12 days in Switzerland & Varenna Itinerary

12 days in Switzerland & Varenna Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Europe journey builder
Make it your trip
Fly to Zürich Airport, Drive to Lucerne
Lucerne, Switzerland
— 3 nights
Grindelwald, Switzerland
— 3 nights
Varenna, Italy
— 2 nights
Zermatt, Switzerland
— 2 nights
Montreux, Switzerland
Drive to Geneva Cointrin International Airport, Fly to Washington


Lucerne, Switzerland — 3 nights

In north-central Switzerland, Lucerne represents a small city boasting a well-preserved old town.
Deepen your sense of the past at sights like Uferpromenade Weggis and Musegg Wall. Explore hidden gems such as Glacier Garden Lucerne (Gletschergarten) and Jesuitenkirche. There's much more to do: fly down the slopes at Mt Pilatus, snap pictures at Pont Spreuer, examine the collection at Richard Wagner Museum, and admire the masterpieces at Museum Rosengart Collection.

Plan my day in Lucerne using traveler tips and tourist information provided by Inspirock.

Washington, USA to Lucerne is an approximately 14.5-hour combination of flight and car. The time zone difference when traveling from Washington to Lucerne is 6 hours. Expect a bit cooler temperatures when traveling from Washington in July; daily highs in Lucerne reach 77°F and lows reach 59°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 15th (Sat) early enough to go by car to Grindelwald.
Museums · Parks · Historic Sites · Nature
Side Trips
Find places to stay Jul 12 — 15:

Grindelwald, Switzerland — 3 nights

Glacier Village

As one of the country's oldest ski resorts, Grindewald serves as a prime example of a cozy Swiss ski town.
Step off the beaten path and head to Lauterbrunnen Valley Waterfalls and Staubbach Waterfall. Escape the urban bustle at Lake Brienz and Maennlichen. Get out of town with these interesting Grindelwald side-trips: Giessbachfälle (in Giessbach) and Luftseilbahn Wengen-Mannlichen (in Wengen). And it doesn't end there: contemplate the waterfront views at Bachalpsee Lake, get to know the fascinating history of Kleine Scheidegg, appreciate the views at Lauterbrunnen Village, and take in the awesome beauty at Faulhorn.

To find more things to do, maps, photos, and other tourist information, use the Grindelwald trip planner.

Getting from Lucerne to Grindelwald by car takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: take a train. Cap off your sightseeing on the 18th (Tue) early enough to go by car to Varenna.
Nature · Parks · Outdoors · Winter Sports
Side Trips
Find places to stay Jul 15 — 18:

Varenna, Italy — 2 nights

Varenna is a comune (municipality) on Lake Como in the Province of Lecco in the Italian region Lombardy, located about 60km north of Milan and about 20km northwest of Lecco.Varenna was founded by local fishermen in 769, and was later allied of the commune of Milan. On the 19th (Wed), take in the architecture and atmosphere at S. Giovanni Battista, take in the architecture and atmosphere at Chiesa di San Giorgio, enjoy the sand and surf at Riva Bianca Beach, then contemplate the long history of Castello di Corenno Plinio, then brush up on your military savvy at Forte Montecchio Nord, and finally take in breathtaking views at Orrido di Bellano. On your second day here, take in the architecture and atmosphere at Chiesa Santa Maria del Tiglio, pause for some serene contemplation at Santuario Della Madonna delle Grazie di San Martino, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Santuario Madonna del Soccorso, and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Sacro Monte di Ossuccio.

For maps, where to stay, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Varenna trip itinerary site.

Drive from Grindelwald to Varenna in 4.5 hours. In July, daily temperatures in Varenna can reach 85°F, while at night they dip to 65°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 20th (Thu) so you can drive to Zermatt.
Historic Sites · Parks · Beaches · Outdoors
Side Trips
Find places to stay Jul 18 — 20:

Zermatt, Switzerland — 2 nights

Best known as home the Matterhorn mountain, Zermatt serves as a chic ski resort town of the Swiss Alps.
Start off your visit on the 21st (Fri): contemplate the waterfront views at Leisee, hike along Marmot Trail, then explore the activities along Stellisee, then stroll the grounds of Mountaineers' Cemetery, and finally hike along 5 Lakes Walk. On the 22nd (Sat), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: take in panoramic vistas at Sunnegga, then take in panoramic vistas at Gornergrat, then take in the architecture and atmosphere at Intercontinental Church Society, and finally fly like a bird with a parasailing or paragliding tour.

To find traveler tips, maps, more things to do, and more tourist information, read our Zermatt tour website.

Traveling by car from Varenna to Zermatt takes 4 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Sat) so you can drive to Montreux.
Parks · Outdoors · Nature · Tours
Find places to stay Jul 20 — 22:

Montreux, Switzerland

Mostly known for its world-renowned jazz festival, Montreux serves as a picturesque lakeside resort town on the Swiss Riviera.
To find reviews, ratings, other places to visit, and tourist information, go to the Montreux online route planner.

Drive from Zermatt to Montreux in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or do a combination of train and bus. On the 22nd (Sat), you'll travel back home.
Outdoors · Parks · Tours · Museums
Find places to stay Jul 22 — 23:

Switzerland travel guide

Bodies of Water · Mountains · Specialty Museums
Immerse yourself in a snow-capped mountain wonderland in Switzerland's serene Alpine setting. See the world-renowned Matterhorn, Switzerland's second-highest mountain at 4,478 m (14,962 ft) tall, or zoom down the mountains on toboggan, ski, or snowboard. In the warmer seasons hike around the rolling green hillsides covered with pine trees and picturesque aqua blue lakes. Luxurious cities dotted with cozy wooden chalets and colorful flowerbeds balance quaintness with first-class cultural offerings. Indulge in the country's opulence of milk chocolate, cheese fondue, and keg-carrying St. Bernard dogs.

Lake Como travel guide

Gardens · Architectural Buildings · Churches
A favorite vacation spot for more than a century, Lake Como was once an exclusive retreat for local aristocrats and wealthy people. It is not only one of Europe's most beautiful lakes, but also one of the deepest at more than 400 m (1,300 ft). Surrounded by elegant villas, the lake has become a popular holiday destination for tourists because of its range of attractions, from landscapes, wildlife, and spas, to activities like sailing, windsurfing, and kite-surfing. The area has been an inspiration for artists since Roman times. English poet Percy Bysshe Shelley wrote, "This lake exceeds anything I ever beheld in beauty…It is long and narrow and has the appearance of a mighty river winding among the mountains and the forests."