Judith Kurmann, Sempach station

100 years Postbus routes

Toot-to-tooot! Although the legendary three-tone horn of the Swiss Postbuses wasn’t introduced until 1923, the first mountain routes – Chur–Laax in Graubünden and Brig–Domodossola over the Simplon – came into service four years earlier, in 1919.

As well as the benefits they offer for regional transport and the local population, the magnificent Alpine scenery along these two routes makes them extremely important to the tourism industry. The first Postbus route in Graubünden initially ran from Reichenau to Flims and was later extended. Today, the Postbus runs from Chur to Laax, but part of the original line is now operated by the Rhaetian Railway. The route passes through the majestic, expansive Rhine valley before heading – via Tamins and Trin – to the winter sports resort of Flims–Laax, where many attractions are to be found.

The Simplon section still exists exactly as it was 100 years ago: from Brig, it goes to the border town of Gondo and via Iselle into the magical Italian town of Domodossola, with its picturesque historic center. The magnificent views over the sun terraces of Belalp, Riederalp, Bettmeralp and Rosswald are not to be missed.

Jürg Freudiger