|Mom and Jim in Tirano|
Oh my, dear readers. It's our last month in Switzerland. There is so much left to do and so little time, but I am so glad that Mom and Jim's visit gave us a gentle push to make the most of our last weeks here. For anyone making a similar transition, I would recommend that you take the time to see those places you might regret not having had the chance to see. Remember, all that paperwork stuff and planning will eventually get done and over with, but the memories you create in a special place will last far beyond your move!
Back to the topic at hand... Riding the Bernina Express was one of those things on our list that we would have regretted not doing. Now that we have crossed it off our list, we realize that it's one of those things we would totally do again! There is so much to love about this train. For one thing, there isn't a bad seat in the house, even if you're not in a panorama car. (I assumed all cars were panorama, but it isn't so. Since we rode on a Monday, the carriages were pretty empty, so the ticket controller said we could move to open seats in the panorama section. However, we decided to stay put so we could open the windows and avoid capturing that pesky window glare in our photos.)
Furthermore, the trains are sparkling new, clean, and comfy - even in 2nd class. (Duh, this is Switzerland, after all.) Also, you can use the Tageskarte Gemeinde on this train, which means huge savings! (I'll write later about this best-deal-in-Switzerland-ever.) All you have to do is pay extra for seat reservations, which is obligatory even with regularly-priced tickets. Another great thing about the Rhaetian Railway in general is their customer service. I must have sent them about five different e-mails asking all kinds of questions about riding the Bernina Express, and they always wrote back within 24 hours (in perfect English).
By far my favorite thing about this train route was exploring the varied landscape of the Graubünden region from the comfort of my seat. This year the Bernina Express celebrates its 100-year anniversary, which means people have been enjoying the sights of this tourist route for a century, and now I'm one of them - so special! It's an UNESCO World Heritage route that's not to be missed!
As I mentioned previously, we rode the Bernina Express bus from Lugano to Tirano, Italy. From Tirano, we took the Bernina Express train route that ends in Davos (you can also take routes that end in St. Moritz or Chur). Here are some of the highlights of our trip:
|Miralago - not far outside of Tirano|
|We went from forest...|
|to snow within a couple of hours.|
|Crossing a viaduct, one of many|
|See? Magical! Like a kid in a candy shop...|
|Highest-altitude railway station on the Rhaetian Railway|
|Mom and Jim|
By the way, don't forget your passport, as you do travel across international lines!