Uri is one of the most mountainous cantons in Switzerland, so let us explore the top places to visit in Uri canton.
While Canton Uri is one of the least populous places in Switzerland, it has some very exciting places as villages, mountain passes, Swiss Alps lakes, valleys, and mountain peaks. It is a very exciting place for hikers and adventure seekers.
I would definitely pick Uri as one of the top 5 places in Switzerland to hike or have a great alpine drive. All canton area pretty much doesn’t have a flat place (unless down the valley) and is full of amazing views. In Uri, you can visit one of the villages from my list of most charming villages in Switzerland and as well do my recommended mountain passes adventure.
I would highly recommend spending the whole weekend in Uri canton, do as much hiking as you can and you won’t really regret it, au contraire – you are going to fall in love with it.
Overall Uri’s population is just over 36 000 people and the main spoken language over there is German. The capital of Uri is Altdorf village and the highest peak in Uri is Dammastock – standing at a staggering 3630 meters altitude.
Uri is a great place as well to see and takes pictures of famous Swiss cows, goats, or even wildlife. Take a path less explored and you are going to love the peacefulness of the place.
Let us jump in into the list of places to visit in Uri canton.
Andermatt is one of the biggest villages in Uri canton is a pretty famous skiing destination in Switzerland.
You can reach Andermatt from four roads: three of them are via mountain passes or via a windy road which you would take just before the famous Gotthard Tunnel.
Andermatt stands at 1447 meters elevation, so that is a pretty high altitude village which makes it a perfect place to ski or hike.
Andermatt has a very fine and charming old town with plenty of restaurants, fancy hotels, and shops.
It has quite many chapels and churches for such a small village and if you are looking to learn more about the history of the place, you can as well visit the Talmuseum (valley museum).
A very cool thing in Andermatt is that they have a golf course over there. At 1447 meters it makes one of the highest ones in Europe.
But the best thing you can do in Andermatt is definitely skiing in winter and hiking in summer. It has amazing slopes with jaw-dropping views and for summertime: Andermatt is pretty much surrounded on all sides by big mountains. So the hiking opportunities are countless. Check out my hike in Andermatt. Once you are in the village center, you will see dozens of destinations where you can hike.
As well, in Andermatt starts the famous Glacier Express train which takes you to one of the most beautiful places in all of Switzerland.
Oberalp Pass is one of the most exciting mountain passes in Switzerland because of its altitude and amazing location. It is just minutes away from Andermatt (by car or train) or a couple of hours away if you decide to hike up there.
On the top, you will find a couple of restaurants, a train station, a huge parking lot and a hotel. So life goes on there pretty much all the time it is open. Usually, the pass is open from late spring to mid-autumn.
Oberalp Pass is at 2044 meters altitude and is the only one with a lighthouse.
One very exciting hike in Oberalp Pass is to Tomasee – the beginning of the biggest river in Switzerland called Rhein. Tomasee is a pretty small, but very charming Swiss Alps lake, the hike there would take about 1h – 1h 30 minutes. If you have more time, you can hike a bit higher to Badushütte – a mountain hut where you can spend a night or just have your lunch break.
If you have less time, right on the top of the pass there’s a huge lake, so you can take an easy hike around it.
Oberalp Pass usually has cows all year long, so that is a perfect location to take many pictures of them.
Once I was in Oberalp Pass at the beginning of September, it was already snowing and the views were fascinating. Just be very cautious – it can be slippery. The best time to visit Oberalp Pass is in the middle of summer.
Furka Pass is definitely the most famous mountain pass in Switzerland or maybe even all of Europe.
It got its fame from the movie Goldfinger where James Bond was having one of his adventures. Part of the movie is right on the Furka Pass.
Furka Pass is as well one of the highest mountain passes in Switzerland – 2429 meters.
Once you are going up to Furka Pass, you must visit a couple of places:
the famous iconic Belvedere Hotel and the Rhone glacier.
There is a big parking lot by the hotel and restaurant, so you can visit both of the places very comfortably. The hotel is closed now, but it looks stunning because of its location, specific facade color, and architecture.
If you want to get into the glacier, you will have to pay a small fee in the souvenir shop next to it – the entrance is via the shop.
As well, if you want to spend more time – needless to say, Furka Pass has countless hiking trails and you can get pretty high as you already start your hike at 2429 meters altitude.
Altdorf is the capital of Uri and is the biggest town in the whole mountainous canton.
The population of Altdorf is close to 10 000 people and if you translate the name of this town you would get Old Village.
Altdorf is right next to the huge Urnersee (Urner lake) and as well is in one of the lowest parts of Uri – at 440 meters elevation.
If you are looking for some cultural experience, you can visit the Museum of art Uri where they exhibit local Uri and international artworks.
In Altdorf you can enjoy nice long walks by the lake or get straight to the forests and mountains – they are really next door. Altdorf is surrounded by huge mountains. You are going to love the views from the top.
Sisikon is a tiny village squeezed between a lake, mountains, and the main road.
Sisikon is right on the border of Schwyz canton.
I want to recommend Sisikon because I really enjoyed hiking there and the views from the higher up places on the mountain are breathtaking. You will get to really less explored mountain paths, will see some mountain chapels (Chämlezen Kapelle) and will have a really peaceful time.
Even though Sisikon is a small place, it has plenty of hotels, restaurants, even a camping place, a small port, and swimming opportunities as well.
Once you get to Sisikon I really recommend just go up straight to the mountains and explore the Swiss Alps. The hike itself is pretty steep, so pace yourself and have a great time in the Swiss nature.
Once you come back from the hike, you can have your lunch or dinner in Sisikon village.
Rütli is a very important historic place as it has meadows where the oath marking the foundation of Switzerland took place.
In the beginning, Switzerland has just 3 cantons (not 26 as now) – Uri, Schwyz, and Unterwalden. It happened back in 1307.
Now Rütli is a historical site with beautiful green meadows by the lake.
There you can find a small ferry terminal, a swearing place and a restaurant – Rütli haus.
It is a perfectly peaceful place for slow walks and hikes by the lake. Rütli is as well the beginning of the beautiful Swiss Path hiking trail created to celebrate the 700th anniversary of Switzerland.
Schöllenen Gorge is a canyon which is formed by the river Reuss and is between the towns of Göschenen to the north and Andermatt. It gives the possibility to get to the Gotthard Pass.
Enclosed by massive granite walls, its road, and railway needed back then several charming bridges and tunnels, of which the most well known is an old stunning stone bridge known as the Teufelsbrücke (“Devil’s Bridge”) – the history of this bridge began back in 1595, it was a wooden bridge before. If your head is spinning going up these roads now, just imagine how it all looked back in the 16th century. I am pretty sure it was a dangerous trip to take.
It is one of those places in Switzerland where you think “How the heck they did it” and at the same time, you just love that such hidden treasures and beauties exist. Even if you far away from being a fan of civil engineering, you will love the structure and complexity of this place.
My tip: once you go to Andermatt, you will see quite a lot of it from the car, Devils bridge is a bit under the main road which takes you to Andermatt, but to see it all and appreciate the Swiss engineering, you should stop and go out to see it all up close. There is even a restaurant next to the Devils bridge: Devils Bridge Restaurant.
What is probably even more exciting than glaciers and mountain peaks in the Alps is the Swiss Alps lakes. In this list, I have put two lakes in canton Uri, but there are many many more. Do not forget about Tomasee and Oberalp See.
Arnisee is a charming little lake which you can reach by car or take a cable car from Amsteg. It has a couple of restaurants, public toilets, children playing grounds and hotels next to it.
In summer time it is a perfect place for hiking and biking, in wintertime, it is the perfect place for snowshoeing.
The lake is at 1368 meters altitude so swimming up there most of the year can be pretty cold.
If you are looking for more adventurous activities, you can do some hiking in surrounding areas and spend a night in the local huts: Leutschachhütte is at 2208 meters altitude, it would take around 3 hours from Arnisee to reach; Sunniggrat-Hütte is at 1978 meters and you can reach it in two hours.
Arnisee is a perfect place for family, groups, couples, and alone adventures.
The lake is pretty high: at 1792 m and has a big dam, hence the reservoir.
Most reservoirs are very beautiful in Switzerland as they are huge and have a very specific color which I personally love.
The lake is right in the middle of the mountains, so it looks pretty stunning.
Just right next to the dam there is a restaurant with parking spaces Dammagletscher. You can have your dinner or lunch there and start your walk to the lake right there.
You can hike by the lake or hike a bit higher to Bergseehütte (mountain hut) which stands at 2370 meters. The hut is over 150 years old and the hut hiking in Switzerland is a special adventure itself. On the other side of the lake, you will find other huts: Dammahütte and Chelenalphütte. So you can even do two days adventure up there.