This is probably the most scenic train ride (and the longest travel day) during our Interrail trip last summer. Switzerland, aka the Land of Milk and Honey, did not disappoint, with its beautiful nature – luscious green mountains and aquamarine lagoons and lakes! The route (as the title suggests): Italy (Peschiera del Garda to Milan) to Switzerland (Lugano to Basel) to France (Mulhouse Ville to Paris Est). Why, oh why, didn’t we stop by Switzerland? I was in Geneve in 2014, but didn’t really see much of the Swiss nature. Maybe next time.. 😉
05:59 AM Peschiera del Garda to Milano Centrale (1 hr 5 mins)
We left Peschiera del Garda quite early. Thankfully, Hotel Pilotto provided us with packed sandwiches and helped us hail a cab to the train station. I wanted to see a little bit of Milan, knowing that it was also a famous city with its cathedral, and that many Filipinos live there (they have a Jollibee branch), but limited time hindered me from doing so.
08:10 AM Milan Sentrale to Lugano (1 hr 20 mins)
Crossing the border between Italy and Switzerland was exciting, as most crossing-borders moments during our Interrail adventure. A few minutes after we crossed the border, we caught glimpse of the first Swiss lake, the Lago di Lugano, with bluegreen waters and green mountains. So refreshing..
09:42 AM Lugano to Basel SBB (3 hrs 21 mins)
The next 3 hours were filled with amazing views outside our train window. I can’t remember now, but I think we booked seats for the trains. The thing about Interrail is that you only get your money’s worth if you take the slower regional and local trains. But if you are trying to save time as well, then you would be surprised to know that hispeed trains have compulsory reservation (most of them in Italy and France), and the fees can be very overwhelming. Good thing we started the journey in the cheaper parts of Europe, so we had money to spare for the reservation fees.
14:21 PM Basel SBB to Mulhouse Ville (19 mins)
We grabbed a quick lunch at Basel, at Burger King, if I remember correctly. We didn’t wander far off, because the next train was due shortly. It’s so amazing to go across Switzerland in like, 3 to 4 hours! XD Anyway, the next stop was Mulhouse Ville.. in France!
15:18 PM Mulhouse Ville to Paris EST (3 hrs)
We reached the hotel at around 21:00PM. It was really cool, because the hotel had an automatic machine outside where you can pick up your card keys. But then, it was also a diasadvantage because the reception was not open for most of the day. Hotel Aviatic has had bad reviews, but we decided to give it a shot because of the location and the reasonable price. It was probably the worst accommodation we’ve had during the Interrail journey, but Paris is Paris, so we kind of brushed it off at that time. I visited the profile on Booking . com again today, and saw some improvements, so that’s really great!
I can’t wait to write about my second visit to France! It was a grand finale to our Interrail adventure ❤