4. Hop on the Lucerne–Interlaken Express
It takes just two hours to travel between the beautiful lake-side cities of Lucerne and Interlaken by express train. But what a ride. The journey is more scenic tour than transportation. For a start, the carriages are supremely comfortable, air-conditioned and well-served by a bistro car. But best is the view out of the huge panoramic windows, as the glorious midlands gradually rise to the full drama of the Bernese Alps. Gliding away from Lucerne’s central station, the train passes no fewer than five lakes, as well as rolling meadows, tumbling waterfalls, geranium-bright chalets and deep-green trees. En route it crosses the 1,008m Brünig Pass, a historic thoroughfare that was even immortalised in a watercolour by JM Turner himself on a visit in around 1847. Once over the pass, the scenery becomes ever more dramatic as peaks such as the Eiger and the Jungfrau get closer. Once you arrive in Interlaken, this high mountain playground is on the doorstep.