Keeping active in the Austrian Tirol
From its magnificent mountains to its reflective lakes, the Austrian Tirol is an ideal destination for outdoor enthusiasts, especially during the summer months. Alongside the renowned hiking and mountain biking trails, there’s rock climbing, white-water rafting, paragliding and many more activities on offer. Here’s a selection of exciting sports to start…
Mountain biking in Zugspitz Arena
For keen cyclists after challenging trails, the Zugspitz Arena has plenty, 4,330 kilometres to be precise. Located at the border of Austria and Germany, and comprising seven beautiful villages, there is a wide variety of downhill, high-altitude summits and winding paths to explore. An approved bike area for 2017 – after a rigorous assessment by TUV and ISO – the region has been designed with bikes in mind and has specialist hotels, circa 20 pre-prepared tours plus top rentals and services available. Those after a truly hair-raising descent should head to Lermoos (one of the seven villages) and check out the freereide scene consisting of jumps, ramps, curves and dirt tracks. Try the Forest Two route, which sees riders plunge down a 3.3 kilometre course (with 392 metres vertical difference) while trying to avoid the various obstacles. Alternatively, put the pedal to the metal on the three-day Zugpitz Loop Tour, which provides acess to more than 5,000 metres vertical and 200 kilometres of trails.
A six-day summer lift pass costs from €58 per adult and from €17 per child. Bikes travel for free on most lifts.
For more information, visit: www.zugspitzarena.com
Hiking in Alpbach
Capture 360° views over the spectacular Tirolean landscape when trekking in Alpbach. Situated in the Alpbachtal valley, at the foot of the Gratspitz mountain (1,898 metres high), the region offers more than 900 kilometres of hiking trails and graded paths for eager walkers. Climb the Wiedersbergerhorn, venture across the Tiefenbach Gorge, or explore the family-friendly routes along the winding Brandenberg River. Alternatively, why not join in with a sunrise hike in the Alpbachtal Seenland? On several dates during the summer, like-minded early risers can board the gondola before powering up the Wiedersberghorn mountain (2,127 metres high) for 45 minutes and settling down, waiting for the first rays to appear. Depending on the time of the year, the natural wonder can be witnessed between 5:30 am and 7 am (the lifts start running between 4 am and 5:30 am accordingly). Round off the experience with a wholesome breakfast at Gasthof Hornboden.
The walking tour costs from €10 pp and walkers must register their interest at the Alpbachtal Seenland Tourist Office the day before.
For more information visit: www.alpbachtal.at
Climbing in St. Anton am Arlberg
Nerves of steel, plus stamina, strength and skill are all needed to tackle the demanding via ferrata in St. Anton am Arlberg, in the Austrian Tirol. Nestled in the Stanzertal Valley, between the Lechtal Alps to the north and the Verwall Mountains to the south, the rugged cliffs attract climbers from around the world each summer. Go above and beyond on the Arlberg via ferrata, one of the most demanding Alpine tours. The course is three kilometres long and just under 2,500 metres high. Venture along steep rock faces and over narrow ledges, scramble up vertical crags and cross stony ridges; full climbing equipment and helmets are vital. The route should take four to six hours depending on the weather and level of fitness. A 2,000-metre steel cable, 1,051 rope clamps and 500 hooks help to ensure safely. Alternatively, beginners can practise their moves at Schann Gorge, which has a selection of easy trails.
Price on request.
For more information, visit: www.stantonamarlberg.com
White-water rafting in Otztal valley
One of Europe’s most frequented rafing destinations, tours on Ötztaler Ache and Sanna river, or the impressive Imster Schlucht gorge, are great fun for all visitors. The Ötztal valley is home to the highest mountain in Tirol, the largest glacier ski resort in the Eastern Alps and the tallest waterfall in the region. The Ötztaler Ache river flows through the valley, separating the Stubai Alps in the east from the Ötztal Alps in the west. Don a neoprene suit, protective shoes, a helmet and a life vest and get up close and personal with the river. Each boat is guided by an experienced and certified white-water instructor and pirate tours for children aged four and above can be organised too. Experiences last for more than two hours, ensuring everyone has a thrilling time. A two-plus hour session costs from €45 pp and includes equipment rental, introductory advice and transfers to the rafting base.
For more information, visit: www.oetztal.com
Paragliding in the Zillertal Valley
With its numerous take-off spots situated high in the mountains, and many landing areas on the wide valley floor, Zillertal Valley is a top destination for paragliders. Located 40 km east of Innsbruck, the region is home to plenty of centres offering tandem flights as well as training courses for those who would like to fly solo in the future. The ski lifts in Fügen, Mayrhofen and Tux keep running during the summer, allowing paragliders to access perfect sites for beginning their flights. Discover the vale from a bird’s-eye view and marvel at the high mountains, lush-green meadows and sparkling lakes below. Experienced paragliders, with their own equipment, can start (and end) their flights at a selection of official points across the gorge. A tandem flight costs from €65 pp and includes equipment.
For more information, visit: www.zillertal.at
For more information about the Austrian Tirol region in summer, visit visittirol.co.uk. Alternatively, keep up to date on Facebook www.facebook.com/visittirol or Twitter @VisitTirol.
ENDS – 26 June 2017
For further information and images contact:
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