How to visit the Rhine Falls from Zurich

In addition to the imposing Alps and the charm of the dense forests, did you know that Switzerland is home to the largest waterfalls in Europe? Yes, it is Rhine Falls and here is a complete guide to visit it from Zurich.

Carla Yaquer

Carla Yaquer

8 min read

How to visit the Rhine Falls from Zurich

Rhine Falls | ©Hindol Bhattacharya

Often only the Swiss Alps come to mind when talking about Switzerland; however, there are other unmissable natural treasures in its lands. No matter how many days you travel to Zurich, be sure to take a trip to Rhine Falls, the most famous waterfalls in Europe. If you want to know the different alternatives available to see them, here is the summary you need to know prices, duration and tips for your trip.

  • Rhine Falls Tour from Zurich

  • Starting at $64

  • The best option

  • Total duration of the excursion: 3 h 45 min.

  • Includes stop at the Munot fortress, transfers and tour guide.

  • Book with Hellotickets

  • Bus

  • From 2€ per leg

  • The cheapest option

  • Duration: between 1h and 1h 30 min

  • Without guide

  • With waiting time

  • Several bus lines available

  • Train

  • From 19€.

  • The most practical option

  • Duration: between 50 min and 1h

  • Without guide

  • Requires organization

  • Several train lines available

  • Cab

  • From 230€.

  • The most flexible option

  • Duration: approximately 40 min

  • Without guide

  • Direct transfer

  • At cab ranks

The best way to see Rhine Falls: an organized tour from Zurich

Excursion to the Rhine Falls| ©Albrecht Fietz
Excursion to the Rhine Falls| ©Albrecht Fietz

Rhine Falls, translated as Rhine Falls, offers a splendid spectacle to visitors and locals alike. Its 150 meters wide with a height of 23 meters make it the largest waterfall in Europe.

Throughout the year, numerous visitors are seduced by its charms. The best time to visit Rhine Falls is in summer, but any time of the year is good.

Of course, I recommend hiring an excursion to Rhine Falls from Zurich if you want to forget about logistics, transfers, and just enjoy yourself accompanied by a guide who will explain everything you need to know about this wonder of nature.

Information of interest

  • Price: from 61 euros.
  • Duration: about 3 hours and 45 minutes.
  • What's included: visit to the Rhine Falls from Zurich, round trip, tour guide, stop at the Munot Fortress, free time and, in summer, optional boat trip.

Book an excursion to Rhine Falls from Zurich

Combined tour Rhine Falls, Titisee-Neustadt and the Swiss Black Forest

Boat trip to the falls| ©Mike Knell
Boat trip to the falls| ©Mike Knell

Before seeing the largest waterfalls in the territory, we change countries, entering German lands to visit Titisee-Neustadt, the city of cuckoo clocks and a classic pastry: the Black Forest cake.

In Titisee-Neustadt you will find a variety of stores, factories and exhibition of cuckoo clocks (the flagship product of the area), plus a wide range of restaurants to eat (do not forget to try the authentic Black Forest cake, this is its land of origin).

After a couple of hours getting to know Titisee-Neustadt, you return to the bus to head to Rhine Falls. The falls are a visual spectacle and you can see them from the different platforms arranged on both sides of the waterfall or, if you prefer, you can sign up for the Rhine Falls boat ride for an additional supplement.

  • Price: from 86 €.
  • Duration: 7 hours.
  • What's included: round trip transportation by luxury coach from a central point in Zurich to Rhine Falls. Professional guide service in English. Entrance to the Drubba watch showroom. Entrance and boat ride at the Rhine Falls.

Book a tour to Rhine Falls from Zurich

Combined tour Rhine Falls and Schaffhausen

Laufen Castle in Schaffhausen| ©André Karwath
Laufen Castle in Schaffhausen| ©André Karwath

The small and beautiful town of Schaffhausen is located 10 minutes from Rhine Falls. The town center has kept its medieval village look.

I recommend a walk around the Museum zu Allerheiligen Schaffhausen or Museum of All Saints, along the circular wall of Munot and up a circular path to reach the Castle of Laufen, where you will find a beautiful view of the Rhine Falls.

In the streets of Schaffhausen is collected in the Swiss spirit. The tour includes the commented walk, perfect to learn about Swiss culture and history with the sound of the Rhine Falls in the background.

Information of interest

  • Price: From 60 €.
  • Duration: 4 hours.
  • What's included: Transportation to and from Zurich. Visit and guided tour of Schaffhausen. Entrance to the Rhine Falls, boat ride over the falls.

Book an excursion to Rhine Falls from Zurich

Combined excursion to Rhine Falls with tour of Zurich

St Peterskirche Church and Cathedral on the Limmat River| ©Russ Bowling
St Peterskirche Church and Cathedral on the Limmat River| ©Russ Bowling

For those interested in getting an overview of the Alpine country, this is one of the most recommended day trips to discover Switzerland from Zurich thanks to the comfort and varied tour it offers.

Morning

The tour begins after meeting around Sihlquai to board a luxury coach that takes you straight to the Rhine Falls. Lean out the window to enjoy the view, while the guide describes the areas of the tour.

As soon as you step off the coach you will be able to hear Rhine Falls in the background. The sound is colossal, 600m3 of water shaking this alpine village and the views do not leave visitors indifferent.

Be sure to climb up to the observation platforms to take your best pictures. If you want to get even closer, enjoy a boat ride and cross the waterfalls.

Afternoon

After this stop, return to the coach for Sihlquai just in time for lunch in the surrounding area while you wait for the second part of the tour, the Zurich city tour.

This tour includes a walk through the old town of Limmat, the St. Peterskirche or St. Peter's Church and its iconic clock with the largest clock face in Europe.

The itinerary, which will allow you to see the best of Zurich in an afternoon, passes by other monuments, such as the Fraumünster Church decorated with stained glass windows by Marc Chagall, the National Museum, the sophisticated shopping street Bahnhofstrasse, as well as the school where Albert Einstein taught.

Interesting details

  • Price: From 85 €.
  • Duration: 7 hours.
  • What's included: Shuttle service to and from Zurich. Entrance and guided visit to the Rhine Falls. Tour of Zurich and walk through the emblematic sites of the city.

Book a guided tour of Zurich

How to get by car to Rhine Falls from Zurich

Detail of the Rhine Falls| ©Hindol Bhattacharya
Detail of the Rhine Falls| ©Hindol Bhattacharya

This way of traveling will allow you to move around at your leisure and get the most out of your tour. If you don't have your own car, you can always rent one from one of the various companies at Zurich airport, such as Sixt, where you can get a car from 37 € per day.

If you are determined to drive to the Rhine Falls in your car, you should take Neumühle Quai and Wasserwerkstrasse to A1L in Kreis 6. Then connect with A1/A4 and E41 towards Dorfstrasse in Laufen-Uhwiesen, exit at 7-Uhwiesen from A4/E41 and finally take Lauferstrasse to your destination.

Following your GPS route you will reach your destination in less than 40 minutes (please note that traffic may vary and you will encounter a couple of tolls on the way).

Book a tour to Rhine Falls from Zurich

How to get by bus to Rhine Falls from Zurich

Rocks at Rhine Falls| ©T T
Rocks at Rhine Falls| ©T T

Bus trips are a good option to travel from Zurich to Rhine Falls, as they only take a little longer than trains and cost a lot less. From 2 € you can buy a ticket for the bus, so it is the cheapest option.

The main transport company is Verkehrsbetriebe Schaffhausen:

  • It has departures every 10 minutes from Sihlquai** station (Zürich HB) with lines 1, 7, 21 and N4 to Schaffhausen, the medieval town on the German border.
  • Once there, several lines take you to Neuhausen Zentrum, including bus numbers 1, 6 and 12, although if you take bus 10 from Schaffhausen train station it will take you directly to the falls at the Rheinfall stop.
  • From Schaffhausen to Neuhausen is only 7 minutes and drops you off in the center of town.
  • From there it is only a 400 meter walk to see the falls.

Book an excursion to Rhine Falls from Zurich

How to get to Rhine Falls by train from Zurich

Schloss Laufen am Rheinfall Station| ©Chris j wood
Schloss Laufen am Rheinfall Station| ©Chris j wood

This is the most practical way to travel to the Rhine Falls from Zurich. The price, time, comfort and speed of this trip makes it the best alternative: the Rhine Falls are just an hour from Zurich if you travel by train and the ticket price is around 19 €.

To get to the falls you must go to any of the stations of Swiss Railways (SBB/CFF/FFS), as Hauptbahnhof, Oerlikon, Winterthur or Zurich HB, from where also depart the best scenic trains:

  • You must take a train to Schaffhausen, where a transfer must be made.
  • There you will catch another train to Neuhausen am Rheinfall or Schloss Laufen am Rheinfall. The difference between them is the side of the Rhine River where they drop you off.
  • Once you get off the train, the falls are a mere 10 minutes away.

If you plan to take a boat ride, choose a train going to Schloss Laufen am Rheinfall station, as the boarding is just a short walk away.

Book an excursion to Rhine Falls from Zurich

Other means of transportation to Rhine Falls from Zurich

Boat rides to the falls| ©Roland zh
Boat rides to the falls| ©Roland zh

Limousines, conventional cabs, luxury minivans... are some of the means of transportation used as a private alternative to travel from Zurich to Rhine Falls.

For this distance of approximately 50 kilometers, the prices of cabs are from 230 €, which makes this the most expensive option.

This alternative does not seem to me the most convenient, however, for special events it may sound attractive, here I leave you the pages of three companies:

Book an excursion to Rhine Falls from Zürich

Tips for exploring Rhine Falls from Zurich

View of Rhine Falls| ©Roland zh
View of Rhine Falls| ©Roland zh
  • Boat rides over the falls are available between April and October. However, July and August are the best months to enjoy the waterfall. If you are looking for a good view, go up to the central platform any time of the year. I assure you that you will be impressed.
  • Continuing with the boats, they have limited capacity, so the ideal is to make a reservation in advance or hire the service directly with the chosen tour to not miss the experience of sailing the Rhine Falls.
  • Between November and March, the trail leading to Laufen Castle with the falls in the background remains open. Only boating activities are excluded, so you can still enjoy these beautiful views.
  • If you are traveling by bus, be aware that many buses do not have ticket vending machines, so you will not be able to board them. It is best to secure your seat by purchasing your ticket at the Zürich HB terminal or the one closest to your stay in advance.

Book an excursion to Rhine Falls from Zurich