Can You Go From Zurich To Basel By Boat? (Travel Guide)

It is not possible to travel by boat from Zurich to Basel. There is only ground transportation available.

Basel is widely regarded as the cultural center of Switzerland. You will come across art everywhere you go in this city. And Zurich is the biggest city in Switzerland, with beautiful mountain views, an interesting history, and a strong economy. It has a pretty waterfront, a lovely old town, and great museums showcasing its past and present.

These two cities are located in the northern part of Switzerland, and tourists are often confused about how to travel between them.

In this article, I’ll tell you if you can travel from Zurich to Basel by boat. I will also tell you about other travel options from Zurich to Basel.

Can You Go From Zurich To Basel By Boat?

Zurich To Basel By Boat

From Zurich to Basel, there is no boat service available. Ground transportation is the only option.

Zurich is located about 80 kilometers (50 miles) northeast of Basel. The two cities are connected by the Rhine River, which flows through both cities. The river is an important transportation route for both goods and people, and there are many boats and ships that travel along the river between Zurich and Basel.

But sadly, these boats are only for sightseeing. You cannot use them as a mode of transportation.

While there may not be any direct boat routes between Zurich and Basel, there are still plenty of opportunities to enjoy a boat tour or cruise in either city.

In Basel, for example, visitors can take a scenic boat tour of the Rhine river, which offers stunning views of the city’s historic landmarks and architecture. So while traveling by boat may not be the most practical way to get from Zurich to Basel, it is still a great way to experience the beauty of these two Swiss cities.

The Rhine River Cruise costs around CHF 100-150 per person, while the Basel to Zurich Cruise costs around CHF 80-120 per person. It’s important to check with the tour operator for the most up-to-date pricing information.

Took this pic on my vacation to Zurich!

Other Travelling Options From Zurich To Basel

Since traveling by boat is impractical, there are other better ways to get from Zurich to Basel. I’ll go into detail about each one.

1. Train

Zurich and Basel are connected by direct trains. It takes roughly 50 minutes on the express trains to get from Zurich to Basel. Approximately 74 kilometers are covered by it. There are typically 78 trains that run daily between the two cities.

The first train from Zurich leaves at 05:08. Usually, the final departure happens at 00:08. The journey costs around 25-35 Swiss Francs.

2. Drive

Driving directly from Zurich to Basel over a distance of 53.4 miles (86 km) takes an hour. There are lots of fantastic stops along the way, and this is personally my favorite option when it comes to traveling between the two cities.

You can make as many stops as you want, go on detours, interact with the locals, and all in all have a lot more autonomy if you are traveling by car (no pun intended).

One of my favorite shots from a recent trip to Basel, Switzerland

There are two possible routes.

RoutesA1A1 A2
Time1 hr 2 mins1hr 18 mins
Distance85 km109 km
Fuel consumption€9.28€11.92

The amount of time it would take you to arrive at your destination depends on the speed of your car.

3. Bus

The cheapest way to travel from Zurich to Basel is by bus.

If purchased on the day of travel, a ticket from Zurich to Basel will typically cost around €6, but the cheapest tickets can be found for just €5.

Average Ticket Price€5
Bus Trip Duration1 h 35 mins
Number of Daily Buses2
Earliest Bus Departure7:00 AM
Latest Bus Departure8:00 PM

The total cost is around 8-13 Swiss Francs.

Is Basel Close To Zurich?

It takes about an hour to reach Basel from Zurich.

The calculated flying distance between Basel and Zurich is about 80 kilometers.

View of Lake Zurich and surrounding villages. Trekking from Uetliberg to Felsenegg, Zurich.

Final Remarks

Whether we could take a boat from Zurich to Basel was frequently posed. In this article, I addressed whether you can travel to Basel by boat, the other options for getting there, and how close the two cities are.

Here’s a quick recap.

Can You Go From Zurich To Basel By Boat? It is not possible to travel by boat from Zurich to Basel. There is only ground transportation available.