Monday 17th to Friday 21st June 2024
Experience the Ultimate Roadtrip: Your Journey, Your Freedom
Let's embark on a journey that transcends the ordinary—a voyage that beckons the intrepid traveler in you. Welcome to the Ultimate Roadtrip, an adventure born from the fusion of passion, expertise, and the pursuit of the extraordinary.
Two years ago, a well-known German client posed a challenge: "Design my Ultimate Roadtrip." That simple request ignited a journey of discovery, research, and imagination. Today, we proudly present the culmination of that quest—the McLaren Alpine Tour, affectionately known as McAlpine.
This tour isn't just a road trip; it's a symphony of experiences meticulously crafted to push the limits of what your McLaren can do. It's a showcase of the Ultimate Driving Roads that Europe has to offer, all woven together into an unforgettable tapestry of sights, sounds, and sensations.
Your Journey, Your Freedom:
- Unleash the McLaren: Picture yourself at the wheel of a McLaren road car—a masterpiece of engineering, power, and style. Feel the hum of the engine, the grip of the tires, and the thrill of the open road ahead. It's an experience that fuels your soul and quickens your pulse.
- Alpine Wonders Await: The Swiss and Italian Alps stretch out before you, a panorama of snow-capped peaks, pristine lakes, and winding mountain passes. Each day, a new wonder unfolds as you conquer legendary passes like the Stelvio, Grimsel, Furka, and many more.
- Freedom to Explore: With meticulously planned routes, handpicked accommodations, and expert guiding, McAlpine is your ticket to exploration without constraints. We provide the framework; you paint the picture of your adventure.
- Charming Accommodations: Rest your weary head in carefully selected accommodations, from châteaux to boutique hotels, each chosen to add a touch of magic to your nights.
- Expertise and Companionship: Our team of expert guides will be your compass and storytellers, revealing the hidden gems and historical secrets of the Alps. They'll lead the way, so you can simply follow your sense of adventure.
McAlpine isn't just a journey; it's a lifestyle, an exhilarating escape from the ordinary. It's about seizing the moment, embracing the unknown, and making memories that last a lifetime.
Are you ready to embark on an adventure that will redefine your notion of road trips? Join us on the McLaren Alpine Tour—it's not just a "must do," it's a "must-experience." The road is calling, and your McLaren awaits.
On this trip you can look forward to:
A spectacular tour of stunning Alpine roads and scenery
Road sections lead by Andy Gordon – Former racing driver, qualified ARDS Instructor and known for frequently driving all over Europe in his spare time
Professional Photo and media team throughout the tour to record the memories
An exclusive Champagne tasting experience in Epernay
Guided routes through at least 10 of the worlds most famous Alpine Passes!
Our guest experience host on hand to assist with any requirements you have over the duration of the Road Trip
Costs are per car - including a driver and one passenger.
Day 1 - Monday - Epernay Champagne Tasting and Chateau de Germigney
Embark on a magnificent journey as we commence our epic road trip adventure at the French side of the iconic Eurotunnel. Picture the thrill of setting forth on a voyage filled with unforgettable experiences and breathtaking landscapes.
Our first stop takes us to the heart of Champagne country, Epernay, where we'll indulge in an exclusive Champagne tasting session. Sip on the finest bubbly elixirs crafted by the region's renowned winemakers, savouring every effervescent note that dances on your palate. The magic of Epernay will captivate your senses as we delve into the artistry of Champagne-making.
But the day's delights don't end there. As the golden sun casts its warm glow, we'll relish a delectable lunch in Epernay, a feast of culinary artistry paired perfectly with the exquisite wines we've just savoured.
Our journey continues southward, guiding us to the enchanting Chateau de Germigney in Dijon. This opulent chateau, nestled amidst lush greenery, will be our haven for the evening. Imagine stepping into a world of historic elegance and timeless charm. Our arrival at this splendid abode is met with anticipation, as we prepare for an evening that promises culinary excellence.
A sumptuous dinner, carefully curated to tantalize your taste buds, awaits us at the Chateau. Savour each mouthwatering bite, perfectly paired with fine wines, while sharing stories and forging connections with fellow travellers. The ambiance is one of refinement and conviviality, setting the stage for unforgettable memories.
As the day comes to a close, retire to your luxurious accommodations at the Chateau de Germigney, where every detail exudes comfort and sophistication. As you drift into a peaceful slumber, reflect on the extraordinary experiences of the day, knowing that this is just the beginning of a road trip filled with wonders and adventures.
Join us on this extraordinary journey, where every moment is crafted to delight the senses and create cherished memories. This is Day 1 of our remarkable road trip—a day of Champagne dreams and Chateau living. Don't miss the opportunity to be part of this once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Day 2 Tuesday Alpine Adventure - From Chateau de Germigney to Radisson Blu in Andermatt
As the sun paints the Swiss Alps with its first rays, Day 2 of our journey unfolds with the promise of exhilarating Alpine adventures. Get ready to traverse a trio of iconic passes, each offering a unique tapestry of breathtaking scenery, road challenges, and unforgettable moments.
Skirting Lake Geneva:
Our day begins with a scenic drive as we depart from the Chateau de Germigney, making our way southward. As we skirt the shores of Lake Geneva, your eyes will be treated to a mesmerising vista—a sparkling jewel nestled amidst the Alpine foothills. Lake Geneva's crystal-clear waters reflect the grandeur of the surrounding peaks, creating a picture-perfect setting for our journey. Along the way, you'll pass through charming lakeside towns that add a touch of Swiss charm to your adventure.
Montreux - The Queen of the Swiss Riviera:
Our route leads us to the enchanting town of Montreux, known as the "Queen of the Swiss Riviera." This is where our road trip takes a detour into wonderment. Montreux, with its Mediterranean climate, palm-lined promenades, and vibrant cultural scene, is a destination that has captured the hearts of many. It's also the former home of the legendary Freddie Mercury, adding a musical note to its charm.
As you explore Montreux, you'll have the opportunity to stroll along the lakeside promenade, admiring the elegant Belle Époque buildings and the stunning Chillon Castle, nestled on a small island in the lake. This town is a true gem of Switzerland, and it's a moment of relaxation and cultural immersion before we dive back into the driving adventure.
The Grimsel Pass:
Leaving Montreux behind, we continue our journey, now heading towards the legendary Grimsel Pass. This is where the excitement of the Alpine roads truly begins. Grimsel presents a different facet of its beauty. The road winds through pristine forests, offering sweeping curves that make driving a pure delight. As you climb higher, the pass reveals its character. It's a high-altitude masterpiece, crowned by snow-capped peaks and emerald-green lakes. The first part of the journey, leading through lovely forests, is a delightful warm-up. Then, after Guttennen, the pass surprises you with towering granite rock faces that rise dramatically, creating a dramatic backdrop. With every turn, Grimsel challenges your driving skills while immersing you in the grandeur of the Swiss Alps.
The Furka Pass:
Following the Grimsel, we transition seamlessly to the world-renowned Furka Pass, made famous by its appearance in a certain 007 film. This road is a symphony of road engineering and natural beauty. The journey starts with pristine forests, and you'll soon find yourself navigating sweeping curves that make driving pure pleasure. Beyond Guttennen, you'll be surrounded by granite rock faces rising 600-800 meters around you—a visual spectacle that contrasts starkly with the serene forests below. The last 5 kilometres to the summit are the crescendo, offering a breathtaking panorama that confirms why Furka is a driving legend.
Day 2 of our road trip is a masterclass in Alpine pass driving. From the serene forests of Grimsel to the iconic landscapes of Furka and the exhilarating journey through Susten, you'll encounter a kaleidoscope of experiences. The Swiss Alps unfold before you, inviting you to embrace the thrill of the road and the awe-inspiring beauty that surrounds you. Get ready to create memories that will last a lifetime as you conquer these legendary passes, with the added charm of Montreux and the enchanting shores of Lake Geneva along the way.
Finally, our day concludes at the delightful Radisson Blu in Andermatt, a haven of modern luxury and comfort. This exceptional hotel consistently earns superb ratings for its impeccable service and world-class facilities. Here, you can unwind in style, rejuvenate in the spa, or relish exquisite cuisine at the hotel's restaurant.
After a day filled with Alpine wonders, your stay at the Radisson Blu promises relaxation and indulgence. Soak in the beauty of Andermatt's pristine landscapes, or simply bask in the tranquility of your elegantly appointed room.
Day 3: Alpine Passes Discovery - Andermatt to Bormio Terme Spa Hotel
On Day 3 of our Alpine expedition, we embark on a thrilling adventure that reveals the diverse beauty and challenges of some of the most iconic Alpine passes. Each pass along this journey offers its own unique character and showcases the grandeur of the Swiss and Italian landscapes.
St. Gotthard Pass - A Triumph of Engineering:
Our day begins with the ascent of the St. Gotthard Pass, an incredible feat of human engineering set against the backdrop of the awe-inspiring Swiss Alps. The road winds its way through dramatic mountain vistas, with every twist and turn presenting a new facet of Alpine beauty. This pass is a testament to human ingenuity and offers a stunning introduction to our day's journey.
San Bernardino Pass - Hidden Gem in the Alps:
Continuing our drive, we arrive at the San Bernardino Pass, a hidden gem that feels like a secret the Alps have kept just for us. As you traverse this pass, you'll find yourself surrounded by untouched natural beauty. The landscape seems to reach for the heavens, and every moment on this road is a discovery of Alpine enchantment.
Splügen Pass - Hairpin Marvel and Rugged Terrain:
Our next destination is the Splügen Pass, a marvel of hairpin turns and rugged terrain that promises an invigorating driving experience. As you navigate the serpentine roads, the vistas are nothing short of breathtaking. This pass challenges your driving skills while rewarding you with some of the most dramatic scenery the Alps have to offer.
Maloja Pass - Mystical Alpine Beauty:
The journey continues to the Maloja Pass, where Alpine beauty takes on a mystical quality. Here, the landscape seems to hold its breath in tranquil reverence. Take a moment to soak in the serene atmosphere of this enchanting location, where every view is like a painting come to life.
St. Moritz - Sophistication Amidst Serenity:
A visit to the chic town of St. Moritz awaits, where sophistication meets the serenity of the Alpine landscape. This glamorous destination is a playground for the affluent, set against a backdrop of pristine lakes, elegant boutiques, and captivating beauty. It's a moment of refined indulgence on our journey.
Bernina Pass - Glacial Majesty and Alpine Panorama:
Our route leads us to the Bernina Pass, where glaciers and the majestic Engadin Alps command your attention with their panoramic grandeur. The road unveils sweeping views that stretch as far as the eye can see, inviting you to savor the essence of Swiss beauty.
Tonale Pass - Majestic Italian Terrain:
Completing our Alpine pass trifecta is the Tonale Pass, nestled in the heart of the Italian Alps. As you approach Tonale, the majestic peaks and lush valleys capture your imagination. The pass itself is a delight, featuring sweeping curves and breathtaking scenery. Tonale is a celebration of Italian driving culture, where the road becomes an extension of your soul.
Gavia Pass - The Untamed Heart of the Alps:
As the day unfolds, we add one more gem to our journey—the Gavia Pass (Passo di Gavia). Renowned for its rugged and untamed beauty, this pass promises a thrilling drive through landscapes that seem untouched by time. Every twist and turn brings you closer to the wild heart of the Alps, creating an exhilarating driving experience.
Day 3 concludes at the splendid Bormio Terme Spa Hotel, a sanctuary of relaxation and rejuvenation. After conquering multiple Alpine passes, indulge in the therapeutic waters of the spa, followed by a delectable dinner that perfectly punctuates an epic day.
This is Day 3 of our unforgettable road trip—an odyssey through a series of magnificent Alpine passes, each offering a unique encounter with nature's splendour. Join us on this extraordinary journey, where every twist and turn reveals a new facet of Alpine beauty. Don't miss the opportunity to be part of this once-in-a-lifetime adventure.
Day 4: Alpine Passes Splendour - Stelvio to Radisson Blu in Andermatt
Prepare for an extraordinary day of Alpine exploration on Day 4, where each pass reveals its unique character and offers an array of memorable experiences.
The Stelvio Pass - A Historical Marvel:
Our day begins with an epic ascent of the Stelvio Pass, a true masterpiece of Alpine engineering and a historical marvel. This pass, perched at an elevation of over 9,000 feet, is renowned not only for its hairpin turns and dramatic mountain vistas but also for its rich history and significance in the world of skiing and cycling.
The Stelvio Pass traces its history back to ancient times when it served as a crucial Roman road connecting Italy to the rest of the Roman Empire. As you navigate its twists and turns, you are driving on a route that has witnessed the passage of countless travellers over centuries. The road itself is a marvel of engineering, a testament to human ingenuity in conquering the challenging terrain of the Alps.
Beyond its fame as a driving road, the Stelvio Pass also holds a special place in the world of winter sports. The surrounding area boasts several glaciers, making it a hub for skiing and snowboarding enthusiasts. In fact, the Stelvio Glacier offers summer skiing opportunities, allowing winter sports enthusiasts to indulge in their passion even during the warmer months.
In addition to skiing, the Stelvio Pass is a mecca for cyclists worldwide. It's a regular feature in prestigious cycling events like the Giro d'Italia, where professional cyclists challenge themselves on this demanding ascent. The pass's winding hairpin turns and high-altitude terrain present a gruelling yet rewarding test for cyclists. As you drive along, you may spot cyclists pushing their limits, inspired by the pass's legendary status in the cycling world.
A Summit of Awe:
Marvel at the breathtaking mountain vistas as you climb higher, and keep an eye out for the iconic "Stelvio" sign, signalling your arrival at the summit. Here, you'll stand at over 9,000 feet above sea level, surrounded by a 360-degree panorama of snow-capped peaks. The summit provides a sense of accomplishment that few roads can match, and the views are simply unparalleled.
Albula Pass - Hidden Gem in the Swiss Alps:
As we cross back into Switzerland, our journey takes us to the Albula Pass, a hidden gem in the heart of the Swiss Alps. This pass offers a mesmerising drive through pristine alpine landscapes. The road is beautifully paved, winding through dense forests and past charming Alpine villages. Keep an eye out for the Landwasser Viaduct, a stunning railway bridge that's a UNESCO World Heritage site. The viaduct's architecture is a testament to Swiss engineering prowess.
Flüela Pass (Optional) - Enchanting Beauty:
For those who choose to explore the optional Flüela Pass, you'll find yourself on a serene route that invites contemplation amidst the grandeur of the Swiss Alps. The road is smooth and well-maintained, providing a serene driving experience. The pass is named after the Flüela Hospice, a historical landmark that has been welcoming travellers for centuries.
Davos - Alpine Charm and Culture:
Our route leads us through Davos, a renowned Alpine town known for its pristine beauty and cultural richness. The roads in Davos are well-maintained, winding through the town's charming streets. Take a moment to explore and perhaps visit the Kirchner Museum, dedicated to the works of the renowned Expressionist artist Ernst Ludwig Kirchner.
Oberalp Pass - Sweeping Views and Breathtaking Scenery:
Next on our journey is the Oberalp Pass, a pass that captivates with its sweeping views and breathtaking scenery. The road is a delightful mix of well-paved stretches and Alpine terrain. As you ascend, you'll be greeted by expansive views of the Rhine River and the surrounding peaks. Look out for the source of the Rhine River, a stone's throw away from the pass road.
As the sun sets, we return to the Radisson Blu in Andermatt, where comfort and luxury await. This exceptional hotel, consistently rated as superb, will be our sanctuary for the evening. Here, you can relax in style, enjoy the hotel's world-class facilities, and reflect on the wonders of the day.
Day 4 of our road trip is a masterpiece of Alpine exploration, where history, nature, and adventure merge. From the iconic Stelvio Pass to the hidden treasures of the Albula, Flüela (optional), and Oberalp Passes, you'll encounter a diverse range of roads and landscapes. Don't miss the chance to immerse yourself in the heart of the Alps and create indelible memories along the way.
Day 5: Freedom of the Alps
As the McLaren Alpine Tour reaches its fifth and final day, an exhilarating adventure awaits. Departing from Andermatt, the group will embrace the western ascent of the Furka Pass—arguably the most dramatic and stunning direction to experience this high mountain pass. The climb reveals a landscape that seems to touch the sky, with views that captivate and exhilarate.
The journey continues seamlessly onto the Grimsel Pass, one of Europe's loftiest paved routes, where the air is crisp and the traffic sparse. The drive begins enveloped by enchanting forests, featuring curves that sweep and soar like an eagle in flight. Beyond Guttennen, the road ascends, flanked by awe-inspiring granite cliffs that rise 600 to 800 meters, commanding respect and admiration.
Approaching the summit, the road delivers a crescendo of natural beauty, with the last five kilometres offering vistas that are nothing short of breathtaking. Then, as the tour nears its conclusion, the Susten Pass awaits—less famed but no less spectacular, with its mesmerising Stein Glacier views on the descent.
This 46-kilometer stretch promises a photographer’s paradise, adorned with 26 tunnels and bridges, each bend in the road presenting a new tableau more picturesque than the last.
The tour’s finale is marked by a return to Andermatt, passing by the majestic Reuss Waterfall and the historic Teufelsbrücke, or Devil's Bridge, where legend and landscape intertwine. After a final celebratory lunch, the group will reflect on the journey and ponder the enticing possibilities of their next grand adventure.
Option 1: Begin the Drive Back to the UK
For those ready to return home, your journey back to the UK promises to be a reflective and exhilarating ride. Bid farewell to the Alpine peaks and set your course for the familiar comforts of home. The memories of the passes, the culture, and the camaraderie will be etched in your heart forever.
Option 2: Extend Your Adventure
But for those with a thirst for more, the Alpine playground beckons. The Swiss and Italian Alps offer a treasure trove of destinations waiting to be explored: -
Just a short drive from Andermatt, Lake Como beckons with its crystal-clear waters, charming villages, and stunning villas. Cruise along the lake's shoreline or enjoy a lakeside meal with views that inspire poetry. -
Nestled in the Engadin Valley, Guarda is a picturesque Swiss village frozen in time. Wander its cobblestone streets and soak in the romance of traditional Engadin houses adorned with colourful sgraffito artwork. -
This enchanting Swiss town, nestled between Lake Thun and Lake Brienz, is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. Adventure seekers can indulge in activities like paragliding, hiking, and boat cruises amid breathtaking mountain scenery. -
If you crave cosmopolitan flair, the fashion capital of Italy awaits. Milan offers world-class shopping, iconic landmarks like the Duomo, and renowned art galleries like the Brera. Savour the city's culinary delights and vibrant nightlife.
Whichever option you choose, remember that your McLaren road car is your passport to ultimate freedom. The roadways are your canvas, and the Alps are your muse. As you continue your journey, whether homeward bound or onwards to new horizons, savour the moments, relish the experiences, and let the spirit of the Ultimate Roadtrip guide your way. The Alps are yours to explore, and the adventure is yours to define.
We are also happy to advise and help with your onward planning if required.
What's Included and What's Not: Your Roadtrip Unveiled
As you prepare to embark on the adventure of a lifetime with the Ultimate Roadtrip, it's essential to know what awaits you on this captivating journey. Allow us to charm you with the details of what's included and what's not:
Unforgettable Accommodations: Throughout your journey, you'll rest your weary head in handpicked accommodations that exude charm and comfort. From châteaux to boutique hotels, we've curated a selection that adds a touch of magic to your nights.
Guiding Expertise: Our team of expert guides will be your compass and storytellers, revealing the hidden gems and historical secrets of the Alps. They'll lead the way, so you can simply follow your sense of adventure.
Tailored Routes: Your journey is meticulously prepared, with customised route maps that guide you through the most scenic and exhilarating roads in the Alps. Every twist and turn has been thoughtfully planned to keep you captivated.
Communication Radios: Stay connected with your fellow road warriors and our guides with state-of-the-art communication radios. Share your experiences, seek advice, and make this journey a shared adventure.
Route Preparation: We've taken care of all the logistics, from designing your route to arranging accommodations. All you need to do is focus on the road and the stunning scenery unfolding before you.
What's Not Included:
Meals: Your culinary adventures are yours to craft. Enjoy the freedom to choose your dining experiences, from charming local eateries to gourmet restaurants. Savor the flavors that excite your taste buds.
Eurotunnel Crossings: The journey begins at the Eurotunnel, but the cost of crossings is not included. The tunnel is your portal to adventure, and it's up to you to make the crossing.
Fuel Stops: Your McLaren's thirst for fuel is something you'll manage along the way. Each stop at the pump is an opportunity to stretch your legs and immerse yourself in the local culture.
Tolls and Peage fees incurred during the tour. Given optional routes on some days, you have the freedom to decide on taking the longer, more varied route, or more direct route to stops.
Beverages: From coffee to cocktails, your choice of beverages is entirely at your discretion. Quench your thirst with drinks that suit your mood and the moment.
Personal Expenses: Souvenirs, shopping, and any additional activities you choose to indulge in are not included. The Alps offer an array of treasures; it's up to you to decide which ones to bring home.
The Ultimate Roadtrip is about freedom, choice, and adventure. We've curated an experience that invites you to live life on your terms, to explore at your own pace, and to create memories that are uniquely your own.
So, as you set out on this enchanting journey, remember that you hold the reins of your adventure. Savor every moment, relish every decision, and embrace the thrill of the open road. The Alps are your playground, and the Ultimate Roadtrip is your canvas—paint it with the colours of your dreams.