and Mount Bre’
Today we visit the splendid 16th century Villa Favorita. Here we see the exceptional art collection of Baron von Thyssen-Bornemisza.
We stroll through the villa gardens and then we visit the adjacent Olive Park. It’s an idyllic landscape of silvery olive trees, cypress, laurel and rosemary on the lower slopes of Monte Bre’.
Next we take the funicular to the summit of Monte Bre’ for wonderful views of Lugano, the lake and the mountains beyond. Here we visit to the mountain top village of Bré.
This afternoon we make our way back to Lugano where you are at your leisure to enjoy this privileged town.
Dinner is enjoyed at you leisure tonight in Lugano.B+L
SATURDAY – Return trip to Zurich by Scenic Train and Lake Steamer.
Today we make the scenic Journey back to Zurich. We enjoy the views from our scenic train now in the opposite direction. We board our beautiful lake steamer in Fluelen.
Lunch is savored on board and so is the splendid view. We arrive in Luzern where we board the train to Zurich.
In Zurich, we check into our conveniently located hotel. There is time for exploring and shopping in the old part of town before dinner.
After cocktails, dinner is enjoyed at one of Zurich’s exceptional restaurants where we regale about our wonderful adventure in Switzerland.
After dinner why not enjoy a stroll through old town and along the river and lake. B+L+D
SUNDAY - Transfer to ZURICH International Airport and your return flight home or extend your stay in Europe with the next tour. B
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