Welcome to Switzerland's largest city – Zurich. Enjoy some free time exploring its charming Old Town or one of its many museums on your own.
This evening, get to know your fellow travelers over a welcome dinner. (D) Stay: Hotel Krone Unterstrass
Say “good morning” to Zurich with a walking tour of the city. A local guide will teach you the city's history and make a few sweet stops along the way. Learn the history behind the chocolate shops and taste some delicacies for yourself. Treat your taste buds to even more flavors of Zurich with free time for lunch on your own.
After that, it's all aboard! You're off to Andermatt to experience the world-renowned Glacier Express train. Natural backdrops of the Swiss Alps, thick forests, gurgling streams, and deep valleys bring this mountain dream to life. Complete your day in the unique, car-less village of Zermatt. (B/D) Stay: Resort Hotel Alex (2 Nights)
Start your morning with a Tour Manager-led walk to get familiar with the quaint mountain village of Zermatt. With free time for the rest of the day, let your curiosity get the best of you while uncovering history in the Matterhorn Museum. Perhaps your adventurous side will bring you on the Gornergrat Railway to experience elevated views of the Matterhorn. (B)
Take on the day as you depart Zermatt and head towards Italy. Enjoy scenic mountain views on a drive through the Simplon Pass, used for centuries as a main trading route between northern Italy and Switzerland. Learn how Napoleon used the Simplon Pass to cross the Alps into Italy and gain control of Milan and Venice.
Continue to a tranquil resort area with crystal clear waters set against the backdrop of the Alps, known as Lake Maggiore. Take time this afternoon to stroll the cobbled streets of Stresa. Long-favored by European aristocracy because of its blend of elegance, Stresa has inspired artists and writers since the late 1800s. Step inside a local wine shop where the family teaches you all about some of Italy's local specialties and invites you to try some. As the day draws to a close, settle in for a 3-night stay at your hotel. (B) Stay: Zacchera Hotels (3 Nights)
The entire day is yours. You might want to soak up the sun along the waterfront, relax in an outdoor café, or head out on the waves by boat. Perhaps you'll take an optional tour to picture-perfect Lake Orta – a hidden gem surrounded by romantic villages and filled with quaint islands. As the evening approaches, board a private boat for a cruise to Isola dei Pescatori. On the island, toast to your Italian experiences during dinner at a local restaurant. (B/D)
Today, explore the twin towns of Verbania and Pallanza where it's your choice! In Verbania, wander through the enchanted gardens of Villa Taranto. Among the dreamy landscapes and captivating reflections are mysterious flowers from the farthest corners of the world -OR- visit Pallanza and tour the Troubetzkoy statuary collection housed in the town's museum, Museo del Paesaggio.
This afternoon, set sail to Isola Bella – known as the “beautiful island.” With an expert guide beside you, journey into the Borromeo Palace – a lakeside Baroque beauty adorned with an exotic garden. (B)
Experience sweeping coastal views on your drive along the picturesque shores of Lake Como during your full morning bus transfer to Tirano. Spend the afternoon traveling along one of the world's most scenic railways. Take a journey through the Bernina Express en route to St. Moritz, Switzerland. Witness the striking landscapes of the Italian and Swiss Alps throughout your voyage – including the famed Morteratsch Glacier. Make your final stop in St. Moritz and enjoy the evening at leisure to relax or stroll the lakeside boulevard. (B) Stay: Hotel Steffani
Slow and steady wins the race today. Enjoy a leisurely start in St. Moritz before heading to Lucerne, the “Swiss Paradise on the Lake.” Follow the ancient pathways of the city on a walking tour through an Altstadt (Old Town), passing through the covered 14th-century Chapel Bridge. Along the way, see the famous Water Tower that once served as a prison. Pause at the renowned Lion Monument, carved from sandstone to commemorate heroic soldiers. The evening is yours to relax or explore. (B) Stay: Hotel Astoria (2 Nights)
Today, enjoy the splendor of pure nature while gliding over a clear landscape in panoramic gondolas and spectacular cable cars. Ascend Pilatus on a unique excursion along the steepest railway in the world. From the top, soak in the magnificent Alpine views from 7,000 ft. above sea level. Enjoy leisure time at the summit, where you can stroll the walkway for new vantage points. Venture back down the mountain by panoramic gondola for another bird's eye view. Gather tonight for a farewell dinner featuring Swiss specialties. (B/D)
Your scenic journey comes to an end today in Lago Maggiore. (B)