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Swiss Alpine Adventure Switzterland - Alps Matterhorn - Riffelalp Resort

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2008 Date: 9/24/2008

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Email: greg@cruisingreview.com

TEL: 608-238-6001

Zurich to Zermatt

After going through passport control, we immediately went down to the SBB train station ticket office, and bought some Swiss Passes. These allow you unlimited travel on the SBB system, which includes trains, busses, lake ferries and discounts on the vertical system of funiculars, cablecars, and cogwheel railways. We looked up the train schedule on my iPhone as well as local monitors. The monitors show train destinations, not the train number, as is presented online.

Train to Zermatt

SBB Train

We caught our train at the airport train station, located below ground.

(click to enlarge)

SwissPass ticket. About $475 for each person - you get a discount for traveling in parties of 2 or more. There is first class and second class.

SBB train - first class.

This is what the SwissPass looks like. Just present it to the conductor on the train.

SwissPass brochure.

Gornergrat cogwheel train ticket to Riffelalp.

Gornergrat cogwheel train ticket to Riffelalp.

SwissPass map.

Riffelalp room card.

Pepe in first class of the train. Most trains are empty, except at rush hour times.

SBB train.

Inside the regional first class train from Brig to Zermatt. They call this a panoramic car. It allows you to see the high peaks above the train.

The Gornergrat cogwheel train to the Riffelalp stop which is high above Zermatt.

At the Riffelalp stop, you board a small electric train to the resort, about 500 meters away.

The Riffelalp - 2222m Zermatt.

The Jacuzzi in the bathroom.

The bathroom.

The bedroom in the suite.

View from the suite. This is the lunch and dinner casual eating spot.

Another view from the suite showing the electric train the resort uses.

The Matterhorn - one of the most famous mountains in all the world.

The indoor pool area at the Riffelalp - there is also a fireplace here.

The outdoor Jacuzzi - which overlooks the Matterhorn.

View from the Jacuzzi of the Matterhorn.

Matterhorn at sunset.

Matterhorn.

Restaurant Al Bosco serving the Matterhorn Pizza and traditional Raclette.

Deborah with her pizza.

Pepe with his fondue.

End of Day One at the Riffelalp

It was a really long travel day. The best part of Switzerland is the incredible (and clean) electric train system. You can travel anywhere without reservations (as far as the train goes). For fancy resorts, a reservation is recommended. The Riffelalp was booked for Friday night of the week, so we only stayed there two nights. While you can get your rail tickets early via RailEurope, you're not saving much money to do so, and you still have to get the ticket verified when you land - so not much time saved there. Since the alps are at altitude, the first few days of acclimation, drink lots of water, take it easy on hiking, and don't drink much alcohol.

CONTACT TEL: 608-238-6001 Email: greg@cruisingreview.com