4-day driving tour in Switzerland in January

4-day driving tour in Switzerland in January

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Jamesmc
Jamesmc
3 posts
new member
Jan 2, 2017 - 3:43 AM

Good evening,

Happy New Year!

We are after some advice on driving through Switzerland and places to visit. We will be arrive by car from Belgium on the evening of the 8th January and need to be in Trento Italy for the evening of the 11th. We are from Canada so quite used to driving in snowy conditions.

We are looking for a good scenic (and hopefully open) route to drive and places to visit over the 2 days we are in Switzerland. We are happy to use car trains if that helps.

cheers

James

Lucas
Lucas
5516 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 2, 2017 - 9:52 AM in reply to Jamesmc

Hi Jamesmc!

Happy New Year to you and welcome to MySwissAlps!

Good to hear from another Canadian!

Option 1: The most direct route and most likely to be open is entering Switzerland through Baseland head East to Zurich, and on to Innsbruck, Austria and south down to Trento. This is also a lovely scenic trip I've made a few times by car (in Spring and Summer only so far).

Option 2: Head for Lucerneafter Basel and on to Andermatt, Lugano and into Milan, then head east to Trento (though you may not want to drive in Milan for any period of time!)

This would perhaps be the most scenic option and offer some breathtaking scenery. However it would be much more prone to road closures once you've gotten to Andermatt and beyond.

Other members here may be able to testify to that.

I can imagine a great road trip if the weather holds and you get nice sunny days, but as you know winter weather in mountain areas can change on a dime. Are you from BC or Alberta and spent any time driving in the Rockies? Are delays on your arrival into Trento acceptable?

Lucerne would be a great city to stop in for two nights and explore the area if you go that route. Visiting Basel or Zurich and the Appenzell region would be my suggestion if you take the northern route. What are you looking to see during your stops in Switzerland?

For more information on driving in Switzerland and car trains take a look at travelling by car in Switzerland

I look forward to your thoughts,
Lucas

Last modified on Jan 2, 2017 - 6:37 PM by Lucas
Jamesmc
Jamesmc
3 posts
new member
Jan 3, 2017 - 12:56 AM in reply to Lucas

Hi Lucas,

Thanks for the info. I'm actually from Australia but now living in Montreal (so adopted Canadian) with my partner who is born and breed Montreal-ian!

We are slowly putting together these few days. Taking your advice and staying the first night in Lucerne, then next two nights are up for debate. We love good scenery and my partner would love to be staying in the alps for two nights to get the good swiss alps vibe. Present thoughts are either;

Option A - Drive to Lauterbrunnen and then train up to Wengen or Murren and stay for two night then drive to Trento via Andermatt on the Wednesday

Option B - Day trip to Lauterbrunnen area, stay that night at Engelberg. Next day explore Engelberg and make our way toward Andermatt/Lugano and stay a night on route (suggestions?), Wednesday drive to Trento, possibly via Como and Sondrio if possible.

Option C - anything you can recommend, we have tossed around St Moritz a bit.

Questions

- Are there any "car trains" that can assist us if roads are closed

- How often is the Autoroute 2 closed for snow? Understand its all weather dependent driving in the alps, just trying to put together a few back up plans too.

Yes, its a business meeting Thursday morning I have to be in Trento for.

Thanks for the help

James

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
4486 posts
expert
Jan 3, 2017 - 1:06 AM in reply to Jamesmc

Hi James-

I like option A. Might be better to minimize Alpine routes, at the expense of longer driving times. Lots to see around the Jungfrau region, minimize Alpine driving. Maybe go back north before heading out to Austria.

My own feelings are that you are pushing the limits a bit with the mountain driving. But, I'm cautious driving in the mountains, although we have plenty of snow and ice here in Connecticut.

it is not the snow and ice, it is the Alpine roads which may have no guard rails....didn't used to have them in places where I'd expect them.

Slowpoke

Last modified on Jan 3, 2017 - 1:12 AM by Slowpoke
Arno
Arno
10344 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 3, 2017 - 9:10 AM in reply to Jamesmc

Hi James,

Please have a look at the last link Lucas gave you. It offers lots of details about traveling by car, including a page about car trains.

Just let us know if any questions remain.

Lucas
Lucas
5516 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 4, 2017 - 10:20 AM in reply to Jamesmc

Hi again James,

Montreal-er? haha.

Yes, even though I've spent a fair bit of time driving in the Rockies in Alberta/BC I'd try not to push my luck either here. (I worried less when I was 20 I think!).

While snow removal here is great, as Slowpoke mentions sometimes there are no guard rails where you hope they will be...If I was driving in the in the area you are looking at I'd try to have extra time to deal with closures and delays of a day or so.

All the best!
Lucas

Jamesmc
Jamesmc
3 posts
new member
Jan 4, 2017 - 10:31 AM

Thanks for all the help guys. It's going to be a fantastic trip and warnings we'll. it's about the area we are driving in. Will keep the route through Innsbruck as the final back up. Cheers

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