The Most Expensive Mountain Trips In Switzerland (And Cheaper Alternatives)

Expensive Mountains Switzerland
There are a lot of expensive trips you can do in Switzerland. And many of them will cost you a fortune!

However, there are often cheaper alternatives that are just as good and sometimes less crowded. Especially in summer.

So, if you are heading to Switzerland and want to save some money, these are the tips for you!

1. Jungfraujoch (Top of Europe)

Sphinx Observatory Jungfraujoch
The Sphinx Observatory at Top of Europe, Jungfraujoch

Perhaps the most popular and heavily marketed attraction in Switzerland. The Jungfraujoch is seriously impressive. You travel through the middle of the Eiger mountain to get to an underground train station, the highest in Europe. Then, once you get outside you are confronted with year-round snow and the longest glacier in Europe.

However, it can cost you north of $200 per person for the privilege. And it is extremely busy up there in peak season.


Cable car from Murren to Schilthorn

The second most popular trip in the Jungfrau Region is the Schilthorn. In many ways it is quite different to the Jungfraujoch, but the trip and experiences at the top are just as enticing!

A trip to the top of the Schilthorn offers

  • A visit to Mürren on the way – an authentic car-free Swiss Alpine town
  • Stop at Birg – the jaw-dropping Skyline walk and Thrill walk
  • Piz Gloria – the top of Schilthorn – James Bond themed and with a revolving restaurant. The views of the distant Jungfrau, Eiger and Monch are also stunning

2. Mount Pilatus (Golden Round Trip)

Mount Pilatus
Mount Pilatus

Mount Pilatus is one of the most popular and expensive trips from Lucerne. And there are certainly reasons why this is the case. You get to ride on a jaw-droppingly steep funicular to the top and get some of the most stunning views of Lake Lucerne at the top. If you do the Golden Round Trip you also get a boat road on the lake thrown in for good measure.

However, it does cost over $110 for the whole tour, which is quite a lot of money if you are staying in Switzerland for a while.


Of course, there are a few worthwhile alternatives around Lake Lucerne you may want to consider:

  • Mount Rigi – Free for Swiss Travel Pass Holders, and heavily discounted for Half Fare holders, Mount Rigi also includes a boat road and fun funicular to the top.
  • Stanserhorn – Just down the lake from Pilatus but also included in the Swiss Travel Pass, this trip includes an open-top gondola which is a rare experience!
  • Burgenstock & Hammetschwand Lift – A lesser known but far cheaper option is a short boat ride and short funicular ride to the top of Bürgenstock then a short (yes everything is short) hike to the stunning glass elevator on the cliff (Hammetschwand)

3. Gornergrat

gornergrat bahn
Jungfraujoch Railway

The Gornergrat offers one of the most stunning views of the Matterhorn and the mountains around Zermatt. But such a great view comes at a price. Tickets often cost over $130 per person, which is a lot of money to spend for a view.

So, what are the alternatives?


Instead of heading all the way up to the most expensive lookout, you can catch one of the other cheaper gondolas up high enough to get other amazing views:

  • Sunnega
  • Rothorn
  • Schwarzsee

It is also “marginally” cheaper if you book early to go up the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise, but with the challenge of predicting the weather, it might not be worth it.


Written by Ashley Faulkes
As a twenty-year resident of Switzerland, I am passionate about exploring every nook and cranny of this beautiful country, I spend my days deep in the great Swiss outdoors, and love to share these experiences and insights with fellow travel enthusiasts.

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