Plan your travel in Switzerland using the Swiss Travel System to get the most panoramic views of the country and easy city-to-city access. The Swiss are known for their chocolates and watches but many may not know that they have a superb rail system for travelers. Those who have experienced it would say it is the best in Europe and traveling second class is like first class in other European countries (they also have a first class service).
The Swiss travel passes are very economical when you compare them to the cost of renting a car, fuel, parking fees and road fees. The longer you stay the better the economics with a 15-day flex pass (use it in one month) priced at $505 US at the time of this article. The passes provide unlimited travel by rail, road(bus) and waterways, including most panorama routes and public transport in 75 towns and cities. You also get free admission to more than 490 museums on the selected days of validity and other discounts around the country. So let's explore some of the most popular train travel routes around Switzerland and start dreaming about doing it someday.
This route is a great way to see most of Switzerland and see many areas that you can only see by train. Covering a total of 1,280 km of panoramic railways, the Grand Train Tour of Switzerland is a must journey for those looking for the best rail adventures in the world. The route itself is not fixed and is just a suggested itinerary for travel through the country to see the best of the rail system. You can travel all of the suggested rail routes or just part of it. The major city destinations are Zurich, Lucerne, St. Gallen, Montreaux, Zermatt, Chur, St. Moritz, Interlaken, and Lugano. Your best option for starting this tour is to arrive by air or train in Zurich. Some portions of the trip are on special panoramic routes and require reservations.
If you are trying to decide on the perfect honeymoon trip that blends opportunities for culture, city exploring, nature and the romantic excitement of rail travel, the Grand Tour is worth considering for those reasons and a variety of other ones. The first is that you are letting someone else do the driving. You only need to get yourself to the station everyday that you decide to travel. Second, a honeymoon trip should be a time to relax and leave the stress of having planned a wedding behind you. Train travel is relaxing and the Swiss make it that much easier because they have an excellent record for being on time. Third, you can be at the top of Europe one day and then exploring the Mediterranean-style atmosphere of the city of Chur another day. Spend as much time as you want at a stop with a flex pass. A perfect trip is to start your marriage by turning what was once "someday" to "my someday honeymoon" in Switzerland.
Can you resist the allure of traveling by train through the Alps? We will get your dreams started with a travel video highlighting some of the best of the Grand Train Tour through Switzerland.
The world famous Glacier Express is one of the best ways to explore the southern region of Switzerland while sneaking through the Alps. The train begins and ends in either Zermatt or St. Moritz and takes approximently 8 hours. The word express and the distance traveled on this route do not correlate, primarily because you are traveling through narrow valleys, tight curves, 91 tunnels, and across 291 bridges. The route is spectacular and a panoramic pleasure for the whole family. Dream of taking a train from Zurich to Zermatt and spending some time skiing or hiking in the Alps with the Matterhorn in view. After a few days of that, take a relaxing but sensory overload experience on the Glacier Express train. You have now arrived in St. Moritz famous for being a birthplace for Alpine winter holidays and the location of two winter Olympics, as well as a place for more great skiing or hiking and a city with great restaurants.
There is no best time to travel on the Glacier Express, but many travelers say that April to June is amazing with snow-capped peaks and green valleys with spring flowers. This train is a special train on a regular route but you can follow the same route using regular trains without the panoramic windows. In our 5 days in Switzerland article we are taking the route from Brig to Zermatt.
If you are a train enthusiast this trip is a no-brainer to add to your Switzerand vacation plans. You can start dreaming today and plan for that someday trip by watching the Glacier Express travel video now, save it to your dream cloud and come back to see it again and again. Why not take that coffee break and be whisked away to the Alps on a famous train. Remember our motto at SomedayTrips is "Dream it, Plan it, Do it"℠. Don't you think you should be dreaming about a trip on the Glacier Express someday?
When traveling to Switzerland you will experience French influences in the west and Italian in the south. Therefore it is no surprise that a popular 4-hour train trip can take you from Switzerland to Italy and deliver you amazing views along the way. The Bernina Express, starts in Chur which is the oldest city in Switzerland and takes you on a 7,122 km trip through 55 tunnels and over 196 bridges and viaducts. You can also start the trip in Davos or St. Moritz. Your final destination will be Tirano Italy. The trip from Switzerland is free with a Swiss travel pass but you will need to pay for your return trip to Switzerland.
This is a perfect day trip to escape to Italy for lunch, tour Tirano and return for a late dinner in Switzerland. Not sure what to do while in Tirano? Take a quick peak at what a 30 minute tour of Tirano would look like. But let us be honest with ourselves, we are here for the ride and scenic views that the Bernina Express provides. Trains are romantic, exciting and take us places that you just can't see with a car. So let's get back on board and watch a travel video that highlights the experience of the Bernina Express. Watch out for clear skies to soon be filled with dream clouds for a future someday trip.
Taking the Jungfrau train is known as the journey to the top of Europe. It is the highest railroad station in Europe and ranks 7th in the world. Unlike the other routes featured in this article, this train ride is vertical with the only purpose being to make it to the top. Most planning this trip will arrive by Swiss Rail to the train station in Interlaken. From here you will take a Bernese Oberland Railway train from this popular lakeside town to higher elevations. There are two routes and we suggest you take one up and the other on the way back down. From Interlaken take the train to Grindelwald Grund Station and transfer to the Kleine Scheidegg station. Alternatively, you can travel from Interlaken to Wenge and transfer to Kleine-Scheidegg. From here you will make the one-way trip to the top on a cog railway, originally opened in 1912. The total time from Interlaken is approximetly 2.5 hours.
The trip from Kleine-Scheidegg is 9 km of railway with 7 km of it in tunnels carved out of the rock of the Eiger and Mönch. The train will stop for a brief 5 minutes at two intermediate stations, the Eigerwand (Eiger Wall) and Eismeer (Sea of Ice), for passengers to explore and view the fascinating mountains through large panoramic windows. Once you are at the top you will have spectacluar views including the UNESCO World Heritage Site known as the Aletsch Glacier. This is the largest alpine glacier in Eurasia covering 81 square kilometres. There are numerous other activites as well, including the Lindt Swiss Chocolate Heaven, which is free of charge, the Ice Palace and of course winter sports because there is snow and ice here all year. Take a further look at the journey and the views from the top in our featured Jungfrau travel video.
Swiss Rail Photo Gallery
Photo Credits: Switzerland Tourism
What is the best 5-day trip to see the beautiful country of Switzerland? It depends on what you want to see but this itinerary will give you a start on our trip through central Switzerland. Our goals were to see a few UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the beautiful Alps, and both city and rural life. For many we would highly recommend that you travel through Switzerland on their train system. Many would say it is the best in Europe with second class being close to first class in other European countries. The Swiss Travel Pass and the beautiful panoramic views you can get by traveling by train make the decision even easier. For our travels we blended train and automobile so that we had the flexibility to get where we needed to for our photography and video.
Why do we travel? Sometimes it is just to relax on a beach or explore a new culture. Then there are those trips that you take to explore a time in history or follow steps of historical events. In the spring of 2016 we will embark on a journey to pay tribute to the fallen during World War I and capture the dedication of new memorials by a Canadian regiment. The Governor General's Horse Guards will be dedicating a new memorial for the 4th Canadian Mounted Rifles (their regiment during the war) for the battle of Somme. They will also dedicate a Governor General's Horse Guard memorial for Mount Sorrel. SomedayTrips (Stulaine Studios) will be capturing the dedications and the journey through France and Belgium for the Regiment.
The Great War (World War I) lasted 4 years and took many lives in its wake. This was of course followed years later by another great war. Much of the Great War was fought in France and Belgium with many landmarks and memorials today to remember those that had fought and lost their lives. Follow us during our trip across the countryside of France and Belgium to commemorate the 100-year anniversary of the Great War. You can find out more about the trip and travel plans here. We have also included a map of our intinerary below for those that would like to plan a similar trip to see the history, cemeteries, and military monuments remembering the wars. Each location pin has a link to further information on the planned trip stop.
The road trip will include a stop in Arras France for two evenings to explore some of the most famous battlefields, the Canadian Vimy memorial and the underground tunnels of Arras. More information on Arras and a documentary short video on the history of the tunnels system is captured in our 100 reasons to visit Arras travel video article.
We will be updating this post in the coming weeks so stay tuned for more information.
Taking your creative photography skills to the next level just got a little bit easier for your extensive library of travel photos. Google just announced that they are now making the whole Nik Software Suite free. Yes we said free, and considering what we paid for this software years ago when it was an independent vendor, it really is the deal of the year for travel photographers.
Posted Wednesday, July 29, 2015
Kootenay Rockies, Outdoor Adventure / Ecotourism
Mountain golf playgrounds promise challenge and drama. And in British Columbia’s Kootenay Rockies, skilled play amid towering giants is rewarded in spectacularly scenic style.
Heart-thumping pursuits get into full swing at Greywolf, namely when enthusiasts tee up at the mountain course’s signature hole, Cliffhanger. This par-3 island green, situated across the aptly named "Hopeful Canyon," is a true bragging-rights feat — one that ensures that the Doug Carrick-designed gem, at Panorama Mountain Resort, is a memorable must-play. greywolfgolf.com
East of Panorama, near Invermere, Eagle Ranch revels in its Purcell and Rocky Mountain setting with 18 holes set high on the bluffs overlooking the Columbia River. Here, open fairways and valley views along the course’s upper region will set the pulse racing, while the hushed shelter of Eagle Ranch’s canyon backdrop encourages equally dramatic play. Off the course? Timber frame chalets, complete with gourmet kitchens and games rooms, may just encourage players to stay indoors. eagleranchresort.com
Rugged alpine landscape defines Trickle Creek Golf Resort, further south near Kimberley. Indeed, this Les Furber design embraces its wilder side, showcasing 18 holes, complete with tricky shots and precision putts, rushing creeks and steep slopes, the latter courtesy of North Star Mountain. That’s not to say that the whole family can’t play along: with Trickle Creek’s Kimberley Family Package, little ones tee up for free when accompanied by an adult. tricklecreek.com
For a final show-stopper, enthusiasts can continue south to Wildstone Golf Course to test their skill at the first Black Knight Design by Gary Player Design in Canada. Set near Cranbrook, Wildstone joined the mountain course scene just five seasons ago, but has steadily built a reputation for rewarding play, due namely to gently rolling terrain, white sand bunkering, plenty of variety and a jaw-dropping Rocky Mountain backdrop. wildstonegolf.com
- See more at: http://travelmedia.hellobc.com/stories/british-columbia%E2%80%99s-mountain-courses-are-calling.aspx#sthash.Mv0VBqUK.dpuf
Northern British Columbia, Ski & Snow Sport
Northern BC has long been a haven for outdoor adventurists, and when the snow flies, skis and boards are standard equipment — and always at the ready — for every intrepid adventurer.
Shames Mountain near Terrace, for example, promises a flurry of activity once the temperature drops. Here, mega snowfalls routinely draw skiers and riders, and in this quiet, rural setting, fresh tracks are frequently on the menu. As Canada’s only non-profit, co-operatively owned ski hill (locals formed My Recreational Mountain Coop in order to purchase and operate Shames Mountain), this northern gem offers choice intermediate and advanced runs, alongside an expansive backcountry landscape. In addition, skiers and boarders can expect spectacular fluted ridges and peaks spread in every direction, while natural glades make for heart-thumping tree skiing, Northern BC-style. mymountaincoop.ca; ski-shames.ca
Further northeast in the Bulkley Valley near Smithers, Hudson Bay Mountain Resort draws the faithful every year, due largely to the area’s natural mountain-range topography combined with the ferocity of northern Pacific weather systems. The result: Mother Nature’s ultimate snow machine. On mountain, enthusiasts can carve through 127 hectares (315 acres) of big mountain terrain, and they’ll even be tempted to stay a while, thanks to Ski & Stay packages that combine one day’s play (or more) with an overnight at the Aspen Inn and Suites or the Prestige Hudson Bay Lodge. For a change of pace, intermediate and expert skiers can switch their gear for backcountry boards to make tracks along the Hankin-Evelyn Backcountry Recreation Area, where 13 cut ski runs, five alpine bowls and a day-use shelter in the sub-alpine are sure to stir the adventurous spirit. hudsonbaymountain.com; Bulkley Backcountry Ski Society Hankin
Snow-packed exploration continues north of Prince George, where Powder King reigns. Here, the resort is situated a mere 462 metres (1,500 feet) from Highway 97, but Powder King feels worlds away from the bustle of your average ski resort. Breathtaking drops, challenging, groomed slopes and excellent tree riding draw devotees, while 38 runs (most, like Penny Lane and Lovely Rita, named for popular Beatles tunes) and a trickster-friendly snowboard cross track are sure to mix things up. Those who wish to linger can bunk at the Powder King Mountain Hotel, an old-school-style hostel at the base of the mountain that offers cosy comfort for powder-hungry crews. powderking.com
Just west of Prince George, Otway Nordic Centre is home to a 55-kilometre (34-mile) trail system that is a tempting blend of smooth grooves and technical track. As the site for the Cross-Country Skiing, Biathlon and Para-Nordic events during the 2015 Canada Winter Games — Canada's largest multi-sport competition for young athletes — Otway upped its game and refurbished its competition facilities, a $1.7 million upgrade that included expanded stadiums and new technical buildings, alongside courses primed for future international competition. caledonianordic.com
- See more at: It's Always A Snow Day In BC's North
Do you have too many photos on your iphone device and nor enough iCloud space while traveling. Apple provides you 5GB for free and then monthly storage fees after that. Sure it syncs with all your devices but all you really want to do is make sure a backup option on the road and then when you get home. Did you know that Yahoo's Flickr application provides you 1TB for free. Yes, we said one whole terabyte. Upload, access, organize, edit, and share your photos from any device, from anywhere in the world. • Put your free 1000GB to work - auto-upload all your photos and videos to your Flickr camera roll. They'll be private, until you choose to share them! • Camera roll in the cloud - instant access to your entire Flickr collection, so you can free up your phone for everything else. • Organization and sharing, simplified - browse with ease, select and organize hundreds of photos with one gesture, and share in seconds. • Unleash your creativity - edit your photos, add filters, crop images and more, directly from the camera roll. And if you change your mind, just revert the changes! • Engage with friends, family and explore the Flickr community - there are millions of groups and billions of photos out there to discover.
For those that want to backup locally on the trip we recommend this Western Digital drive with wireless capabilities.
Are you a DLSR shooter looking to get sharper travel photographs? The new ART Sigma line of lenses are an excellent buy when you are ready to get you photography to the next level. A favorite of our is the versatile 24-35mm f2 DG ART lens. A prime zoom wide angle lens that is so super sharp and delivers good bokeh. At f2 this will let you shoot better in low light as well. A super travel lens for a full-frame Canon camera user.
If you are like many travelers your go-to device for taking many of your shots is your mobile phone. The capability of products like the Apple iPhones and Samsung Galaxy S6 are outstanding options for your travel snapshots. They are not great for low light and can't match a DSLR for features but portability often rules when traveling. In this article we explore the challenge of aspect ratios when shooting with your phone.