Andermatt
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Andermatt

Andermatt

1,444m above sea level, and home to a substantial community, the principle town of the Andermatt region is located in the Urserntal valley. Throughout its rich history the area has been a key staging post for travellers in the Gotthard massif. Its central location among the main Alpine passes was well known even in Roman times. Back then, the massif was the easiest route between north and south, as only one mountain pass had to be negotiated.

In the 13th century, the Walser Germans who populated the Urserntal valley at that time built the first bridge (later to become known as the Teufelsbrücke, or Devil’s Bridge) across the Schöllenen Gorge. The trading route that opened up placed Andermatt firmly on the map, and for several centuries trade in the region flourished. In 1649, the village gained its independence from the Disentis Abbey, to which it had up until then been tied.
Andermatt first made it onto the tourist map in the 18th century thanks to Germany’s national poet, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, who wrote enthusiastically of the region’s mountain villages. At the turn of the 19th century, Russia’s war against Napoleon brought more attention to the region. In 1840, a route was opened up between Göschenen and Tessino via the Gotthard massif, and the stagecoach era was born. Today, the historic horse-drawn St. Gotthard stagecoach remains as a reminder of the time when this was the only mode of travelling to Tessino.
The world wars of the 20th century brought a substantial military presence to Andermatt, and garrisons remained here as late as the 1990s. The Sasso San Gottardo Fortress, which was built into the mountains themselves, is today open to the public and offers a unique insight into this military stronghold.
In the 21st century, Andermatt has been host to one of Switzerland’s biggest tourist developments. Initiated by the Egyptian investor Samih Sawiris, Andermatt Swiss Alps is a new resort alongside the existing village. The skiing facilities have also been modernised and, thanks to a connection to Sedrun, extended.
Whether as a trading route, military stronghold or tourist destination, Andermatt has played, and continues to play, a central role in the life of Switzerland and indeed Europe. In summer, its Alpine passes offer some of the world’s most spectacular views and hiking trails. In winter, the snow-covered valley glitters and shines like a diamond. The skiing is suitable for all levels, from beginner to advanced, and cross-country trails and snowshoeing are equally popular.

Andermatt ice field

Elegant gliding or sporty use – a few hours on the Andermatt ice field are always a cool change from winter fun on the slopes.

Curving over ice on skates is fun for the whole family. This winter the ice field in Andermatt again invites you to pirouette training, to compete when curling or to sweaty hockey matches. Of course you can also do a few laps quite comfortably.

Whether professional or newcomer, locals or holiday guests – everyone is welcome on the ice rink near the Radisson Blu Hotel Reussen. Ice skates and other equipment can be rented on site. And for the youngest there are funny standing aids so that no one falls on the nose and the first few laps work straight away.

An afternoon on the ice field is an ideal alternative if the weather suddenly doesn’t lure you onto the slopes. But just like skiing, ice skating also makes you thirsty: there is a good sports bar where you can warm up with coffee and punch for the next round.

SLEDDING

Sledding is classic winter fun for young and old. Driving down the slopes amidst the strong mountain backdrop on two runners is an experience for non-skiers. Whether comfortably by train to the starting point or athletically on foot – various toboggan runs can be tried out in the Andermatt and St. Gotthard holiday regions.

SKI TOURING

The historic ski tour between Andermatt and Engelberg spreads through a particularly lonely stretch of land in winter. A breath of spirit of adventure blows through the magnificent stages from hut to hut. Summit tours from Gemsstock to Lochberg, Sustenhorn (3503m), Uratstock, Grassen (2946m) followed by a dream descent to Engelberg.

The imposing route through the Central Swiss Alps used to be one of the biggest alpine crossings. It offers around 5500 meters of ascent and descent and can be done in four to five days.

The route is not marked and a mountain guide is strongly recommended.

CROSS-COUNTRY SKIING

Cross-country skiing is trendy. The whole body is trained in the sun and fresh air. Our trails are well-groomed every day. In addition to the cross-country trails in Andermatt, winter sports enthusiasts can also quickly reach the cross-country trails in Sedrun and Obergoms by train.

SNOWSHOEING

Runaway from the slopes and hiking trails through the snowy winter landscape and feel the swirling powder snow under your feet. This strong feeling can be experienced on a variety of marked snowshoe routes in the Andermatt holiday region.

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