Switzerland is full of surprises but if you have travelled to the Ticino by car the «perm-a-jam» at the Gotthard tunnel will not be one. Recently, in an attempt to avoid it i travelled along the Rhône valley which runs between Brig in the Valais and Andermatt in Canton Uri. The valley features some amazing sights, not least the Aletsch Glacier, (visit it while it’s still there,) which can be accessed via the ski lifts at Bettmeralp and Fiesch. And who can forget the hilariously named village of Bitsch which sits at the end of the valley, close to Brig?
But, as you travel along the valley don’t miss the spectacular «Hängebrücke Fürgangen». The 280 meter footbridge spans the valley with the sound of the Rhône rushing through the gorge 92 meters below. It is truly spectacular if you have the nerve to look down.
Now i have to be honest, the bridge did make my legs a bit shaky so i welcomed two to three minute walk to the alpine idyll that is the village of Mühlebach, hoping for a coffee (or even a beer,) to steel my nerves before the return crossing.
As i ordered my coffee at the Café Hängebrigga one of the other customers proudly informed me that the owner was an «Olympic Sieger» and directed my to a display that showed the numerous triumphs of snowboarder Patrizia Kummer with her, (very imposing,) gold medal from the 2014 Sochi Olympics as the centrepiece. And as i sat and contemplated her numerous successes and victories she brought me my coffee and we chatted about snowboarding. If you get a chance to visit the bridge or the village of Mühlebach take the extra time to do so. Because, although Switzerland is full of surprises, sometimes you have to get off the beaten track to find them.
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