The Belchen Tunnel

The Belchen Tunnel is a significant motorway passage in Switzerland, connecting the municipalities of Liestal and Eptingen, playing a crucial role in the A2 motorway that links Basel and Lucerne. Opened in 1970, the tunnel runs through the Belchen mountain range and comprises two main tunnel tubes, each having two lanes.

While this modern myth originated in around 1980, the tunnel has been serving road users since 1970. It recently underwent a substantial upgrade, bringing the structure up to national safety standards. The upgrade included the construction of a third service tube - the Belchen Rehabilitation Tunnel. The two existing tubes dating from 1970, were both modernised in 2022 by the Federal Roads Office FEDRO. This was necessary to ensure operational safety.

Background about the Belchen Tunnel

The tunnel consisting of two existing tunnel tubes (each with two lanes) that run through the complex and varied geology of the Belchen mountain range. It connects the municipalities of Liestal and Eptingen. It plays a crucial role in the A2 motorway, which links north-south road traffic between Basel and Lucerne.

Encircled by the striking Jura Mountains, this tunnel enables efficient domestic Swiss traffic between Basel and the neighboring regions of Olten and Solothurn. It is integral to the national system of toll roads and up-to-date live news is available online. It is managed by the Federal Roads Office FEDRO, who recently installed a new service tube parallel to the existing tunnel system. The existing tunnel tubes were also renovated.

Image (Map) to be created! A map showing the exact location of the tunnel and roads leading to/from it

Image File name: Map Belchen Tunnel.webp

Image Title: Map Belchen Tunnel

Belchen Tunnel - Toll Free

While no direct charge is levied for use of the tunnel, all drivers using the motorways are obliged to purchase a Swiss motorway vignette. These can be bought online and enable efficient payment for the use of the superb road network.

Elevation and Length of the Belchen Tunnel

Here are few useful and interesting facts about the tunnel:

Length 3 180 metres
Number of Tubes 2 (and 1 service tube)
Number of Lanes 2 x 2 (bi-directional)
Traffic Volume 55 000 vehicles per day
Typical travel time @ 80 km/h* 2.5 minutes

*Please note that the travel time listed is in ideal traffic and weather conditions. Users are advised to consult online resources with up-to-date information about traffic and weather.

Terms of Use & Restrictions

Those planning on using the tunnel are subject to the following regulations:

  • Drivers must have a valid driving licence and adhere to national traffic regulations.
  • Observe the 80 km/h speed limit when transiting the tunnel.
  • Be aware of the potential risks of using the tunnel. By law, all vehicles should be equipped with an emergency hazard triangle to deploy in the event of a breakdown or accident.

Belchen Tunnel Online Resources

It is suggested that travellers check their weather app for the latest Belchen tunnel weather. There is no traffic webcam for the Belchen Tunnel.

Belchen Tunnel FAQ:

The Belchen Tunnel serves as a vital link on the A2 motorway, connecting Basel and Lucerne, facilitating efficient transit through the Jura Mountains.
It is 3 180 metres in length. It is located between 47° 22' 43.76" N 7° 48' 59.45" E and 47° 21' 9.37" N 7° 50' 6.94" E
No. However, drivers should obtain an e-vignette to legally use the nation's motorways and toll roads.
You can request Roadside Assistance in Switzerland using the following numbers:
  • Emergency Call / Vehicle Breakdown Service: 140
  • TCS Touring Club Switzerland - Toll free number: 0800 808 114
  • TCS Touring Club Switzerland - International number: +41 58 8276316
As on all roads in Switzerland, adverse weather can hamper the efficient flow of traffic. The tunnel does remain open, but you are advised to seek further information online about prevailing conditions.
In 1980, a story circulated of a mysterious figure (female hitchhiker), who would appear in the roadway. Allegedly, those who picked up the 'woman' report bizarre discussions, followed by 'her' disappearance.
Those looking for an above-ground alternative to the tunnel can use Route 2.