Hiking with extensive views

Last updated on 25.04.2018

Trekking, long-distance hiking, multi-day day tours are some of the many terms used to describe the trend for escaping the pressures of everyday life for a while and setting out on foot. Long-distance hiking trails and pilgrimage routes such as the Way of St. James, the Munich-Venice route, the European long-distance hiking trails and the Adlerweg (Eagle’s Way) are becoming more and more popular. When you hike, you get closer to yourself with each and every step, as is often said. And anyone setting off on one of the two new long-distance trails in the heart of the Alps can look forward to some relaxing time out from everyday life in incomparably beautiful mountain scenery.

From the historic Old Town to the Naturpark Karwendel

For centuries Innsbruck has been the meeting place of the most important routes through the Alps, and the modern long-distance hiking trails in part follow ancient paths. And for years Innsbruck has been a popular staging post for established long-distance hiking trails such as the Munich-Venice route, and stages 12 to 14 of the Tyrolean Adlerweg also pass through the city and the surrounding mountains.

The Innsbruck Trek and the Karwendel Höhenweg long-distance hiking trails have now added to Innsbruck’s appeal, reinforcing the city’s reputation as the “Capital of the Alps”. Where else could you set off on a long-distance hike from the heart of a historic old town?

The famous Golden Roof is the starting point for the new “Innsbruck Trek”. This long-distance hiking trail is a joint project involving Innsbruck Tourismus, ASI Reisen and the Alpine School Innsbruck, a specialist in every aspect of hiking holidays throughout the world. Ambros Gasser, ASI’s Managing Director, says of the trail: “Long-distance hiking is both the most challenging discipline and also the original form of hiking. It enables people to perceive the landscape with all their senses and with remarkable intensity. The varied landscape makes the Innsbruck Trek particularly attractive, and I can’t imagine anywhere else where city and high mountains are as close as they are here.”

The “Innsbruck Trek” gives access to all the region’s massifs and takes hikers to almost every important landmark such as the Kalkkögel mountains and the famous Zirbenweg trail. The first stage starts in the middle of Innsbruck’s Old Town and ends in the lofty heights of the Karwendel mountains. The trail goes over the sunny Mieminger Plateau and on into the impressive Stubai Alps to Kühtai. From there you make for the mountaineering villages of St. Sigmund and Gries in the Sellrain before you reach the Olympic village of Axamer Lizum. A special highlight of this stage is a breathtaking view of the rugged beauty of the Kalkkögel mountains, the “Dolomites of North Tyrol”. The last stage of the 7-day tour takes you back via the Zirbenweg on the Patscherkofel mountain to the alpine and urban flair of the Tyrolean capital.

The trail is all the more impressive not only because of the unique combination of urban flair and alpine experience. Along the route, 3 and 4-star hotels also provide stylish accommodation and wonderful relaxation, and your luggage is already waiting for you at the next hotel, with luggage transport included. There are also two variations for each stage and hikers can choose which they fancy each day according to their mood and fitness.

The package includes supervision by highly trained mountain hiking guides, six nights’ accommodation in three or four-star hotels including meals and luggage transport. If you prefer hiking on your own, you can also book the trek as an individual at ASI Reisen. All your accommodation is reserved and you’re provided with detailed travel documents, maps, luggage transport and a 24/7 service number. More about the “Innsbruck Trek”: http://www.asi-reisen.de/specials/Innsbruck Trek.html 

Trekking with chamois guaranteed 

Serious fans of mountain sports with long-distance hiking experience and good physical condition will adore the new “Karwendel Höhenweg”. With a total length of 63 kilometres, this is a challenging but attractive tour with six very different stages for each day and a total altitude gain of 7,000 metres, of which 3,400 m are ascending. Hikers will also appreciate the Karwendel Höhenweg’s wonderful variety of valley and high mountains, lush meadows and rugged cliffs, not to forget the unforgettable views of the city. The Naturpark Karwendel, Austria’s largest nature reserve, is not only the habitat for rare species, but also an admirable example of how both the natural and cultural landscape can be protected. Here you can be within touching distance of ibex, eagles and chamois, and the chamois in particular can often be seen here showing off their impressive climbing skills; but, at the same time, the traditions of alpine farming are being maintained. The tour can be undertaken from west to east starting in Seefeld in Tyrol or in the opposite direction from Scharnitz, and there are five mountain huts in the park offering overnight accommodation. In keeping with its status as a nature reserve, getting to the trail by public transport is easy and straightforward. The ideal time to go hiking on the new Karwendel Höhenweg is from June to September.

Hermann Sonntag, Managing Director of the Naturpark Karwendel, is very pleased about this new trail: “The Karwendel Höhenweg is probably one of the most intensive ways to get to know the largest nature reserve in Austria. We ourselves are enthusiastic partners in the project, which is why we provide all participants with detailed knowledge about the flora and fauna along the way – on our website, in the mountain huts and with a starter package.”

You’ll find all the information about this new highlight for hikers on the website https://karwendel-hoehenweg.at and there’s lots more information about long-distance hiking in and around Innsbruck at https://www.innsbruck.info/en/experience/summer-sports/hiking/weitwanderwege.html