A wild balcony road through the Chluse Gorge in Switzerland

Chluse Gorge is a very scenic canyon located in the canton of Bern in Switzerland. This passageway was used from earliest times. The road through the gorges is so narrow that cars (as well as bikes) are only allowed to drive in each direction for 20 minutes every hour.

Chluse Gorge road

Can you drive through Chluse Gorge?

Set high west of the Jungfrau massif, the road through the gorges carved by the raging River Kander is mostly unpaved. It’s 11.4 km (7.08 miles) long, running from Gasterntal to Kandersteg. The Gasterntal valley is an important UNESCO site and nature reserve.

Is the road through Chluse Gorge open?

Tucked away in the Swiss Alps, the gorges are the entrance to the Gasterntal Valley. The road is usually open from mid-May to mid-October. It is extremely narrow, impassable for 2 cars at the same time. Due its narrowness, the car traffic is restricted. 20 minutes for cars going to valley, ten minutes buffer, then 20 minutes for the cars getting out the valley. As a driver you’ll definitely feel a bit of pressure seeing the narrow road created in the mountain wall.

When was the Chluse Gorge road built?

 To drive the very narrow road carved out of the cliff wall without stopping will take most people between 30 and 45 minutes. The first road through the gorges was built in 1912. Work on road construction was begun in the second half of the 19th century, which however only served for access to the temporary settlement in Gasteretal. Shortly before World War I it was possible to improve the road as far as Selden. The road has arched bridges, tunnels and a half gallery: incredible civil engineering feats which can still be seen today. The road has retained its original appearance for more than 100 years.
Pic: Petra Risel