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Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip from Lucerne

Luzern, Switzerland

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Free Cancellation
up to 24 hours in advance
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icon5 hours 30 minutes  (Approx.)
iconOffered in: English
Good for avoiding crowds

Keeping you safe during COVID-19
What you can expect during your visit
Face masks provided for travelers
Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
Guides required to regularly wash hands
Temperature checks for travelers upon arrival
More questions?
(888) 651-9785


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.
Cable-car ride (except during maintenance, check additional info)
Cogwheel train ride (early May to mid November)
Boat ride on Lake Lucerne (2 May to 18 October 2020)
Meal voucher in the event that the boat ride does not operate, exchangeable at Pilatus self-service restaurant
Food and drinks, unless specified
Hotel pickup and drop off

Departure Point

Frankenstrasse 2, 6003 Luzern, Switzerland

Departure Time

12:30 PM

Return Details

Returns to original departure point
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:  
Lake Lucerne
Meet your guide in central Lucerne 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 cableway — 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. 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.
Duration: 4 hours 
Admission Ticket Included
Stop At:  
Lake Lucerne
On arrival, conclude your tour with a picturesque 1-hour boat ride across lovely Lake Lucerne and enjoy the spectacular scenery from an entirely different angle. Your tour finishes at the end of the cruise 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.
Duration: 1 hour 
Admission Ticket Included
  • 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
  • Infants aged 0-5 years are free of charge but need to be registered on your booking
  • The cable car will be closed for maintenance from October 22 to November 9 in 2018; the ascent and descent of Mt Pilatus will be by cog-wheel train during this time
  • The cable car operates subject to weather conditions. When the cable car does not operate, you will be transported up and down the mountain by cog-wheel train.
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Service animals allowed
  • Near public transportation
  • Infant seats available
  • Travelers should have a moderate physical fitness level
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 48 travelers

For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.

  • 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 face masks and attendee health during Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip from Lucerne?
The policies on face masks and attendee health are:

  • Face masks provided for travelers
  • Temperature checks for travelers upon arrival
See all safety measures taken by Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip from Lucerne.
What is the policy on sanitization during Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip from Lucerne?
The policies on sanitization are:

  • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
  • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
  • Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
See all safety measures taken by Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip from Lucerne.
What measures are being taken to ensure staff health & safety during Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip from Lucerne?
The policy on staff health & safety is:

  • Guides required to regularly wash hands
See all safety measures taken by Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip from Lucerne.
What is the maximum group size during Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip from Lucerne?
This activity will have a maximum of 48 travelers.

See all safety measures taken by Mount Pilatus Summer Day Trip from Lucerne.

Traveler Photos

Traveler Tips

  • "Would take the long hike around the mountain - wear proper shoes, as it gets rugged." See review
  • "Do this, even if the weather looks iffy as it changes quickly in Lucerne and is always worth the trip." 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


501 Reviews
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Reviews by Viator travelers
Showing 1-10 of 501 reviews
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.
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
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
, 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.
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".
Mt Pilatus
Barbara C
, Oct 2019
The destination was amazing . We arrived at the top via two tram rides after a short bus ride from Lucerne.The first a 4 passenger sit down tram and the second a 51 passenger stand up tram. The views were amazing. Views from the top were amazing. The return was via the cog railway from the top then a boat ride on Lake Lucerne back to the city. While the destination was great I felt the guides were not very good. There was no commentary on the bus ride about what we were passing. The boat ride was beautiful but again no commentary on the sights we were passing on our way back.
, Oct 2019
Amazing tour! We were fortunate to have good weather so the views from the mountain were fantastic. Our tour guide, Yolanda, did a great job of explaining the different steps of the tour and was always available for questions. The boat ride back to Lucerne was a lovely way to end the day.
Mt. Pilatus excursion
, Oct 2019
Excellent excursion would recommend to anyone. Our guide Jorge was awesome, very friendly. Views were breathtaking
Wonderful day for the 4 Sisters and their hubsnds before they depart on a Viking River Cruise!
, Sep 2019
This Viator excursion offered everything we wanted for our first day on vacation in Lucerne, Switzerland!

Product code: 3885SW304BSL

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