Panoramic Route

The art of travelling around Switzerland by public transport

Discover the UNESCO World Heritage Sites along the Swiss Travel System.

Switzerland may seem small, but it has a wealth of places to visit and sights to see, including 13 World Heritage Sites that can be reached effortlessly on the Swiss Travel System.

Trains, buses and even boats run like clockwork. The fact that you can catch one to remote villages as easily as you can to mountain summits makes renting a car unnecessary in almost all cases. And, after all, what’s better than leisurely looking through a large window onboard a panoramic train while gently rushing past stunning landscapes? The Grand Train Tour of Switzerland also comes highly recommended. It merges the trajectories of the major panoramic trains into one stunning route, of which one is a World Heritage Site itself. An unrivalled touring experience that starts and ends wherever you like.

Exploring Switzerland has never been easier. For guests from abroad, the all-in-one ticket Swiss Travel Pass is the key to Switzerland’s public transport network. This single ticket enables visitors to explore Switzerland from end to end by train, bus and boat on 3, 4, 6, 8 or 15 consecutive days. Good to know: Swiss Travel Pass holders also benefit from free entry to more than 500 museums and enjoy up to 50% discount on exciting mountain excursions.

We have selected three World Heritage Sites that can easily be reached by train, bus and boat.

Rhaetian Railway in the Albula/Bernina Landscapes.

The Bernina Express is one of several premium panoramic trains in Switzerland. The journey from Chur to Tirano has all the ingredients of a memorable trip: breathtaking sights, tunnels, steep ascents and sweeping views of mountain summits. But its significance extends far beyond picturesque sights.

The construction of this route is a stroke of genius and is widely regarded as a defining moment in railway architecture. Despite the challenging terrain, the engineers found a way to construct the rails and tunnels to make them blend in with the environment. While it’s the Albula and Bernina Lines from Thusis to Tirano that gained UNESCO World Heritage status in 2008, the entire journey is spectacular. The Albula Line is 62 kilometres long and was built in six years. Interested in learning more about this unique chapter in railway history? In that case, a visit to the Albula railway museum in Bergün is an excellent choice.

Swiss Alps Jungfrau-Aletsch.

This World Heritage Site is firmly in the “I just can’t believe what I’m seeing” category. Home to the largest connected glaciated area in the Alps, the three iconic mountains Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau look like they were sculpted directly from a block of ice. But why stand there in awe when you can go up there? And no, one doesn’t have to be an experienced mountaineer to make the trip. The Jungfraujoch railway station, located at 3,454 m above sea level, is the highest in Europe. Unsurprisingly, it is also known as the Top of Europe. Since 2020, the state-of-the-art Eiger Express has significantly cut the commute to the summit. It connects Grindelwald station with the Eiger Glacier station. From there, the rack railway takes guests to the top. Pretty cool, right?

Abbey of St. Gall.

The abbey of St. Gall was founded in 612 by the Irish monk Gallus. It became an important centre for writing activities and book illumination. For many visitors, the Abbey Library is the main attraction. Its rococo halls are among the most beautiful in Switzerland. The library’s collection of 170,000 antique books never fails to amaze. Its collection is one-of-a-kind and includes, among others, rare manuscripts and the oldest conserved German language book. For some, it feels like being the main character in a fairy tale, so it’s no surprise that this institution was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983.

The Swiss Travel Pass can be put to good use: the intercity train from Zurich takes just 1 hour and 13-minutes to St. Gall.