I didn’t even realize that the Bernina Express scenic train journey was on the UNESCO World Heritage list until I arrived at the small northern Italian town of Tirano to start the trip. There are several different routes from which travelers may chose, but that day I took a one-way trip from Tirano to the Swiss mountain town of Chur.
It was the middle of winter and I was excited to see the famous snow-covered Alps in person. Images of Maria from the Sound of Music kept running through my head as the train slowly pulled out of the small station. The journey is a scenic one and the train cars have been designed to maximize the amazing views. The windows are extra large and there is more than enough room between seats to allow for even the most ardent shutterbug. Our trip took about four hours, during which time we passed through narrow valleys and swept past mountain villages that looked like they were plucked out of a model train set.
The unique and stunning scenery I was lucky enough to witness proved to me why UNESCO very smartly placed this journey on their important list.
Tirano is easy to reach from Milan and there are many different train routes available including trips to St. Moritz and Davos.
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Local Train trips to Interlachen
I used the local swiss rail while I traveled to Interlachen. Not only do I reccommend a visit to Interlachen but the local rail is a good way to go. The Swiss countryside is just beautiful and the windows on the local railway are huge so the view is spectacular. At Interlachen there are a number of hostels that one can easily book in summer, you don't even have to plan in advance if you happen to be in Europe. If you are traveling from the US, you might want to make reservations in advance. Nice hostels are available and are even used by families for travel. There is snow on tops of the mountains even in summer and you can take a trolley car to the middle and top of the mountains and you can walk down if you want to do so which makes for a nice day hike. Great trip!