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The Bernina railway line forms the heart of the Unesco World Cultural Heritage listing and is regarded as one of the world's most spectacular routes. The Bernina Express passes by the gigantic Morteratsch glacier, climbs without the help of cogwheels across Europe's highest railway Alpine pass, the 2253-metre-high Bernina, and winds down in Loops to Poschiavo.

The RhB Bernina Railway: Man & MAchine

The train journey over the Bernina Pass (in winter the road over the pass is sometimes closed) from St. Moritz to the Puschlav and to the Italian border in Tirano is an impressive experience. Time and time again vistas of the mountainscape of the Morteratsch Glacier, Diavolezza or Lagalb open up. From Alp Grüm you enjoy a view of the imposing Palü Glacier and at the same time you can see the Lago di Poschiavo deep down at the bottom of the valley. The railway line into the Puschlav with a gradient of 70 per mill is the highest rail link across the Alps and among the steepest narrow gauge railway lines without a rack in the world - a railway engineering feat.

When the Bernina Express was planned, the engineers who built it were faced with a difficult challenge.The train needed to bridge a considerable difference in altitude in a very short distance. The ride began in St. Moritz (1,775 m.a.s.l.), crossed the Bernina Pass (2,253 m.a.s.l.) and winds up in Tirano (429 m.a.s.l.). And since it was a train built specifically for tourists who wanted to see the lovely landscape, the train had to go through as few tunnels as possible. But the solution they came up with was quite ingenious: rather than use switchback tunnels, the train uses switchback viaducts that have have a diameter of 100 meters. Train passengers are usually in awe over this engineering feat.

Bernina Express Movies:
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