Schaffhausen has a system of trolley buses that can get you around quickly without a car. The main bus station is co-located with the train station, which allows you to transfer seamlessly to the local transportation. Most tourists will likely be most interested in Trolley Bus 1, which whisks you to a short walk from the Rhine Falls in about 10 minutes. The exit closest to the falls is Neuhausen Zentrum... but don't worry, the stop is announced twice in both German and English as the Rhine Falls stop. A 60-minute ticket in the local area (Schaffhausen and Neuhausen) costs CHF 2.80 as of 2013, CHF 2.20 with a Swiss Card or Swiss Half-Fare Card. All trolley buses are covered by Swiss Pass (but you must use a pass day for the Flexipass, otherwise you just get the reduced fare).
The Schaffhausen train station is a large rail hub on the Swiss-German border. Local and long-haul trains depart in several directions, including Konstanz, Ulm, Zurich, St Gallen, Karlsruhe, and Stuttgart. The station offers many services, including left-luggage service and an SBB travel agency. If you are heading for the Rhine Falls, Trolley Bus 1 departs from just outside the train station entrance. If you're coming from Germany as Kathrin was, the Baden-Württemberg ticket is valid all the way to Schaffhausen (but doesn't include public transit in Schaffhausen). We were traveling on a Swiss Pass, which gave us free transit on the train, as well as the river boat and public transit within Schaffhausen.
Schaffhausen is easy to reach from the Swiss as well as the German side. It is a stop on the ICE line Stuttgart to Zürich. To budget-oriented travellers, the frequent and dense network of local train routes is of more importance, though. Schaffhausen is well connected, for example, towards Zürich and Zürich airport.
I lost the overview but it seems that at least three regional transport networks overlap here, including the ZVV (Zürich), and the network of canton Thurgau which wittily calls their local trains "Thurbo"...
Travellers coming in from Germany can travel to Schaffhausen on a Baden-Württemberg-Ticket. The ticket is valid on the railway line Singem-Waldshut that leads through that bit of Swiss territory around Schaffhausen which extends onto the Northern bank of the Rhine. Both the Swiss commuter train S 22 and the German regional trains can be used with this ticket.
For obvious reasons - the Rhine Falls which form a barrier insuperable for any boat - cruises to and from Schaffhausen are possible in upstream direction only. The cruise line leads to Stein am Rhein, then enters Untersee. Boats hit destinations on the Swiss side as well as Reichenau island, then continue through the short stretch of river called Seerhein, and end in Konstanz and Kreuzlingen.
Untersee is often considered part of Bodensee but it is actually a separate lake. This boat cruise is more scenic than cruises on the big lake, simply because Untersee is smaller and the banks are closer, so you see more scenery. Even a down-to-earth German like me rates this landscape as "lovely".
Timetables and fares can be looked up via www.sbb.ch The Swiss Pass is valid on the boats.
The Rhine Falls are not in Schaffhausen itself but in neighbouring Neuhausen. From central Schaffhausen it's a walk of one hour. Fine if you enjoy walking, but there are several easier options.
From Schaffhausen centre, your best bet is the trolley bus # 1 which departs in front of the train station. It runs every 10 minutes. The ride takes about 8 minutes. A single ticket is CHF 2.80 (June 2013); you can buy tickets either from the ticket machine at the bus stop or from the ticket machine on board the bus. The ticket is valid for one hour, so if you are quick, you can return on the same ticket.
Get off at "Neuhausen Zentrum". It is all quite tourist-proof: You can follow the route on the onboard monitor, and this stop is announced twice in German and English! From there it's a 10 minute walk to the falls. The way is well signposted as in photo 3) - if in doubt, go downhill.
This bus stop is, by the way, conveniently located right in front of a Migros supermarket, so if you need snacks and/or drink, buy them there.
Local trains on the Northern Rhine bank (S 22) stop at Neuhausen train station, from where you are facing a walk of approx. 15-20 minutes. If you are coming from the German side, the Baden-Württemberg ticket is valid on local and regional trains on the route the S22 takes through that bit of Switzerland via Schaffhausen and Neuhausen (but no further than this train line).
In case you are arriving from the Swiss side, i.e. from Zürich, take a local train (S 33) straight to "Schloss Laufen" and you are there.
There is also a "tourist train" (photo 4) that takes you from Schaffhausen near the boat landing to the Rhine Falls in half an hour; can't tell about the fares but surely more than the bus or train.
Downtown Schaffhausen is serviced pretty comprehensively by its regional bus station. Although we had a car, there were a couple places where the bus would have been convienent, especially when we walked all the way across town and found ourselves several bus stops away from where we parked!
Schaffhausen must not get alot of English speaking bus riders, as their online site is all in German, but if you need an online schedule of bus rides, I have included their site here.
To get out to the rock in the middle of the Rheinfalls you can get a boat from the bottom of the cliff under Schloss Laufen. The boat runs a trinagular route from Schloss Laufen over the river to the small Schloss Worth and then across to the Rock.
The cost for a return trip from Schloss Laufen to the rock is CHF 6.50
If you travel to Schaffhausen and want to get to the Rheinfalls the easiest way is to catch public bus #1 out to Neuhausen from outside the SBB Bahnhof Station. Get off at the 'Rheinfalls' stop and follow the convienient yellow footprints on the footpath which lead you down down to the falls.
Picture of bus #1 timetable in my photos (If you can make it out!)
There are hourly direct trains from Zurich to Schaffhausen which takes around 40 minutes and leave at 14 minutes past the hour every hour. The price for a 2nd class one way ticket is CHF 18.20.
From Bern there are direct trains to Schaffhausen every two hours (more trains available involving connections) leaving at 39 minutes past the hour.
08.39, 10.39, 12.39, 14.39 etc.
The journey takes 2 hours 15 minutes and a 2nd Class One Way ticket costs CHF 57
From Lucerne there are no direct trains to schaffhausen but many trains are available with connections in Zurich. Typical journey time is around 2 hours and a 2nd Class One Way ticket costs CHF 35
For other routes and fares check the link below
As we only planned to stay in Schaffhausen for the morning, and get onto another city by the evening, we decided to rent a car for the trip. This turned out to be a fairly good option for three of us, as it was less expensive then taking three train tickets, if you include the time element into your equation. The daily car rental out of Stuttgart was 60 euros, and total fuel was about 50 euros, and three rail tickets would have been 90 euros or so, but would have taken pretty much all day for the round trip.
As this was a day trip, a small compact Nissan Note was the perfect size for three, and would have easily held a fourth!
In order to get to Rheinfall. Get to the train station in Shaffhausen and ask for a bus #1 (not sure) to Rheinfall. This is only 5 to 10 minutes bus ride. Ask driver where you need to get off. Locals are very friendly and willing to help you with directions, however not all of them speak English. After you get off the bus follow the directions to Rheinfall you are less then 200 m from it. Take the stairs and go down the hill ‘til you get to your destination.
To: Stine am Rhein
Stine am Rhein is a must see place, if you are in Schaffhausen area. But the way to get there is slightly complicated. First you have to take bus from Schaffhausen train station which leaves every half an hour on 06 and 36 minute of hour. Bus ride is approximately 10 – 15 minutes (no stops) . The bus stops at smaller train station where train will wait for you to board. Board the train and look for Stine am Rhein stop. The Train ride is approximately 20 -30 min. However some of the days you can get direct train to Stine am Rhein, but it is only ones or twice a week. Bus ride already included in to the train price of the ticket. At the Stine am Rhein train station you are approximately kilometer from the center of the town. Take Bahnhor (?) strasse north and turn right to Wagenhouserstrasse after turn left on Charregass cross the bridge and you are in a center of the city explore and enjoy.
Take a train from Zurich Haupbanhof (if you are staying in Zurich) and change train at Winterthur, and proceed to Schaffhausen. Be careful not to miss this small stop. Listen carefully to the announcement in the train. Its fourth stop from Winterthur. Ask for special ticket that valid for a day that can be bought at Zurich Hauptbanhof (Main Station).
By car or by train...
To the Rheinfall you can follow the signs on the roads. If you want to go straight to the side of 'Schloss Laufen' , there is an exit on the Autobahn in direction to Zurich!
You need a vignette for the Swiss Autobahn! Costs 50 CHF and lasts for a year!You will get it at the border!
By car or by train
The most convenient way of reaching this town is either by car or train. The nearest airport, the Zurich-Kloten Airport is (hold your breath) 55KM away from this town.
The Old Town is best seen on foot. But if you want to move around (or visit the Rhein Falls), you can either rent a car or hop onto a local bus....