Adventures await for riders who choose to extend their stay in Graubünden and return to Arosa to explore the mountains and valleys of the region.
Arosa plays host, for two nights, to the 2020 Swiss Epic. The teams will be treated to spectacular riding and amazing scenery, but with the focus on racing, many might miss the region’s true beauty. With spectacular mountains, valleys and more to explore, why not extend your stay, return to Arosa and experience the town – and its surrounds – at a more sedate pace?
For mountain bikers, the highlight of the area is undoubtedly the Hörnli Trail. At 6.8 kilometres long, and boasting a 519-metre loss in elevation across its length, it is a dream mountain biking playground packed with thrills throughout, including bermed turns and jumps, which can be rolled or launched off. Parts of the trail will be used on Stages 3 and 4 of the Swiss Epic, but only by returning to Arosa can you enjoy it in its entirety and at a pace of your choosing.
Off the bike, the Arosa/Lenzerheide region offers alpine hiking and breath-taking mountain experiences that provide fun for the whole family. The region boasts over 300 kilometres of marked hiking trails, with routes of various intensity from leisurely lake-side strolls to strenuous alpine hikes. Two of the most significant hikes one can undertake from Arosa lead hikers to Lenzerheide, along a 20-kilometre route, or along the Mittelbünden-Panoramaweg to Davos. The more manageable Arosa-Ochsenalp Rundtour, which riders passed during Stage 2 from Laax to Arosa, is a 14-kilometre loop, which starts and finishes in Arosa and is famed for its exceptionally diverse scenery. From the highest point of the route, it is possible to gaze down Arosa’s Schanfigg Valley. If you time your adventure well and get a perfectly clear day, Graubünden’s administrative capital, Chur, is visible down the Rhine Valley.
One of the most spectacular overnight stays is the Million-Star Hotel. Getting there by foot is a hike up to 2 653 metres above sea level, to the Weisshorn summit. From there you will be able to take in 360-degree views across the valleys and lower mountain ranges which stretch as far as the eye can see before spending the night under the stars.
It is also possible to stay in Arosa and hike or take a gondola up towards the Weisshorn summit. The first gondola of the morning departs in time to see the sunrise from 2 653 metres (a sight we’d highly recommend) and at the summit, you can enjoy a brunch buffet while taking in the views. From the top, options abound and you can either bike, hike, or cruise down to Arosa on the gondola.
While riders would have pedalled past the Arosa Bear Sanctuary twice during the race, the Sanctuary, with its three Eurasian brown bears, is worth a visit with the family. The species once roamed across much of Europe and Asia but man’s encroachment on its natural habitat means that sanctuaries like the one in Arosa are among the few places where wildlife lovers can see the bears in Western Europe. Families with younger children can also hike the Squirrel Trail, feeding squirrels along the way, or visit the Bear Cave indoor playground if the weather takes a turn for the worse.
Other attractions include the Rope Park, renting a pedalo to relax on lake Obersee, or taking a visit to the Eggahuus museum of local Arosa history. All these activities and attractions can be found online at www.arosalenzerheide.swiss. The region’s tourism website also lists all-inclusive packages and each guest receives an Arosa Card; as of one overnight stay in an Arosa hotel, holiday apartment or campsite. The Arosa Card entitles you to make use of many of the town’s leisure activities free of charge – the final reason for extending your stay by even just a day.