Interview with Frédéric Füssenich, CEO of Rigi Railways
No-one who visits Switzerland can fail to be impressed by the stunning scenery. The combination of mountains, lakes and lush green pastures is the true description of paradise.
One of the many things I love about Switzerland is that wherever there’s a mountain – regardless of how high it is – there’s usually a mountain railway or a cable car to take you to the top.
In fact, Switzerland is home to Europe’s oldest mountain railway, the Rigibahn, and in 2021 the railway is celebrating its 150th anniversary. It’s incredible to think how many tourists must have taken the journey to the top of Mt. Rigi in a century and a half.
A lot has changed in 150 years but one thing has remained the same – the breathtaking 360 degree views from the top of Mt. Rigi.
In today’s episode I’m joined by Frederich Fussenich, the CEO of Rigi Railways, who tells us about the history of the railway and shares all the reasons a visit to Mt. Rigi should be top of your list when you are in Central Switzerland.
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Topics covered in this episode include:
- Frédéric’s background in the tourism industry and his long association with central Switzerland
- The history of Mt. Rigi Railways
- Where is Mt. Rigi?
- How to get to Mt. Rigi
- What can you do at Mt. Rigi?
- Staying overnight at Mt. Rigi
- Operating times
- How to prepare yourself for a visit to Mt. Rigi
- Fun facts about Mt. Rigi
Places mentioned in this episode:
>> Vitznau – a town located on the shores of Lake Lucerne and at the foot of Mt. Rigi. Passengers can travel from Lucerne to Vitznau by boat and then connect to the rack railway for the journey to Rigi Kulm.
>> Weggis – another lakeside town at the foot of Mt. Rigi. From here, a cable car transports passengers to Rigi Kaltbad.
>> Goldau – located on the other side of Mt. Rigi, a rack railway connects the town of Goldau with Rigi Kulm.
>> Rigi Kaltbad – a village with a small population of permanent residents, Rigi Kaltbad is situated at 1433 metres above sea level.
>> Rigi Kulm – at 1797 metres above sea level, Rigi Kulm is the highest peak of Mt. Rigi which offers stunning 360° panoramic views.
>> Rigi Scheidegg – a popular lookout point which is also home to a circular hike/ridge trail offering spectacular views. Rigi Scheidegg can be reached from Goldau by cable car.
Mt. Rigi restaurants and accommodation mentioned in this episode:
>> Krauter/Herbal Hotel – the Regina Montium gourmet restaurant at the Krauter Hotel at Rigi Kaltbad has been awarded a Michelin star and offers an exceptional menu using exclusively Swiss products.
>> Chalet Schild – a mountain restaurant at Rigi Kaltbad which serves tasty regional cuisine.
>> Restaurant Lok 7 – just a few metres below the Rigi Staffel station, Lok 7 restaurant’s panorama terrace is the ideal place to enjoy a meal or drink.
>> Rigi Kulm Hotel – first opened over 200 years ago (but since renovated), this 3* hotel on the summit of Mt. Rigi provides outstanding sunrise and sunset views.
>> Old Station House – the old station house at Rigi Kulm can now be rented out for overnight stays through Airbnb. More info here >
>> Hotel Rigi Kaltbad – with direct access to the Mineralbad and Spa, this 3* Superior hotel boasts a great location on one of Switzerland’s sunniest mountain terraces. More info here >
The Mt. Rigi website has lots of useful information to help you plan your visit.
You can pre-book your tickets for the classic Mt. Rigi Round Trip (one way via Vitznau and the other via Weggis) > here.
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