What’s New in the Austrian Tirol for Summer 2015

Alpine Sports Week 2015 in the Wilder Kaiser

 For summer 2015, the Wilder Kaiser region is offering a special Alpine Sports Week, where guests can participate in 6 types of sport for only €99 per person (normally €358). From 20th – 27th June, the resorts of Söll, Ellmau, Scheffau and Going provide the perfect base for an active summer break. Experience new sports under expert instruction, try the Via Ferrata on the Jubiläumssteig and newly built Klammlsteig, challenge the legs to a mounatin bike tour, head high on the High Rope Garden course, go canyoningthrough the deep gorges and test your stamina trail running.

A 7 night holiday in Ellmau starts from €335 for a double room on B&B. Flights are available with easyJet to Innsbruck from Gatwick. For more information and to book visitwww.wilderkaiser.info

 New downhill challenge for mountain bikers: Prime Line Trail in Sölden

 With almost 900km of official mountain biking routes, the Ӧtztal is one of the best areas for mountain bikers. Lakes, rivers, pastures, glaciers and mountain peaks guarantee great diversity, with trails and terrain available for everyone from novices to pros.

This summer there will be a new 6 km Prime Line trail in Sölden, beginning at the middle station of the Gaislachkogelbahn. Experienced mountain bikers will be able to take on the challenge, with steep turns and wave features along the trail. It will officially open on 20th June 2015, with half price lift tickets and guides on hand to show you how to get the best out of the new Prime Line.

Stay in one the approved properties certified for offering cycling and mountain bike friendly accommodation, with lockable storage rooms, free use of tools and repair kits, free washing facilities for bikes, tips and advice as well as bookable guided tours. Accommodation starts from from €30 per person per night staying in an apartment on a self-catering basis. Flights are available with easyJet to Innsbruck from Gatwick. For more information on accommodation visit www.soelden.com

Bathing fun for families in Serfaus

Barely known as a ski resort to the UK market, the resorts of Serfaus Fiss Ladis are even less well known as a summer family-friendly destination. Located on a sunny plateau, families can make full use of the Super. Summer. Card. guestcard and benefit from free children’s entertainment from Sunday-Friday at the Murmli-Club in Serfaus or theMini&Maxi club in Fiss-Ladis, as well as entry to the summer fun park in Fiss and the Adventure World in Serfaus.

From June 2015, the water reservoir Hög at Serfaus, normally used for snowmaking, will become a summer swimming and bathing area. It will offer play areas for children, there will be a jetty and pedal boat and rowboat rentals. The new restaurant Seealm Hög, with its sun terrace, will be the perfect place to relax, with views of the mountains.

A 7 night holiday in a family room on half board in a 3* Hotel starts from £990 (€1150) per family, based on 2 adults and 2 children under 15. Flights are available witheasyJet to Innsbruck from Gatwick. www.serfaus-fiss-ladis.at

ZirbenPark on Hochzeigerhaus

 In summer 2015 a new summer attraction for families will open in the Pitztal, located just 90km from Innsbruck airport. The Zirbenpark is named after the Swiss stone pine and one of the most beautiful forest areas in Tirol can be found on the Hochzeiger. Embark on a very special circular hike in the new ZirbenPark and allow the children to enjoy the 12m Zirben adventure tower, equipped with a viewing platform and a 16m long tubular slide.

Stay at the family friendly 4* Hotel Seppl in St Leonhard in Pitztal, with prices starting from €754 per person in a family room. Prices include half baord, guided walking programme, use of cable cars, mountan bike tour and 2 spa treatments. For more information visit www.hotel-seppl.com; www.pitztal.com

First summer for the Jacob Cross in Pillerseetal and the Highline 179 in Reutte

 Two new tourist attractions opened late in 2014 and will enjoy their first full summer of operation this year.

The Jakobskreuz, a 29m cross at the summit of the Buchsteinwand, opened to visitors with five viewing platforms in all directions.  It is located in the Pillersee Valley, the easternmost part of the Austrian Tirol region surrounded by the Kitzbüheler Alps. The philosophy of the Jakobskreuz rests on four pillars: it is both a tourist destination with breath-taking views of the mountains as well as a special place to recharge your batteries, it serves as a pilgrimage site and a place for contemplation, it works as a “think tank ” where innovative seminars and workshops can take place and it is a unique venue where visitors can experience exhibitions and lectures in and around the cross.www.pillerseetal.at; www.bergbahn-pillersee.com

Record-breaker! In November 2014, Highline 179, the world’s longest pedestrian suspension bridge connected the castle ruins of Ehrenberg ruins with Fort Claudia and ensured a place in the Guinness Book of Records for the town of Reutte. With a total length of 403 metres and a maximum height of 110 metres, is the longest Tibet-style pedestrian suspension bridge in the world and takes its name from the popular tourist route, the  B179. This route leads drivers take from the Austrian Tirol  over the Fern Pass and into Germany and onto the famous tourist attractions of Neuschwanstein and Linderhof Castle.  www.highline179.com; www.reutte.com

 20 years for Swarovski Crystal Worlds in Wattens

Marking its 20th anniversary, the Austrian Tirol’s number 1 tourist attraction, the Swarovksi Crystal Worlds will re-open at the end of April after a complete redesign. 2015 will also be the 10th anniversary of the long-distance hiking trail, the Eagle Walk, there will be a new downhill challenge for mountain bikers in Sölden and new family attractions in the Pitztal and in Serfaus. Summer 2014 witnessed a growth in visitors from the UK, with the number of arrivals increasing +4.9 % and the number of overnight stays increasing by +2.2%.

The path to success for Swarovski has come a long way since its beginnings in 1895 when Daniel Swarovski moved to Wattens, near Innsbruck, with his newly-invented machine for cutting and polishing crystal jewellery stones. Now a household name, Swarovski is synonymous with jewellery, fashion and ornaments and it is no wonder the Swarovski Crystal Worlds is Tirol’s number 1 tourist attraction.

To commemorate its 20th anniversary in 2015, the Swarovski Kristallwelten (Swarovski Crystal Worlds) will re-open on 30th April 2015, after a complete redesign of this extraordinary tourist destination, worth a total investment of EUR 34 million. Working in collaboration with artists from around the world and internationally renowned architects, the park landscape (previously 3.5 hectares) will be more than doubled to 7.5 hectares. There will be innovative installations and new structures, providing a memorable insight into the fascination of crystal through creative design, art and exhibitions. One of the show pieces will be the 1400 sq ft cloud floating above a black mirror of water and made up fo more than 600,000 crystals. Entrance for adults costs €19 and children €7,50. www.kristallwelten.swarovski.com

Inghams (www.inghams.co.uk; 01483 345652) introduced new city breaks to Innsbruck for summer 2015. Stay at the 5* Hotel aDlers for 3 nights, with prices starting from £559 per person, including flights and transfers.


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