Alpine Altitude

Austria & Switzerland

Alpine Altitude

Austria & Switzerland

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Alpine Altitude
Austria & Switzerland

The alpine scenery, mountain passes and beautiful landscapes are just some of the highlights of this tour.

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11 Day Self-Guided Tour

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Traverse the soaring hairpins of Austria and Switzerland's finest high alpine passes. Glacial grandeur meets switchback thrills.
Ben Spear and Felix Billington.
Find out more about Magellan Guides
If zooming round twisties and hairpins along cobbled mountain passes in the beautiful snowy Alps are your thing then this tour is absolutely for you. We ride some exquisite roads, and stop off at places of historical and cultural significance throughout this tour, so it’s a true delight for riders and pillions alike.
  • Self Guided Tour
  • 11 Days
  • 2000 miles
  • Folkestone, UK

May to September

Your tour starts with a day’s cross country riding through picturesque northern France along the Route D’Epinal to your first nights stop on the edge of the Lorraine National Park. From here you make your way to the first historical point of interest at Verdun, you can visit the memorial and walk around the battle site made famous in the first world war. You then ride into eastern France before crossing the border into Germany via the beautiful Vosges mountains.

The afternoon’s ride brings you into the Black Forest region and to your second night’s stop near Baden Baden, here you can rest up and get ready for the first famous road of the trip in the shape of the B500, this stretch of tarmac has long been coveted by bikers looking for long sweeping roads that run from bend to bend. Sure not to disappoint, it will have you wanting to ride it over and over again.

Ben Spear, Trip guide
Ben Spear, Trip guide

Norway is often the trip people are most suprised by. Just how dramatic the scenery and empty the roads are. Come and join me in August and experience a beautiful country with tremendous twisty roads.

The Magnificent Austrian Tyrol

From one kind of beauty to another you leave Germany and head into Austria through the foothills of the beautiful mountains of Tyrol to your base for 2 nights near the historic town of Zell am See. Here you have a day off with the choice of a ride out to the famous Grossglockner high alpine road, the highest surfaced mountain pass in Austria or a day trip to the Eagle’s nest- Hitler’s summer retreat in Berchtesgaden. You then leave Zell am See continuing west to the awe inspiring Swiss Alps.

The Swiss Alps are one of the world’s most famous biker havens and its not difficult to see why with endless hairpins and breathtaking beauty they bring bikers back here year on year and on this tour you ride five of the greatest mountain passes in Switzerland. Take on the St Gotthard pass with its famous cobbled hairpins, get in touch with your inner 007 on the Furka pass immortalised by the car chase in Goldfinger then ride the giddy heights of the Grimsel pass at an elevation of 7,100 feet and the Nufenen at 8,130 feet.

See if you can track this cow down on the B500!

See if you can track this cow down on the B500!

Glacier waters of the Tyrolean Alps

We come back down through the mountains and valleys past crystal clear lakes into the Vosges region again via the Routes des Cretes the very scenic road often cited as one of the best scenic drives in France. We continue riding North through the Vosges the following day before heading to Charlons en Champagne near Reims for our final night's stop.

Your last adventure on this tour comes with a visit to the GP track Reims-Gueux, the disused track was the second location of the Grand Prix, several Formula one races and the MotoGP. The route takes you on the old track riding past the old pits and grandstand before heading towards Calais

The Grossglockner, epic Alpine passes, 007 and beautiful picturesque towns these are a few of our favourite things! Come and set the hills alive with the sound of your motorbike!

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Tour highlights

The B500 in the German Black Forest: All the roads in the Black forest are steep and twisty and the B500 is no exception. A road that consistently features in the top ten biking roads in the world, its many twists are curves along the forest ridge are exhilarating.

Grossglockner High alpine road and glaciers: At 2,500 km above sea level the Grossglockner boasts 36 unforgettable elegant hairpins sure to delight any rider!

The Eagle’s Nest in Berchtesgaden: The Kehlsteinhaus is a remnant from third-reich era Germany, Hitler’s alpine summer retreat. It’s a fascinating destination for any history buffs amongst the group, as it was the location of many Nazi government meetings and on at least 12 occasions a holiday spot for Hitler.

'Excellent!! 5* Fantastic trip with heaps of great memories that will last a lifetime, everything from the routes to the daily banter was superb. Can’t wait to get away again.'
Andy B

St Gotthard pass: This pass consists of 37 cobbled (but well layed!) hairpins, sheer drops and steep curves on a dry day it's a biker’s dream.

Furka pass: The Furka pass needs no introduction to any James Bond fans. Immortalised by the Aston Martin DB5/Ford Mustang car chase in Goldfinger this road is as exhilarating as it is picturesque.

Neufenen pass: The second highest paved pass in Switzerland and featured in Adventure Bike Rider’s eight best mountain passes to ride before you die the Nufenen pass is an exquisite mix of hairpins and breathtaking views of the Bernese Alps.

Grimsel pass: This traffic free pass boasts landscape that is almost lunar, with granite rock formations, huge reservoirs and barren mountains.

Route des Crêtes in the Vosges Mountains: A real jewel in the Vosges mountains the Route des Cretes has twisties and sweeping bends to really get your blood pumping!

Douaumont Ossuary WW1 war memorial at Verdun: The battle of Verdun claimed the lives of 300,000 soldiers, and the Bishop of the area wished to give them a ‘decent burial’. The Douaumont Ossuary houses a Necropolis which shelters the bodies of 16,142 known French soldiers, and the Ossuary which houses the bones of roughly 130,000 unknown French and German soldiers.

The Eagle’s Nest in Berchtesgaden

99.7 % Overall
100 % Would recommend

Tour Map / Itinerary

Full Itinerary

Day 1 288 Miles

A day’s cross country ride straight off the Tunnel through northern France riding along the Route D’Epinal to your hotel at the edge of the Lorraine National Park.

Day 2 211 Miles

You enter Germany via the Vosges mountains. The afternoon brings you into the Black Forest region and then on to your hotel near Baden-Baden.

Day 3 221 Miles

You ride B500 which takes you through Bavaria and on to your hotel on the border with Austria.

Day 4 137 Miles

Continue into Austria today through the foothills of the Tyrol to your base for the next 2 nights near Zell am See.

Day 5 Explore Day / Rideout Day

Either ride the Grossglockner high alpine road, or take a day trip to the Eagle’s nest in Berchtesgaden, Hitler’s summer retreat.

Day 6 225 Miles

Leave Zell am See and continue west through Austria towards your next challenge, the Swiss Alps.

Day 7 90 Miles

Ride some amazing mountain passes today to find your hotel for the next 2 nights, which is a lovely traditional place surrounded by Swiss peaks.

Day 8 110 Miles

Tackle 5 of the greatest mountain passes in Switzerland. The St Gotthard pass, the Furka Pass, the Neufenen pass and the Grimsel pass.

Day 9 170 Miles

Ride to the Vosges region of France via the Route des Crêtes to your overnight stop.

Day 10 216 Miles

Ride north through the epic scenery of the Vosges before heading down to the Champagne region and relax at the last hotel on the tour.

Day 11 191 Miles

Hearty breakfast, a visit to a disused GP track outside of Reims and then onwards to the channel tunnel for the final leg of the trip home.

What's included
Euro Tunnel return trip Folkestone-Calais (if Folkestone isn’t convenient for you do please get in touch as other crossings can be arranged see Q&As below).
10 Nights accommodation in good quality hotels.
Excellent breakfast each morning.
Full use of all hotels’ leisure facilities.
Detailed route plans and maps.
GPS routes (Garmin / Tom Tom).
Detailed daily itinerary including sights and suggested coffee / lunch stops.
Fully guided and supported by an experienced tour guide throughout.
What's not
Toll charges.
Admission charges.
Occasional hotel parking charges.
Meals and drinks.
Travel/Breakdown insurance covering repatriation back to the UK.

Common questions about this trip

Can I get a different crossing on this trip?

Of course, many of our clients cross by ferry from further north. If you would like to do this and make your own way to the hotel on the first night just let us know in the comments section of your booking form and we will deduct the cost of the Eurotunnel crossing from your booking.

When is the best time of year to do this trip?

May to September as a rule although as late as October can work with a dash of luck. This trip crosses a number of high passes and the usual opening times are below. Be aware that even in August some of these can close at short notice due to adverse weather conditions. There are always ways round these passes but worth bearing in mind when planning the best dates for your tour.
Grossglockner: Beginning of May to the end of October.
Swiss passes: Mid May to October

Are the speeding fines as scary as I’ve heard in Austria and Switzerland?

In a word, yes. However the only place you really need to keep an eye out is in the small towns with low limits (20/30 kmph) and the extra vigilance needed here is more than made up for by the world class riding that their passes offer.

More information
For general information on planning and preparing for motorcycle trips including what to pack please see our Prepare for your trip section.
Magellan Hub
Want to ask one of the team a question, or a get a previous tourer’s take on a trip?

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