10 reasons why we love autumn in Ötztal

Explore the most colorful valley

The tree leaves rustle, the autumn wind smells more and more like snow. It has become wintry on the mountain peaks of the Ötztal Alps while autumn is still at its most beautiful on the valley floor and in the forests. Why do we love autumn in Ötztal that much? You can find out here!

Autumnal hikes

1. Autumnal hikes full of contrasts

How best to let the contrast of the autumnally colored valley work on you? Of course with a splendid hike including a comfy refreshment stop! Endless 1600 kilometers of hiking trails, routes, footpaths and treks are waiting to be explored on foot. No matter if you are a long-distance hiker or a relaxed leisurely walker, everyone will find a personal dream route in Ötztal (at varied altitude levels). Autumnal excursions for all the family are scheduled on many child-friendly theme trails.

Wellness short break

2. Wellness short break with long-term effects

You can of course treat yourself to a short wellness break in every season. But it is especially cozy when the days are getting shorter, after an intensive activity program in the fresh air you can retreat to the cozy warmth of a heated pool or sauna parlor. The AQUA DOME in Längenfeld, Tirol's largest thermal spa center, offers both: 12 soothing indoor and outdoor pools plus a spacious sauna area invite you to relax and wind down.

3. Autumn time is harvest time

Harvest time

In autumn, fruits (and vegetables) are harvested - reminding of the year-round hard work. With a lot of personal commitment and awareness of nature, local farmers, direct marketers and schnapps distillers produce regional delicacies - ranging from spicy mountain cheese to crispy bread and high-quality spirits. The delicacies are offered directly at the farms, in farm shops or distilleries - the brochure "Eppas Guets" (Ötztal for "something good") shows where you can shop regionally in Ötztal. An annual culinary highlight are the highly popular Haiming Market Days taking place on two weekends in October in the undisputed "apple metropolis".

4. On the tracks of the valley's culture

A visit to the Ötztal Museums is not just a bad weather alternative in autumn. The three historical museums offer a fascinating range plus exciting insights into life in the valley. In Oetz you will find the Tower Museum that provides an artistically reflected view of Ötztal. The Local Heritage Museum and the Memory Archives are a little further in a small hamlet on the outskirts of Längenfeld. In the 16 original buildings, the valley's traditional farming culture is not only documented but also lived: The mill still grinds and bread is baked once a week (together with the visitors). If you want to read about the regional historical life, you will find an impressive reading library with an extensive archive in the special atmosphere of the unique Memory Archives.

Discover Ötztal Museums

5. Let's go and pick "Granten"

I beg your pardon? Admittedly, anyone who is not proficient in the Ötztal dialect won't understand that. Freely translated, it means hunting for cranberries in Ötztal. The super healthy wild fruits are processed into juice or syrup, liqueur or schnapps. And of course also into jam. But first the garnet-red vitamin bombs have to be picked. "Granten" are growing in sunny locations on mountain heaths and in the Alpine scrub area. The Ötztal Alps are an ideal habitat, you can find them from heights between 1400 and 1500 m up to the tree line - which is over 2000 m in some places in Ötztal. Here we will tell you how to make the perfect "Granten jam" yourself:

Go to recipe

6. Customs experienced close by

Most Ötztal locals only feel really "dahoam" (which means "at home" in Ötztal dialect) if they actively contribute to the maintenance of customs, community and tradition. These annual rituals undoubtedly include the popular cattle drive: Colorfully decorated cattle are brought back to the farms and stables (with a loud ringing) - such as in mid September 2020 in Haimingerberg. Thanksgiving festivals, marching of music bands or church processions also testify to the deeply rooted customs still practiced in Ötztal.

Customs
Cancellation guarantee for your Winter Holiday!
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  • Cancel or rebook free of charge*
  • Cancel without giving a reason
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* Depending on the accommodation, valid from the 31st day to 1 day prior to arrival until 02 May 2021 - Further details/Exceptions

Cancellation guarantee
for your Winter Holiday!
  • Flexible and risk-free booking
  • Cancel or rebook free of charge*
  • Cancel without giving a reason
  • Plan your vacation safely & worriless

* Depending on the accommodation, valid from the 31st day to 1 day prior to arrival until 02 May 2021 - Further details/Exceptions

Route of the sheep to the south

7. The (arduous) route of the sheep to the south

Every year in mid-September, almost 2000 sheep cross the main Alpine ridge from the rear Ötztal valley towards neighboring South Tyrol in an endless row - an ancient farming ritual that goes back some 6000 years. The century-old cattle drive is so deeply rooted in the valley's farming tradition that the so-called "Transhumance" found its way into the UNESCO National Directory of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Austria in 2011. Due to the current COVID 19 regulations, the sheep drive unfortunately doesn't allow accompanying hikers - therefore the blog post "Taking 2000 sheep across Similaun Glacier as an auxiliary shepherdess" gives a virtual insight into their way to the south.

Barteb'ne art trail Vent

8. Barteb'ne art trail - High Alpine open-air gallery in Vent

The name of B-ART-EB'NE Art Trail came from a wordplay on the local cultural ARTeVENT workshop and the Ötztal dialect word Bart (beard). Bart is scrubby grass which grows between the mountaineering village and the historic Rofenhöfe Farms. The well-maintained walking route leads past Ötzi's hunting base and the historic summit cross of Wildspitze peak and across a modern suspension bridge to Austria's highest, permanently settled farmhouses. The handcrafted stone sculptures along the trail invite you to marvel and reflect.


Ötztal (Premium) Card

Ötztal (Premium) Card

Your all-inclusive card for your summer holiday in Ötztal: The unrivaled Ötztal Premium Card is available for guests who stay overnight at one of the 320 partner accommodations and includes free services such as rides on the summer mountain lifts, admission to swimming pools, museums and other excursion destinations as well as mountain bike & bicycle rental and free use of public bus lines - to name just a few of the highlights already included. Those who don't stay at one of the partner accommodations can purchase the regular Ötztal Card for 3, 7 or 10 days.

9. Architectural wanderings

The history (and contradictions) of the valley can be excellently seen in the light of its varied architecture: Centuries-old village structures (such as the historic village center of Oetz) are contrasting to modernly staged buildings such as the new Nature Park House in Längenfeld or the five striking architectural sculptures of the "Timmelsjoch Drive". Historic inns, eye-catching churches, lonely chapels but also modern museums such as the 007 ELEMENTS James Bond Adventure World or Europe's highest Motorcycle Museum in Gurgl make really perfect excursion destinations during the autumn season.

Explore excursion sites

10. The first & last turns

Glacier Ski Area Sölden

It's all a question of perspective: Would you rather get back on your bike and cycle through bright landscapes or already put your ski boots on to enjoy your first turns in the freshly fallen snow? Autumn bridges the summer and winter seasons by promising a truly colorful activity program. Be it a leisurely and safe cycling tour with all the family along the Ötztal Cycle Trail, speeding down the trails of the BIKE REPUBLIC SÖLDEN or downhill skiing or snowboarding at Rettenbach & Tiefenbach Glaciers high above Sölden - The choice is all yours.

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