This sporty village comprising three parts – Silvaplana, Champfèr and Surlej – lies at the foot of the Julier Pass, among the lakes of the Upper Engadin and surrounded by impressive 3,000-metre peaks. Just minutes away is the Corvatsch ski area, home to the highest cable car station (3,303 m) in the Eastern Alps, as well as dream descents of all levels of difficulty and mountain huts oozing winter charm.
The gloriously wide expanses of the valley with its frozen lakes are ideal for exploring, whether on romantic walks or on extended cross-country ski tours along more than 190 kilometres of trails. Lake Silvaplana is the venue for the unique thrill of snowkiting, but conventional ice sports are also on offer at the Mulets sports centre. On Friday evenings, you can even ski under a star-studded sky – at Snow Night on Corvatsch. Silvaplana also hosts many popular sports events, such as the Coppa Romana, the largest open-air curling contest in Europe, and a winter golf tournament.
If you were to ask a kitesurfer in New Zealand, for example, what springs to mind when he thinks of Switzerland, you can be sure that Silvaplana will figure even higher up his list than Roger Federer. After all, this sports discipline originated here on the frozen Lake Silvaplana. Since then, almost every day, trend-sport enthusiasts from all over the world wait patiently for the Maloja wind to blow through the valley at around midday and to pull at their colourful kites. The thermal currents allow the more intrepid skiers and snowboarders to perform acrobatic jumps against the steel-blue sky or to sail close to the wind across the plain. Silvaplana has developed into a meeting place for hard-and-fast sports freaks.
For despite its close vicinity to trendy St. Moritz, the hotel and restaurant prices here have remained reasonable. And, towering up on the doorstep, the Corvatsch offers unlimited possibilities for winter sports enthusiasts. And yet Silvaplana also has its fair share of quiet spots: indeed, the village is surrounded by an almost surreally beautiful landscape, wide, frozen lakes, snow-laden forests, peaceful hiking paths and magnificent cross-country ski trails, all set amidst a mystical Engadin Alpine world.
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