Alpine Circle Bike-Tour

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Explore the most beautiful sights of Graubünden along the "Alpine Circle" by mountain bike or e-mountain bike in four or five days. The route of the "Alpine Circle Bike Tour" leads to the Diavolezza glacier world, past the Swiss National Park, to the Landwasser Viaduct, through the Rhine Gorge and ends in the old town of Chur. Overnight stays are available for three or four nights in the Swiss Youth Hostels in St. Moritz, Davos, Valbella and optionally in Laax.

Day 1: Arrival in Pontresina, tour to Morteratsch, back through Stazerwald to St. Moritz

After arriving in Pontresina by train, the tour towards Morteratsch gives you the opportunity to experience the impressive glacier world of the Bernina massif. Shortly after Pontresina railway station, a gravel path leads uphill through sparse larch forests, first steeply for a short while, then only slightly uphill for a longer time until you reach the Morteratsch restaurant with the railway station after about six kilometres and about 150 metres in altitude.

Here you are presented with an extremely impressive scenery with a view of the imposing glaciers of the Bernina massif. If you have time, follow the two-kilometre-long glacier trail to the present-day end of the Morteratsch glacier, which in 1850 reached almost as far as the railway line at Morteratsch station. 
From the Morteratsch station, a well-maintained trail leads uphill to the Bernina Pass road, which is crossed in a serpentine. Here you have another opportunity to admire the view of Piz Bernina, then follow a forest road slightly downhill. After a few hundred metres, a single trail branches off to the left; it runs parallel to the road, is not very difficult, but offers a lot of riding fun. Follow the path to Pontresina, ride through the village and cross the Inn at its end, whereupon the route leads uphill again into the Stazerwald. Passing the picturesque Stazersee lake, you reach St. Moritz Youth Hostel.

Day 2: From St. Moritz to Zernez, visit to National Park Museum possible, by train through Vereina Tunnel, via Klosters to Davos

On the second day of the "Alpine Circle Bike Tour", you leave St. Moritz Youth Hostel in the direction of the Stazerwald forest, ride in the opposite direction to the previous day past the picturesque Stazersee lake and reach the San Gian church near Celerina via a flowing trail. From there you follow the Inn down the valley, with hardly any notable climbs to S-chanf. The stage can also be covered in sections by train, as the Rhaetian Railway serves practically every village between St. Moritz and S-chanf.

If you want to challenge yourself physically and technically, turn left in S-chanf into Val Susauna, tackle the ascent of around 1000 metres in altitude to the Scalettapass and reach Davos through the Dischma Valley, mostly on trails. 
If you follow on the much less demanding main route of the "Alpine Circle Bike Tour" to Zernez, there are some short but crisp climbs. You follow the signposted route of the National Park Bike Marathon and reach the museum of Switzerland's only national park in Zernez. A visit to the museum is definitely worthwhile and is the remaining opportunity for mountain bikers to enter the park. This is because its area is a no-go zone for mountain bikers and may not be ridden on. In Zernez you then take the train to Klosters, where you change to the train to Davos Dorf and from there in a few minutes you reach the Davos Youthhostel, situated a little above on the hillside.

Day 3: From Davos through the Landwasser Valley to Tiefencastel, by post bus to Valbella

On the third day, you follow the Landwasser Valley, the course of which you can see perfectly from the Davos Youth Hostel and which gives its name to the famous viaduct. To do this, you ride through Davos to Glaris and via Ardüsch you reach the «Alter Zügenweg», a beautiful single trail that requires a lot of energy uphill. After a short but steep section on a gravel road, you turn onto the narrow ridgeway to Wiesen and reach Davos Wiesen station via fun single trails.

Along the Landwasser River you head for the world-famous Landwasser Viaduct, pass under the imposing structure, and then roll along the Albula to Tiefencastel. The Valbella Youth Hostel can be reached in a few minutes by post bus from Tiefencastel at the Valbella Dorf or Parpaner Höhe stop. 
If you want to challenge yourself again and tackle one of the highlights in Davos, take the mountain railway to Jakobshorn and from there tackle the legendary IMBA award-winning "Alps Epic Trail". Via Sertig, Jatzmäder and Monstein you reach Jenisberg, where you can enjoy a well-deserved snack in the Gässälibeiz after around 30 kilometres and almost 600 challenging metres of altitude. From Davos Wiesen you follow the previously described main route of the "Alpine Circle Bike Tour" to Tiefencastel for the remaining 15 kilometres.

Day 4: From Valbella via Alter Schyn into Domleschg, via Rheindamm to Reichenau-Tamins,

4a&c: on the Rhine bank path to Chur.
4a&b: via Versam and Valendas to Sagogn, by post bus to Laax

The fourth day of the "Alpine Circle Bike Tour" begins at Valbella Youth Hostel and is first followed by the long descent over the Alter Schyn into Domleschg. The path carved into the steep walls of the Schyn Gorge is impressive to ride through, even if the passage is easy to master from a technical point of view.

Once you reach the Domleschg valley floor, you have the choice of taking the train from Thusis to Reichenau or riding the 15 kilometres or so along the Hinterrhein yourself. Since the entire day's route is quite long and you don't miss much in terms of biking on the section to Reichenau, it's worth taking the train.

Variant without Laax:

From Reichenau you cross the Rhine and climb the incline to the village centre of Tamins, from where you then set off the final fireworks on the first-class Rhine bank trail, which only ends at Rossboden in Chur. From there you can reach Chur railway station in around ten minutes.

Variant with Laax:

From Reichenau, you tackle a long climb to Versam and follow the road for a short distance before branching off at the gravel works onto the hiking trail to Carrera. From Carrera, the road leads to Valendas. At the end of the village, the old road branches off to the right to Valendas railway station, where you cross the Rhine. After a short climb, the post bus takes you to Sagogn and from there on to Laax-Dorf. From Ilanz you reach the "WellnessHostel3000" in Laax comfortably by post bus and enjoy the luxury of having an indoor swimming pool with an extensive wellness area directly in the house. After four days of the "Alpine Circle Bike Tour", an extended wellness visit is recommended. Possibly extend your stay to have enough time to relax.

Day 5: From Laax via Il Spir to Chur

The conclusion of the five-day "Alpine Circle Bike Tour" begins at the "wellnessHostel3000" with a ride through the Flimserwald forest, past Lake Cauma and to the viewing platform "Il Spir", high above the Rhine Gorge. A short detour to the platform is obligatory, especially as the section of the Rhine Gorge travelled the previous day can be seen from here. The continuation of the final stage leads past Trin Digg, where a few more single-trail sections await and Tamins is subsequently reached.

The final bouquet is ignited on the first-class Rhine bank trail, which only ends at Rossboden in Chur. From there you can reach Chur railway station in about ten minutes. Those who have opted for a relaxed finish can forego the last stage, board the post bus in Laax and start the return journey directly there.

Or perhaps you would prefer to travel by train or on foot?

Experience the Alpine Circle Tour at your own pace

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