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Stelvio Pass (Passo dello Stelvio)

A popular cycling destination in the Ortler Alps

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The Stelvio Pass road links Italy to the South Tyrol and Switzerland. The distance from Bormio to Prato allo Stelvio is about 29 miles (47 km). А mountain pass is located on an elevation of 9,045 feet (2,757 m) and is the highest paved pass in the Eastern Alps and the second highest in the Alps after Col de l'Iseran in France. The road SS38 features 48 hairpin turns, attracting many cyclists and motorcyclists with these picturesque curves. Stelvio Pass has become an iconic cycling destination due to Giro d'Italia (Tour of Italy).

Stelvio Pass facts

Stelvio Pass road was a popular route since the Middle Ages. The first road was built here in 1820–1825 during the times of the Austrian Empire to connect Lombardy with Austria, and that idea was backed by Emperor Francis I of Austria. Stelvio Pass lies only 656 feet (200 m) from the Swiss border. Umbrail Pass runs from its westbound ramp. The Dreisprachenspitze, also known as Three Languages Peak, towers above the pass and is considered to be the meeting point of German, Italian, and Romansh languages.

Attractions of Stelvio Pass include a cable car, leading to the ski resort of Livrio, where skiing is possible even in the summer. Visitors can admire nearby scenic peaks: Ortler, Thurwieserspitze, Trafoier Eiswand, Monte Scorluzzo, and Piz Umbrail.

When does the Stelvio Pass open

Stelvio Pass is usually open to traffic between June and October. The road closes around November 1 due to snow blocking the way and reopens around June 1. You can check the current status of the Stelvio Pass road and other mountain passes at bormio.eu.

Stelvio Bike Day (Scalata Cima Coppi)

Each year, Stelvio Pass gets closed for traffic on the last Saturday of August or the first Saturday of September. On that day, around 12,000 cyclists celebrate the Stelvio Bike Day, riding from Prad to the pass and descending over the Umbrail pass to Val Müstair. There are three routes to the Stelvio Pass for cyclists: the South Tyrolean route, the Lombardia route, and the Swiss route. Also, in mid-June, an annual Stelvio Marathon from Prad to Glurns takes place in the area.

Stelvio Pass map

If you are up to driving or cycling the scenic Passo dello Stelvio, you may want to rest your head somewhere close to the pass road. So take a look at the Stelvio Pass map, suggesting some of the best hotel options nearby. And make your bookings well ahead of time if possible.

Practical info

When does the Stelvio Pass open?

Stelvio Pass usually opens about June 1 and closes about November 1.

Where is Stelvio Pass?

Stelvio Pass is located at the northwest Ortles Mountains in northern Italy close to the Swiss border.

What side of the road do they drive on in Italy?

Italians drive on the right side of the road.

How many miles is the Stelvio pass?

29 miles (47 km)

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