To me, it’s known as Lucerne but doesn’t get confused if you hear Luzern in German and Lucerna in the Italian language. This city is surrounded by the Jagged mountains of the Swiss Alps, most interesting being Rigi and Pilatus. There are many smaller towns surrounding the huge lake and Lucerne is one of the largest city which serves as a transport hub in central Switzerland.

One of the most exciting things you can ever do while you are visiting Lucerne is to visit Mt. Rigi is also known as “Queen of the Mountains”. The mountain rises high above the surrounding lakes and offers stunning views from the hilly landscape in the north to the impressive summits of the Alps in the South.

Planning a Trip?

Here are few affiliates link that may help planning a perfect trip while staying within budget

How to get to Mt. Rigi

There are different way of getting to Mt Riggi from Lucerne, our trip involved 3 modes of transportation – on the way up there, we took a boat from Lucerne, cross Lake Lucerne to Vitznau (about 60 minutes), and then took a cogwheel train from Vitznau to the top of Rigi (about 30 minutes). On the way down we took the same cogwheel train down only halfway to Rigi Kaltbad (about 10 min), and from there took a gondola/cable car down to the town of Weggis (about 10 min), from Weggis where we took another boat back to Lucerne. Details below.

Lucerne – Vitznau by boat, Vitznau – Mt. Gigi by Cogwheel train, Mt. Gigi – Kaltbad by Train, Kaltbad – Weggis by Cable Car, Weggis – Lucerne by boat

The mountain rises high above the surrounding lakes and offers stunning views from the hilly landscape in the north to the impressive summits of the Alps in the South

What to Expect During the Trip

It was early August what to expect other than crowded tourist attractions in Switzerland. On the morning of departure to Mt Rigi, Lucerne was hit by heavy fog. We took the 1st boat that sailed at 08:12 to Vitznau, and from Vitznau by cogwheel train up to Mt Rigi. As the boat left the docks of Lucerne, I felt good looking at the weather and the Sun has already come out.

rigi, Switzerland
Lake Lucerne – early morning heading towards Mount Rigi

The winds were chilly on Lake Lucerne, and most passengers were smart enough to hide in the warmth of the interior of the boat. Few brave ones, including me, sat outside because could not afford to miss the unbelievable view surrounding the lake. Eventually, the fog started clearing up as we approach closer to Vitznau.

The boat pulled into Vitznau at 9:00 am where we made a transfer onto the next leg of the trip, the cogwheel train, or the Vitznau-Rigi Bahn. The cogwheel train that already waiting at the station. I did not have much time to venture out the Vitznau but still took a risk to walk away from the station and try to explore some of the beautiful neighborhood that was so beautiful and different than what I am used.

We arrived at Vitznau and need to change over to cogwheel train up to Mt. Rigi

The landscape on our way steep uphill was fantastic in fact beyond my expression. I could say the best experience of my life. I had a hard time managing my time between enjoying the moments as well as capturing the moments through my lenses. For best views over Lake Lucerne, take a seat on the left-hand side of the train. I was just standing and moving around to make my shots throughout the entire 45 minutes journey.

Being at the end of the train paid off – so happy to get this shot!

Kaltbad-First Station

After about 15 minutes we reached Kaltbad-First station, which connects to the aerial cableway down to Weggis. That is what we are going to take on our way back. Such a beautiful place sometimes you just need to forget your schedule and about your plan and just try to enjoy the moment. 

Kaltbad-First station from where we will take the cable car on our way back

From Kaltbad, the train continued to the top and at about 10 AM we arrived at Rigi Kulm at an elevation of 1752 meter (5750 feet).

mount rigi
Still going up the hill – such a beautiful view through the window!

Arrived at Rigi Klum

Soon we stepped out of the train we could feel the Air, so pure and fresh. It was sunny but could see the cloud on the horizon moving toward us so fast. It was a great feeling to be in the cloud and feel them and touch them so unbelievably amazing.

rigi klum
Just arrived at Rigi Klum!

We started to explore around trying to discover the area covered with fog, places that were unknown to us so every moment was precious despite the pain of hike up the hill.

mount rigi
The could hear the sound of cowbells coming from nearby fields blanketed by moving clouds.

The Sun came out and even though the sun started shining brightly again but still it was pretty cold due to wind chill, time to time the entire area was covered with moving clouds. It was such a beautiful scene. 

mount rigi
Just imagine the feeling of getting lost in the cloud!

Mount Rigi offers a wide variety of activities, such as hiking, walking on trails, biking and also mini golfing. There was a number of cafes and restaurants to sit back and relax after a stiff climb.

mt rigi
The TV Tower at the summit

Having Lunch at The Top of The World

mt rigi
One of the popular item in Rigi Klum

I could not resist but to try out one of the local wine, it was was so delicious you need to try it to believe the great experience.

Local white wine – RIGI

Time For Us to Head Back Down

I could hear the sound of cowbells coming from the nearby field which was blanketed by moving clouds. As it was still early morning, we could see ‘sea of clouds’ come and go. The scenery from the top was breathtaking. After spending 2 hours up there, we took the 12 pm train down to Kaltbad-First station.

mount rigi
At Kaltbad station – time to kill waiting for the next cable car.

Get the Cable Car from Kaltbad-First station

We arrived at Kaltbad-First station but still need to wait for the next available Cable car down to Weggis. We had some time to explore the surrounds of Kaltbad village. Finally, time for us to take the cable care down. The view from the car down was fantastic. I enjoyed the spectacular view of Lake Lucerne and the villages surrounding the lake.

mount rigi
Cable car from Kaltbad down to Weggis – what a beautiful view!

Weggis by Lake Lucern

We arrived at Weggis little early so needed to wait for the next boat to Lucerne to show up. Weggis is a small town, there are few hotels around and great looking restaurants around the boat terminal.

lake lucerne
Waiting at Weggis for the next boat to Lucerne

The view around Weggis was spectacular and undoubtedly the lake was beautiful.

lake lucerne
A beautiful view of Lake Lucerne from Weggis

My Opinion and Tips

Have you been to Mount Rigi, Switzerland? Any additional tips to share?

Please leave a comment below! I’d love to hear from you to improve my knowledge. 

Was this travel guide helpful for you?

If you’d like to help me continue making free guides, here is one way you can help:

  • Share This Guide – If you have a friend that would benefit from this guide, share it with them. Or post this guide on Facebook, Twitter or Google+

Your help would definitely help me making more free guides like this. Thank you in advance!

Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required

My collection of pictures that will tell the trip story of Dizzy Traveler


Hasan Mahmud

Traveler, Blogger, and Travel Photographer!

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Nice post, very informative!

  2. Avatar
    Chev Cas

    Did you buy your boat/ train/ cable cars the day of? Or did you purchase in advance?

    1. DZTraveler

      Hello Chev, thank you for the message. We actually bought the tickets on the day of our trip from the counter right next to the Pier.

  3. Avatar

    Very nice post DZ, in fact I was trying to copy your itenary for my day 2 in Lucerne. I had to read few times to get my understanding right though. Keep it up..

    1. DZTraveler

      Thank you so much for your comment GB, appreciate it. There are different ways to get there and back. Regardless how you are going up there you will definitely enjoy the trip, no doubt about it. Have fun!

  4. Avatar

    thanks so much for a great review! after reading many different forums i have decided on the same route =) Would you consider it a half day trip or did it take most of the day?
    Also can i ask if you used a swiss pass or tell pass? i’ve also looked at the mt rigi railway day ticket and was considering it as as option.

Leave a Reply