R03 - Maccagno to Sisikon
St. Gotthardpass
Driving around the Alps is quite an experience. You have not yet passed one corner or the next one is already there. As you climb from the valley, see the landscape change from wooded slopes with splashing waterfalls to alpine meadows where no trees can be found and asphalt roads that cut through the eternal snow. Arrived on top of the mountain, enjoy phenomenal views of the surrounding snow-capped peaks, as if you were standing on the roof of the world. For me that is pure enjoyment and that is why I rate this route with 5 stars.

The route starts at Albergo Paradiso on the beautiful Lago Maggiore. You don't get the chance to warm up the bike first, after 350 meters you turn into a narrow, steep street in the center and the climbing is blown. In a short time you climb to a height from which you have a beautiful view over Lake Maggiore.
A little further on, you drive over today's first pass, the Passo dell'Alpe di Neggia, lying at an altitude of 1,395 meters. Not a particularly high pass, but still a beautiful view of the surrounding peaks on top. Definitely worth a moment for a photo.

At the bottom of the descent you drive again along the waterline of Lake Maggiore. At Bellinzona, TomTom does not understand that you can just go straight ahead and turns right into a small road. Don't turn off, just drive straight ahead. Garmin does give the correct indication.
A few kilometers further you reach Biasca. Since you have already covered almost 75 kilometers, it is time for coffee. This is possible at hotel Svizzero, a small but good hotel where they serve delicious coffee.

After coffee, you set course for the beautiful Gotthard Pass. Look out for a while at the second roundabout after Biasca. TomTom clearly indicates the right way ('180 degrees' straight ahead), while Garmin wants you to turn at almost three-quarters of the roundabout. Now that is going to be difficult, because there is a fence. But beyond that lies the old road. If you take the right exit you can immediately turn left onto the old road, but since it is a dead end, you better not do that. Follow the signs 'San Gottardo' then it can hardly go wrong. After just less than 1 kilometer you will see that you are back on the route.

Before you reach the Gotthard Pass you first have the opportunity to visit the waterfall in the river Piumogna. This waterfall has a fall height of 43 meters and is considered one of the most spectacular in this area. It is easily accessible on foot, there are parking lots nearby and it is an unmissable attraction for nature lovers. A suspension bridge over the creek, which gives the name to this wild waterfall, allows visitors to enjoy a natural spectacle of rare beauty in complete safety.

Once you are back on the road you still have about 20 kilometers to go before reaching the Gotthard Pass. Make no mistake, those are 20 beautiful kilometers. Beautiful mountains, nice mountain villages and vast green meadows determine the scenery through which you drive.
At some point you will reach the point where the Gotthard tunnel (17km!) Starts. The routes that run along the top also start there. There is an old and a new part, this climb runs entirely over the old part. Only in the descent do the routes come together at a certain point.
A warning is in order, the pavement of this pass still consists in part of so-called cobblestones, especially in bends. When the road surface is wet, these can be treacherously slippery. With a dry road there is little to worry about, except for the bumping ...

Also pay attention to the higher situated new part of the pass when climbing. The panorama galleries are beautifully visible from the old pass. Only then does it become apparent what a gigantic building this is and what an effort it must have cost.

After the Gotthard you arrive at Hospental, turn left and start the ascent of the Furka Pass. You follow the 19 to Realp. That's where the last part of the climb starts. On top of the pass you have a beautiful view (if the weather cooperates), reason to stop for a few photos.

In the descent you will soon arrive (3rd hairpin bend) at hotel Belvedere. This old hotel is widely known from photos. If you say Furka Pass, you say Hotel Belvedere. Wonderful to stop in the parking lot and take a few pictures.
Another reason to stop here is because if you stand with your back to the hotel in the parking lot, you will see the path that takes you to the Rhône glacier. It's a short walk of approx. 200 meters.
Since the opening of today's Furka pass 150 years ago, thousands of tourists have come to see this unique mountain panorama with the Rhone glacier. Nowadays you park at the Hotel Belvédère and you walk to the ice cave drilled every year. The glacier itself looks white-gray, but in the 100-meter long ice tunnel and in the ice hall, everything lights up in magical subtle shades of blue. The glacier here moves 30 ~ 40 meters per year, sometimes more than 10 cm in a day. Also a lot of ice melts away during the summer; the ice cave is still 100 meters deep at the start of the season, and only 70 meters at the end of the summer. One can enjoy this glacier panorama from the viewing platform and soon also from the platform at the glacial lake. This is because a new glacial lake is created at the foot of the glacier. Take a moment to contemplate this beautiful natural phenomenon!

At the bottom of the pass you come to the mountain village of Gletsch, a hamlet consisting of a large old luxury hotel (royal) with a mountain station and an Anglican chapel. It is part of the village of Oberwald. After being closed for years it has been put back into use as it is considered a monument. Gletsch is deserted in the winter.

After lunch you immediately start climbing the Grimsel Pass. After a number of hairpin bends you arrive at a small lake, the Totesee, located at the top of the Grimselpass. A little further on is the Grimselsee, which is a lot bigger.
To be able to view and photograph the area well, you can turn left just after the water and park at the indicated spot.

A little further there is the possibility to walk over a suspension bridge, the Handeckfallbrücke. The suspension bridge got its name on the one hand because of the place name Handeck and on the other because it crosses several waterfalls. Even though the suspension bridge itself is right next to the valley station of the Gelmerbahn and is also used to cross the motorway below, it is very pleasantly surrounded by beautiful nature and equally well integrated into it. The fact that it is a magnet for suspension bridge fetishists has certainly also been included in the planning of the project.
Some details of the suspension bridge: Wingspan: 70 meters, height: 70 meters and width: 65 centimeters. Bring it on if you dare! And it's free too ...

You continue the route towards Innertkirchen, where the route turns right towards the Sustenpass. This forms the connection between Innertkirchen and Wassen. The pass is located at an altitude of 2,224 meters. The current road was built between 1938 and 1945, making it one of the newer Swiss pass roads. The Susten Pass is rarely used as a transit route and is especially important for tourism. For this reason, the road is not kept free of snow during the winter.
From Innertkirchen the road leads up through the sparsely inhabited Gadmental. The highest point of the route over the Susten Pass is in a short tunnel. There are a few buildings and spacious parking spaces on the Bernese side. The actual Susten Pass can only be reached on foot. The descent takes you through the green Meiental to Wassen. During this descent there is the possibility to stop at Sustenbrüggli for a cup of coffee or something else. This gives you the opportunity to enjoy the Meiental during this break.

From Wassen the route runs over the 2, which meanders along the A2. At Fluelen you can already see the water of the Vierwaltstättersee. A few kilometers further on you turn left for the last time (just before the tunnel!) To arrive at today's end point. That is hotel Tellsplatte in Sisikon. A hotel in a beautiful location with an even better view. Enjoy with a capital G.

Have fun driving this route!
Handeck suspension bridge
Rhône glacier
Useful links:
Hotel Tellsplatte Sisikon
Waterfall of Piumogna
Handeck suspension bridge

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Waypoint, used to construct the route
Sight, here you can see something
Viewpoint, a short stop for taking a picture
Stopping point, for hotel, lunch, etc
Attention, see the text in the waypoint for more information

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Arno van Lochem - RouteXpert
The images and text displayed here originate from the Wikipedia article "Ticino", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.
About this region
Ticino (), sometimes Tessin (), officially the Republic and Canton of Ticino or less formally the Canton of Ticino, is one of the 26 cantons forming the Swiss Confederation. It is composed of eight districts and its capital city is Bellinzona. It is also traditionally divided into the Sopraceneri and the Sottoceneri, respectively north and south of Monte Ceneri. Red and blue are the colours of its flag. Ticino is the southernmost canton of Switzerland. It is one of the three large southern Alpine cantons, along with Valais and the Grisons. However, unlike all other cantons, it lies almost entirely south of the Alps. Through the main crest of the Gotthard and adjacent mountain ranges, it borders the canton of Valais to the northwest, the canton of Uri to the north and the canton of Grisons to the northeast; the latter canton being also the only one to share some borders with Ticino at the level of the plains. The canton shares international borders with Italy as well, including a small Italian enclave. Named after the Ticino, its longest river, it is the only canton where Italian is the sole official language and represents the bulk of the Italian-speaking area of Switzerland along with the southern parts of the Grisons. In 2019, Ticino had a population of 351,491. The largest city is Lugano and the two other notable centres are Bellinzona and Locarno. The canton is a major tourist destination and is renowned for its distinct culture and gastronomy, and also for its warmer climate, especially around Lake Maggiore and Lake Lugano. The land now occupied by the canton was annexed from Italian cities in the 15th century by various Swiss forces in the last transalpine campaigns of the Old Swiss Confederacy. In the Helvetic Republic, established 1798, it was divided between the two new cantons of Bellinzona and Lugano. The creation of the Swiss Confederation in 1803 saw these two cantons combine to form the modern canton of Ticino. Because of its unusual position, the canton relies on important infrastructures for connections with the rest of the country. The first major north-south railway link, the Gotthard Railway, opened in 1882. In 2016 was inaugurated the Gotthard Base Tunnel, the first flat route through the Alps.
Amount of visits (Ticino)
Amount of routes verified by RouteXperts (Ticino)
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Route collections
The route collections by MyRoute-app are collections of multiple routes that belong to each other and checked by MRA RouteXperts. All routes are identical for TomTom, Garmin and MyRoute-app Navigation.
View route collection From Innsbruck to Holland in 7 days
About this route collection
The Alps, a mountain range in Europe stretching from the French Mediterranean coast in the southwest to the Pannonian plain in the east, almost always guarantee beautiful routes. It can hardly be boring there. The many passes, views and variations in the landscape make the Alps a true motorcycle paradise. Driving around the Alps is really quite an experience. You have not yet passed one corner or the next one is coming. While climbing from the valley, see the landscape change from wooded slopes with splashing waterfalls to alpine meadows where there is no longer a tree and asphalt roads that cut the eternal snow. Arrived at the top of the mountain, enjoy phenomenal views of the surrounding snow-capped peaks, as if you were standing on the roof of the world.

The 7 routes of this collection lead you from Austria to the Netherlands via Italy, Switzerland, Germany and a few kilometers France. Various passes are visited, including the Tonale, the Gavia, the Stelvio, the St Gotthard, the Grimsel and so I can go on for a while. Each one of them is a pleasure to ride.
You would think that after the Alps the fun is over, but nothing could be further from the truth. From the Alps you drive through Switzerland into the Black Forest. You can enjoy yourself for a week in that area alone. From the Black Forest you drive to the Eifel, also a famous area among motorcyclists. Consider, for example, the busy Nürburgring.
The last part of the route is on the motorway, because then you have arrived in a non-interesting area: the Ruhr area. Busy, drab and gray. Reason to do this via the highway, then you will get through it quickly. Driving inside is not an issue here. You drive from one town into another, often with lots of traffic lights and correspondingly heavy traffic.

A few attractions are discussed per route in the review. These often tell something about the history of the area in which you are driving. Fun facts, quite educational. Often there are also indicated places where you can find some entertainment, for example a suspension bridge at a great height. You are completely free to visit these sights, you can of course also determine your own interesting points.
But the most important thing you've probably traveled to this area for is simply driving. And as mentioned above, you are in a true motorcycle paradise where the steering is fantastic!

Each route ends at a hotel. It is of course not an obligation to use these hotels, you can always find another place to stay in the area, you are completely free. However, my experience is that they are all simple but good hotels for a very reasonable price. They are known and can be booked via booking.com.

The routes of these collections:

R01 - Innsbruck to Stelvio, 289km
R02 - Stelvio to Maccagno, 264km
R03 - Maccagno to Sisikon, 271km
R04 - Sisikon to Rickenbach, 273km
R05 - Rickenbach to Forbach, 253km
R06 - Forbach to Kirchberg, 288km
R07 - Kirchberg to Arnhem, 400km

Have fun riding these routes!