Exploring Mount Rigi, Switzerland
Multiple day trips can be taken from Lucerne – one of which being the magnificent Mount Rigi. Affectionately known as the 'Queen of the Mountains', Mount Rigi boasts sweeping views of the Swiss Alps and beginner-friendly hiking routes. Plus, getting there is really easy!
There are a few ways to get to Mount Rigi:
First, you can take a 60-minute boat ride to Vitznau, followed by a 30-minute cog railway ride up to Rigi Kulm (the summit). The boat can be taken from Lucerne ferry terminal, which is located right opposite the main station.
Alternatively, you can take a train from Lucerne main station to Arth-Goldnau. This will take you about 30 minutes. Next, you can take a cog railway, which will bring you up to Rigi Kulm in 45 minutes.
Lastly, you can also choose to take a 40-minute boat ride to Weggis, a 10-minute cable car ride from Weggis to Rigi Kaltbad and finally a 12-minute cog railway ride to Rigi Kulm. Granted that there isn’t a direct route no matter which option you pick, but look at the journey as part of the experience!
I managed to visit Mount Rigi on a half-day trip from Lucerne; however, if you wish to spend more time atop the mountain, there are plenty of activities to keep you occupied.
Unfortunately, it was rather foggy the day I visited. I was hence unable to feast my eyes on the view at Rigi Kulm! The summit is also home to a restaurant and a gift shop. Here, you can choose to take any of the aforementioned modes of transport down the mountain or, you can hike down! There are various stations along the way - what you can do is to hike down as much as you wish, then take the train down from whichever station you are at.
The classic hiking route goes from Rigi Kulm to Staffel, Staffelhohe, Kanzeli and Rigi Kaltbad. This route will only take you about an hour. You can then take the train back to Vitznau from Rigi Kaltbad. However, to save some time, you can choose to take the train down from Rigi Kulm to Staffelhohe and start your hike from there.
The hiking route is clearly signposted – simply look out for these yellow signs along the way. The signs will tell you how long you have till the next station, which will come in really handy.
The trails are also wide and clearly demarcated; you won’t have to worry about losing your way!
Thankfully, the fog cleared as I started going down the mountain. Just look at that view!
A popular place to stop at would be at Kanzeli for the Kanzeli viewpoint. An additional 15-minute hike from Kanzeli will bring you to Rigi Kaltbad, where you can take a train down to Vitznau. At Vitznau, simply get on a ferry back to Lucerne.
If you wish to continue your hike, you can continue from Rigi Kaltbad to First, Unterstetten, Hinder Dossen and Rigi Scheidegg. From Rigi Scheidegg, you can take a cable car down to Krabel, followed by a train to Arth-Goldau. This will take you an additional 2 hours. At Arth-Goldau, you can easily catch a train back to Lucerne.
If you’re heading back from Vitznau, don’t forget to snap a picture here before leaving!
If you’re looking for an easy hiking excursion, Mount Rigi is the place for you. Do set aside at least half a day to enjoy the mountain to the fullest!