Tag Archive | Swiss card

BACKPACKING – Italy & Switzerland Summer 2011 Trip (11 days / 10 nights)

This post has entire itinerary, in depth details about Italy and Switzerland trip (11days/nites). Please do read till the end as day-day itinerary has been included as well. For pictures please refer to picasa link https://picasaweb.google.com/101282230968389778340

We planned our trip based on Rick Steve’s book on Italy. This book is so handy it describes all the details of what not and what to do. Book guides you thoroughly to layout your trip plan.  Before even going in detail would seriously recommend referring Rick Steve’s book depending on which country you want to visit in Europe.  We hated to go with tour so we decided to go on our own (self paced tour). As we started planning we learned that trip becomes very specific based on individual likes/dislikes. I can just keep on talking about our adventurous trip.

We did extensive research as we were planning on our own… I went through couple of books at library and  at Barnes n nobles  and then finally ended up going with “Rick Steve’s”  …other thing I referred was trip advisor just to see the specific hotel review….n that’s it..

People do refer other author books like (Former, fodors, Lonely Planet, trip advisor…n so on) but I think Rick Steve’s is best even his show comes on travel channel… also he has free podcast…so u don’t have to end up buying expensive audio tour guide on your trip u can just download his app on iphone or download mp3 on ipod n u r all set..He guides u thru n explains the details.. based on specific monument u visit.

We bought Italy and Switzerland book n for reference borrowed Rick Steve’s city specific book from library.

Check out his site http://www.ricksteves.com/  . He pretty much covers everything in his book. I planned my entire trip by reading his book..

We were first planning to go in May but than we postponed to June. As this trip can go way expensive, so we calculated our budget inclusing airfare, hotels, lunch/dinner, travel passes and etc. And we marked our min to max expenditure we can afford spending.  Luckily we completed our trip with min budget lavishly.

We booked our hotels based on what “Rick Steve’s” recommended. Before booking the hotels we read in details what do hotel covers,  room type n all other details as Europe works way differently …some rooms don’t have bathrooms within the room… we mostly booked B&B’s n some places we stayed in hostel with private room n bathroom in it…so it was convenient n never felt like hostel style… if u end up booking “Rick Steve’s” recommended hotel  than u might get 10% discount in Italy or they will give u 10% discount if u pay in cash… make sure before u book any hotel u double check, whats does your room includes and lock the price by emailing them….they are pretty good in responding back…also we booked all our hotel through the hotel website..  We didn’t use any travel booking website.

We didn’t rented the car in Europe….public commute is way good there… we had booked Italy country pass through Eurail…based on where u planning to travel u might have to do bit of math as u might not need pass to travel.. if u r going to be there for few days….

We bought separate pass for Italy n Swiss… after doing all math. Also each city specific public commute passes are available which gives u some discount to monuments n subway covered…  Rick Steve’s has mentioned in his book so u can decide which one is flexible for your planning.

Also I would recommend on doing  reservation if u planning to visit museums like Vatican museum in Vatican(Rome) , Uffizi gallery & Accademia in Florence…. we didn’t reserved it online we asked our hotel to do reservation for us. They will give u reservation no..u just have to take print out n present that in museum the time n date u book for…n u pay there…it’s very convenient.

After reading Rick Steve’s book on Italy and Switzerland we decided which cities to visit. 


Rome (3 days/3 nites)

Venice (1 day/1 nite) – visited Murano Island

Florence (3 day/2 nites) —  did day trip to Pisa n Cinque Terre

Milan — (1 day – transiting) this city is more of fashion n shopping if u gng paris u can skip this…but if u r changing train in Milan n have 3-4 hour time lag between u can visit central of the city. ( We had 4-5 hrs of lay over time in Milan while going Switzerland.. so we decided to just visit Milan Duomo and Victoria monument.) Rick Steve’s did mention this in his Italy book.


Interlaken West (1 nite) (1/2 day)

Jungfrau/wengen/Grindelwald – day trip

Murren – (1 nite/1day) — Its rustic mountain village to stay…rick steves mention about it in his Swiss book ( u can track to Gimmelwald)

Lauterbrunnen – (1nite/1day) — small town in valley… gr8 view..here u can go to Tumbbach glacier waterfall

Luzern – (1nite/1day) — take scenic train from Interlaken OST

Zurich – (1day — flying back to US) 


We decided on to go for Backpacking, so we bought these 2 bags for our trip. That’s all we carried for our entire trip. You can get cover for these bags as well in case you planning on to check-in.

Men’s Backpack – North face Terra 65 (http://www.thenorthface.com/catalog/sc-gear/terra-65-pack.html)

Women’s Backpack – North face Women’s Terra 45 (http://www.thenorthface.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?storeId=207&langId=-1&partNumber=AJQS&variationId=Z94&cm_vc=CrossSells)

Rick Steves link for what to pack









Day 1 – Roma (17thJune – Friday)

9:40am Arrive at Rome Intercontinental Airport Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino (FCO) Airport & buy the Roma Pass ({€25} valid for 3 days it covers public transport, first 2 sight seeing free and rest at 30% discount).

11:00am Take a “Leonardo Express” Fiumicino airport – Roma Termini train station (After every 30min interval, First Departure from Airport at 6.36 and last departure from airport is at 23.36). Fare is {€14 or 15 for first class and regular {€11} for one way.

12:00pm After arrival at Roma Termini Station check-in to “Hotel Griffo” which is like 1.2km walk from termini station OR take a “LINE B towards Laurentina” get down at next stop “CAVOUR” 400m walk to hotel. Grab Lunch locally and rest till 2pm.

2:00pmTake “LINE B to Colosseo” or walk Colosseum Tour (last entry 6pm – 45mins tour) {€12} covered by Roma Pass

3:00pm Tour Arch of Constantine (Between Colosseum & forum)  , Roman Forum Tour(90 mins tour) , Palatine Hill (all open till 7pm – 90mins tour, follow the Rick Steve’s Italy book self guided walk tour on page 710 follow from Start point at “Arch Of Titus” and will exit to “Capitol Hill”)

6:00pm Grab some snacks and go to Capitol Hill & Piazza Venezia, Trajan’s Column, forum and maket tour. For Tour details follow page 740 of rick Steve’s. (Capitoline Museum open till 20:00)

8:00/8:30pm Dinner & Back to Hotel for sleep as may be jet lagged.

 Rome Public Transport time – 5:30am-11:30pm. Carry your iPod for Audio Tour Guide.

If time before noon than visit St Peter-in Chains Church (Open from 8 – 12:30 & 15:00 – 19:00, modest dress required, its zigzag walk from Colosseum 15min uphill or walk form “CAVOUR metro stop”


 Day 2 – Roma (18thJune – Saturday)

8:30am –  Take Metro Line A towards “Battistini” get down at “Cipro” for Vatican Museum and “Ottaviano” for St Peters Basillica. 10 mins walk from metro stop.

9:00am – Vatican Museum tour {€15} (open from 9:00-18:00) – {€4 pay extra for reservation n skip line} (2 hour tour)

11:30am – Grab Lunch

12:00pm – St.Peter’s Basilica Tour {€….?} (Open from 7:00-19:00) (2 hour tour)

2:30pm – Grab something to eat

3:00pm – Visit Castel Sant’Angelo (Take Line A metro towards “Anagnina” and get down at “Lepanto”.

6:15pm – Dolce Vitta Stroll & Shopping (From Rick Steve’s Book) Dinner and Sleep.


Day 3 – Roma (19thJune – Sunday)

9:00am National Museum of Rome – Main sight – Museo Nazionale Romano Palazzo Massimo alle Terme {€10} (Open from 9:00-19:45) Take a metro to “Termini Station”. (Roughly 2 hour tour).

11:00am Museum of Bath at Bath of Diocletian (Terme di Diocleziano) (free admission as covered in national museum ticket) (Open from 7:00-19:30)

11:15am Baths of DioCletian Tour (7:45pm)

1:00pm Lunch

2:00pm Pantheon tour (Open 9:00-18:00)

6:00pm Night Walk across Rome from Campo de’ Fiori to the Spanish steps. Follow Pg 722 of Rick Steves (Shopping Triangle), Four Rivers Fountain at Piazza Navona

8:00pm Dinner and Sleep

 Borghese Gallery tour (2hours)….? Can be added on Day 3….?


Day 4 – Roma to Venezia (20th June – Monday)

8:00am Catch metro to “Termini Station”

8:30am Catch train (8:45am) for Venezia Santa Lucia from Roma termini (3hr50min train ride)

12:30pm Arrive at Venezia Santa Lucia Station. Buy Pass for unlimited use of vaporetti or ACTV Buses (see pg 53) {€16/12hrs} or {€18/24hrs}

01:00pm Take slow boat #1 towards “San Marco” from “Ferrovia train station”. (45mins ride) (See pg 57 – Grand Canal Cruise)

2:00pm Grab Lunch walk towards the Hotel Villa Igea, Check-in, take rest

3:00pm Walk to San Marco area Buy the San Marco Museum Plus Pass(13€) at Correr Museum

3:30pm St Mark’s Basillica Tour (Free, Open 9:45-17:00 – 1hour tour)

4:30pm Doge’s Place Tour (Open 8:30-18:30 – 1.5hr tour)

6:00pm Correr Museum(Open 9:00 -19:00 – 1 hour tour)

7:00pm Campanile di San Marco (dramatic bell) ({€8} Open 9:00-19:00 – best time after 6pm or morning 9am)

8:00pm Grab something to eat and stroll towards Academia & Rialto Bridge area

Later in nite take Gandola Ride (If possible share with 6 people to divide the price as it will cost {€100} for a 40min ride.

 2 main train stations – Venezia Mestre (on mainland) and Venezia Santa Lucia (on island). {€1 shuttle from Mestre to Santa Lucia station}.

 Daily Toilet Card (can use it twice) (3€), If possible use Toilet while at Museum or at Café for free.

Vaporetto stop – Ferry/water bus stop , Gondola stop.

Boat 41/42 to Murono Island from Train Station (40minutes)


Day 5 – Venezia to Firenze (21stJune – Tuesday)

8:30am Check out of Hotel and grab breakfast

9:30am Head towards San Marco Piazza stroll around and chk out Frari Church (3€) & Sculo San Rocco

11:30am Grab something to eat and head towards the Santa Lucia Station taking Taxi # 2 (25min) or Taxi#1 (45min) thru grand canal cruise

01:00pm Take train at 13:27 from Venezia Santa Lucia to Firenze SMN (Santa Maria Novella) (2hr train ride)

3:30pm Arrive at Firenze SMN Station. Arrive at hotel  check-in Hotel Residenza Giotto

5:00om  Accademia  at 17:15 on 21st June2011 Res#132037 to show at the door “with reservations”.  Florence Academia  (Opens- 8:15-18.50){€6.50+€4} (1 hour)

Other  Duomo (Opens-10.00-17.00){free} ,  Duomos Dome (Opens – 8:30-19.00){€8}, Duomo museum(Opens-9.00-19.30){€6}, Campanile (Opens – 8.30-19.30){€6}

7:30pm Dinner and stroll

Follow Rick Stevees Pg437 Renaissance Walk through florence


Day 6 – PISA & Cinque Terra Day Trip (22nd June – Wednesday)

8:30am Leave from Florence

9:31am Arrive in Pisa, (15min, .95€)

10:00am Tower (lam rossa line1 from stazioneFS6 to torre1, ask driver “torre” /every 9’/(15min, .95€) )

11:30am (lam rossa line1 from torre2 to stazioneFS1 /every 9’)(15min, .95€)

12:00pm Grab a light brunch at Pisa central

12:36pm Leave from Pisa

1:46pm Arrive at La Spezia Central  (Cique Terra Card 10€)

Buy cinque terre train ticket. *NOTE* The ticket is for regional train and is priced based on km to travel. La spezia to levanto should be done in 30km. Buy ticket return from Verenzza to la spezia at La spezia itself.  The eurail pass is good for la spezia to Monterosso. There is no reservation. Open seating. Confirm this at the station.Write name/Validate ticket. Go to Monterosso.

2:00pm Leave from  La Spezia Central

2:17pm Arrive in Monterosso. Start trekking to Verenzza

 3:45pm Arrive in Verenzza. Explore. Eat.

5:30pm If enough daylight and energy trek to Corniglia. (or) 6:24pm train from Vernazza to La spezia.

7:00pm Arrive at Corniglia

7:30pm Leave from Corniglia 

7:46pm Arrive at La spezia   (or) 6:46 reach La spezia

8:06pm Leave from La Spezia Central (or) 7:19 train to Florence. Reach 9:33 pm.

9:55pm Arrive at Florence

Things to do in Cinque Terre from Lonely Planet

  1. Chiesa di Santa Margherita (Sight seeing)

Vernazza’s tiny harbor is a delight, so perfectly quaint you’ll think you’ve wandered onto a film set. The small waterfront piazza is watched over by the harbourside gothic church of Santa Margherita di Antiochia complete with bell tower which has stood here since 1318.

  1. Via dell’Amore (Sight seeing)

The Via dell’Amore (Lovers’ Lane) is a well-paved coastal path linking Manarola with Riomaggiore (1km/0.6mi). Studded with picnic areas and stone beaches embedded in the cliffside, it affords stunning ocean views. At either end, steps lead up from the train station to the path – checkpoints along the way ensure no one sneaks by without a valid trail pass.

The Via dell’Amore is part of the 12km-long (7.4mi) sentiero azzurro (blue trail) that runs the length of the coast between Monterosso and Riomaggiore. Unlike Lovers’ Lane, which is flat, well-paved and suited to walkers of all abilities, the rest of the footpath is only for the sure-footed and well-equipped.

  1. Torre Guardiola (Sight seeing)

Bird life and local flora can be seen from the Torre Guardiola, a nature observation and bird-watching centre located on Fossola Beach, immediately southeast of Riomaggiore marina. From the centre a botanical walking trail leads along the coast.



Day 7 – Fierenze to Milano – Interlaken West(Swizz) (23rd June – Thursday)

8:00am Check out and Breakfast

8:45am  Uffizi Gallery – at 9:15 on 23rd June2011 Res#132040 to show at door 3. Uffizi Gallery(Opens-8:15-18.50){€10+€4} (1.5hour)

11:00pm Check out city and duomo and other remnant

1:00pm Ahead towards Fierenze SMN station and Grab Lunch

2:00pm Catch train for Milano (See Euro train timetable book)

3:45pm Reach Milano centrale. Pick up a city/subway map. Take Milan subway to Duomo. Taking the Metro to the Duomo and back.  Refer Pg 278 of Rick steves. ( Buy 1Euro ticket at koisk or from machine, validate in orange machine. Follow signs for yellow line 3 (direction: San Donato) after and 8 min ride (fourth stop) . To return, ride the saem yellow line 3 back the other way (direction: Maciachini).Explore – Duomo Museum (6:00pm, 8€),  Galleria Vittoria Emanuele & La Scala Opera House and Museum

5:30pm/6:00pm back to station Catch direct train to SPIEZ at 18:28(6:28pm) Chk timetable for time. Reach Spiez by 8:53pm. Catch train to Interlaken West (2-3 train/hr 9:35pm, 10:35pm, 11:36pm) reaching Interlaken by (9:56pm,10:57pm,11:59pm) se Euro timetable.

10:00/11:00pm Reach Interlaken West – Nite stay at villa in Interlaken West.


Day 8 – Jungfraujoch – Top Of Europe Day Tour (Switzerland) (24th June – Friday)

9:00am Checkout from Hotel

Take train to Interlaken OST or walk.

Take train to Lauterbrunnen (20 min train  ride). Check out weather here depending on that decide whether to do Jungraujoch or Schilthorn…? Based on that take trains from Lauterbrunnen.

Train to Wengen (15min) , from there train to Kleine Scheidgg (30 min). Change trian here for Jungfraujoch. (50 min). Refer Pg 155 Rick Steves. Sit on right side from “Kleine scheidegg” station. About an hour ride.

Jungfraujoch (11,300ft) (Pg 176 of rick steves) . On top of Jungfraujoch chk out chart, restaurants, Ice Palace (cavern with a gallery of ice statues), Elevator to “Sphinx observatory for highest viewing pt (from u can see “Aletsch Glacier – europe longest st 11mi stretch).

Come back to Kleine Scheidgg , chk out “Grindelwald” expensive resort town if time permits. Take “Grutschalp cable car and Murren train (30min) (known as best scenic path). Refer pg 157 of rick steves.

Check in to hotel at Murren.

WAY TO HOTEL (From hotel website) – From platform 2 you continue by train to Lauterbrunnen with the Bernese-Oberland-Railway (BOB). In Lauterbrunnen you cross the street and take the cable car/train to Muerren or take the post bus to Stechelberg and continue by cable car via Gimmelwald to Muerren.

Hike Option –

An hour across the ice to “Monochsjochhutte” (a mountain hut with small restaurant).

Best hike – 2.5 miles (Mannlichen –Kleine Scheidgg) with dramatic views. refer Pg184.

Day 9 – Murren/ Schilthorn/Gimmelwald Day Trip (Switzerland) (25th June – Saturday)

9:00 am Take cable car to Schilthorn(10,000ft), have breakfast there if possible Pg 175 of rick steves. Breakfast Buffet (27.50SF serves from 8 to 11), Panoramic view of Jungfrau, Monch, Eiger mountains.

Go to Gimmelwald. Take other route to Lauterbrunnen valley.

check out Lauterbrunnen & Trumm falls .

Check in to hotel , nite stay at Lauterbrunnen valley.

NOTES: Enjoy the mountains, real wilderness and a breathtaking view of the Bernese Oberland on Mount Schilthorn, which became famous around the world thanks to the James Bond film «On Her Majesty’s Secret Service». You can be up on the Schilthorn (2970 m) in just 32 minutes from Stechelberg (864 m). In our revolving restaurant, we can offer a large A-la-carte menu, our famous James Bond breakfast and the best view over Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau. You can also combine a trip up the Schilthorn with a walk through the panoramic spa resort of Mürren (with no cars), a trip on the funicular railway to the Allmendhubel and a visit to the Trümmelbach glacier waterfalls in Stechelberg


Day 10 – Lauterbrunnen to Luzern (Switzerland) (26th June – Sunday)

9:00am  Check out and breakfast.

Take train from Lauterbrunnen to Interlaken OST. Take Golden Pass Panoramic train from Interlaken OST to Luzern. (One of the bext scenic path) chk out for VIP Pass.

Mt Pilatus can be done in 2 ways (Cog railway or Gandolas). Check out Package Golden Round Trip & Silver Round Trip back and forth form Luzern to Pilatus. Take cog wheel train from lakeside town of Alpnachstad from Luzern, take S5 train to Alpnachstad(2/hr , 20min). Cog wheel operates daily from (1-2/ hr, 8:15-18:30, 30 min up, 40 min down, for the best views going up, take a downhill facing seat on the right side). www.pilatus.ch (Pg 88 of Rick Steves)

Get into the groove on Switzerland’s longest summer toboggan run – 1350 metres of tempo and top-notch fun (in summer, in dry weather only).

(timetable) http://www.pilatus.ch/webautor-data/146/Fahrplan-2011-2.pdf

Chekc out – http://www.pilatus.ch/content-n131-sE.html (Pg 89 of Rick Steves)

On return take (1.5 hour boat) from Alpnachstad to Luzern (7/day, 22SF).

Evening reuss River Stroll (Pg 67 Rick steves)

Nite stay in Luzern

LUZERN EXCURSION : (any one can be done in a day)

Enjoy a spectacular trip to Mount Pilatus (2132m/7000ft). From Lucerne you board the boat to Alpnachstad and then the steepest cogwheel train in the world takes you up to Mount Pilatus. On the way back you take the cable car/gondola down to Kriens and further by bus back to Lucerne. http://www.pilatus.ch/default-n7-sE.html

Or excursion to Mount Rigi – Queen of the mountains. Enjoy a boat cruise form Lucerne to Vitznau and then board the cogwheel up to Rigi Kulm at 1800 m/ 6000 ft. Mount Rigi is a trafic-free recreation resort and couers some 90 km2 of scenic landscape. Specially marked viewing points provide superb panoramic views.

Or excursion to Mount Titlis – at 3020 m/10000 ft. From Lucerne the train takes you to the mountain monestry village Engelberg where you board a gondola which takes you up to the Trübsee. You continue your trip by another gondola to Stand and finally the first revolving Titlis Rotair cablecar takes you up to Mount Titlis. For a spectacular, close-up insight into a glacier, visit the glacier cave and ride the Ice Flyer chairlift. Overnight in Lucerne. http://www.titlis.ch/index.php?id=2?lang=en

Or Better to spend your time taking a short lake cruise on Lake Luzern, roaming around the quaint old town area of Luzern, and just sitting by the lakefront soaking in the views. The 6 hours that you have allocated will be gone in a flash. You will not even have time for the wonderful Transport Museum or the Rosengart/Picasso Museum. You should however, visit the Lion Monument, and try climbing up the City Wall. No matter what you do, 6 hours is not enough for Luzern itself, much less for Pilatus and back !


Day 11- Luzern to Zurich (Switzerland) (27th June – Monday)

9:00am – Check out and Breakfast.

9:30am – Take train to Zurich.

Stroll around follow the main sights in Rick Steves book.Chk out Lintd Factory

3:00pm To Zurich Airport for flight at 5:30pm.

BUY ZURICH CARD also check out tours

The Zürich Trolley Experience – City Tour

Discover the sights of the city of Zürich on board the nostalgic “Classic Trolley” – a one-of-a-kind experience in Switzerland!
The approx. 2-hour trip tours the business and financial center, Bahnhofstrasse, the most important museums, historic Limmatquai, Grossmünster Church, St. Peter’s Church with Europe’s largest clock face, Fraumünster Church with its famous Chagall windows, residential areas, the university district and Zürich’s finest views.
You will listen to informative commentary via earphones in the language of your choice (German, French, Italian, English, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian and Japanese).
In summer, you can enjoy the city tour and get some fresh air, too, as the streetcar has open-air seats in the rear section.

The chocolate side of Zürich – Summer

Enjoy Zürich’s chocolate side. After a guided city tour through trendy, traditional residential areas, the university quarter and historic Limmatquai in Zürich’s Old Town, you will have the opportunity to purchase the best of Swiss chocolate when visiting the outlet store at the world-famous Lindt & Sprüngli chocolate factory.
Then you can enjoy a one-hour boat cruise on Lake Zürich (unaccompanied) while munching on a sweet piece of chocolate, perhaps? The boat cruise ends at Bürkliplatz harbor, not far from Bahnhofstrasse and the Old Town.

Zurich Train Station – Zurich HB(Zürich Hauptbahnhof) (Zurich Central Station)

Station called as “Bahnhof”(train – Bahn),  Zurich Airport known as  Zürich Flughafen (aeroplaneFlugzeug)


Trip Itinerary – Italy Hotels (6 Nights Total)

Roma :

Hotel Grifo (3 nites – 17th, 18th, 19th June) (credit card pay – {€377}, cash payment 8% discount – {€347} – New Standard Room incl Pvt Bathroom  http://www.hotelgrifo.com/inglese/home.htm (Close to Colosseum and Metrostop Cavour”)

Venezia :

Hotel Villa Igea (1 nite – 20th June) (credit card pay – {€132}, cash payment discount – {€…?} – One standard Double Room incl Pvt Bathroom http://www.hotelvillaigea.it/  (Very Close to St. Mark’s Square (Piazza San Marco)) (Bkfast Incl)

Firenze :

Hotel Residenza Giotto (2 nite – 21st,22nd June) (Credit card pay – {€260}, cash payment discount – {€234}    Camera Doppia vista Via Roma / Double room Via Roma view – http://www.residenzagiotto.it/en/


Trip Itinerary – Switzerland Hotels (4 Nights Total)

Interlaken WEST:

Hotel Backpackers Villa Sonnenhof, Interlaken (1 nite – 23rd June) (Credit card pay – {118 CHF}, cash payment discount – {€…?} http://www.villa.ch/en-rooms__prices-reservation.html


Hotel Jungfrau (2 nite – 24th  June) (Credit card pay – {150 CHF}, cash payment discount – {€…?} http://www.hoteljungfrau.ch/en/booking


Hotel Staubbach  (1 nite – 25th  June) (Credit card pay – {150 CHF}, cash payment discount – {€…?} http://www.staubbach.com/index2.htm


Hotel Alpha (1 nite – 26th  June) (Credit card pay – {CHF 150}, cash payment discount – {€…?}- http://www.hotelalpha.ch/


Trip Itinerary – Train &Museum Passes & Add. Info

 Eurail Italy Saver Pass –  EURAIL ITALY SAVER 4-DAY PASS RES# EU – Paid  ($418) 

4 days for 2 people for 2nd class = $430 and 6 days for 2 people for 2nd class = $478. 


CONFIRMATION # –  CH-XXX – Paid (CHF243)  (110CHF per person (gives 50% discount on all trains, boats, postal buses and some cable cars. Buy Swiss Half Fare Card. Check the excel for math calculation for trip. )http://www.swisstravelsystem.com/produkttexte.php?passid=6

FLORENCE MUSEUM  (for 4 people)

 Accademia  at 17:15 on 21st June2011 Res# to show at the door “with reservations”. 

-Uffizi Gallery -at 9:15 on 23rd June2011 Res# to show at door 3  

You have to show these numbers were indicated and that’s it!  

The ticket is 11,00  + 4,00 Euro for the reservation that you will pay directly there.

EURO for Italy : The euro is Italy’s currency. The seven euro notes come in denominations of €500, €200, €100, €50, €20, €10 and €5. The eight euro coins are in denominations of €2 and €1, and 50, 20, 10, five, two and one cents.

CHF for Swizterland : Swiss francs are divided into 100 centimes (Rappen in German-speaking Switzerland). There are notes for 10, 20, 50, 100, 500 and 1000 francs, and coins for five, 10, 20 and 50 centimes, as well as for one, two and five francs.

ATM in Italy  known as bancomat

VAT (value-added tax Taxes & refunds) : A value-added tax of around 20%, known as IVA (Imposta di Valore Aggiunto), is slapped onto just about everything in Italy. If you are a non-EU resident and spend more than €155 on a purchase, you can claim a refund when you leave. The refund only applies to purchases from affiliated retail outlets that display a ‘tax free for tourists’ (or similar) sign. You have to complete a form at the point of sale, and then get it stamped by Italian customs as you leave. At major airports you can then get immediate cash refund; otherwise it will be refunded to your credit card. For information, pick up a pamphlet on the scheme from participating stores.

Tipping: No Tipping in Italy and Switzerland. Check your bill if service tax charged than don’t tip. If  it’s not charged and you think service and food was good consider tipping or leaving some Euro change like (€0.10 or 0.20). No tipping to taxi driver.

Documents To Print/Carry For The Trip

(Also leave same set of document at home)


Other Useful Links for Planning

Medical Insurancehttp://www.ricksteves.com/plan/tips/insurance.htm (you can get approval cover letter from you curent exisitng medical insurance)

Italy Audio tours linkhttp://www.ricksteves.com/news/travelnews/0602/italy_downloads.htm

Golden Pass in Swizz http://www.goldenpass.ch/default.asp?OrgID=5   The scenic tour by the most attractive panorama trains of Switzerland by Golden Pass rail Line

Glacier Express in Swizzhttp://www.swisstravelsystem.com/panoramastrecken.php

Jungfrau tourismhttp://www.jungfrau.ch/en/tourism/


Zurich tourismhttp://www.zurichtourism.ch/en/Visitor.html


To get train schedulehttp://www.bahn.com/

To get Swizz Train Schedulehttp://www.sbb.ch/

To get Jungfrau Region Train Schedulehttp://www.jungfrau.ch/en/tourism/travel-information/timetable/

To get Italy Train Schedulehttp://www.trenitalia.com

Route Plannerhttp://fahrplan.oebb.at/bin/query.exe/en?L=vs_inputgen&

Europe Map & timetable –






Swiss Train Travel Fare Calculations



Italy Train Fare Calculations

 !*!*! ENJOY YOUR TRIP !*!*!