The Alpine Republic

A brief guide to the best ski resorts in Austria

Services | Christopher Anderson | December 2008 / January 2009

Interested in trying out your World Cup skills? With over 200 resorts in Austria to choose from, any self-respecting ski enthusiast could spend a lifetime finding the ideal slopes. The following is a selection of some of our favorite Austrian resorts. Remember, this is a country where school children take weeklong field trips to the slopes and ski conditions take top billing in the morning news.

From East to West:


Situated 100 km by car southwest of Vienna, the Semmering is the closest ski mountain to town and can easily be done as a day trip. It’s also affordable, with 24 kilometers of easy to medium skiing with six draglifts and four chairs.

Altitude:  782 - 1774 meters

Day ticket: €33.50, €17 (to age 15)


Just south of Salzburg, this famous resort boasts over 100 km of slopes and offers skiing well into the beginning of May. In addition to one cable car, there are 6 draglifts and 19 chairlifts.

Altitude: 1740 - 2526 meters

Day ticket: €36, €18 for kids


Perched on the Austro-Italian border in Carinthia, this modern resort has the longest network of slopes in the region, including 18 draglifts, 7 chair lifts and 5 cable cars.

Altitude: 610 - 2020 meters

Day ticket: €39, €19 for kids


At 3,122 meters above sea level, this ranks as one of the highest resorts in Austria. Above the village of Flattach in northwestern Carinthia, Mölltaler boasts an efficient system of lifts including the eight minute Glacier Express, the Ice Lake cable car, two drag lifts and four chair lifts.

Altitude: 1200 - 3122 meters

Day ticket: €37, €18.50 for kids


Salzburg Land’s sole glacier resort is located southwest of Zell am See in Kaprun.  Forty-one kilometers of slopes stretch out beneath the 3200 meters Kitzsteinhorn glacier.

Altitude: 911 - 3029 meters

Day ticket: €40 euro, €20 for kids


This resort’s web address perhaps best characterizes what a visitor will encounter upon arrival at Austria’s largest ski complexes and tourist resorts. Around the bend from Zell am See, the twin towns of Saalbach and Hinterglemm, along with their cousin Leogang offer over 200km of slopes. 24 draglifts, 16 chair, 15 cable cars. This resort welcomes skiers of all levels of experience.

Altitude: 2,096 meters

Day ticket: €40.50, €20.30 for kids


With over 168 kilometers of slopes, the quaint Tyrolean village of Kitzbühel is renowned for its charming village center closed to cars and relaxed charm. The extensive network of lifts includes 15 draglifts, 28 chair lifts, 8 cable cars and a gondola. A second, new gondola has been added connecting the Kaiser-Brixental with Kitzbühl shrinking the connection to a 5 minute bus ride and opening up a new 1,000 meter snow field considered one of the coolest in the region.

Altitude: 800 - 2000 meters

Day ticket: €40.50, €20.50 for kids


The World Cup kicks off at this Tyrolean resort located only an hour’s drive from Innsbruck. Two glaciers overlook the bustling village, which attracts a lively young crowd for the après-ski. A network of 8 draglifts, 19 chair lifts and 7 cable cars provide access to over 150 km of slopes.  A number of local hotels are highly rated, attentive to guests and alert to events and sites in the region.

Altitude: 1350-3250 meters

Day ticket: €42.50, €27 for kids

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