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Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip from Lucerne

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Luzern, Switzerland
Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip from Lucerne
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Free cancellation
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icon5 hours 30 minutes  (approx.)
iconOffered in: English
Good for avoiding crowds

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Spend an afternoon in the Swiss Alps during this seasonal trip to Mt Pilatus from Lucerne. Your 5.5-hour round-trip journey includes a 30-minute panoramic gondola ride from Kriens to Fräkmüntegg terminus plus an ascent by aerial cableway to the peak of Mt Pilatus. After free time at the summit, take the world's steepest cogwheel train down to Alpnachstad, where you’ll board a boat for a 1-hour scenic cruise on the tranquil waters of Lake Lucerne. Enjoy commentary from your guide and coach transport from Lucerne.
  • Take a panoramic gondola ride to the Fräkmüntegg terminus
  • Hop aboard the aerial cableway to the summit of Mt Pilatus at 7,000 feet (2,132 meters)
  • Descend from the summit via the world's steepest cogwheel train
  • Cruise out onto Lake Lucerne during a 1-hour boat ride (May to October)

Why Travelers Choose This Tour

If the weather doesn’t cooperate for a lake cruise, this Mt. Pilatus tour offers complimentary lunch instead.
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Partly guided tour by professional multilingual guide as per description
Cable car ride (except during maintenance)
Cogwheel train ride
Boat ride on Lake Lucerne (from October 18 lunch voucher will be provided instead of boat ride)
Food and drinks, unless specified
Hotel pickup and drop off
Frankenstrasse 2 , Frankenstrasse 2, 6003 Luzern, Switzerland

Our meeting point is located at Frankenstrasse 2-4, 6003 Lucerne, a side street off Lucerne train station. Please wait there on the side walk.

12:30 PM
This activity will end right where it started.
Climb aboard your coach in central Lucerne for an afternoon excursion to the top of Mt Pilatus, situated at a dizzying altitude of 7,000 feet. You’ll make the brief journey to Kriens where your guide accompanies you aboard the panoramic gondola for a 30-minute ride to the Fräkmüntegg summit terminus. 

Look down upon forested views, then swap your gondola for the aerial cableway at Fräkmüntegg — it's a quick 3.5-minute ride to the summit. The cabin’s spacious and sleek design on this ‘Dragon Ride’ affords more magnificent views over the Alpine lakes and rugged peaks seen from your vantage point high above.

During your free time atop Mt Pilatus, you can venture on a high-altitude hike, grab lunch (own expense) or enjoy the vista from the terrace. Then meet up with your guide for the descent to Alpnachstad aboard the world's steepest cogwheel train. Ride past sheer rock faces and pretty mountain streams toward the fertile meadows below. 

On arrival, enjoy a 1-hour boat ride across picturesque Lake Lucerne and view the scenery from a different angle before your tour concludes here in the evening.

Please note: The aerial cableway is under maintenance between late October and mid-November. In this case, you will ascend and descend Mt Pilatus by cogwheel train. The Lake Lucerne boat cruise operates from early May until late October; if you are traveling when the boat is no longer in operation, you will instead receive a complimentary lunch and return to Lucerne by train.
Pass By:  
Meet your guide in central Lucerne (Frankenstrasse 2-4) in the early afternoon.
Stop At:  
Pilatus Luzern
Hop aboard your comfortable coach for the short journey to Kriens, at the foot of the imposing Mt Pilatus. On arrival, begin your ascent to the mountain’s lofty summit with a 30-minute panoramic gondola ride to the Fräkmüntegg terminus. Enjoy beautiful views over the rolling hills and lush pine forests below. At Fräkmüntegg, hop aboard the aerial tramway — a spacious and modern cabin with panoramic windows designed to give the feeling of flight. Continue your climb to the summit at a dizzying altitude of 7,000 feet, and take in spectacular views over the Alpine peaks and lakes from your vantage point on the mountain. During your free time atop Mt Pilatus, perhaps sit down to a high-altitude lunch among the peaks (own expense) or relax on the expansive sun terrace. Venture down the Dragon's Path and take the short hike around the summit to enjoy the amazing views.
Duration: 4 hours 
Admission Ticket Included
Pass By:  
Take the world's steepest cogwheel train down to Alpnachstad, descending past trickling mountain streams and sheer rock faces toward the verdant, green meadows below.
Stop At:  
Lake Lucerne
Conclude your tour with a picturesque 1-hour boat ride across lovely Lake Lucerne and enjoy the spectacular scenery from an entirely different angle.
Duration: 1 hour 
Admission Ticket Included
Pass By:  
At the end of the cruise, your tour ends back in Lucerne. The Golden Roundtrip (ascent by aerial cable car, descent by cogwheel train, return to Lucerne by boat) operates between early May and late October. Between late October and mid-November, the aerial cable car is under maintenance. In this case you will travel up and down Mt. Pilatus by cogwheel train. The boat on Lake Lucerne operates from early May until late October - if you are traveling when the boat is no longer in operation you will return to Lucerne by train and receive a complimentary lunch instead.
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking, unless booked within 1 day of travel. In this case confirmation will be received as soon as possible, subject to availability
  • 17.10. - 23.10.2022: Ascent by cable car, descent by cogwheel train, no boat ride but lunch voucher included (fully guided)
  • 24.10. - 04.11.2022: Ascent and descent by cogwheel train, no boat ride but lunch voucher included (fully guided)
  • 05.11. - 20.11.2022: Ascent by cable car, descent by cogwheel train, no boat ride but lunch voucher included (fully guided)
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Service animals allowed
  • Near public transportation
  • Infant seats available
  • Infants aged 0-5 years are free of charge but need to be registered on your booking
  • Travelers should have a moderate physical fitness level
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 48 travelers
  • OPERATED BY Best of Switzerland Tours
You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.
  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.

Learn more about cancellations.

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
What is the policy on sanitization during Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip from Lucerne?
A:The policy on sanitization is:

  • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
See all safety measures taken by Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip from Lucerne.

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Traveler Tips

  • "Would take the long hike around the mountain - wear proper shoes, as it gets rugged." See review
  • "How much you enjoy either tour will also depend on how much cloud cover you get - so if you have some flexibility with your itinerary, make sure you check the weather in the lead up." See review
  • "A very good day despite the cool gray weather, still very much worth the price." See review


521 Reviews

Reviews by Viator travelers

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Showing 1-10 of 521 reviews
Great tour and great value
, Jun 2022
Monika is a great guide and The arrangements and sights were magnificent. This is a must do you if you are in Lucerne.
, Jun 2022
Breathtaking scenery! The coordination of logistics went seamlessly. I would recommend the trip to others.
Ok if you like guided tours.
, Jun 2022
Viator made the trip easy by providing the bus transfer to the gondola. The guide, Isabela was nice and friendly but she was hard to hear. Personally I would Buy the golden ticket and go on your own that way you don’t have any time restrictions. Also if the weather is bad like ours was you can go another day.
icon Response from Host , Jun 2022
Hello Randel, Thank you very much for joining our Golden Round Trip at Mt Pilatus! While Mt Pilatus can also be visited individually by public transport, the historical information and personal anecdotes shared by our tour guides are the main reason why guests opt for a live-guided tour rather than an individual visit. All bookings can be modified or canceled free of charge up to 24 hours prior to departure, which gives you the chance to check the weather forecast and to make any necessary changes to your itinerary - our daily departures offer you full flexibility! We still hope that you will keep your visit to Mt Pilatus in fond memories and look forward to welcoming you back on tour during your next visit to Switzerland. Best regards, Amanda from Best of Switzerland Tours
A pleasant adventure!!
, Jun 2022
The gondola ride up the mountain is breathtaking. Our party included a couple with limited mobility and the tour guide was most helpful & considerate. We all enjoyed lunch at the top and it was fun watching the birds frolic. The train ride down was unique and we enjoyed the views along Lake Lucerne.
1 traveler found this review helpful
Wonderful trip
, Jun 2022
We loved the tour! It included all of the highlights and our tour guide Rita was excellent! It was a wonderful day!
My friend and I traveled...
, Jun 2022
My friend and I traveled to Lucerne for vacation and did this excursion, which was so awesome and so worth it!! I definitely recommend this trip and booking through Viator. Our tour guide Rita was so knowledgeable and welcoming. It ended with a beautiful lake tour as well. 10/10 experience and I definitely would recommend!
Brilliant trip
, May 2022
Great trip. Good guide and brilliant organisation. A fabulous trip from Lucerne - awesome views. The length of time worked well for us. Plenty of time at the top to enjoy the scenery
Great Tour Best Guide
, May 2022
Louis sharing history, and the views the views awesome and well the Chocolate Delicious wine and cheese was very informative Ana very good. Easy walk!
Wonderful trip to Mt. Pilatus
, May 2022
Fun trip up the mountain, great views, cog wheel train was fun. The boat ride was the cherry on top.
1 traveler found this review helpful
Mt. Pilatus Must Do Tour
, Oct 2021
Our guide, Robert, was personable and informative. The different modes of transportation throughout our day made the trip very exciting… bus, gondola to cogwheel. SO much fun!! Views were spectacular! Really enjoyed watching paragliders leaving from Mt. Pilatus to the valley below. Spectacular tour!!! Must do in Switzerland!!
1 traveler found this review helpful
Stress free and enjoyable
, Sep 2021
A wonderful time had by all, a nice combination of tour guide assistance and information as well as time alone to wander. On time and very stress free. Robert was our guide and we enjoyed and trusted his wisdom.
Mt Pilates
, Sep 2021
Great scenery and stunning views coupled with a varied travel experience - cable cars , cog wheel railway and then lake trip - fantastic.
Not to be missed
, Aug 2021
Great tour! Enjoyed the tram, cog train and boat ride tremendously. Timing for each was perfect. The best way to see Lucerne.
Excellent trip
, Aug 2021
Everything about this tour was perfect and on time. Our guide Yolonda was full of information and interacted with everyone! We really and truly enjoyed ourselves!
Pilatus tour
, Sep 2020
Robert was an excellent guide! The email instructions on where to meet and whether we should have a hard copy of our ticket caused us some anxiety, but it all worked out well.
2 travelers found this review helpful
Mt Pilatus Cable, Train and Boat
, Nov 2019
A lovely tour. We went up by cable, and spent about 2-3 hours at the top and walked to the highest point. Beutiful views everywhere, then went to the restaurant for some nice Swiss wine. then we took the worlds steepest train to the bottom near the wharf. Then we went on boat tour of Lake Luzerne and were dropped off close to the tran station. It was a lovely day and we took a lot of photos. Highly recommendable
1 traveler found this review helpful
Pilatus beautiful, tour guide awful
, Nov 2019
Pilatus and the train and gondola were wonderful. The boat ride back to Luzern was dismal. The boat, the lower deck where the tourists are held, was uncomfortable and shabby. An hour on a grey, damp summer day was not good. And the tour guide was miserable. He shared no information, no smiles, nothing useful. With thirty people along, he spent all his time with three Spaniards because he could actually speak Spanish but he spoke, or chose not to speak English. Overall, a terrible guide.
icon Response from Host , Jan 2020
Dear Andrew, Thank you very much for having joined our Pilatus – Golden Roundtrip tour and for sharing your experience with us. We are pleased to hear that you enjoyed the ride with the cogwheel train and the aerial cable car. We are sorry to hear that the cruise boat did not meet your expectations. While we can totally understand that a boat trip is much more enjoyable on a clear sunny day than on a cloudy day, we believe that it is still a nice add-on and contributes to the overall value of the tour. Unfortunately, we were unable to allocate your tour guide without your date of travel and your booking reference number. We very much regret to hear that your tour guide’s service was disappointing and would like to apologize on his behalf and in the name of Best of Switzerland Tours for having made you feel ignored or even left out. Conducting the tour in two languages is highly appreciated by many our non-English speaking guests. However, our guides are not only instructed to share all information equally in both languages but also to take care of the guests of different language groups equally. We hope that you were still able to enjoy a wonderful stay in Switzerland and look forward to welcoming you back on one of our tours on your next trip to Zürich. Best regards, Best of Switzerland Tours
1 traveler found this review helpful
, Nov 2019
It was an amazing tour, WOW Thanks to the guide, how a nice man :-) Everything was perfect, scenery was unbelievably beautiful.. we enjoyed every moment.. enough time to see everything:-)
Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip
Lori G
, Oct 2019
The top of the mountain was beautiful but the trip was very disorganized. They lost a person and when we got there she had to go and buy tickets. There were no instructions and no one knew what to do.There was not boat ride or tram. (not their fault), On the way back we hit another bus and had to wait in the bus while they figured it out.
icon Response from Host , Nov 2019
Dear guest, Thank you for having taken the time to review your experience. We are happy to read that you generally enjoyed the mountain itself but at the same time we are sorry to read that your trip was negatively influenced by different factors. I am happy to elaborate a bit more on what had happened on that day after having checked with our tour guide: We had the case that the Mt. Titlis railways had to close down part of the cable car line. Therefore, our other group to Mt. Titlis could only go up to the middle station instead of the summit. We offered the Mt Titlis guests to join the tour to Mt. Pilatus instead. First, five people were expected to change to the tour to Mt. Pilatus with your group. However, one of these clients changed his opinion at short notice and got on the coach which was heading to Mt. Titlis. Your tour guide had unfortunately not been informed about this and therefore thought that one person was missing, even though everything was alright. Once arrived at the valley station of Pilatus, she informed the guests where they need to get on the cogwheel train. Whilst she was at the ticket desk of the railway company, the guests already went through the turnstile instead of waiting at the instructed area. Therefore, it was not possible to travel in our reserved waggon together as a group. Due to seasonal programm change, the boat ride has not been provided on October 23rd anymore and our clients received a meal voucher instead (as a compensation). The tram is never an official mode of transport on this tour but maybe you refer to the gondola and cable car ride which was under technical maintenance that time and replaced by the cogwheel train. Please understand that maintenance works and seasonal schedules are beyond our control but necessary and we communicate these details to all partners and trust that they adjust the information on their platforms. Finally, our coach touched a public bus on the return drive to Lucerne. The driver had then to get out of the coach and fill in some documents for the insurance, which is a regular procedure in case of such an incident. According to the guide did some of the guests who started the tour in Lucerne get off at this place, so that they did not have to wait any longer. We are sorry that you were clearly not satisfied with the tour guide’s performance on this excursion, but kindly ask for your understanding that depending on the daily situation, it can be more or less challenging for our tour guides to handle the whole tour. Based on all factors above and as there was a big crowd on the mountain, it was surely a big challenge for our tour guide to keep everyone together and to provide the same quality customer service to everyone. Our guides have the task on one hand to tell interesting facts along the journey, provide the necessary information about itinerary and meeting points, organise and handle the distribution of tickets and to keep up the quality of the tour even with big groups. However, we have forwarded your feedback to her, so that she can overthink her approach for a next time. We always strive to improve our services, and critical feedback like yours, helps us and our guides to improve our performance. We still hope that you were able to enjoy your time in Switzerland and remain with best regards.
1 traveler found this review helpful
Beautiful Scenery
, Oct 2019
The trip started a bit rough. There was a guide at the meeting location but she was not our guide. She said we would be with another guide, but she couldn't answer when the other guide and bus might show up. It ended up we were joining a bilingual tour on a bus that was coming from Zurich. This tour is what I would call "semi-guided".
1 traveler found this review helpful

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