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Basel to Lucerne: A Scenic Train Journey Through the Swiss Alps

Posted at July 5th, 2024 | Categorised in Train Travel
Basel to Lucerne: A Scenic Train Journey Through the Swiss Alps

Basel to lucerne train – Embark on a captivating rail adventure from Basel to Lucerne, where breathtaking landscapes and historic landmarks await. As the train glides through the heart of Switzerland, witness the panoramic splendor of the Swiss Alps, crystal-clear lakes, and charming villages.

This journey offers a unique blend of scenic beauty and practical convenience, providing an unforgettable experience for travelers seeking an immersive Swiss escapade.

Train schedules and fares

Traveling by train from Basel to Lucerne offers a convenient and scenic journey through the heart of Switzerland. The route is well-served by frequent train services, providing flexibility and options for travelers.

The train journey between Basel and Lucerne typically takes around 1 hour and 15 minutes. The fares vary depending on the train class, departure time, and availability of discounts or promotions.

Train schedules, Basel to lucerne train

The following table provides a detailed overview of the train schedules and fares for the Basel to Lucerne route:

Departure time Arrival time Duration Fare (2nd class) Fare (1st class)
06:05 07:20 1 hour 15 minutes CHF 29 CHF 49
07:05 08:20 1 hour 15 minutes CHF 29 CHF 49
08:05 09:20 1 hour 15 minutes CHF 29 CHF 49
09:05 10:20 1 hour 15 minutes CHF 29 CHF 49
10:05 11:20 1 hour 15 minutes CHF 29 CHF 49

Note: The fares listed above are approximate and may vary depending on the specific train service and availability.

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Discounts and promotions

Various discounts and promotions are available for train travel in Switzerland, including:

  • Swiss Travel Pass: This pass offers unlimited travel on trains, buses, and boats throughout Switzerland. It is a great option for travelers who plan on doing extensive traveling within the country.
  • Half-Fare Card: This card provides a 50% discount on train fares. It is a good option for frequent travelers within Switzerland.
  • Group discounts: Discounts are available for groups of 10 or more people traveling together.
  • Advance purchase discounts: Discounts are often available for tickets purchased in advance.
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For more information on discounts and promotions, please visit the website of the Swiss Federal Railways (SBB).

Scenic highlights along the route

Basel to lucerne train

The train journey from Basel to Lucerne offers a picturesque panorama of Switzerland’s natural beauty. The route winds through rolling hills, past shimmering lakes, and alongside majestic mountains, providing travelers with a breathtaking visual experience.

Notable landmarks

One of the most iconic landmarks visible from the train is the Rhine Falls, Europe’s largest waterfall. The thunderous cascade and swirling waters create a mesmerizing spectacle that can be admired from the comfort of the train carriage.

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As the train approaches Lucerne, the majestic Mount Pilatus comes into view. This iconic peak, with its jagged summit and snow-capped slopes, dominates the skyline and offers stunning photo opportunities.

Mountain views

The journey is punctuated by breathtaking mountain vistas. The Swiss Alps, with their snow-covered peaks and verdant slopes, provide a constant backdrop to the train ride. Notable peaks include the Titlis, Rigi, and Stanserhorn, each offering a unique and awe-inspiring sight.

Bodies of water

The train route passes by several picturesque lakes, adding an element of tranquility to the journey. Lake Lucerne, with its crystal-clear waters and idyllic surroundings, is a particular highlight. The train also skirts the shores of Lake Zug, offering glimpses of its serene waters and charming lakeside towns.

Travel time and distance

Lucerne station train switzerland heart luzern bahnhof hawkebackpacking bing

The journey by train from Basel to Lucerne covers a distance of approximately 70 kilometers (43 miles). The travel time can vary between 45 minutes to 1 hour and 15 minutes, depending on the type of train and the route taken.

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Factors affecting travel time

  • Type of train:Express trains (such as InterCity trains) are faster than regional trains, which make more stops along the way.
  • Route taken:The fastest route between Basel and Lucerne is via Olten, while a slightly longer route via Bern is also available.
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Practical travel tips

Basel to lucerne train

To ensure a smooth and enjoyable train journey from Basel to Lucerne, here are some practical travel tips to consider:

Purchasing tickets

Tickets can be purchased online through the SBB website or app, at ticket machines in the train station, or from the ticket counter. It’s recommended to book tickets in advance, especially during peak season, to secure your seat and avoid queues.

Finding the correct platform

Once you arrive at the train station, check the departure boards to locate the correct platform for your train. The platform number will be displayed on the board and will also be announced over the station’s public address system.

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Navigating the train station

Basel and Lucerne train stations are large and well-equipped with amenities. There are information desks, restrooms, shops, and restaurants available. If you need assistance, don’t hesitate to approach the station staff for guidance.

Luggage storage

Both Basel and Lucerne train stations offer luggage storage facilities. You can store your luggage in lockers of various sizes for a fee. This is a convenient option if you have time to explore the cities before your train departs.

Dining options

There are dining options available at both train stations. You can find cafes, restaurants, and vending machines offering a variety of food and drinks. If you prefer to bring your own food, there are designated seating areas where you can enjoy your snacks.

Other amenities

Other amenities available at the train stations include ATMs, currency exchange services, and free Wi-Fi. You can also find tourist information centers at both stations, where you can get information about attractions, accommodations, and other travel-related services.

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Alternative transportation options: Basel To Lucerne Train

Basel to lucerne train

In addition to trains, travelers can explore alternative modes of transport for their journey from Basel to Lucerne. Each option offers unique advantages and drawbacks, catering to different preferences and circumstances.

One alternative is to take a bus. Buses are generally more affordable than trains, but they also have longer travel times. However, buses offer more flexibility in terms of departure and arrival times, and they may stop at more intermediate locations, allowing travelers to explore smaller towns and villages along the way.

Rental Cars

Renting a car provides the ultimate flexibility and freedom to explore the region at your own pace. With a rental car, you can make spontaneous stops, visit off-the-beaten-path destinations, and enjoy the scenic countryside. However, car rentals can be more expensive than other options, and parking in Lucerne can be challenging and costly.


While flights are the fastest option, they are also the most expensive. There are no direct flights between Basel and Lucerne, so travelers would need to connect through another city, adding to the travel time and cost. Additionally, airports are often located farther from city centers, requiring additional time and expense for ground transportation.

Last Point

Basel to lucerne train

Whether you’re a seasoned traveler or a first-time visitor, the Basel to Lucerne train journey promises an unforgettable experience. From the stunning vistas to the seamless travel arrangements, this train ride encapsulates the essence of Swiss efficiency and natural grandeur.

Helpful Answers

How long does the train journey from Basel to Lucerne take?

The journey takes approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes by direct train.

Are there any discounts available for train tickets?

Yes, discounts are available for children, seniors, and groups. Advance booking and travel passes may also offer savings.

What are the dining options on the train?

Most trains offer a bistro or dining car where you can purchase snacks, beverages, and light meals.

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