The Italian Alps + Switzerland

The Alps are the highest and most extensive mountain range system that lies entirely in Europe through France, Switzerland, Italy, Monaco, Liechtenstein, Austria, Germany, and Slovenia. They stretch across these eight Alpine countries for approximately 1200 kilometres.

The Italian Alps most popular road would have to be Stelvio - the highest paved road in Italy at 2757m and probably the most famous pass in Europe because of its epic climb on both sides and its amazing landscape shadowed by glaciers.

"I reached the Alps: the soul within me burned,
Italia, my Italia, at thy name:
And when from out the mountain's heart I came
And saw the land for which my life had yearned,
I laughed as one who some great prize had earned:
And musing on the marvel of thy fame"

_____________________
Oscar Wilde
(Extract fro 'Sonnet On Approaching Italy')

Passes and Statistics

GIRO D' ITALIA - STELVIO PASS
1953 Fausto Coppi (ITA)
1961 Charly Gaul (LUX)
1965 Graziano Battistini (ITA)
1972 José Manuel Fuente (ESP)
1975 Francisco Galdós (ESP)
1980 Jean-René Bernaudeau (FRA)
1994 Franco Vona (ITA)
2005 Iván Parra (COL)
2012 Thomas de Gendt (BEL)
2014 Dario Cataldo (ITA)
2017 Mikel Landa Meana (ESP)
MAJOR PASSES
Stelvio Pass 2,757 m
Gavia Pass 2,621 m
Umbrail Pass 2,501 m
Timmelsjoch 2,474 m
Bernina Pass 2,328 m
Livigno Pass 2,315 m
Foscagno Pass 2,291 m
Passo d'Eira 2,208 m
Jaufenpass 2,094 m
Mortirolo Pass 1,852 m
GIRO D' ITALIA - MORTIROLO PASS
1990 Leonardo Sierra (VEN)
1991 Franco Chioccioli (ITA)
1994 Marco Pantani (ITA)
1996 Ivan Gotti (ITA)
1997 Wladimir Belli (ITA)
1999 Ivan Gotti (ITA)
2004 Raffaele Illiano (ITA)
2006 Ivan Basso (ITA)
2008 Toni Coloma (ESP)
2010 Ivan Basso (ITA)
2012 Oliver Zaugg (CH)
2015 Steven Kruijswijk (NED)
2017 Luis León Sánchez (ESP)

Riding

Some of the most breathtaking cycling you will ever do in your life! Every turn, every angle, every panorama will blow you away!

Always take a warm/windproof jacket, leg and arm warmers, very rarely are the descents off these climbs warm.

Best time to ride: Late May, June, July and September

Stelvio Bike Day

Annually, Stelvio Pass is blocked to all traffic other than bicycles, for Stelvio Bike Day,

Stelvio Bike Day is always held on the last Saturday of August, organised by the Stelvio National Park committee.

The road is closed from both directions: Prato dello Stelvio, to the peak, all the way to Bormio, including Umbrail Pass all the way to Santa Maria Val Müstair.

On average some 12,000 cyclists participate!!

History of Stelvio

Stelvio pass was built between 1820–25 by the Austrian Empire, connecting the former Austrian province of Lombardy with the rest of Austria.

With a total of 75 hairpin turns (48 from Prato) the road is a spectacular work of engineering as much as a challenge.

Before the end of World War I, it formed the border between the Austro-Hungarian Empire and the Italian Kingdom.

Post 1919, as Italy expanded, Stelvio Pass lost much of it's strategic importance.

Cuisine Valtellina

Pizzoccheri
Rectangle buckwheat pasta tagliatelle

Bresaola
Cured beef deli meat, lean, high in iron and nutritious

Sciatt
Balls of cheese, usually a local casera, covered in buckwheat flour, fried.

Slinziga
Horse bresaola, usually cured a bit longer than regular bresaola
Bresaola

Delicious Valtellina Bresaola

Bormio

The Ski Resort Town of Bormio

Pizzoccheri

The local favourite, Pizzoccheri

"Ever since I was about 25, my dream was to ride the 'Big 3' - Stelvio, Mortirolo and Gavia.
To be honest i never thought I was capable, but your staff encouraged me, took care of me and fussed over every detail to make each of the three climbs momentous.
Thank you, I can't begin to express just how amazing your tours are!"

_____________________
Anthony L.
(USA)

Official Partners

Contact

  • Australia: +61 (0)404 679 146
  • Italia: +39 329 929 6560
  • E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • MAGLIA NERA TOURS PTY LTD
    PO Box 207,
    Freshwater NSW 2096
    Australia
    ABN: 73 623 773 884