The beautiful Swiss village protected by a colony of rare ibex

Early-morning mist was draped over little Lake Staz. The gossamer veil added a touch of mystery to a serene summer outlook across gin-clear waters to pine-clad hills and mountains towering behind.

Only some ducks, gliding from the far shore in V formation, disturbed the stillness. I sat on a jetty revelling in the views and the tranquillity, then reluctantly walked on, following a woodland trail that in less than 20 minutes would take me a world away to one of the planet’s ritziest resorts.

Surrounded by a network of footpaths, Lake Staz is something of a hidden jewel in eastern Switzerland’s Upper Engadine valley. From my base at the postcard-pretty village of Pontresina I’d followed one of…

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