Interrail pass or Eurail pass that includes Switzerland. If you have an Interrail or Eurail pass, you can travel for free on the Bernina bus and the Bernina Express panorama train. While you can also take the regular regional trains, I find that the huge glass-domed windows add some charm and do justice to the amazing scenery. If Switzerland is famous for anything, it’s the country’s efficient trains and colossal mountains. And while several train routes show off the beautiful scenery, the Bernina Express is one of the best options.
The price of a one-way ticket can already be up to 30 euros if you apply this trick. I had a great time driving on one of the most beautiful railways in the world. I was just disappointed that I couldn’t enjoy the full route due to the absence of daylight. Therefore, please note that the northbound service will operate in the dark for the last 1-2 hours.
In a country where incredible scenic train rides appear in large numbers, it can be difficult to pick just one to include on your next trip. But for many travelers, the Bernina Express is a no-brainer, especially when you consider how cost-effective and impressive the trip with a Global Pass is. And given that your arrival in Tirano or Chur means you can continue to explore Italy or Switzerland, it’s also the perfect complement to any day’s train holiday. The Bernina Express between Switzerland and Italy is one of the most spectacular train journeys in Europe and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Between frozen lakes, snow-capped pine trees and postcard-perfect settlements, an entire day quickly passes in the blink of an eye.
That’s why I felt VERY happy when we switched to the regional trains and found the windows adjustable. The Swiss began exploring rugged alpine terrain more than a century ago and built the world’s most prominent railways with an obsessive eye and effortless hand. And today, these little red trains still sniff over ravines and rivers and under glacial mountains that mark the 13,000 feet. Totally overshadowed by their colossal background, these corkscrews dart around spiral viaducts, shoot through rock and ice, and sail over mighty bridges. Since you take the train from St. Moritz to Tirano, driving to St. Moritz is pointless.
If you choose to travel on the scenic trains by Express, you only have to pay a small seat reservation fee. I highly recommend booking seats on the Rhaetian Railway Bernina Express. The Bernina Express is not powered by a locomotive, but by a powerful and modern 3-car electric unit with 1st and 2nd class seats, brand Allegra. Seats on the Allegra unit are not reserved, you can sit on these seats without reservation on a first-come, first-served basis, provided you have a valid ticket or rail pass. Local trains every hour between Chur, St Moritz and Tirano also consist of an Allegra unit, which pulls ordinary (non-panoramic) carriages. If you have a Swiss Travel Pass or an Interrail or Eurail global pass, it covers the Rhaetian Railway, including all trains on the Bernina route.
Yes, your furry four-legged friend is on the Bernina Express and does not require a seat reservation. Driving the Bernina Express first class is truly a luxury experience in itself. The carriage comes with comfortable leather seats, extra spacious legroom and all-glass paranomic Trenino Rosso windows, ensuring the best exterior views. We hope this post has answered all the questions you have about doing the Bernina Express as a day trip from Milan. While it’s definitely a long day, it’s worth every second of travel and it’s a truly wonderful trip.