I was following the Bear trail, but even if I wasn't, Andermatt is quite a nice town to go for a walk.
These are some sight's I saw............
like the fast flowing, River Reuss passing through town, and alongside it, a sculpture of boy playing a Flute next to a water fountain. There was a nicely kept cemetery beside the Church, and in many places, I had a good view of the surrounding Mountain's and the little Chapel located amongst the green grass on the side of the hill. One of the Restaurant's had a fence with wood-carving's! There really was quite a bit of interest, and some Cafe's if you wanted to stop for a rest or morning tea.
As you drive along the Gotthard Pass, you really need to watch for pull-off's, as this usually means there is something to see.
We saw one and stopped, and I went for the short walk and found the notice about a nicely arched River Bridge in the Schollenen gorge .
It was called the Haderlisbrucke, but this one wasn't old, it was fairly new, being constructed in 1991. It has been built as much as possible to be the same as the original. You can tell is is not old, because of the granite it is made from, it doesn't matter though, as it is a chance to stand on the middle of it, and enjoy the River Reuss.
The bridge is located on an ancient trade route which Mule's with their loads of supplies used to follow alongside the River Reuss. The original Bridge, was built in 1646, but was washed away by the tremendous force of water in a storm in 1987.
The area has good Mountain view's, and it is quite mesmerizing watching the pretty blue water, swirl and rush amongst the boulder's to make its way further downstream.
The Gotthard pass was one of our most beautiful drives in Switzerland.
It links the towns of Andermatt in Canton of Uri to Airolo in the Canton of Ticino.
The first road over the pass was opened to car's in 1830, then Train's were able to cross the pass in 1882. 177 people lost their lives building the Gotthard Rail Tunnel. In 1980, the motorway tunnel was opened, making it the third longest road tunnel in the world.
You don't have to drive the newer road, as the old road, called Tremola, can still be travelled on.
Great scenery for the car passenger, not for the driver, unless you can find a place to pull off!
Andermatt is in the 'VALLEY OF THE BEAR'S"
I don't know if these Bear's I found on the trail are permanent or not, but I had a very good time following the "Bear" trail. The Bear's were everywhere, some on verandah's, some hidden in the garden. They were painted differently, and my favorite would have to be, the "Bear on the Motorbike!"
Bear's are the emblem of the area!
The St. Peter & Paul Church in Andermatt, is a must to see inside.
It's richly decorated with a lot of gold, stucco and frescoes and really is beautiful, especially the High Altar!
The Catholic Church was built in 1602, and enlarged at the end of the 17th century, and is one of the most important Churches in the canton of Uri.
Some of the Town's have beautiful Rathaus's, and Andermatt is one of them!
It was built in 1583, and has a needle point Tower, and a nice arched verandah. The architect who designed the Town Hall, also created the fountain with the bear as a mascot in front of City Hall.
What a beautiful Chalet house is the Talmuseum! It was built in 1786, in the style of other homes in the Ursern valley.
It is a Museum, but it's only open a couple of hours over several day's, so if you do wish to see the inside, then you would need to plan your visit.
The Museum displays exhibit's on the local area, including wildlife, cultural history, what they grow in the Valley, about Mule tranportation years ago, and much more!
Some of the exhibition's change.
OPEN.....Wednesday to Sunday 4 - 6 PM
ADMISSION.....Adults 7sf.....Children 2.50 sf
The Reuss river which starts in the Gotthard mountain area cascades down the Schöllenen ravine. Its water has a beautiful colour and one can imagine that in a storm the river because quite fierce. It does flow underneath the devil's bridge.
Legend has it that locals tried to built a bridge over the Reuss river but they didn't manage and one guy showed "if only the devil would build it". The devil came and promised to build it, but it wanteds the first soul that crosses the bridge for it. The deal was duly made and when the bridge was finished after 3 days the locals sent a goat across. The devil got upset and took a huge rock and threated to destroy the bridge. A religious woman came along and made a cross on the rock and when the devil saw he run away never to be seen again.
You can see the devil's rock (picture 2) just outside Göschenen, on the left side when you are on the national SBB train coming up to Göschenen. In 1977 the rock had to be shifted 127 m which cost CHF 300'000.00 because it was in the way for the new highway. Modern legend has it that all the accidents on the highway occur because the rock was shifted...
This is apparently the oldest tunnel for traffic in the Swiss alps. The Urnerloch or Urner hole is 64 meters long and 1,6 km from Andermatt.
The engineer Pietro Moretti managed this difficult task to built the first tunnel through rock in 11 months. The construction took two lives. It was finished around mid August 1708. According to the contract it cost 1680 French taler but it turned out to be much more expensive with 3080.
The Talmuseum introduces you to the history, the culture of living and customs of the Urseren valley. The museum is housed in one of the most spectacular buildings in the valley.
The Russian General Suworow stayed here in this lovely building overnight on 25th September 1799.
The museum is open Wednesday till Saturday from 4 – 6 pm. In winter also on Sundays.
The St. Peter and Paul church is the most important one in the Ursern valley and one of the most important ones in the canton of Uri. It was built in 1602 and extended at the end of the 17th century by Bartholomäus Schmid of Hospental.
The St. Kolumban church is the only Romanistic style church in the canton of Uri. Originally there was a chapel which was a present from the Benedictine monatery in Disentis in the 9th century. From the 11th to the 13th century a church was built in its place. In 1559 the church was newly consecrated with four altars.
The Suworow monument was built in 1899 to comemorate the deaths of the Russian soldiers under Generalissimo Fieldmarshall Suworow in the fight again Napoleons’s troops under Claude-Jacques Lecourbe on 25th September 1799.
The very first Teufelsbrücke or devil’s bridge in English was built in 1230 from wood. In 1595 a stone bridge was built. A storm swelled the Reuss river so much that it destroyed the bridge on 2nd August 1888.
Today the devil’s bridge is a pedestrian/bicycle bridge. The new bridge for the traffic was built in 1955/56. The devil painting on the rock above was made by Heinrich Danioth, a local painter and poet.