Glarus, the smallest canton in Switzerland, is tucked into a valley with dramatic peaks on either side. It’s a major family camping destination, and popular with hikers. The main road runs right through the initial towns, and then winds up over the especially scenic **Klausenpass into canton Uri. Barring nature activities, you’d be hard pressed to fill more than a day in the region.

We started with a drive up to the popular *Klöntalersee, a popular camping, hiking, and biking destination. It’s a nice lake with dirt/stone shores, fairly calm, with many hikers. It’s scenic, but not particularly unique in the Swiss context.

Nafels and adjacent Mollis are the first major towns up the valley. Mollis in particular is lovely – a good place to wander around, with quiet side streets and grand historic homes. We really liked **Museum des Landes Glarus im Freulerpalast, which has really spectacular interiors and a small collection on the history of skiing and textiles of the region. **Restaurant Bären in Mollis has excellent schnitzel. Gasthof Löwen Mollis looked appealing as an alternative.

Continuing up the valley, Glarus (town) twists around the central road, creating a slow parade of cars. On our visit, a market & music festival was underway, with big cheerful crowds. We enjoyed **Gastrorollbar, a fancy pop-up bar in the park.

We stayed at the impressive **Hotel Landvogthaus, a historic house of the region. The owner was lovely, made a good meal and gave us a very interesting tour of the house. Quite expensive but worth it for fans of historic architecture. It’s outside of town, heading towards the pass.

The pass itself over to Uri, the **Klausenpass, is one of the prettier drives in Switzerland, mostly below tree line. You can camp near the top. The road surface itself is a bit rough, not a great choice for more delicate vehicles. 



Galen and I debated how to categorize **Hotel Stern und Post (almost ***). One of the oldest inns in central Switzerland, there are documented records of it as far back as 1357. The current building dates to 1788. I think it’s unlikely this is a destination for anyone but people seeking a great drive over an Alpen pass – but if that’s you, it’s a great choice. It’s not fancy (though the food leans that way), but it’s thoughtful, comfortable, well maintained. The owners are extremely nice, and it’s friendly atmosphere. The guests were a mix of drivers, road bikers, and hikers – and the place was full, so book in advance.

Susten Pass

The pass road, built from 1938–1945, connects Innertkirchen in the canton of Bern with Wassen in the canton of Uri. In great shape, lovely smooth driving conditions over dramatic passes. It combines everything amazing about the Grimsel Pass and adds elevation change (2260 m.). It also adds glaciers. Better than Stelvio.


Coming down the Klausenpass from Glarus, Hotel Posthaus Urigen looks appealing for a meal stop – another historic option for a future trip. We did look into staying there and decided to skip, a bit communal and rustic for our tastes (shared rooms, bathrooms).

Known for the **Stäubifall, a very impressive year-round waterfall in a bucolic countryside setting (also visible from the Klausenpass). The moderate walk in takes about 30 minutes – on a well maintained, but fairly uphill trail. There’s a small cafe/restaurant at the end for snacks.

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