||LEFT: The Bernina
Express on the RhB's Wiesner Viaduct.
Express may be more famous, but Switzerland's Bernina Express is that
train's equal--or better--when it comes to spectacular scenery. In his guidebook for Alpine train travelers,
by Rail, Anthony Lambert writes:
"This line is the highest rail crossing of the Alps, helping to
make it one of Europe's outstanding train journeys. Where else can you travel
from glaciers to palm trees in two hours? In summer open-air cars enable
passengers to experience the views and glorious air without the interference of
glass, making it perfect for photographers. The climb is made even more
astonishing by the fact that it is achieved without rack assistance [cogwheels],
compelling the builders to devise tortuous loops and spirals to gain or lose
height. Sit on the right."
The Rhaetian Railway's Bernina Express offers a choice of two routes:
- Chur-St. Moritz-Tirano (or reverse)
- Chur-Davos-Tirano (or reverse)
Schedules vary by season, with extra trains in summer. Check the
official timetables (see links on next page) and book in advance, since
seat reservations are mandatory.
reach Tirano, you have several choices:
1. Explore the palm-shaded town center briefly or have a quick lunch,
then return to St. Moritz or Chur on the westbound Bernina Express.
2. Catch the connecting bus for the three-hour road trip to the Swiss city of
3. Continue on to Milan via Sondrio and Lecco, Italy by train. Travel time is
about 2½ to 2¾ hours.
Sightseeing, Web links
Photo © Swiss-Image.ch.
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