On the International Women’s Day yesterday, Switzerland Tourism launched over 50 new female-only cycling packages for 2023 as a part of its 100 per cent Women initiative launched in 2021. The packages include beginner cyclist, training, cycle and flop, e-biking, technical and racing packages, which can either be one-day-long or take multiple days to complete. Previously focusing on hiking and mountaineering, 2023 has been announced as the year for 100 per cent women to focus on promoting cycling to a female audience.
So, if you are a cycling pro looking for perfect outdoor nature trails that challenge your biking skills or are a beginner who loves to explore the joys of cycling outside of the gym, then Switzerland is the place you need to head to! When it comes to outdoor adventure activities, the country is serious about what it offers to women from across the world. Imagine cycling or mountain biking across 12,000 km of standardised, sign-posted cycling routes across the length and breadth of Switzerland!
This is your Swiss cycling holiday done right — you’re one with nature, moving at your own pace, soaking in the vibrant ambience riding along on traffic-free roads! To help you discover the best of Switzerland on a bike, here are the top cycling routes the country offers:
The Lake Route, Lake Geneva Region
Biking along lakes in Switzerland is truly living the postcard life. On this route, you’ll pass through seven lakes from Lac Léman to the Bodensee that mirror the grandeur of the Alps and clear-blue skies. The Lake Route is a 510-km 10-day dream route for bikers that starts from Lake Geneva and ends at Lake Constance. You’ll bike uphill and downhill through quaint villages across the countryside and even cities like the high-end Gstaad, Zurich, etc. Some important landmarks you’ll see along the way are the new Modern Times Museum Chaplin’s World in Montreux, the Ballenberg Open-Air Museum in Brienz, Schadau Castle in Thun and Old Town of Zug, to name a few. If you don’t want to do all the 10 stages on this route, you can opt for any stage you like and explore only that portion.
Châteaux et Maisons fortes, Geneva
If you want to explore Geneva’s countryside at your own pace, this 32 km route is perfect for you. Not only is it short and easy, you get to see a whole range of beautiful vistas along the way. You will ride through the Castle of Crest in Jussy, Fortified House Adda in Meinier (Corsinge) and the Castle of Rouelbeau. This route’s advantage lies in its mainly quiet roads and little traffic, making it a fun and pleasant experience.
Chur’s Rhine Valley
Biking alone can be fun, but biking with your family or your gang of girls is another ball game altogether, isn’t it? This 26-km route is what family tours are made for! It begins from the oldest Alpine town of Switzerland, Chur. An interesting titbit about this route is that it crosses through Maienfeld, a place brought to life in author Johanna Spyri’s famous book – Heidi. Also, The Bad Ragaz bathing resort is just a crossing of the Rhine away. Depending on the weather and time of year, it’s the perfect place to cool off in an outdoor pool of warm up in the thermal baths!
If you’re a mountain, vineyard kind of person, the Rhone route is the tour for you. This 350-km route starts from Andermatt and ends at Genève. The first stage of the Rhone route is a tough ride, so if you’re a leisure cyclist, you might want to start in Oberwald and follow the route thereafter. On this 8-day trip, you can visit St Maurice, a 1,500- year-old monastery in Abendland or you can stop at the vineyard terraces in Lavaux — a UNESCO World Heritage property — and soak in the terraced landscape with a glass of wine and some cheese for company.