Passo dello Stelvio - Stilfser Joch

The king of passes, Passo dello Stelvio remains the most famous and busiest Italian pass.

Passo Stelvio night motorbike
Passo dello Stelvio at night - Ph. Shutterstock

The King of the Alpine passes, the Stelvio Pass is the undisputed most scenic and technical pass in the Alps to be done by motorbike or bicycle.

In the heart of the Rhaetian Alps, the Stelvio Pass has always been the most coveted and exciting Alpine pass, from any side, with over 80 hairpin bends and 3 route variants between Lombardy, South Tyrol and Switzerland.

Altitude (meters above sea level)2.758
Length29 Km
connectionBormio - Prato allo Stelvio
Number of hairpin bends82
Winter closureOctober - May
Road conditions and notesGood conditions. Very busy.

Content index

  1. The path
  2. Useful Tips
  3. Map and information
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Stelvio Pass - Ph. Moto Excape

Better in the morning

The Stelvio, the second highest pass in the Alps after Colle dell'Iseran, it can be reached from three different points, which also allows you to vary the route a lot. Most traffic usually comes from Bormio, in Valtellina, being the fastest point to reach from the main cities of the Lombardia.

The other points of departure (or arrival) are Prato allo Stelvio, in South Tyrol, or Santa Maria in Val Mustair, on the Swiss side, at the bottom of the Umbrail Pass. You will face the greatest number of hairpin bends right on the Italian "sides", with those in Lombardy, on the Bormio side, softer and more panoramic, while on the South Tyrolean side you will find those "hanged" one above the other, much narrower and more technical.

stelvio umbrail pass bormio bmw motorrad stilfser joch
Stelvio Pass - BMW K1600GT - Ph. Moto Excape

Our advice is to try them all, because each side offers different emotions depending on whether you go down or up. The Prato allo Stelvio side requires calm and good driving skills, as the hairpin bends are narrow and busy and sometimes low speeds make you lose your balance.

At the top you will find some hotels like the Thoni 3000, right on the glacier where skiers train even in summer, several bars and souvenir shops. As always, the most beautiful and exciting part of the Stelvio Pass is not the destination but the journey.

stelvio umbrail pass bormio bmw motorrad stilfser joch
Stelvio Pass - Ph. Moto Excape

Useful tips and curiosities

The Stelvio in summer is literally stormed from any type of vehicle with wheels, from bicycles to cars, from campers to trikes, for this reason it is always better to drive it in the early hours of the morning.

Il weather at altitude it changes very quickly: you can go up and down with the sleet, so always leave well equipped, because at the top with bad weather the freezing winter returns to reign.

La road it is in good condition, but the rock on the sides crumbles and collapses easily, so it is easy to find debris on the road, go slowly and watch out for the blind corners because unfortunately many mistake this step for a circuit.

To this itinerario you can add the others as well passivated of the area like Umbrail Pass, Gavia Pass and Bernina Pass and many others between Alto Adige and Lombardy.

Where to sleep and eat

Map