Overview: Most of the Lake Cruises in Switzerland are covered under the Swiss Pass at no cost or at a nominal cost. They can be booked directly. For cruises like the Lake Brienze Cruise or the Lake Geneva Cruise, Lake Lucerne also includes either lunch or dinner cruise and due to limited sitting facility need to be pre booked.
Some of the Lake Cruises in and around Switzerland
- Lake Morat
- Lake Constance
- Lake Thun & Lake Brienze
- Lake Geneva
- Lake Maggiore
- Lake Lucerne
- Lake Zurich
1. Lake Morat
Overview: Summer pleasures against the backdrop of the medieval fortified town of Morat. Lake Morat and the lovely landscape of the Three- Lake-Region offer many different experiences and extraordinary adventures, rain or shine.
The boat cruise on the Murtensee (Lac de Morat) takes a good hour, while the trip through the Broye canal to Neuchâtel takes just under 2 hours. The all-day, three-lakes-tour takes its guests through the Broye canal into Lac de Neuchâtel, and then on through the Zihl Canal and Lake Biel to Biel over a course of 4 hours.
2. Lake Constance
Overview: The upper Rhine between Shaffhausen and Stein am Rhein offers one of the most beautiful river trips in Europe and the lower lake is rightly considered to be the Pearl of Lake Constance.
The "white fleet" connects the small shoreline towns and attractions around the lake. On the Swiss, south-western side of the lake, the noteworthy settlements include Romanshorn, Arbon and Rorschach with their delightful old towns, as well as picturesque townships on the Untersee (Lower Lake) such as Gottlieben, Ermatingen and Stein am Rhein. One of Europe's most beautiful lake and river cruises starts off at Kreuzlingen, leads through the Untersee to Stein, and then continues along the Rhine to Schaffhausen. At the other end of the lake, boats cast off from Rorschach to ply the romantic course of the Old Rhine River and arrive at Rheineck.
3. Lake Thun and Lake Brienz
Thun - Interlaken West
Interlaken East - Brienz
Overview: Lakes Thun and Brienz are home to a fleet of 14 boats, of which two boats are paddle steamers. The lakes nestled among the imposing mountains surrounding them glint like jewels and are a sight to behold in any weather.
The shores of Lake Thun are exceptionally attractive as they are dotted with castles, churches, picturesque parks and natural reserves. Gentle slopes and snow covered caps make for a picture-perfect backdrop. Lake Brienz on the contrary has a very special colour and dreamy vistas of wild countryside, dense pine tree forests and cosy villages.
4. Lake Geneva
Geneva - Lausanne/Evian - Vevey - Montreux - St-Gingolph
Overview: It has been 130 years since the Belle Epoque lake steamers ply the waters of Central Europe's largest lake, criss-crossing the lake to connect Swiss villages and towns to French destinations, such as Geneva to Montreux via Lausanne and Evian (France). Whether the lake is shrouded in early morning mists or blood-red sunsets on the mountains, the on-board restaurant is always good for a delicious treat.
Be sure to scan the shores for the famous sights seen from an unfamiliar perspective, such as the various castles grand and small (for instance the one located in Montreux known as Castle Chillon) or the vineyards that yield an excellent vintage or the snowy peaks of the Swiss and Savoy Alps. The boats call on places that are also gateways to other exciting adventures, such as taking a cogwheel train up to the Rochers-de-Naye or Les Pléiades, or the Swiss Chocolate Train going to Gruyères and Broc. The boats run frequently in summer. In winter, the schedule is reduced.
5. Lake Maggiore
Overview: Lake Maggiore extends from the Italian-speaking part of Switzerland far into the Italian regions of Piedmont and Lombardy. Thanks to its mild climate, there is lush, Mediterranean vegetation along its shores. In the hinterland is a wild and romantic mountain landscape with breathtaking views. Options include the international service between Switzerland and Italy, daily touristic trips from Locarno and Stresa to the Italian markets of Luino, Cannobio and Verbania-Intra. 25 boats and 6 hydrofoils provide connections with the Brissago Islands in Switzerland and the Borromean Islands in Italy.
6. Lake Lucerne
Lucerne - Weggis - Vitznau - Beckenried - Brunnen - Flüelen
Lucerne - Kehrsiten - Stansstad - Alpnachstad
Lucerne - Küssnacht am Rigi
Overview: The flotilla on Lake Lucerne consists of five nostalgic lake steamers and 15 elegant salon motor boats. Together, these twenty boats ply the lake on various routes that add up to 38 kilometers.
Admire nature at its best: gently rolling meadows, idyllic bays, dramatic fjords, and near-vertical cliffs. Add to this natural spectacle some of Switzerland's most significant historic landmarks: see the Ruetli Meadow, where the Swiss Confederation was founded in 1291, William Tell's Chapel, and the Schiller Rock. The boats run daily and year round.
Lake Lucerne Navigation Company offers other attractive arrangements, such as the Lunch Boat (daily, all year round), the Cake Boat, sundown cruises, the Fondue Boat, the Indian Buffet, the Sushi Boat and the Jazz Cruise on the steamer, as well as many more special offers of the musical and culinary sort. All boats pride themselves on their excellent cuisine.
The highlights of the Lake Lucerne Cruises are:
- Indian Dinner cruise with Bollywood music.
- 1 hour sightseeing cruise by the yacht "Saphir" with commentary in Hindi/English.
- Scheduled boat services – some by 100 year paddle-ships.
7. Lake Zurich
Overview: The lake is bordered by the cantons of Zurich, St.Gallen and Schwyz. At the western end lies Zurich, Switzerland's largest city.
The lake is a popular place for excursions, and homes along its shores are much sought after. Enjoy the gently rocking waves, peace and quiet, relaxation and fine food. Most of the places around the shore are served by a regular boat service all year around.
The famous "golden coast" extends along the northern side of the lake, from Zollikon to Feldmeilen. This sun-soaked region is famous for its low rates of taxation and high property prices, and is therefore the stretch of coast where you can seen the magnificent houses and villas of the upper echelons of society.
At the eastern end of the lake is the "rose town" of Rapperswil. In the public gardens here you'll find over 15,000 rose bushes blooming. The lakeside promenade with its Mediterranean charms, the picturesque Old Town and the medieval castle make this harbor town a popular place for excursions. For young visitors, Knie's Children's Zoo is high up on their wish-list.
8. Lake Lugano
Overview: Enjoy the exquisite panorama and discover romantic hideaways. Visit the region's gorgeous parks, museums or let the Ticinese sun warm your mountain excursion. You can choose from 30 different cruises aboard ships, where you can enjoy a blissful meal or savor famous Vanini pastries.
Take a boat ride to discover the diversity of the region: Morcote, with its grand mansions and the church of Santa Maria del Sasso, an important Renaissance building with a late-Romanesque bell-tower offering outstanding views, or Gandria, a perfect example of a little fishing village by Lake Lugano.