Kilometre Hiking routes
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Two things are an absolute must in your luggage for a Tirolean hiking holiday in Ötztal: sturdy hiking boots and the right mood to explore nature. Endless 1600 km of trails, routes, paths and treks are waiting to be discovered and will surprise you with new panoramic views at every turn. Families, leisurely hikers, ambitious peak conquerors and perennial long-distance hikers head towards their personal "Hurray, I made it!" moment in the valley of 250 peaks higher than three thousand meters. Thanks to perfect infrastructures it is even more fun. 12 modern summer mountain lifts, guided hiking programs and certified mountain guides, about 100 rustic Alpine huts and pasture inns, special hiking accommodations as well as awarded hiking and mountaineering villages leave nothing to be desired during an active summer holiday in Ötztal.
Kilometre Hiking routes
Alpine Pastures & Huts
The Alpine pasturelands and mountain meadows within Ötztal are not just popular excursion destinations, they are also pristine nature landscapes and regional economic areas. We owe this to the deeply rooted farmers who cultivate this unique cultural landscape with much effort and sweat by preserving centuries-old traditions, such as the summery cattle drives to the Alpine pastures. To ensure that hikers and animals on the Alpine meadows and pasturelands feel safe and comfortable also in the future, this video shows 10 general rules of conduct if you meet grazing cattle on the mountain pastures.
A sunset at Brunnenkogelhaus, towering high above Sölden, creates memories that will stay with you forever. On the opposite side of the valley glacier-topped peaks in the foothills of Wildspitze summit are bathed in red light in the early morning. Experience the very first sunrays of the day and feel their warmth on your face. Maybe breakfast is served on the terrace? One of the undisputed highlights is a splendid hiking tour to Hochstubaihütte at 3174 meters above sea level: a well maintained hiking trail – built in times long past - takes mountain fans from the edge of the forest up to the eternal ice, leading through varied types of Alpine vegetation. Descending on a narrow footpath past huge rock slabs you circle marvelous lake Seekarsee.Less experienced hikers are recommended to head for an easier hike from the village of Gries up to Amberger Hütte. The landscapes surrounding Sulztalferner glacier can be admired during a rest stop at quaint Sulztalalm mountain inn, famous for its legendary "Kaiserschmarrn" shredded pancake or the mouth-watering blueberry omelets.
All those who follow the call of the mountains in the morning, can make it in time to witness the awe-inspiring sunset in the upper Ötztal Valley. Glacier fields covered in white during the day are colored in red when the last sunrays touch them. The Ötztal is easily accessible by car via A12 Inntal Autobahn (exit Ötztal) or Garmisch-Mittenwald-Seefeld or Garmisch-Fernpass-Imst. Trains stop in Ötztal Bahnhof. The nearest airport is in Innsbruck from where the convenient Ötztal Shuttle takes you to the hotel's doorstep.
The best way to follow the tracks of the "white gold" are the marvelous Water Strider Trails, a network of themed walking routes giving an insight into the wet element in all its facets: frozen water of the eternal ice, rushing mountain brooks and waterfalls cascading down hundreds of meters, silent high Alpine lakes or healing spa waters coming from deep inside the earth. The breathtaking Water Strider Trails are perfectly signposted and also suitable for less experienced walkers. 2 out of 6 theme hiking routes have been awarded "Premium Trails" by the German Hiking Institute.
The splendid Stuiben Falls – Tirol's biggest waterfall – feature a total falling height of 159 meters. A wonderful trail along the waterfall takes passionate walkers to the nearby via ferrata towering high above the rushing mountain waters. From five panoramic platforms hikers can watch this nature spectacle close-by. Real dare devils should not miss an exciting river rafting tour on the Ötztaler Ache brook, across the Imster Schlucht gorge or on the river Inn. Trend sports such as rafting, canyoning, kayaking or canoeing are scheduled here!
The mighty and healing power of water can be experienced at the Aqua Dome, Längenfeld's Spa Center offering plenty of water fun and healing spas for the whole family. Passionate swimmers or fishing fans are strongly recommended to head for picturesque Piburger See near Oetz, one of Tirol's warmest swimming lakes and a real natural gem.
It's easy to be spellbound by Wildspitze peak and the 250 giants made of rock and ice beyond 3000 meters above sea level. But they also make a wonderful backdrop for myriad walks and pleasant hikes at a more leisurely pace. The Ötztal valley boasts unique natural landscapes, ranging from dense forests and colorful Alpine meadows to lush green pasturelands and ancient rockslide areas. What's more, the wet element is omnipresent here – it is not without reason why Ötztal is called the "valley of 1000 springs". Discover water in all its facets: snow, eternal glacier ice, thirst-quenching spring water and rushing Alpine brooks coming down to the valley. In Umhausen you find a range of marvelous "Waalweg" water theme trails and a stunning waterfall. Crystal clear mountain lakes are spread all over the valley's high Alpine areas.
Hikers taking a rest stop at Hauerseehütte, nestling in the foothills of Luibiskogel summit, feast their eyes on picturesque lake Hauersee with its blazing blue water in the summer months, changing the color to turquoise at the beginning of autumn. A perfect place to indulge in the dreamlike Alpine scenery, a real place of energetic power and strength. As soon as you have found your favorite spot of the day you better get ready for the next highlight: exploring the Ötztal mountains means discovering gorgeous landscapes and unique highlights in a row.
Nature slowly turns into the most beautiful colors, ranging from deep red and golden yellow to dark brown. The colorful season boasts myriad activities. An autumn holiday in Ötztal attracts guests with very special highlights. The autumnally colored valley is waiting for you - no matter if you are looking for mountain conquests, time to relax, adrenaline boosts, family time or cycling and mountain biking.
In the autumn months scenic Ötztal opens up all the varied facets of walking and hiking. Comfortable, lift-assisted hiking at 3000 meters above sea level or high Alpine tours incl. summit climbs. Leisurely hikes to rustic mountain huts and idyllic Alpine lakes attracts nature lovers just like ambitious multi-day tours to magnificent peaks higher than three thousand meters. If you would like to reach the top in a less sporty way you can simply use the mountain lifts: 1 uphill / return lift ride per day free of charge for Ötztal Inside Summer Card holders. Our 1800 km network of walking, hiking and mountain trails has definitely the right autumn hike for you. Additionally, 100 huts and Alpine pastures provide for your physical well-being by spoiling you with culinary treats.
Unfortunately, there is no general rule for this question. On the one hand, of course, it depends on how fast you go and how steep the terrain is. Additionally, your physical condition and external influences play a major role. In heat, during winter hiking or in thin mountain air, your body has to work harder and accordingly needs more calories. You've definitely deserved a mouth-watering “Kaiserschmarrn” at one of the countless mountain huts and Alpine pastures in Ötztal, because hiking keeps you healthy and burns almost as many calories as jogging! A little clue: if John Public, who weighs around 70 kilos, hikes uphill for an hour on one of the varied hiking routes in Ötztal he burns around 500 kcal.
Where it is most beautiful in summer too: within the entire Ötztal between Haiming and Vent or Gurgl. More than 80 varied winter hikes with a total of 250 kilometers of signposted trails keep you on your toes. From easy walks along the Ötztaler Ache shores to pure winter idyll at lake Piburger See to more demanding winter hiking tours in Sölden’s silent part or in Gurgl, there are really many options. Partly with serviced huts along the route or even with toboggan rental for a speedy downhill adventure. Winter hiking in Ötztal is family-friendly, does not need a lot of equipment and inspires in almost all weathers. Adventure seekers can try out the snowshoe variant on guided tours to the fabulous Ötztal Nature Park.
First things first: sturdy footwear. Hiking boots that are adapted to your feet and the level of difficulty of the hike form the basis of a memorable day in the mountains. High Alpine tours require a higher leg to protect the ankles. You also need matching socks and ideally a pair of zip-off hiking pants to be flexibly equipped for different temperatures. Breathable, quick-drying clothing and a warm jacket or wind and rain protection are also part of the basic equipment, as the weather can change very quickly in the Ötztal mountains. Gloves and hats also do a good job, especially at the end of the day. For your head, you can choose from a hat, headband, peaked cap or trekking hat, depending on the weather and the intensity of your tour.
In addition to appropriate clothing, you need a backpack with a water bottle, enough to eat and drink, hiking map, first aid kit, sun protection (also for lips), sunglasses, mobile phone, headlamp and handkerchiefs. Of course, the packing list becomes significantly longer if you plan a multi-day hut tour in Ötztal instead of a half-day hike. Adjustable hiking poles complete the basic equipment, which you can have put together in the expert Ötztal sports shops.
Those in the know say: off you go to Ötztal in Tirol! With incredible 1600 km of hiking trails at all difficulty levels and 250 peaks higher than three thousand meters, Ötztal is a huge hiking paradise. Regardless of whether you are looking for family-friendly hut tours, theme and loop hikes or challenging Alpine tours and long-distance hikes lasting several days such as the Ötztaler Urweg. Twelve modern summer mountain lifts, guided hiking programs and certified mountain guides will help you to reach the top. Some 100 rustic mountain huts and Alpine pastures invite hikers to enjoy a refreshment stops. Some can also be easily reached by road or mountain lift, so that a joyful mountain exploration is accessible to everyone. Special hiking accommodations and quality-sealed hiking and mountaineering villages make Ötztal the first choice when it comes to hiking in Austria.
If you have brains then protect it! This saying also applies when hiking, because the head is particularly sensitive when it comes to cold or heat. Sturdy and weatherproof headgear is therefore an essential part of the basic hiking equipment. A trekking hat with a wide brim or a cap with a large peak can protect you from the high levels of sunlight in the mountains, which you hardly notice due to cooler temperatures or light winds. Ideally, the hat is also waterproof, wind-stable and can be rolled up and easily stowed in the backpack. Compared to a hood, the hat has the great advantage that you can turn your head better.
A popular alternative - provided it's not raining - are headbands, for example. They keep the ears warm and protect against too much sun, absorb sweat and are very comfortable. Next time you go on a hut hiking tour in Ötztal or climb one of the 250 three thousand meter high peaks: think of your head and protect it!