Via Alpina - the Start

Part I: Vaduz - Altdorf | 4 days

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The Via Alpina is the best-known long-distance hiking trail in Switzerland. From east to west, the number 1 hiking route connects the most beautiful hiking highlights across the country over 400 km from Vaduz in Liechtenstein to Lake Geneva in Montreux. The Via Alpina, that is experiencing Switzerland, up close!

The first part of the Via Alpina leads from Vaduz to Altdorf over remote, lonely Alpine passes, through a pristine natural and mountain world with wonderful insights and outlooks.

On this trekking you hike with a light daypack. Your luggage will be transported from hotel to hotel.

Hiking highlights

  • Take a leisurely ride on an e-bike through the Rhine Valley
  • Discover the UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Tectonic Arena Sardona between Sargans and Glarnerland
  • Through the lonely Durnachtal valley you reach the Zigerschliz, the deepest valley in Switzerland.
  • Finally, William Tell, the Swiss national legend, greets you in Altdorf

Hiking and mountain trails, continuous trail, moderately steep to steep, short sections with more exposure are possible (T1-T3). Surefootedness required.

The e-bike route on the first day is easy to ride. No special e-bike experience is required.


For outdoor enthusiasts who like to be on the go all day! Bring experience from day trips and prepare well with regular fitness training. Hiking times up to 6 hrs, up to approx. 1000 m altitude difference.


6-12 guests per hiking guide

Meeting place

9.15 AM Buchs SG, train station (train arrival 9.09 AM)


approx. 3.30 PM Altdorf train station


(depending on the date, an alternative choice of hotel with comparable services may occur).


New dates for the 2024 season will be released by Dec. 2023. For further information, please contact us or subscribe to the newsletter.

Private tours on your desired date we gladly will organize for you. Get in contact with us.

Learn more about the technical and physical requirements.

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We are happy to advise you. Please send us an inquiry, or use our customer service: Tel: +41 (0) 5252 0 6242

Day 1 At the starting line in the main town of Vaduz, below the prince's castle, you pedal gently and off you go. The e-bike whirs off and in the group you cycle out of the pretty town to the large wooden bridge over the Rhine. Roads, forest and field paths alternate. All paths are suitable for biking and with enough space for pedestrians and bikers. Past the tunnel entrance of the Gonten iron ore mine, you reach Sargans, where a castle also awaits, and you park the bike here. (E-bike time: 2 h, distance: 16 km, up-/downhill: 350/330 meters).

Then take the shuttle bus up to the Weisstannental below Vermol. From there you hike in the shade of the Weisstannen firs and across meadows on the left side of the valley up the longest St. Gallen valley to the pretty hamlet of Weisstannen. (Walking time: 2.30 h, distance: 7.8 km, ascent/descent: 360/280 meters).

Day 2 Today you cross the first pass. But first you take the bus up into the valley basin of the rear Weisstannental to the small inn Walabitz, where the view of the Isengrindfall, with 230 m the third highest waterfall in Switzerland, will amaze you. You set off through the Foowäldli and then uphill through a wild landslide area, first along the mountain stream Seez, then the Heidelbach, to the Foopass. Here you cross the cantonal border and change from St. Gallen to Glarus. On the crossing the view opens into the Glarnerland up to the Tödi. Past the Raminer Alp and the cheese dairy you hike down into the valley and out to Elm with the view of the Martinsloch. (Walking time: 6 h, distance: 15.3 km, ascent/descent: 950/1350 meters).

Day 3 The way to Linthal drags on. To shorten it a bit the post bus takes you to the ski hut Obererbs. From the ski hut you have a great view of the "magic geological line" of the Glarus main overlap and the UNESCO Tectonic Arena Sardona. Over meadows the path winds its way up to the Erbser Stock and gives a view of the mighty valley basin below the Chärpf and the silted up Wichelsee. Across the colorful high moorland, the trail leads to the slate of the Richtelipass. Across alpine pastures and a ridge with great views you hike down into the lonely Durnachtal and further into the deepest valley of Switzerland - the Zigerschlitz - to Linthal on the Linth. (Walking time: 6 h, distance: 14.8 km, ascent/descent: 750/1800 meters).

Day 4 From Linthal the post bus takes you comfortably to the Klausenpass. The view sweeps back over the plain of the Urnerboden and the panorama of the Glarus and Uri mountain peaks. Clariden, Schärhorn and Gross Windgällen greet you high above the Schächen valley. You follow the Schächentaler Höhenweg over several alps, enjoy a coffee in the mountain inn and the view over the wide, impressive valley. At the station Biel-Kinzig you get into the small cabin and gondola down the 1000 meters of altitude to Bürglen, from where the post bus takes you to the last Via Alpina stamp and to the most famous Uri in Altdorf. No, not the Föhn, but Willhelm Tell. (Walking time: 5 h, distance: 17 km, ascent/descent: 600/860 meters).

  • Guiding and support by hiking guide
  • Overnight stay with half board: 3x hotel (basis double room)
  • Welcome aperitif on day 1
  • Daily luggage transfer from hotel to hotel at a value of CHF 155.-
  • Offsetting of CO2 emissions on the tour CHF 12.- per person (according to myclimate CO2 calculator)
  • Service fee legal travel guarantee (0.25% on offer price)
  • Arrival
  • Transportation (taxi/bus/cable car) approx. CHF 100.- (SBB halffare basis)
  • Snacks and drinks

Additional services:

  • Single room supplement CHF 120.-

Rental equipment

The rental equipment will be handed over at the meeting point:

  • E-Bike
  • Bike helmet
Technical equipment
  • Backpack approx. 20-30 l with rain cover
  • Telescopic poles (optional)
  • 1x hardshell jacket (wind- and waterproof)
  • 1x soft shell and/or fleece jacket
  • 1x hiking pants
  • Light waterproof rain pants (e.g. Gore-Tex)
  • T-shirt or shirt
  • Underwear
  • Cap/headband and hat
  • Gloves (wind and water resistant)
  • Functional socks and spare socks
  • Hiking/mountain boots (at least ankle-high, sturdy sole)
  • Clothing and shoes for the evening (accommodation & village life)
  • Personal toiletries, earplugs if necessary
  • Breakfast and dinner at the hotel
  • Tea and lunch must be brought by yourself or can be bought in the hotel/village
  • Snacks (e.g. bars, dried fruits, dried meat)
  • Sunglasses
  • Sun and lip cream (SPF 30 or more)
  • Camera and binoculars (optional)
  • Half fare Travelcard (if available)
  • Water bottle
  • Small pharmacy for personal needs
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