Obertauern is one of the top five Austrian ski resorts. This small but perfectly formed resort is just two hours from Salzburg so there are no long transfer times to worry about.
Obertauern is located on what was originally a mountain pass and sits on the edge of the tree line. Around fifty years ago, the locals realised that this tranquil spot had some very fine snowfall, perfect for skiing. They built one ski run at the location and as its popularity grew, so did the ski area. Magnificent hotels and resorts have sprung up all over the mountain ever since.
Its high elevation means that it has a great snow record and a long ski season. The Obertauern ski area has a true variety of terrain, making it a great place to explore. It also means that the resort has plenty of runs for all ability levels, which makes it popular with groups of skiers and snowboarders. It is also popular with families due to the excellent childcare facilities.
Although it is one of the only ski resorts to truly cater for all levels of skiing, it offers most to the intermediate skier with some unbeatable red runs. The ski lift system can take some figuring out in the first few days so a piste map is an essential accessory on the mountain. The ski area includes two ski runs, one red and one green, which allow skiers to journey across the two sides of the valley in either direction in what is known as the Tauernrunde
Obertauern is also highly rated by snowboarders and contains a great snow park.
The apres ski in Obertauern is quite lively and it is famed for its great bars. Obertauern’s apres ski scene begins with a mug or two of glehwein or jegertee in one of the many local cafes or bars in the centre of the village.
In addition, tea dancing at the Latsch’n Stubn or Lerzeralm Cafe is becoming increasingly popular after a hard day on the slopes.
The Rimer Bar or Hotel Edelweiss are normally very popular destinations and provide live music.
Unlike its rival resorts in the Alps, there are plenty of late-night spots in Obertauern which are normally busy all evening. One of these is the Lezeralm, which often has people partying into the early hours of the morning.
The liveliest spot in town is almost certainly the Gasthof Taverne, which is notorious for being the most raucous location of all.
Other locations to try include the Nanu Bar, Lerzer Alm and L’Atchen Alm
When you are not skiing, you can enjoy plenty of other activities on offer. Obertauern has a sports centre, replete with a bowling alley and gym or there are plenty of hiking trails and a tennis court.
If you can’t get enough of the piste, there is night skiing available or snoe shoeing is a great way to explore Obertauern without skis and at a more leisurely pace. Similarly, 20km of cross-country skiing trails are available to experience the crisp winter and glorious snow conditions.
For those that want something less active after a day’s skiing, why not unwind in the local spa?
There is plenty for families to do too. You can enjoy sleigh rides, which are very popular with the children who visit the resort each season, or as a romantic treat for a couple. A thrilling 1.5km toboggan run can be booked during the day, or floodlit by night.
Alternatively, the beautiful Winter Wonderland at Gnadenalm is located a short 4km away. The charming Gnadenalm Inn is one of the many rustic huts in Obertauern and it offers fantastic food, drink and traditional atmosphere. Gnadenalm is easily reached by the local bus or by car.
For a once-in-a-lifetime experience, a skidoo sled taxi will take you on an exciting journey up the mountain to take in the stunning views.
Perhaps you are looking for something more extreme, if so you can try your hand at ice-climbing, where you will be taught how to climb frozen waterfalls, under expert tuition. No experience is required and you will come away with a renewed sense of confidence and adventure.
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