Hats off! Swiss PostBus drivers not only drive well, they can also park well. A bus ride from Davos to Monstein is exciting – especially when the driver parks his bus perilously close to the edge of a concrete lay-by at the abyss. You like to experience the trip on your own? Here is how it works…:
For a radio report I was once again a guest in Davos and stayed overnight in the chic Hotel Grischa at Davos Platz station. Davos is a small town in the Swiss canton of Graubünden, situated at an altitude of 1560 metres and surrounded by mountains. This is where Thomas Mann once drew his inspiration for his work “Der Zauberberg”.
Today Davos is known as the venue of the World Economic Forum (WEF), which takes place annually in January. Then news pictures of the mostly snow-covered town of Davos and the surrounding mountains are seen all over the world. Mountains, valleys and peaks attract thousands of ski tourists to Davos every winter season. The place is just as popular in summer, when it is great for hiking, mountain biking and other holidays in the fresh mountain air. Cablecars can then be used free of charge with the guest card – many local and postal bus routes as well, by the way!
Kudos! From Davos to Monstein by bus
But there is more to discover in Davos than just the mountains. One of the attractions, for example, is the small brewery “BierVision” in Monstein. The distance from Postplatz in Davos to the brewery in Monstein is almost 12 kilometres. All in all it takes half an hour by bus. The old Walser village Monstein is a district of Davos and lies at an altitude of 1625 metres. For a long time, the Monstein brewery was regarded as the highest brewery in the Alps.
Since I like to travel around Switzerland by public transport, I took the bus to Monstein. In Switzerland, trains and buses are wonderfully comfortable and usually on time, as are the post buses, which are called “Postauto” here because they are operated by PostBus Schweiz AG company.
Swiss bus drivers are known for being able to safely master even the steepest mountain roads and passes. This was also the case on my trip to Monstein – and especially when the bus was parked.
By bus from Davos to Monstein – how to get there:
From “Davos Postplatz” (Davos Post Square) near Hotel Grischa I took local bus number 1 in the direction of Glaris Ortolfi. At Glaris train station I changed to bus number 10 to Monstein without long waiting time. This is where the adventure began.
The road winds uphill all the time and in some places is hardly wider than the bus itself – at least that’s how it feels when you’re sitting in the bus. The bus drivers, who are respectfully called “chauffeurs” in Switzerland, must prove all their driving skills if they want to bring their passengers to Monstein safely and on time.
My Postbus driver also proved safety and a good eye when turning around and parking (here they say “parkieren”) in Monstein itself. 50 metres below the brewery is the final stop where the bus drivers have to turn their vehicles and park until they return to Davos.
The place where this happens is quite narrow. The bus chauffeur had to drive to the edge of the parking area with “millimetre precision” in order to turn and park the bus safely. I only became aware of this when I saw the bus from the side – on the edge of the abyss. Kudos!
The Swiss can be really proud of their bus drivers – this is also shown by the predominantly positive response to my Facebook post and the subsequent publication of my photo in the Swiss commuter newspaper “20 Minutes”: There were more than 300 comments online within a short time.
By the way: You don’t have to be afraid when you take the bus from Davos to Monstein. The Davos bus drivers are among the best and literally “most experienced” chauffeurs in Switzerland! I could convince myself of this every day.
Images: ©Peter von Stamm
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