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The Glacier Express
"The Slowest Express Train in the World"
By Bob Enzel

If your idea of a train ride is to get from one point to the next as quickly as possible take the 186 mph TGV train from Paris.  But if you’re a train aficionado, the Glacier Express is the ultimate ride on a slow train that ambles along allowing you to “smell the roses.”  Which in this case happens to be a heart-pumping panoramic ride… 

The seven and a half hour trip from Zermatt to St. Moritz and vice versa moves from one impressive sight to the next.  Should you happen to doze off you’ll miss something for at almost every mile of the 167 mile ride is a sight to marvel over?  The Glacier Express churns into deep tunnels with the 15km Furka Basis Tunnel being the king of tunnels that moves you into a black ride for 20 minutes before you’re blinded by dazzling sunlight. 

This is an end to end jaw-dropping scenic ride on a comfortable state-of-the-art train with panoramic coaches using pneumatic suspension and ergonomic seats (that was a mouthful.)   When essential, the high-performance rotary snow ploughs are called upon to assist the cogwheel engine to make it up the 125º gradient going around and through 300km of track across 291 viaducts and through 91 tunnels and over the 6,667 foot snow-capped Oberalp Pass.  We’re talking rugged cliffs, mountain passes and narrow gorges that take you into deep tunnels and across breath taking viaducts to view castles and charming villages that end and begin at two of the world’s great destination ski resorts, St. Moritz and Zermatt.  To add a little spice to the ride as if it needed any, there is an acrobatic-crew to entertain you by pouring schnapps (Grappa) one meter from bottle snout into a schnapps glass without spilling a drop.

If you are not ready to ride just yet but want to check the train out, visit



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Last modified: February 02, 2009    Copyright © 2012-2018