Friday, February 29, 2008

We still have space on our hike through the land of fairy tales.

We still have space on two of our guided Engadine Treks. The first trip runs July 1-8, 2008 and the second trip runs September 1-8, 2008.

I strongly recommend that you consider this tour if you want to see a very special and unique corner of Switzerland. Romantic and magical are two words that easily describe this spendid region of southeastern Switzerland. I will admit that I’m somewhat bias and that candlelight dinners, good wine and warm days on the trail hold a special significance for me. That said, there is a reason that many of our guests choose to visit the Engadine and that many of them celebrate their honeymoons there.

Did you know that the four official languages of Switzerland are French, German, Italian and Romansch? Most people would probably guess the first three languages, or at least the first two. It makes sense, since almost 64 percent of Switzerland’s population speaks German and 20 percent speaks French. Few people are aware however, that one-half of one percent of Switzerland’s population, (that’s 0.5%), speaks a native tongue that originates from deep within the magical valleys and mountain ranges of a little land of fairy tales called the Engadine.

Many of the doorways are round with little half doors.



Even the gnomes have their own little doors.



People often ask us about water. The most refreshing water that you’ll ever taste just flows out of the Engadine forests and into the palm of your hands.



And what about the people? Some of the locals can trace their heritage all the way back to the Romans that founded the area. In fact, the towns feel more Italian or Roman than they do Swiss, as demonstrated by the extraordinary use of stone and plaster. The ornate exterior designs are called sgraffito. Literally meaning "to scratch" in Italian, this is a popular technique used in painting, pottery, and glass, which consists of putting down a preliminary surface, covering it with another, and then scratching the superficial layer in such a way that the pattern or shape that emerges is of the lower colour. This was a common technique during the middle ages and a hallmark of the Engadine region.



My favorite memory of the Engadine has to be the food.



And yes, the Engadine offers plenty of mountainous terrain. We advertise our Engadine Trek as one of our easier itineraries simply because an extensive transportation system allows it. The hiking will be as easy or as challenging as you like.

Please contact us for more information. We'd love to have you on this tour.

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