Austria is a beautiful country, similar to Switzerland but more laid back and cheaper. The roads and possible routes are numerous, so we can ride as much or as little per day as Tour Members want to. Every Tour Member who rides in Austria wants to go back. It’s got great riding, spectacular scenery and a biker friendly culture.
The best areas we ride in Austria sit right above some of the best riding in Italy – the Dolomites. We take advantage of that geographical gift by heading south to spend 3 nights in the Dolomites, a region with unique mountains, great roads, and spell binding views around every turn. They are a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
This tour is for those riders who know just how cool Austria is, appreciate the beauty of the Dolomites and want to see it all close up.
This tour also does a great job at double duty – you have the option to link this tour to the French Loop Tour as part of the TOP 10+ Highest Passes Tour.
|September 4 – 13
|September 25 – October 4
|TOUR LINK OPTIONS:
|French Loop before – when combined = TOP 10+ Tour
|10 Riding Days
|200 kms – 300+ kms per day (120 miles – 180+ miles) – Asphalt roads
|3.5 out 5
|Switzerland, Austria, and Italy
|2 – Kitzbuhel (Can ride or rest), 2 – Corvara (Can ride of rest)
|2 to 4 star hotels – family run Alpine style
|MINIMUM # OF RIDERS:
- Day 1 – Damuls (A)
- Day 2 – Kitzbuhel (A)
- Day 3 – Kitzbuhel (A)
- Day 4 – Kitzbuhel (A)
- Day 5 – Corvara in Badia (I)
- Day 6 – Corvara in Badia (I)
- Day 7 – Corvara in Badia (I)
- Day 8 – Wenns (A)
- Day 9 – Sedrun (S)
- Day 10 – Thun (S)
- Special Places – Hallstatt, perhaps the most beautiful and photographed lake village in the Alps (see photo above)
- Special Places – The Kölnbrein Dam, the tallest dam in Austria with a fun road to get there
- The Grossglockner High Alpine Road – home to Austria’s highest pass and a motorcyclist’s playground
- The Zillertal High Alps Road and the Krimml Waterfalls – beautiful Alpine sights not on the normal tours routes
- Ötztal Glacier Road – The 2nd highest paved road in Europe – Even higher than the highest #1 pass
- Major Passes – (#10), (#9) (#8) (#7) and the incomparable Passo Stelvio (#3) + more
- Smaller Passes – too many to mention including passes so narrow that traffic only goes 1-way every 1/2 hour – very cool
- More than 45 passes in total
NOTE – Awesome Austria/Essential Alps Routing
Astute readers of this page will notice that some of the passes and route description are similar to the Essential Alps tour. That is because both tours are designed to make sure we hit 5 of the TOP 10 passes not in France in case Tour Members are looking to combine this tour, or the Essential Alps tour, with the French Loop in order to complete the TOP 10+ tour. Any duplicate passes are ridden in the opposite directions, which all Alps riders know provides a very different feeling going over a pass one way vs the other. The majority of the riding and passes per tour are definitely different by design so that Tour Members who do both the Essential Alps and Awesome Austria tours get to enjoy a very different ride, visual feast and cultural experinece.
MOTO-CHARLIE reserves the right to alter the exact route at his discretion.
The cost for this tour at the current exchange rates will be:
- Single rider in a single room
- $5,025 – AWESOME AUSTRIA Tour
- Passenger sharing a double room
- $3,025 – AWESOME AUSTRIA Tour
- Couple riding two-up sharing a double room
- $8,050 – AWESOME AUSTRIA Tour
These cost numbers should cover your direct tour costs including motorcycle rental, all hotels, all meals, gas and my fee.
This tour is about enjoying Austria with a focus on riding. We spend 5 nights in Austria and 3 nights in the Dolomites while covering the best riding in each area. Both Austria and the Dolomites have lots of high passes, wonderful small passes, high valley roads and beautiful lakes. The route is designed to mix it all up. Highways are strictly forbidden. This tour will show you why Austria and the Dolomites are truly motorcycling paradise.
Most people like to arrive at least one day ahead of time to help with jet lag, see the local sights or get acclimated to their motorcycle, the roads and Euro riding in general via the free 1/2 day ORIENTATION DAY offered to all Tour Members. I’ll be more than glad to help you plan whatever activity might be of interest to you.
- Day 1 – We head straight for Austria today as we head east along the Thuner See (“see” is the german word for lake) and the Brienzer See on our way to a couple of high Swiss passes. Along the way we stop for a scenic lunch high up on the edge of a mountain side that looks down on a large lake and valley below. After lunch we ride along the lake and cross into Liechtenstein where we might have tea with the Prince if he is available. From there it is on to Austria where we enjoy small villages and pretty valley roads on our way to our mountain hotel in Damuls.
- Day 2 – Today is all about riding beautiful smaller 2-lane passes and high valley roads and we continue to work our way east. We can easily ride up to 300 kms or more today. After we enjoy several smaller passes, we ride over the Kuhtai road. At over 2,000 meters this road is higher than many passes. It also goes by the Kuhtai ski resort, the highest ski resort in Austria. From there we continue to work our way over to Kitzbuhel, one of the most ski towns in the Alps and a great town to spend some time in. We will be here for 3 nights.
- Day 3 – We will ride a big loop that takes us over the Zillertal High Alps Road. This road offers spectacular scenery of the valley below and is also over 2,000 meters high. We continue to explore high dead-end valleys, the Gerlos Pass and ride by the famous Krimml Waterfalls. The loop winds its way through the mountainous Austrian countryside on our way back to Kitzbuhel.
- Day 4 – Today we ride a big loop comprised of a little bit of all kinds of roads and highlighting the Grossglockner High Alpine Road. This road includes Austria’s highest pass, expansive mountain views, the sadly disappearing Franz Joseph Glacier and more. It is a 48 km (29 mile) toll road with 36 hairpin turns and is one of the most famous in the Alps along with being one of the top three tourist attractions in Austria. We will play back and forth over this road to soak up all its goodness before completing our loop back to Kitzbuhel.
- Day 5 – Like the motorcycle nomads we are we continue to roam south towards the Dolomites. Our route will include a unique pass at more than 2,000 meters high, which is so narrow it is only 1-way on the half hour. It crosses over the Austrian border into Italy. From there we lunch at Lago Misurina after which we ride several famous Dolomite passes before ending our day in the beautiful Dolomite town of Corvara, in heart of Alta Badia.
- Day 6 – Today we get to enjoy the Dolomites in all their splendor while riding the famous figure 8 configuration of passes including Gardena, Sella, Falzerago and more. Along the way we will have lunch at the top of a cable car with some of the most panoramic views of the Dolomites that can be seen from one location – a top highlight of the entire tour. The Dolomites are motorcycling Nirvana and today will show you why.
- Day 7 – Today we switch our focus and explore several of the Dolomites famous smaller passes barely 1-lane wide. While the roads may be narrow the passes are still high, ranging from 1,800 to 2,000 meters. They have gorgeous views and make you feel like you are the only riders who have seen them. They include the Furkel and Wurzjoch passes. This is some of my most favorite Dolomites riding.
- Day 8 – Today we head north to take one last swing through Austria. Our route will include the Jaufen Pass, one of my favorites, which immediately connects at the bottom to the Timmelsjoch Pass (#9 highest in the Alps). The Italian side is a long wild and spectacular ride up to 2,509 meters (8,232 feet). The valley road on the Austrian side also leads us to the Ötztal Glacier Road – the 2nd highest paved road in Europe at 2,830 meters (9,285 feet), which is 28 meters higher than the highest pass in the Alps. The glacier is also where the famous frozen Otzie man was found. We work our way back down from the glacier road and head to our classic Austrian style hotel in Wenns Austria.
- Day 9 – We need to get back to our base in Thun somehow, so why not get there via some of Switzerland’s crown jewel passes including the Ofen Pass not far from the Austrian border and the Julier Pass starting not far from St. Mortiz. We will ride some awesome high valley roads that are favorites with Tour Members and then find our way to Sedrun for the night. This town is at the start of the Oberalp Pass leading to Andermatt and our hotel here is very cool.
- Day 10 – Today we will ride some more of the high passes that make the Andermatt region the top riding area in Switzerland. It is a quintessential Swiss Alpine village. We will also stop by the Rhone Glacier on the Furka pass. This glacier is the poster child for glacial melting and global warming and has shrunk significantly just in the time I have been touring the Alps. We stop by the Brienzer See Lake for a final lunch and strudel to commemorate a fantastic tour. We go back to the hotel, unload our gear and head to the rental shop to turn in our bikes. We wrap up a great tour with a group dinner at a lively old town riverside restaurant and say our farewells, until the next tour 🙂 to our newfound friends
- Next Day – Many possibilities – Rest Day before next tour, continue on with other Euro travel plans, fly home
- If you would like to come sooner, or stay longer, hotel and motorcycle arrangements can readily be made to suit your schedule.
- When to book your reservation obviously depends on your schedule. As a rule I suggest at least 3 months in advance to ensure that you get the motorcycle that you want and to secure a place on the tour. There is a limit of 7 motorcycles or 10 people, whichever comes first, per tour.
- The final cut-off date is technically 30 days before the tour starts. If someone contacts me to sign up with less than 30 days to go every effort will be made to accommodate you. The issue will usually be the motorcycle availability.
5 Bikes or 7 Tour Members
Please “Contact Me“ by telephone or e-mail to book your spot on this tour. I am not a paperwork intensive person. So, the process of making a reservation and getting what I need for my records is pretty simple.
Feel free to contact me to ask any questions about my tours in particular, or the Alps in general. If I can be of help in any way I’ll be glad to do so.
Final Thought – I enjoy all of my tours very much. Riding on great roads with great people is why I do it. Anyone who has been to Europe knows that it is simply chock full of wondrous places and beautiful things to see and do. This tour is designed to let Tour Members ride as much, or as little, but mostly as much as they want while providing them the opportunity to sample Austria’s most spectacular roads. I really really like Austria and I know you will too.