A "Must Do" in the Lower Engadine are strolls through the quaint villages. Most of them nestle high above the valley floor on sunny terraces. All of them remained their structure through centuries. Small squares with fountains, surrounded by beautiful stone houses, which are decorated with magnificent sgraffiti. Each is similar, but different in details.
The most picturesque villages are Guarda, Ardez, Scuol and Sent. It's the athmosphere! Especially in Guarda or lower Scuol (Scuol Suot) you feel that time stands still, an athmosphere like 400 years ago.
Although the Lower Engadine (Scuol) is not as famous for cross-country skiing as the Upper Engadine (St. Moritz) it is still a fantastic area for this kind of sports.
About 80 km of tracks are groomed for cross-country skiers between Scuol and Martina, and another 35 km between Zernez and Giarsun/Guarda. The longest tracks are to find right on the valley floor along the Inn river. Due to the narrow valley floor and the high mountains towering above the trails gets very few sun in Dec/Jan. Good for the snow quality, but can be quite cold then ...
Sunnier but shorter tracks are groomed near Ftan, Ardez and Guarda. I prefer to bring my own equipment, but you can rent at several sports shops in the villages. Especially Scuol provides a wide selection.
Scuol and the Lower Engadine Valley
The Engadine Valley, which is my favourite vacation destination, is separated into two quite different parts: Lower and Upper Engadine. For the Upper Engadine with its major place St. Moritz please see my St. Moritz page.
This page is about the Lower Engadine Valley which is called Engiadina Basse in local language "Rumansch". It is located in the far east of Switzerland, bordering to Austria in the north and sharing a short borderline with Italy in the east.
It is a lovely valley along the Inn river, with huge mountains to both sides, reaching more than 3000 meters, with large glaciers in the northern mountain range (Silvretta). The Lower Engadine takes profit of its location in the Central Alps - only relatively little rain and a lot of sun. Shortly said, the weather tends to be like on the Southern side of the Alps.
The Lower Engadine doesn't know the crowds of the famous places in the Alps. It is a region for hikers, bikers, skiiers or just recreation. The Inn river offers plenty of water sports, e.g. fantastic whitewater rafting. But you can read all this in the tips section.
When being in the Lower Engadine you MUST have a closer look at the quaint villages: they are probably some of the most beautiful in the Alps. Old stone houses, decorated with sgraffiti, surrounding small squares with fountains, small cobbled streets leading around the corner to the next square. Minor roads cross rivers on covered wooden bridges.
The locals remained their language and culture well. They are a (constitutional protected) minority in Switzerland and speak the language Rumansch. You can get by with German very well, and English is usually spoken, especially by the younger folks.