Kitzbuhel – Austria
Skiing reputedly started in Kitzbuhel in 1893 after local hero Franz Reisch brought a pair of skis from Norway to try out on the mountains of Austria. From these beginnings the town has become one of the largest and liveliest resorts in the country. The ski area has 145km of pistes, including the legendary Hahnenkamm downhill run, and has benefited from many recent lift upgrades. However, in years of sparse snowfall Kitzbuhel (Kitz-bool), at an altitude of just 760m, can suffer.
One of the main strengths of Kitzbuhel is the town itself - its picturesque centre retains colourful medieval buildings, several churches and a nearby castle which is now a hotel. The vibrant après-ski scene is typically Austrian and the nightlife alone is worth the visit to Kitzbuhel. It is a great destination for skiers and non-skiers alike, and serious shoppers will be impressed by the presence of Louis Vuitton and Swarovski.
The main part of the Kitzbuhel ski area can also be accessed from the neighbouring villages or Reith, Kirchberg, Aurach and Jochberg, so check that the ski school or restaurant you are searching for is in the same area as you are.
- For serious skiers the world-famous Hanhenkamm downhill run is a must
- A visit to the nearby town of Kirchberg is a great excursion for non-skiers in the party.
- A balloon trip is a great way see the outstanding beauty of the area.
- Try your hand in the casino. You may get lucky and be able to affors to shop in Kitzbuhel the following day!
- Access glorious powder fields on Bichlalm with guided snowcat tours (bookable at www.alpin-experts.at)
Posted by John Barr on 27th November 2013
Five years ago I lived in a quiet residential district on the outskirts of Reading, and I’d be woken by the goods trains rattling their way towards London at all hours of the night. Now that I live in Austria, I’m woken by the dawn chorus in the spring telling me that it’s time to get up to go walking in the mountains.
Posted by John Barr on 14th April 2013
A handful of lifts and runs are open in the Hahnenkamm area above the town of Kitzbühel, and in the Resterhöhe area at the far end of the Kitzbühel ski area above Pass Thurn. Having skied at Pass Thurn earlier in the week I decided to spend the last day of the season at the Hahnenkamm. The main bowl here has a wall of black runs on the north facing slopes, which vary from pretty easy to scarily steep. Early in the day the snow was on the firm side, without being too icy, and after midday it was becoming slushy. But between ten and twelve o’clock the snow was fantastic, nice and grippy and confidence building, and these runs were great fun.
At a glance
|Resort altitude||760 m|
|Highest lift||2004 m|
|Lowest lift||762 m|
|km of piste||170|
|Number of lifts||53|
|Lift pass price||€233/ 6 days|
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