The Route 19 is full of surprises and changes of scenery. The 5kms between Laax and Flims is the home of the Rhine Gorge where some magnificent scenery is. We could see some of it from the road, but didn't have time to actually go into, and do some hiking.
This is another very pretty area.
The Rhine Gorge happened over 10,000 years ago, when the biggest landslide in the Alp's and in the World happened at Flim's.
The valley was completely filled with debris several hundred metres thick.
From Selva, we are heading to Disentis-Muster.
Along the way, we saw a roadside Chapel, and I mean roadside! I wondered what they were like inside, so we stopped and I was able to have a look. I was quite surprised to see a scene with Jesus & Mary.
There were many more small Village's on the way. We stopped to see the large Viaduct on the Glacier Express Train line, and then another stop was made for valley view's before Disentis-Muster.
I didn't know, but near the Town of Sedrun which we passed through, is where the Rhine River begins its journey.
One of the small town's we stopped at on the Overalp Pass, was Disentis-Muster.
Here was an enormous building which turned out to be Disentis Abbey.
It is one of the oldest Benedictine monasteries in Switzerland, dating back to 720, its huge complex dates from 1696 to 1712. The name Disentis is supposed to come from Latin Desertina, used for the deserted valley in late antique times.
The Abbey has a museum showing the history of the monastery, religious art and Christian traditions and in a natural history exhibition crystals and minerals from the region.
Location....Via Claustra street
I wish I could tell you the name of this Church, but I can't. I can tell you it is on one side of the Abbey, so I wonder if it is something to do with it.
It is another beautiful Church inside, really stunning and quite unexpected.
On the outside, it is painted white, and has some frescoes. Beside it, is the Cemetery.
If you like Churches, then this one is another MUST SEE!
Via Claustra street
From the Lake which is high up, we follow the now named road "Via Alpsu." It is down hill all the way, and we can see the road as it winds its way down the Moutain side. Plenty of zig-zag's, good scenery and some Swiss Cow's with their Bell's on, before we finally come to the Town of Selva. I must say I was surprised to see a very nice Golf Course at Selva.
The Oberalpsee, a large Lake, was our next stop. We entered a long road tunnel which wasn't fully enclosed, and this is how we saw our first view of the Lake. Once out of the Tunnel, we were able to pull up for a look and to take some photo's.
In May, the scenery was great! The grass was very green, and there still was some snow on the Mountain tops. The air was so clean and crisp, no smog up here! The jagged peaks looked spectacular!
You can see the road tunnel in my first photo.
From Andermatt, we wanted to head to Chur, so rather than go the long way around,
we took Route 19, THE OVERALP PASS.
This is another of those high Alpine Roads, [2044M] with many, many "S" Bend's and marvellous scenery most of the way. As the road is good, we had no worries driving it, but if you are not a competent driver, it may not be for you, take the Train instead. Lot's of Motorbike's were on this road, and not all are sensible rider's, something else to contend with!
Stop at anywhere there is a pull-off, we stopped nearly immediately after leaving Andermatt for a fantastic view of the valley and Andermatt. This was STOP 1.
We were here in May, so the road was open, but it is closed in Winter. The pasture's were a brilliant green, the meadow flower's were blooming, we saw Swiss Cow's grazing right at the top, the River Reuss and waterfall's, lot's of small Village's, many little hut's scattered around the Mountain side's and the Glacier Express Train.
The road closure depends on snowfall and differs therefore between end of October to beginning of December. Its opening in spring can be expected by the end of April but may also be happen by mid May.
It is a beautiful, scenic drive, one I am glad we did!
Now join me as we head to Chur, and make several stops along the way
A must do, is to go inside the Abbey Church
It is big, it is beautiful!
There are many painting's, and much detailed, delicate stucco work, really well done!
I had a look at all of the 6 Altar's in this Church, and they are all worth a look. Many of the Altar's have a lot of gold, and really are stunning to view!
Outside, is a very pretty cemetery, which had lots of Pansie's flowering at the time I was there.
I thought this was rather nice, as was the view from here.
Check out the travelogue for more photo's of the Church