St Johann in Tyrol
Kitzbühel’s closest bathing lake and beach area is just a couple of kilometres away. Schwarzee lake contributes to Kitzbühel’s reputation as a spa town, as the mud is packed full of rich natural minerals that are great for your skin.
The deep emerald-green water of the lake is exceptionally clean. It's surrounded by the Wilder Kaiser mountains and some parts of the shore are protected as nature reserves.
Even though some areas have a safeguard status, there are still plenty of grassy sunbathing areas with easy access to the lake. You can hire boats, go fishing or swim in the warm waters. Kids – and big kids – will love the slide and diving board.
To pick up some bargain bits, walk a little further out of Kitzbühel’s main town, towards the MPreis supermarket on Jochberger Strasse, to find some good outlet clothes shops. There’s also a weekly farmers' market from May to November, in the centre of Kitzbühel.
Kitzbühel has an excellent array of casual clothing shops, speciality shops, traditional Austrian-dress stores and places to purchase activewear. There’s even British high street favourite, Superdry, in the main square.
If you’re in the market for something special, Kitzbühel’s the perfect place to pick up a designer treasure – from high-end jewellery stores to world-renowned labels. The exclusive boutiques add to the Glitzy Kitz reputation.
If buzzing bars aren’t your thing, you’ll find a number of late-night pavement cafés and restaurants where you can have a quiet drink or after-dinner treat.
For a fun-filled evening with a couple of cocktails, drop by The Londoner bar. This legendary haunt is an old school, small and quirky venue. It comes complete with dingy lighting and a rocking late-night atmosphere, especially if the house band is playing.
Fashionable Kitzbühel is a paradise for lovers of fine food, with its range of award-winning restaurants, family-run mountain huts and contemporary cafés. Be sure to sample traditional Austrian dishes like kaiserschmarrn, a sweet dessert of chopped up pancakes, or käsespätzle – an Austrian take on macaroni cheese.
In the centre of Kitzbühel, and with its very own brewery, Huberbraü Stüberl is a great place to pop into for lunch or dinner. You can sample Austrian classics like goulash and schnitzel, soak up the lively atmosphere and savour the fresh beer.
The family-owned Berggasthof Hagstein sits perched at the top of the Horn. When taking a walk on the mountain, this Austrian chalet is a popular place for a pit stop. Everything is homemade and prepared with fresh local produce, and the views are fantastic.
A little further out of town is Pilpino's, on the edge of Lake Schwarzsee. With stunning views of the lake from its outdoor terrace, it’s a lovely setting for a romantic meal. The traditional Italian dishes and fish dishes also go down a treat with its customers.
Within its city walls, Kitzbühel’s centre is predominantly car-free, meaning you can wander around ancient streets admiring the pastel shades of the historical buildings without worrying about rush hour.
There are two stations in Kitzbühel – the Hahnenkamm, which is a 10-minute walk from the resort, and Kitzbühel Station, which is a 15-20 minute walk towards St Johann. From the stations, you can reach St Johann in 8 minutes, Zell am See in 1 hour and Innsbruck in 2 hours.
The efficient local bus service connects Kitzbühel to loads of resorts in the Brixen Valley and Kufstein. Buses run every day and depart once or twice an hour. The buses are cheaper than using the trains, and you’ll be able to savour the wonderful views of huge mountains and little villages.
A lot of lifts, including the Hahnenkamm cable car and Kitzbüheler Horn cable car 1 (both accessible from the resort centre), are open throughout the summer. They operate between approx 8.30am and 5pm and provide amazing panoramic views of the mountains and valley.
With over 1,000km of marked trails, from the valley floor to the peaks, Kitzbühel really is a walker’s paradise. If you like to take it easy, go for a gentle 20-minute stroll to Lake Schwarzee, or follow the nature trail at Hintenbachalm to see the many species of flora and fauna. If it’s views you’re after, jump on the Hahnenkamm gondola and follow the Panorama Loop Trail or Hahnenkamm ridge walk for stunning scenes of the Wilder Kaiser mountains. Other marked routes will take you to impressive sights such as the Sintersbacher waterfalls or the towns of Kirchberg or Aschau.
Get a real feel for the area with this gentle walk, which winds through woodland, meadows and farms to the charming Steurberg restaurant. Relax in the garden there and soak up your surroundings, or grab a bite to eat. From there, it’s a short stroll through the trees to Lake Schwarzee – one of the warmest bathing lakes in the Alps and a lovely place to spend a lazy afternoon.
Explore a bit further afield on this medium difficulty walk. You’ll need to catch a bus to Jochberg and then follow signs for the waterfalls. The walk up through the woods can be tricky so take it easy – and know the sight at the top is well worth the effort. Spend some time admiring the spectacular sight, and snap some photos, before carrying on to the Wildaalm mountain restaurant to refuel for the descent.
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