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Types of Mountain Rides

Pauline Kenny

The following is a list of the common types of mountain rides you will find in Switzerland.

Cablecar (Luftseilbahn) - large gondola like thing for a large group of people. Usually run every 15 minutes or half hour, depending on the length of the ride.

Engelberg. Furenalp gondola. 08/02

Cablecar from Engelberg to Furenalp (it goes right up that wall of rock)

Gondola - individual gondolas that run constantly, usually seat 6-8 people.

Chairlift (Sesselbahn) - open air chair lift for two people, sometimes four. They run continuously.

Engelberg. Gondola to Engstlenalp. 08/02

Chairlift from Jochpass down to Engstensee (Engelberg)

Funicular - small train like vehicle that goes up a steep slop on the ground on a special track.

Bus - some mountain areas are accessed by a road and a bus.

Train - many mountain villages have small mountain trains connecting to other villages.

Mountain train near Grindelwald

Price of Mountain Rides

Mountain rides can be expensive. Rides to the tops of mountains, where people usually go to look at the view not to hike, can be very expensive. For example, to go to the top of Titlis from Engelberg costs 76CHF (50 euro) per person, return.

For hiking, you do not take these expensive rides, but even then the cost adds up. For example, in Engelberg to take the cablecar to Ristis (on Brunni) costs 22CHF (15 euro) per person, return. A full day of rides to Trubsee, then Jockpass and to Engstlensee costs 48CHF (32 euro). With your guest card from your hotel or vacation rental in a town, you may get a 10% discount on mountain rides.

Some regions offer a lift pass for the week - get them at the tourist office. In Engelberg we paid 76CHF (51 euro) for a pass for 6 consecutive days. This pass let us onto all the mountain rides from Engelberg. You don't save that much money, but if you plan to use the rides a lot, it is probably worth getting the pass. Note: Be clear on how long the pass is good for and when it starts. Tourist offices are not always open Sunday, and if open, may be only in the afternoon. You might have to buy your pass on the Saturday, but be sure it starts from the Sunday - the first day you will use it.

Some regions will also offer a pass for the lifts combined with the train. Check into the tourist office when you arrive to see what is available and what will work best for you. In our experience there is always someone who speaks English at the tourist office.

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