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If Switzerland's lovely village of Scuol has caught your attention as it has so many others from around the world, then you're probably dreaming about a vacation filled with excitement on the ski slopes and complete relaxation in the natural thermal baths. To be sure, these are exceptional activities that you won't want to miss during your visit, but nature lovers are also in for something really special with a visit to the incredible Swiss National Park. Read on to learn more about this natural wonder and everything that it has to offer, and you're sure to want to add it to your must-do list during your stay in Scuol.

About the Swiss National Park

Located less than 20 minutes from Scuol, the Swiss National Park was founded on Aug. 1, 1914, by a group of pioneers and visionaries who wanted to ensure the protection of this exquisite natural area. It's among Europe's very first national parks and the only one to be found in all of Switzerland. Every plant and animal in the park is strictly protected, and the entire park is included in the worldwide UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Visitors will discover over 100 miles of gorgeous wilderness in the Western Rhaetian Alps, and these are just a few of the activities that you may expect to enjoy during your visit.

Wonderful Hiking Options

Some 50 miles of trails with 21 possible routes offer an excellent hiking experience for every visitor. Those traveling with young children may choose the easy-to-navigate trails, and those with older children and teens may enjoy a trail that is a bit more challenging. There are also quite strenuous trails for those who want a long hike that requires some real climbing.

Because the park is in the mountains, you'll find trails that take you to various altitudes, and many are high above the treeline. Regardless of which trails you take, you'll be treated to the natural beauty of the mountains and plenty of plant and animal life, but you should check the local weather conditions before you head out for the day. These are just a few of the plants and animals that you may expect to see during your hiking adventure.


  • Fairy Thimble Bellflower
  • Alpine Aster
  • Vanilla Orchid
  • Edelweiss
  • Cowberry
  • Lady's SlipperEdelweiss Flower
  • Mountain Pine
  • Cembra Pine
  • Norway Spruce
  • Rock Jasmine
  • Glacier Crowfoot
  • Rhaetian Poppy
  • Pygmy Buttercup


  • Red Deer
  • Ibex
  • Chamois
  • Fox
  • Marmot
  • Mountain Hare
  • Snow Vole
  • Squirrel
  • Ptarmigan
  • Golden Eagle
  • Bearded Vulture
  • Nutcracker
  • Northern Viper
  • Grass Frog
  • Brown Bear
  • Lynx
  • Wolf

The National Park Center

Before or after your hike, you're welcome to come right inside the visitor's center to explore the four large rooms that are filled with a permanent exhibition of all things related to the park and many interactive exhibits that are sure to delight those of all ages. There's also a special discovery trail for the children, and they'll be provided with an explorer's handbook that will allow them to find all of the wonders of natural history within the exhibit in a fun way that is sure to leave them feeling proud of their accomplishments.

The Museum

The Schmelzra Museum is another fun part of the park, and it houses a comprehensive mining exhibition. It's dedicated to the miners who spent over 300 years mining ore by hand from the mountains. You'll learn about the unique geology of the area, the discovery of dinosaur tracks, the destruction to nature from the mining and the harsh living conditions that the miners endured.

This museum also boasts the popular bear exhibit, which showcases the very last indigenous bear to live in Switzerland. He made his home in the woods that surround the park right up until his untimely demise in 1904. You'll learn how bears live, the type of habitat that they require to thrive and how bear populations are returning throughout Europe today. After seeing this exhibit, you'll want to take your children on the Bear Trail, which offers nine interactive areas that reveal facts about brown bears.

Great Ways to Explore

While visitors are free to explore the hiking trails on their own, it's also possible to reserve a private guided walk to ensure that you see the best of everything. Each guide is an expert on all things that involve the park, and any questions that you have will be thoroughly addressed. Another great option is the use of the digital hiking guide that works with your smartphone. It supplies detailed maps, information and stories as you walk and offers quizzes, videos and images that help explain everything that you encounter.