Lauterbrunnen Waterfall

3 Day Switzerland Itinerary

Planning a Switzerland family vacation? It’s been one of our favorite family trips. While you could spend weeks here, here’s a 3-day Switzerland itinerary to give you a taste of this beautiful country! Get ready to be bowled over by nature’s grandeur as we explore the best spots in Switzerland in just three days. As we embark on this adventure, you’ll uncover the magic of the Swiss Alps, Lake Lucerne’s serenity, and the Bernese Oberland’s allure.

A Fun-filled 3 Day Switzerland Itinerary for Families

Switzerland, with its most beautiful places and picture-perfect landscapes, is a playground for families with kids. Here’s the best three-day itinerary that will surely be a hit with the little ones.

Read more on our other Switzerland pages:

Day 1: Explore Zurich’s Charms


Kick off your first day in the bustling city of Zurich. Start your journey with a visit to the Swiss National Museum. Here, kids can take a guided tour and learn about Switzerland’s history in a fun, interactive way.

Next, let the kids burn off some energy at Zurich’s Zoologischer Garten, or Zoo Zurich, home to over 2,000 species of animals. Don’t miss the Masoala Rainforest Hall; it’s like stepping into a mini Madagascar.

Wrap up your day with a relaxing boat trip on Lake Zürich. The views are splendid, and the cool breeze is particularly refreshing if you visit in the summer. Remember, with a Zurich Card, you can enjoy unlimited second-class travel within the city by tram, bus, train, boat, and cable car.

Day 2: Adventure in Lucerne and Mount Pilatus

Lucerne River With Castle In Background. 3 Day Switzerland Itinerary

On the second day, take a short train ride to the charming small town of Lucerne. Visit the iconic Chapel Bridge and the medieval castle of Museggmauer. The nine towers offer stunning views of the city, lake, and mountains.

Lions Of Lucerne

Next, get your train tickets for an exciting trip to Mount Pilatus, the highest point in Lucerne. Reach the top via the world’s steepest cogwheel railway. At the summit, be greeted by a majestic panorama of the highest mountains in central Switzerland.

The mountain also boasts a large playground and the biggest rope park in Central Switzerland. Let the kids have a blast while you soak in the spectacular views.

Day 3: The Jungfrau Region

On your final day, venture into the Bernese Oberland and our favorite excursion in Switzerland, the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Jungfrau region.

Jungfraujoch View

Start with a scenic train journey through mountain passes to the quaint town of Lauterbrunnen. From here, visit Trummelbach Falls, a series of impressive waterfalls inside a mountain. It’s a short bus ride away, and the sight of the roaring falls is a thrill for kids and adults alike.

Next, board a train to Wengen, a car-free village perched high above the Lauterbrunnen Valley.

Finish your day with a trip to Jungfraujoch, the Top of Europe. With the Swiss Pass, children under 16 accompanied by a parent travel free of charge. Enjoy a leisurely lunch, and let the kids play in the snow, even in summer! Check out our complete guide here to Jungfraujoch.

Alternate Day 1: A Day of Castles and Rivers in Schaffhausen

Would you prefer a smaller town than the large city of Zurich? Embark on a day of adventure by hopping on a train to Schaffhausen, just north of Zurich. This small town is known for its beautifully preserved medieval castle, Munot, which offers panoramic views of the old town and the mighty Rhine.

Next, it’s time to explore the grandeur of nature at the Rhine Falls, the largest waterfall in Europe. A guided tour will take you close to the roaring waters, an experience that will thrill the kids. Remember to use your Swiss Pass for unlimited travel and discounts.

The Adventure Park at the Rhine Falls is great for kids to let off steam. With rope courses and ziplines, it’s a perfect spot for some family fun.

End the day with a leisurely stroll in the old town, where kids can learn about the rich history of the region. Enjoy some delicious Swiss cuisine in one of the many family-friendly local restaurants in the area.

Alternate Itinerary Day 2: Lucerne and Mount Rigi

Begin your Switzerland itinerary with a jaunt to the charming Swiss city of Lucerne. The city’s heart, the city center, is filled with quaint medieval buildings, including the iconic Chapel Bridge. The bridge, arguably one of the city’s best views, spans Lake Lucerne and offers captivating panoramic views.


Once you’ve soaked up the city’s historic charm, it’s time for a boat ride. Board a boat at the Lake Lucerne boat station for a serene trip to Vitznau. From here, the cogwheel train awaits to whisk you up Mount Rigi. Revel in the scenic train ride, taking in the spectacular views of the lake, city, and mountain peaks.

Atop Mount Rigi, relish the breathtaking panorama before taking a short hike. You’ll be surprised how much you can cover in a little time. Once you’ve filled the fresh alpine air, head back down via an aerial cable car to Weggis and from there, a boat back to Lucerne.

Here is a comprehensive guide to Lucerne.

Alternate Itinerary Day 3: The Jungfrau Region – Lauterbrunnen, Wengen, and Jungfraujoch

On the third day of your Switzerland itinerary, we’re keeping it in the same area as the first itinerary, taking the train to the top of Europe, the Jungfraujoch. But first, we’ll visit the Jungfrau region‘s enchanting villages – Lauterbrunnen and Wengen.

Lauterbrunnen Waterfall

The scenic train ride from Interlaken Ost to Lauterbrunnen presents you with the pristine beauty of the Bernese Oberland. Famed for its 72 waterfalls, Lauterbrunnen is a perfect place for nature enthusiasts. A short walk from the train station leads to amazing views of Staubbach Falls, which is as mesmerizing as it gets!

Next up, catch the mountain train to Wengen. We spent 3 nights in this car-free village which offers a unique blend of tranquility and adventure. Don’t forget to soak in the breathtaking views of the Lauterbrunnen Valley and surrounding mountain peaks.


If you’re short on time, take the cable car up to Mannlichen. Stand on the cable car’s rooftop balcony for some amazing views! Check out our video below, or read more here.

However, if you have enough time for the journey to Jungfraujoch, take the train trip to Kleine Scheidegg and then on to Jungfraujoch.

From Wengen, the train journey to Kleine Scheidegg is simply awe-inspiring. With its picturesque landscapes and the imposing north face of the Eiger, it’s a sight to behold. From Kleine Scheidegg, it’s a cogwheel train ride to the highest railway station in Europe, the Jungfraujoch.

Kleine Scheidegg Train

Referred to as the “Top of Europe,” Jungfraujoch offers a blend of snow-clad landscapes, adventure activities, and panoramic views. Spend time visiting the Ice Palace, observing the Sphinx Observatory, or simply marveling at the Aletsch Glacier, the longest glacier in the Alps.

For a detailed account of Jungfraujoch, see our review here.

Bonus Extra Day: St. Moritz and The Glacier Express

St. Moritz is too far to fit in a 3 day itinerary with the other options, but it can be a great addition or alternative. Starting from St. Moritz, the Glacier Express train journey promises to be a visual treat with its stunning panoramic views of the Swiss Alps.

St. Moritz, itself, is a great place to spend some time. Nestled in the Engadine Valley, this town offers a blend of glamour, lifestyle, sports, and nature. Explore the town’s main street for various restaurants and luxury hotels, or take a short stop at the famous Badrutt’s Palace Hotel.

After exploration, head to the train station and hop aboard the Glacier Express. The journey offers a unique perspective of the Swiss landscape, with its vast mountain views, quaint villages, and UNESCO World Heritage sites.

Worried about the extra cost of this ride? Good thing you have the Swiss Half Fare Card, which offers a 50% discount on most mountain railways and regular trains, ensuring you have enough time and resources to enjoy the experience.

For more on the Glacier Express, check out our guide.

Swiss Travel Pass

The Swiss Travel Pass is a ticket that lets you travel anywhere in Switzerland on trains, buses, and boats. You also get free entry to over 500 museums and discounts on mountain trips.

The Swiss Travel Pass is available for 3, 4, 8, or 15 consecutive days, making it perfect for short and extended trips. Some of the key benefits include:

Swiss Travel Pass

Swiss Travel Pass

The Swiss Travel Pass is a convenient, all-in-one ticket granting unlimited access to Switzerland’s public transportation network, including trains, buses, and boats. It also includes free admission to over 500 museums and discounts on mountain excursions. The Swiss Travel Pass is available for 3, 4, 8, or 15 consecutive days, making it perfect for short and extended trips. Some of the key benefits include:

  • Unlimited travel on trains, buses, and boats in Switzerland
  • Free admission to over 500 museums
  • Discounts on mountain excursions, such as Mount Pilatus and Mount Rigi
  • Free travel for children under 16 when accompanied by a parent with a Swiss Family Card

Regional Pass Bernese Oberland

Regional Pass Bernese Oberland

Travelers in the Bernese Oberland region can use the Regional Pass Oberland. It includes Interlaken, Grindelwald, and Lauterbrunnen.

The pass lets you travel as much as you want on certain trains, buses, boats, and cable cars in the area. It also gives you discounts on mountain trips. It is available for 3, 4, 6, 8, or 10 days within one month, allowing flexible travel planning. Key benefits of the Regional Pass Bernese Oberland include:

  • You can travel as much as you want on certain trains, buses, boats, and cable cars in the Bernese Oberland area.
  • Discounts on mountain excursions, such as the Jungfraujoch and Schilthorn
  • Flexible travel days within one month

The Swiss Travel Pass or the Regional Pass Bernese Oberland depends on your travel plans. If you travel to different parts of the country, consider using the Swiss Travel Pass.

The Regional Pass Oberland might be a better option if you’re only interested in the Oberland region.

For our recent trip to Switzerland, we chose the Oberland Pass. We focused on Lauterbrunnen, Wengen, and Lucerne. All these areas and some of the cable cars were covered.

Swiss Trains

Switzerland is known for a highly efficient train system that covers a large area. The train system is a good way to travel nationwide, especially for families. Traveling by train in Switzerland is safe, reliable, and eco-friendly. Additionally, trains are kid-friendly. Some even have playgrounds!

Swiss trains sometimes have playgrounds on the upper levels. Kids can play and burn off energy there during long journeys.

In this picture, the upper deck had a slide, where our kids spent the ride playing with other kids.

Swiss Train Playground

Swiss trains have beautiful views of the countryside and mountains.

Many Swiss trains offer onboard dining. The train had a dining car during the journey from Interlaken to Lucerne. But, they served snacks instead of full meals.

Swiss Train Dining Car Scenery

Top Picks for an Overnight Stay

Looking for the perfect place for an overnight stay? Here are some luxury hotels that offer not just comfort but also fantastic views:

Best Places to Stay in Wengen

If you plan a trip to Wengen, you will want to stay in a comfortable and convenient hotel. Here are some of our top picks for the best places to stay in Wengen:

Our Pick

Hotel Silberhorn

The Hotel Silberhorn is a family-run hotel that offers comfortable rooms and stunning views of the surrounding mountains.

The hotel is located in the heart of Wengen and is a great place to stay.

Our Pick

Hotel Edelweiss

The Hotel Edelweiss is a charming hotel in Wengen. The hotel offers comfortable rooms and stunning views of the surrounding mountains. It is a great place to stay to relax and unwind.

Our Pick

Hotel Schönegg

Hotel Schönegg is a 3-star charming hotel located right in the center of Wengen.

With its stunning mountain views, comfortable accommodations, and excellent amenities, the hotel is a popular destination for travelers seeking a relaxing and unforgettable vacation.

Best VRBOs and Other Hotels in Wengen:

Top Hotels in Lucerne for Families

Lucerne is a small town, so staying in the Old Town allows you to enjoy picturesque scenery while still just a 10-minute walk from the train station.

Here are some top-rated hotels in Lucerne that cater to families, each with a rating of 8 out of 10 or higher on

Our top choice

Hotel des Balances

Hotel des Balances is a charming 4-star hotel in the heart of Lucerne’s old town. This historic building offers beautifully designed rooms, some with views of the Reuss River.

Rating: 9.0/10 on

Another Great choice

Hotel Schweizerhof Luzern

Hotel Schweizerhof Luzern is a luxurious 5-star hotel located on the shores of Lake Lucerne. The hotel features elegant rooms, a spa, and several on-site dining options.

Rating: 8.6/10 on

top Pick close to train station

Radisson Blu Hotel

Radisson Blu Hotel, Lucerne, is a modern 4-star hotel near the main train station and Lake Lucerne. The hotel offers spacious family rooms, an on-site restaurant with a kids’ menu, and babysitting services upon request.

The location makes it easy to drop off your luggage after arriving at the train station.

Rating: 8.3/10 on

Getting Around Switzerland

For an alternative, check out our review of Swiss Holiday Park, a hotel and destination all in one that’s been a favorite of our kids.

Swiss Holiday Park In Morschach
Swiss Holiday Park Lake Lucerne View

Swiss Holiday Park


Swiss Holiday Park is a family-friendly leisure resort nestled in the picturesque village of Morschach, offering a water park, and stunning views of the surrounding Alps.

With its adventure pool, ski slopes, spa facilities, and fun-filled amenities, it’s the perfect getaway for unforgettable family vacations in the heart of Switzerland.


If you have limited time, or want to make a day trip, you can always customize this itinerary to suit your needs. But trust us, once you get a taste of Switzerland’s beauty, you’d wish you had more than just three travel days!

For more about Switzerland, explore our Switzerland page and Männlichen guide. Stay tuned for more exciting travel stories!

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