Red Train of Bernina

A trip on the Bernina red train that goes from Tirano to St. Moritz in Switzerland crossing the mountains, traditional villages and glaciers. Amazing views, but also comfort on a train with a traditional design.
  • Travelling time: 1 day

  • Difficulty: Easy

  • Why we love it: the mountains, for the remote villages in the countryside, for the confort of the train, because it is a unique trip in the world.

  • Length: 60 km

  • Total Elevation Gain: 1824 m

  • Way to travel: by train, by foot

  • Cost: 62 CHF

  • Our Advice: Departure from Tirano by train to St. Moritz unabated. Lunch in St. Moritz and return in the afternoon with 1 or 2 stops walking around. Return in the evening. Two type of train: Standard no booking required or Panoramic, booking required.

Train itinerary in the Alps

Leaving the station of Tirano, the red train enters in the Poschiavo Valley in Switzerland. This is the steepest section that allows the train to get to the Bernina Pass.

After a few km from the start, in Switzerland, the train exceeds the famous viadotto Brusio, a symbol of the railway.

Viadotto Brusio
Viadotto Brusio, photograph by Stefano Bertolotti, via flikcr

Then the valley meets the lake of Poschiavo at almost 1000 meters above the sea level. The valley widens and on the right of the pass of Bernina you see the pace of the same name, the highest point of this trip.

 

Bernina pass covered by the snow
Bernina Pass, photograph by Epilpera, via flikcr

Then we arrive in Poschiavo, beautiful village from which the name of the valley, at about 1000 meters above sea level.

From Poschiavo train climbs the slope of the mountain and then down in the Valtellina. The train passes through green valley and forests. The view is just amazing.

Reaching the altitude of about 1700 meters above sea level the train arrives in Cavaglia, pleasant stop for walks and to visit the park of Rocks of Giants.

 

The next stop is Alp Grum at 2091 meters with a magnificent view of the glacier of Palu, the Poschiavo valley to the peaks of Valtellina.

 

The Bernina Pass along an artificial lake called Lake White. The milky color of the water is due to the "glacial flour" of the glacier Cambrena just above.

now we meet the Black Lake and Lake Small, two natural lakes fed by mountain streams and not from glacier water as with the White Lake. This is why they have a different color and different transparency of the water.

 

Morteratsch
Morteratsch, photograph by Bodyl, via flikcr

 

The stop of Morteratsch is recommended for those who want to make a simple walk of about an hour to the base of the glacier, in the heart of the Bernina.

The train passes through beautiful woods in prevalence of pine to get to Pontresina, historical holiday resort: the imposing and elegant hotels are testimony. From here, the train arrives at the station in St. Moritz at 1775 meters above sea level, where you can enjoy the town and the lunch.

Coming back in the afternoon you can choose one or two stops that you have previously seen in the morning.

Cost: The ticket / return 2nd class Tirano - St.Moritz costs 62.00 Swiss francs. One way costs 31 Swiss francs.

Author: Gaia Giongo

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