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Lucerne / Switzerland

Mt. Rigi – how to do a winter day trip from Lucerne

*Trip to Mt. Rigi in partnership with Switzerland Tourism

Mt. Rigi is located only a short train ride away from Lucerne. Lucerne is a a charming boutique town in the middle of Switzerland – a town I have kind of fallen in love with. Lucerne is a town of 100,000 inhabitants but popular amongst the tourists especially in the summer season. The city is magical in winter though, even though many choose to stay at skiing lodges this time of year.

As Lucerne is surrounded by magnificent mountains, such as Mt. Rigi – you are always a short trip away from skiing and snowboarding.

Another mountain day trip from Lucerne is Pilatus, which to be honest is forever my personal favorite. Read more about Pilatus and spending a night on top of a mountain from here.

Mt. Rigi day trip
Mt. Rigi train station

Mt. Rigi – Queen of Mountains

On a perfectly sunny day, Mt. Rigi offers 360 views over the Swiss Alps. The mountain rises up to 2 km and is known as the queen of mountains. Mt. Rigi offers hiking paths around the year for all fitness levels. You can also enjoy the views from top of Mt. Rigi without hiking and just take the train all the way up.

Mt. Rigi is also home to a great spa and some delicious restaurants.

We headed up to Mt. Rigi as a day trip from Lucerne on a windy winter day, so the views were not as great as they could be but we still enjoyed a great day.

Mt. Rigi is also great in summer time, but we were traveling in December.

Book your day trip from Lucerne to Mt. Rigi from here.

Mt. Rigi train
Mt. Rigi boat station Vitznau
Mt. Rigi cable car

How to get to Mt. Rigi from Lucerne

A trip from Lucerne to the top of Mt. Rigi will take you less than two hours. There are a few options, but I recommend taking a boat from Lucerne to Vitznau and from there hopping on a cogwheel train all the way to the top of the mountain. From the train station, you will need to walk up about another 100 more meters.

A boat ride from Lucerne to Vitznau will take you about an hour and you will get to enjoy breathtaking mountain views from the deck – and why not even cocktails if you are on a festive mode. Find the boat schedules and ticket prices here. These boats also accept Swiss Travel Pass.

From top of Mt. Rigi there are several hiking paths, which I will introduce to you in the next chapter.

We used the cable car to get back to the boat station.

If you don’t have a Swiss Travel Pass, you can purchase the cogwheel train ticket here.

Mt. Rigi cogwheel train
Mt. Rigi map
Mt. Rigi kulm

Mt. Rigi hiking trails for summer & winter

Mt. Rigi offers 120 of hiking trails in total. This time we didn’t follow any official hiking trails as it was a very cold and snowy winter day – and I don’t think my body could have managed a lot of hiking in snow this deep, haha.

Rigi Kanezeli hiking tour is one of the easiest paths and it is only 1,9km long. The path ascents only 34 meters. Read more here.

The classic route goes from Staffel to Staffelhoehe and through Kaenzeli to Rigi Kaltbad. The route is about 4km and ascents 300 meters in total. On a clear weather, you can enjoy some amazing views on the path. Read more here.

Flower Path is and easy hike for enjoying the beautiful flora along the way. Rigi Floral Trail is 5km long. Read more here.

The Rigi Panorama Path is 7km and 300 meters of ascent in total. This hiking path is perhaps the prettiest and the view will remind you more of a post card than real life. Read more here.

The Path of Nature Treasures offers more incredible views for 6km from Rigi Kaltbad to Hinterbergen. On a clear day you can enjoy the view of the snowy Swiss Alps even during summer months. This hiking trail ascents for 100 meters. Read more here.

Mt Rigi hiking trails
Mt. Rigi hiking winter

Alp Chäserenholz – a traditional Swiss lunch

The best thing about hiking in the winter cold is the thought of a perfect lunch in a warm cozy cottage with some heartwarming Swiss cuisine. Alp Chäserenholz is a restaurant and a cheese factory 300 meters down from top of Mt. Rigi Kulm. We hiked down to purchase some cheese and to enjoy lunch.

The restaurant is quiet during winter as hiking through the snow even for some hundreds of meters of steep hill is not as easy as it may sound. The restaurant feels like entering someones home and the food is served making you feel like at your Swiss grandmoms home (yes, you now have a Swiss grandmom, don’t question it). I enjoyed a plate of my all-time favorite: Swiss Alpine Macaroni. Swiss Alpine Macaroni is a meal of potato, pasta, heavy cream, cheese and apple sauce – trust me, it’s better than anything you’ll ever put in your mouth.

A warm drink, fire and a delicious meal in good company was the perfect break amongst hiking.

Read more about our hike and experience here on my friend Rania’s blog at Northbound Journeys here:

A day trip to Mt. Rigi

swiss alpine macaroni
My face when I finally get a plate of Swiss Alpine Macaroni
swiss alpine macaroni lunch
Swiss Alpine Macaroni

The Rigi Kaltbad Mineral Baths & Spa – perfect way to relax after hiking

The Rigi Kaltbad Mineral Baths & Spa is located a few train stops down the mountain. A stop at the spa is a perfect way to end a day of hiking mountains both in summer and winter. I haven’t personally been to the spa as I did forget my swimwear at home, but it does seem like a worthwhile stop for sure! There are even outdoor swimming pools to continue enjoying the magnificent mountain views!

The Rigi Kaltbad Mineral Baths & Spa is designed by a fabous Swiss architect Mario Botta.

Purchase a ticket to the spa in advance through here.

Read more about the spa here.

If you are looking for a hotel to stay in Lucerne, read about my favourite here!

About Author

Veera Bianca is a passionate storyteller and hospitality expert with an urge to roam the globe. She spends her time on the road searching for meaningful experiences, reviewing accommodation and airlines – trying to inspire you to leave your comfort zone and getting to know new cultures.

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