Local facilities 5
(i.e. Restaurants, hire shops)
Slope conditions 4
Lift system 4
Skiing / boarding experience
Apres ski 4
Alpbach is the first place I learned to ski back in 2006 and after falling in love with the place I have now returned 4 times the most recent in Feb 2015. A transfer from Innsbruck takes just over an hour. There is often a change of bus in Brixlegg which separates the guests going on to Neiderau but from there it’s only about 15 minutes.
In 2012 the two resorts of Alpbachtal and Wildshonau were linked opening the area up to cover 145km of ski runs. This area is now known as the Ski Juwel. There is currently no direct lift out of the village of Alpbach but buses run regularly around every 10 minutes from the centre of the village. There are two main starting points to get up the mountain, with buses going to both sections. At Inneralpbach you can choose to go either up to the Wiedersbergerhorn, the Alpbach side, or to the top of the Schatzberg Mountain via the new 8 person gondola to reach the skiing area of Auffach.
This being my first visit after the new link I must say I did enjoy the Auffach side and I found the pistes a little wider and easier. Numbers 8,9,10 and 11 are all great places to practise your carving and gain some confidence. Number 2 is quite a long run the top of which sites the Moosa Stadl, a great spot for an 11oclock drink stop in the sunshine! Over on the Alpbach side the busiest run is number 47 which is also the longest taking you all the way down to the bottom of Inneralpbach. There is a section here where pistes 44, 46a and 47 meet- expect major traffic jams here! The area known as the 2000 lift which is the highest point features the Wiedersbergerhorn hutte and THE most amazing views over the Zillertal. It’s also fairly quiet here with a couple of black runs which are usually in great condition. For the more adventurous head to the left of the 2000 lift to access some great off piste which will again eventually link back to Inneralpbach.
The Alpbach side definitely has the better mountain restaurants. Especially the Dauerstoa Alm and Hornboden both with fantastic terraces with great views for sunny days.
There are quite a few ski schools in the area. Skischule Alpbach/Inneralpbach (red uniforms) being my choice. They have an office in the village opposite the Raiffeisen bank and also a meeting place up the mountain just past the Wiedersbergerhornbahn.
For equipment hire the majority of tour operators will send you to Connys but I have always gone to Iggys, located towards the Alpbacherhof hotel. It is family run and an extremely friendly place, they are always happy to change your skis if you are having problems or the conditions change.
Apres-ski at Alpbach is more about relaxing in the hotel lounges and bars rather than dancing to Euro-pop. The PostAlm Bar is a great spot and you will mostly be surrounded by the locals so it’s very friendly. There are also a number of farmhouses above the village such as the Rosmoos and the Bishoferalm which are really worth a journey up to for fondue, you can walk or hire a horse and cart and of course sledge back down to the village afterwards.
Alpbach has been voted the most beautiful village in Austria and it is a well-deserved accolade. It is very traditional, friendly and overwhelmingly charming. There is a large group of British people that have returned here year after year for more than 40 years which is great testament to the welcoming spirit of the locals.