January 2011
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Travel – Samnaun – located as a duty free area in Switzerland

Samnaun is in the district of Inn in the Swiss Canton. It is a municipality in Canton of Graubunden in Switzerland. This is a valley for the villages Tschlin and Ramosch and was used as a pasture. In the 12th century, farm houses and fields were gifted to Marienberg Abbey by the counts of Tarasp. It is spread from 1,700 and 2,900 meters.
Located close to the Austrian border, this place is a duty-free area for Swiss customs.There are four villages, Samnaun-Dorf (at the end of the road going through the area), Compatsch, Laret and Ravaisch, inside the Samnaun area. Ischgl is a ski centre in Sumnaun on the Austrian side on the border. It is the largest, as well as the liveliest ski area in the Eastern Alps.
It has an area of 56.2 square kilometers (21.7 sq mi) and has a population of approximately about 813. The official language of Samnaun is German and Portugese is the second and Serbo-Croatian is third most speaking language of Sumnaun. Bavarian dialect is the form of German spoken by Samnaun residents. Samnaun has known for its world’s first double-decker cable car which was the biggest ever of the time and the capacity is to carry over 180 skiers at a time.
This is a Swiss ski resort which has access to 200km of downhill skiing, with 70 individual pistes, served by 40 ski lifts. It is at an altitude of 1500 meters skiing is ideal and with pistes above 2500metres, snowboarding and skiing is perfect. There are two skii schools in Samnaun and they are the First Ski- and Snowboard School Samnaun and Swiss Snowsport School Samnaun.

Things to do:
Snowmaking: – Samnaun has 260 Snow Cannons and hence snowmaking is one of the best deals in winter.
Ski Lift Capacity: – The 40 Ski Lifts of Samnaun can carry or uplift up to 78,500 skiers / snowboarders per hour.

Skiing in Samnaun and Snowshoe trekking:
Samnaun offers good skiing. Swiss ski resort which has access to 200km of downhill skiing, with 70 individual pistes, served by 40 ski lifts. It is at an altitude of 1500 meters skiing is ideal and with pistes above 2500metres, snowboarding and skiing is perfect. It offers a total of the 235 piste kilometers for skiing.

Cross-Country Skiing: Samnaun has a total of 7 kilometers for cross-country skiing.

Snowboarding in Samnaun: Boarder’s Paradise is one of the biggest snow parks in Europe, ideal for Snowboarding. Along with this, 1500 meters ski area and 2500metres areas of pistes give a broad chance of Snowboarding.

Ice sports: There are many opportunities on the natural ice field “Clis da Ravaisch” between Samnaun village and Samnaun Ravaisch.
Winter Hikes. There are about 40 km of winter hiking paths with beautiful views of the Samnaun landscape.

Tobogganing: There are two natural tobogganing tracks with a spectacular view of Samnaun valley.

The Top events of Samnaun:
Clau Wau – This event occurs at the beginning of December. This event is Clau Wau Santa Claus world championships that take place every winter. Every Christmas, the Santa Claus has to drag sack full of gifts through wind and weather, to all, young and old and the best becomes the champion of the year.

Spring Snow Festival: This festival takes place in the last week of April. This is an international spring snow festival in the midst of the Silvretta Arena Samnaun/Ischgl. It is a rock music celebration and electrifying concerns.

International Silvretta Schüler-Cup: This international competition takes place in April where more than 500 kids take part in a ski race. This takes place at the Alp Trida in the Silvretta Arena Samnaun / Ischgl.

Synchro Ski world cup: This event takes place in January at the Musella-Hang in Samnaun Dorf where groups have to ride down the steep hill Musella. This is an exciting event of the year.

Moonlight skiing: Skiing under the moonlight is a special experience in the the Silvretta Arena Samnaun / Ischgl, up the alp Trider Sattel. There is a ski run to Skihaus Alp Trida and is supposedly the first to be known in moonlight. Moonlight is the only source of light for the ski run.

Places to see:
Alpenquell experience bath: The valley offers a visit to the Alpenquell experience baths. It is the highest situated bath centre of Switzerland that is 1,715 meters above. It also has sport swimming pool, ice-cool springs, whirlpool, massage jets and steam cabins.
Library: This is a well known Samnaun library with huge collections of books and best sellers. It is situated in the school premises of Samnaun Compatsch.
Butts: The House Panorama in Samnaun village offers shooting bull’s eye. If one is interested a rifle-range (butts), this place is the right one to try.

How to get there
By Air: The two nearest major airports are in Zürich and Innsbruck from which Samnaun can be reached by bus.
By Bus: The Swiss part of the valley is served by a frequent bus which can be used free of charge.
By Car: To reach Samnaun there are two roads-one that comes from Austria and the other is Swiss road, from Engadin.
The easier one is from Austria which comes from Landeck. When coming from Landeck, about a few km after the village Pfunds the road begins and a few meters before the road to St. Moritz – Engadin, there is the Austrian side of the Samnaun. The Swiss road is from Engadin road, starting at Martina, is considered difficult with tunnels, traffic etc. The biggest possible car coming across here is the Swiss post bus.

Double Decker Gondola: Samnaun had the world’s first double Decker Gondola. It carries 180 people up to the skiing area.
Ski bus: Samnaun has got a free Ski bus which connects the villages with each other and the gondola station. There is an “Ortsbus” too, it connects all the villages (incl. the villages which can’t be reached with the ski bus because the streets are to narrow). This service is free for guests of Samnaun.

Public Transport: Samnaun can be reached easily from Switzerland and Austria by public transport. A bus connects Samnaun with Scuol-Tarasp and Landeck about 4-6 times a day. Scuol Tarasp can be reached from any part of switzerland via Zürich-Landquart and the Vereina Tunnel. Landeck is on the Arlberg Mainline.

Best time to visit / climate:

The place has its own activities for summer and winter. But the ideal time is winter as there are many events and sports to enjoy.
In winter, Sumnaun is a place for skiing cross-country or snow-shoe trek, snowboarding and sledging. It lasts from the end of November to early May. In summer, shopping jewellery, Swiss watches, alcohol and tobacco and viewing the nature and mountains is ideal in Sumnaun along with sports like hiking, biking or tennis. Ischgl is a ski centre in Sumnaun on the Austrian side on the border. It is the largest, as well as the liveliest ski area in the Eastern Alps.

Location on Google Maps:

View Larger Map

Directions from Zurich to Samnaun:

View Larger Map

Places to stay (hotels / restaurants):

• http://www.samnaun.ch/en/navpage-AccSAMN.html
Tripadvisor (list of hotels)
• http://www.ski-austria.com/ischgl/samnaun.php
• http://www.samnaunhotels.com/
• http://www.hotelscombined.com/City/Samnaun.htm
Virtualtourist (list of restaurants)
Virtualtourist (list of hotels)
• http://realtravel.com/dh-34546-samnaun_hotels

Blogs / Sites about Samnaun:

• http://www.travbuddy.com/Post-Hotel-Samnaun-v138670
• http://www.kosmix.com/topic/samnaun/Blog-Posts
• http://realtravel.com/d-34546-samnaun
• http://blog.eurail.com/index.php/2008/eurail/in-samnaun/

Images and photos of Samnaun:

• http://realtravel.com/dp-34546-0-samnaun_photos
Google Images
• http://www.flickr.com/photos/17259476@N00/4500219187/
• http://www.webshots.com/explains/sports/samnaun.html
• http://www.snow-forecast.com/resorts/Samnaun

Videos of Samnaun (link)

Samnaun 2010

Samnaun 2008

Skiing in Samnaun – The black summit @ 100+ km/h

Slalom Samnaun

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