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Four times great freedom

The desire for outdoor life is increasing. Camping holidaymakers want to be in the great outdoors and still want to play it safe in their own four walls. In Ötztal there are four camping sites offering a heartfelt atmosphere and family-like connection.

Camping Sölden: hospitality rooted in history

Martha Kneisl was six years old when she entertained guests for the first time. As a toddler, she darted across her father's meadow and ran errands for vacationers. Long before the term camping became socially acceptable, guests set up their tents where today "Camping Sölden" accommodates vacationers. That was never planned. In the years when the border pass between Italy and Austria was opened and the Timmelsjoch High Alpine Road was built, soldiers came to Sölden. "That was in 1962," remembers Martha's son Lukas Kneisl, who runs the campsite today. "My grandfather Alois let his meadow to soldiers who were stationed as border guards at Timmelsjoch." A little later, a Dutch guest came to Sölden, saw the tents - and asked if he can also stay at the campsite. "That gave my family the idea of building a campsite."

What began improvised and with a spartan sanitary building is now a spacious area with a large wellness area. The special highlight is the location right in the heart of Sölden and yet close to nature on the banks of Ötztaler Ache brook where its murmuring always accompanies camping guests. The water and the surrounding peaks can be seen from every pitch: the campsite is terraced, the different heights allow for both the great panorama and the retreat area. Be it walking, hiking, cycling, biking or skiing: from the pitch it is only a few steps towards sports, action, nature and mountains.

Camping Sölden

Ötztal-Arena Umhausen: free choice of pitches and family connection

In Umhausen, a sheet of paper is the key to the perfect location. Before guests park their mobile home in the "Ötztal-Arena Umhausen", they are given a map of the area. "Each guest should form their own opinion and choose their own pitch," say Rainer and Birgit Krismer, who opened their campsite in 1987. Even when there is a lot of hustle and bustle, they stick to this ritual. Then the entire family lends a hand so that the operation with a total of 100 parking spaces runs smoothly. "We stick together as a family - and we want our guests to feel that, too," explains Birgit Krismer. "Anyone who comes to us becomes part of the family!" In the morning you can buy fresh bread rolls and there is also a coffee machine, in the evening Rainer Krismer cooks in his own restaurant.

Holidaymakers therefore like to come back - because of the family-like atmosphere of the Krismer clan, but also because of the location. At the heart of Ötztal, Umhausen makes a splendid starting point across the valley. The natural bathing lake in Umhausen, the Ötzi Village and the Birds of Prey Park are only a few minutes away, and it takes half an hour to reach the mighty Stuiben Falls, Tirol's biggest waterfall. A special feature are two wooden huts that guests can rent. Rainer and Birgit Krismer converted the garden shed into a holiday retreat: they insulated the wooden walls and set everything up lovingly so that up to four guests can stay overnight on the campsite - without a tent or van.

Ötztal Camping Umhausen

Camping Ötztal Längenfeld: comfortable idyll between forest and meadows

Located on the outskirts of Längenfeld in a grove, the story of "Camping Ötztal Längenfeld" begins with a snack bar and "tent campers". The Auer family opened a tourist inn in 1957. In the summer, guests keep asking if they can camp in the grove. Those "campers" provided the impetus for the campsite to be built in 1959. First only with a small sanitary building and operated in summer, the site has constantly grown over the decades. "Today we have 190 pitches," says Sandro Auer proudly and points to the place, which is idyllically situated between the edge of the forest, fields and meadows. The highlights are four alpine lodges, which are located in an area enclosed by hedges. Book in here if you want to experience the flair of a campsite but don't want to forego the quality of a hotel. There is space for two to five people on 25 to 30 square meters. "We only worked with local stone pine and fir wood and natural insulating materials," Sandro Auer explains.


Campsite Ötztal Längenfeld

© Lukas Ennemoser / Camping Ötztal Längenfeld

There is just as much attention to detail in the "Bergquell" sanitary building. Constructed in a modern alpine style, there are eleven luxury wash cubicles with tropical showers and washbasins, a lounge with library and flat screen, a baby room and a washing-up room. Wellness takes place only a few minutes away: the unrivaled Aqua Dome thermal baths can be found in the immediate vicinity. The snack station of yesteryear is still there, but it has been remodeled several times. Today, "Restaurant Infang" is not only popular with camping guests: "Many Ötztal locals come to enjoy a meal here," says Sandro Auer happily.

Ötztaler Naturcamping in Huben: the tradition lives on

"Where camping is still camping" is the motto of "Ötztaler Naturcampingplatz" in Huben. The focus is on traditions and the natural campsite that adapts to its surroundings. Quietly situated at the edge of the forest, the campsite enchants guests with its green location surrounded by the imposing Ötztal mountains, a quiet brooklet is flowing across the area. There are 100 comfort pitches, beautifully landscaped terrace spaces and - from 2022 - even more panorama pitches.

Fabulous "Ötztaler Naturcampingplatz" was founded by the bricklayer Alfons Kuprian in 1959. At that time, he got the consent of the farmers and changed the pasture area into a camping site. From 1986 onwards, the campsite was given the name "Ötztaler Naturcampingplatz". Today, Ernst Kuprian - Alfons Kuprian's brother - runs the campsite, in the future his son Simon will take over the business. What has remained over the years is the closeness to nature and the adherence to traditions. There is a mill on the campsite, in which grain is ground into flour and then baked into bread in a wood-fired oven. Camping guests and other holidaymakers can enjoy the fresh bread with bacon and cheese from local farms, in summer there are also bread baking sessions for everyone.


© Lukas Ennemoser / Ötztaler Naturcamping


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Ötztaler Naturcamping in Huben will remain closed due to construction works from 05.09. to 20.12.2022.

Jasmin Kreulitsch

Guest author Jasmin Kreulitsch

The freelance travel journalist lost her heart to Ötztal Valley years ago - and has been tracking down exciting stories in the valley every summer.


There are even more travel reports on www.kosmopoetin.com.