Hi, We plan is to visit Switzerland for 4 days in the beginning of May. We will be 5 adults and 1 child (4 yrs).
We will be visiting from Paris. Would love to see the most beautiful parts of Switzerland in 4 days before returning to Paris.
Any suggestions for places to visit (interested in scenery), the panoramic train routes we can take, and travel tips ...would be really helpful.
I read on blogs that one of the ways to find cheaper but good accommodation is to stay in small villages just outside the main tourist towns. Any tips on where we could stay on a budget would be really helpful.
4 Day Trip to Switzerland
Seeing the "most beautiful parts of Switzerland" in only 4 days is quite an ambitious plan :)
From the Swiss Riviera travel by normal train (no fee) or by Golden Pass line (additional fee and reservation mandatory) from Vevey/Montreux to Interlaken.
If you board the normal train you could interrupt your journey to visit the medieval hill town of Gruyères (change of trains in Montbovon), learn how to make cheese and and visit the Cailler Chocolatiers in Broc (just outside Bulle).
If you stay in Interlaken Ost or Wilderswil you have direct access to the Jungfrau Region and save on travel time, though Interlaken West offers more hotel options.
Staying outside larger cities can be less expensive but you'd also lose more time going there if you travel by public transport. And if the hotel is not located walking distance to the train station, you might need a taxi which is not exactly cheap.
If you travel by car this is certainly a great option for saving on accommodation. Smaller hotels such as "Gasthöfe" or "Gasthäuser" (Restaurants with a few rooms) in villages and small towns are less expensive and often not even listed on any booking site. You could just stop and ask for rooms.
But you can find reasonably priced rooms in larger towns too if you don't mind sharing bathrooms and not having an elevator, for example. When searching on HotelsCombined (see accommodation link below) allow a radius of at least 20 kilometers when you look for hotels in Lausanne and Interlaken. But do check distances (on google map for example) to see where they are located so you are not in for a surprise when you arrive.
For example, Beatenberg offers quite a few budget accommodations. While the view to Lake Thun and the Bernese Oberland Alps is stunning, it takes about half an hour by postal bus (depending on where you stay) to reach your hotel from Interlaken West (hourly bus connections).