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Zurich to Schaffhausen Train: All You Need To Know

Last Updated on December 19, 2023 by Darla Uhl

Schaffhausen is a beautiful city in the northern part of Switzerland, near the German border. It is home to many landmarks, including the Rhine Falls, Europe’s largest waterfall, the elegant timepieces of IWC, the alcohol-free wine Rimuss, and the prehistoric cave Kesslerloch. If you’re planning a trip from Zurich to Schaffhausen by train, you’ll find all the info you need here.

Image of Schaffhausen by TouringSwitzerland.com

An impressive waterfall and a charming old town with colorful buildings await visitors in Schaffhausen. With that being said, seeing Schaffhausen and the Rhine Falls is a popular activity for many visitors to Switzerland.

Logistical concerns come up inevitably. Particularly for those who want to travel by rail in Switzerland, there are several specifics concerning train travel. What is the best way to get from point A to point B? Does it offer scenic views? So on and so forth.

This article will answer all your questions about the train journey from Zurich to Schaffhausen

Overview: Navigating Swiss Trains

You can start by visiting the SBB website: www.sbb.ch. Using the website, you can type in your departure and arrival destinations. It will then guide you to where and when you need to be. An app is also available for iOS and Android devices.

If you wish to pay half the fare for all your train rides in Switzerland, a Half Fare Discount Card (1-month validity) is available on www.sbb.ch. This allows you to travel for half the price on all SBB routes and most other railways during the duration of your discount card.

Using the Swiss Pass, you get unlimited travel by train, bus, and boat in Switzerland. Over 500 museums are also free or discounted, and there are free or discounted excursions to mountain summits.

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Getting tickets from RailEurope is convenient while traveling within Europe and/or visiting multiple countries. Having been in operation since the 1930s, RailEurope‘s extensive history, user-friendly website and mobile apps, flexible currency payment options, commitment to customer satisfaction, and strategic partnerships with leading rail operators, collectively establish it as a reliable and trustworthy platform for booking European train travel.

You can obtain from RailEurope the following travel passes:

  • Swiss Travel Pass – choose between continuous or flexible Swiss train passes for 3, 4, 8, or 15 days. The perks? unlimited use in over 90 Swiss cities, free admission to more than 500 museums, and discounts on mountain railways and cable cars. You also get discounts on high-speed Lyria trains between France and Switzerland as well as Nightjet trains that go through Switzerland. See RailEurope for more information.
  • Eurail Global Pass – unlimited train travel to 40,000 destinations in 33 European countries for non-EU residents
  • Interrail Global Pass – access to 40,000 destinations in 33 European countries for citizens and permanent residents of the EU

How To Get From Zurich to Schaffhausen

Zurich Train Station
Image of Zurich Train Station by TouringSwitzerland.com

How To Get From Zurich Airport to Schaffhausen

You can get directly to Schaffhausen from Zurich Airport by taking the direct train, S24, going to Thayngen. Before reaching Schaffhausen, this train stops at Bassersdorf, Effretikon, Kemptthal, Winterthur, Andelfingen, and Neuhausen. The train leaves Platform 2 every 57 minutes after the hour.

Alternatively, you can take the following train routes from Zurich Airport to Schaffhausen:

RouteOptimal Train Connections
Zurich Airport – Zurich Oerlikon – Schaffhausen– S2 train to Zurich Oerlikon
– S9 train to Schaffhausen
Zurich Airport – Zurich Oerlikon – Schaffhausen– S24 train to Zurich Oerlikon
– RE to Schaffhausen
Zurich Airport – Winterthur – Schaffhausen– IR 13 train to Winterthur
– S12 train to Schaffhausen
Zurich Airport – Winterthur – Schaffhausen– IR 75 train to Winterthur
– S33 train to Schaffhausen

How To Get From Zurich Train Station to Schaffhausen

Image of Schaffhausen Train Station by TouringSwitzerland.com

It is really easy to get from Zurich to Schaffhausen because many direct trains go between Schaffhausen and Zurich.

Direct Trains from Zurich to Schaffhausen

To get to Schaffhausen from Zurich, you can take one of the following direct trains and get off at Schaffhausen:

  • S9 to Schaffhausen
  • S12 to Schaffhausen
  • Intercity to Singen (Hohentwiel)
  • S24 to Thayngen
  • RE to Schaffhausen

How Long Is the Train Ride From Zurich to Schaffhausen?

The following table shows the train ride duration from Zurich to Schaffhausen and the other way around (updated December 2023):

RouteDuration (fastest)
Zurich – Schaffhausen39 minutes
Zurich Airport – Schaffhausen (Direct)49 minutes
Schaffhausen – Zurich39 minutes
Schaffhausen – Zurich Airport (Direct)47 minutes
Duration of the Train Ride between Zurich and Schaffhausen

Is the Train From Zurich to Schaffhausen Scenic?

Unfortunately, the Interregio train from Zurich to Schaffhausen is not the most scenic train route. These are mostly slow trains that will bring you from one city to another while passing by residential areas. If you would like to ride other scenic trains, we have listed a couple of examples below.

In case you would like to check out other scenic trains, then there are more scenic trains recommended below. These are the Golden Pass Linethe Glacier Expressand the Bernina Express. Another interesting train is the Historical Train that goes from Davos to Filisur.

Image of Bernina Express by TouringSwitzerland.com
Image of Bernina Express by TouringSwitzerland.com

Your other options in detail are the following:

  • Golden Pass – The Golden Pass departs from Lucerne. You would take a train from Zurich to Lucerne, then change to Interlaken. This is sometimes referred to as the east end of this route. The Golden Pass has panorama coaches and is scenic.
  • Glacier Express – Glacier Express is a long journey that starts from Zermatt, home of Matterhorn. It then traverses 291 bridges and 91 tunnels before stopping in St. Moritz. Zermatt and St. Moritz are beautiful mountain resorts worthy of a longer stay. The Glacier Express passes by several idyllic mountain villages.
  • Bernina Express – Bernina Express is another train route that begins in Chur. Chur is the oldest alpine city in Switzerland and is worth visiting. This train route spans 196 bridges. It goes through 55 tunnels and passes 20 beautiful villages in Switzerland. For you to go on this scenic train, you will have to go from Zurich to Chur first.
  • Historical Train Davos to Filisur – May through October, vintage carriages are pulled by the century-old crocodile locomotive from Davos Platz to Filisur. The train line covers a total length of 4,200 meters through 14 tunnels and 28 bridges. Its scenic highlights include the Wiesen Viaduct and the Zügen Gorge.

How Much Will the Train Ticket From Zurich to Schaffhausen Cost?

Here are the train ticket prices from Zurich to Schaffhausen (updated December 2023):

RouteFull Fare (CHF)Half Fare (CHF)
Zurich – Schaffhausen24.2012.10
Zurich Airport – Schaffhausen24.2012.10

Do You Need a Seat Reservation on the Train?

No, there is no need to reserve a spot on the train. But you can always add this option if that is your wish.

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Darla Uhl is the owner of TouringSwitzerland.com. Her home is in the German-speaking part of Switzerland. Having lived almost 20 years in Switzerland, she's traveled extensively all over the country.

Darla's favorite regions to visit in Switzerland include Engadin, Lake Geneva, Bernese Oberland, Ticino, and Valais. She loves spending time with her family, hiking, visiting museums, and reading books.

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