Obergurgl, situated high up in the mountains at the head of the Otztal valley, is a very family-friendly Austrian village steeped in tradition.
Obergurgl is the second oldest ski resort in Austria after St Anton. At 1930m, Obergurgl is the highest parish in Austria with a church dating back to 1737, a pleasant village centre and importantly, has guaranteed snow throughout its long winter season. Accommodation is still mainly in traditional high-quality 3-star and 4-star family-run hotels, with some apartments, chalets and pensions as well, almost all of which are within 5 minutes walk of the lifts.
There is always Hochgurgl if you do not see yourself leaving the hotel. Hochgurgl is almost entirely ski-in ski-out, although there is little charm to it, unlike neighbouring Obergurgl.
For those in search of apres ski, look no further than the Nederhutte as well as some other bar lower down. The fun carries on back in the village for a while, but then quietens down because Obergurgl is the kind of resort where most guests return to their comfortable accommodation in time for dinner.
The uplift throughout the area is consistently excellent, with very few queues or bottlenecks, and the high speed chairlifts have covers which is a godsend at this altitude.
For many, Obergurgl allows some great skiing, a great party and snow sure certainty as well as an abundance of charm.
2150m – 3080m
December – April
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Hotel Edelweiss & Gurgl
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Obergurgl’s beginner runs are perfect for learning – they are wide and flat. In the Obergurgl side of the mountains, there are a number of gentle blue runs which either lead down to the Top Express gondola for the 12 minute ride to Hochgurgl, or the long and winding run via blue run 6 back down into Obergurgl.In Hochgurgl the blue run 27 is teh place to ski when learning. This run offers the skier some real space, a key factor in allowing progression. Most of the blue runs end up either at the bottom of the Wurmkogl I chairlift or from there down to Hochgurgl itself.
The Obergurgl-Hochgurgl ski area is a paradise for intermediate skiers. The intermediate pistes are wide, interesting, long and varied. And there is even more available at bus-linked Solden. Obergurgl has three main red runs. The shortest is red 7 from the top of the Festkogl, the highest point above Obergurgl, with the alternative descent being a challenging black run. The other two red runs are long, fast and a good test on thigh muscles. From the top of the Festkoegelbahn, red run 1 descends the full length of the gondola on the Ferwalital valley side down to the lift start. At the top end of the Otztal valley above Obergurgl, red run 16 drops from the top of the Hohe Mut all the way to the bottom of the Steinmannbahn, and more importantly David’s skihutte. Hochgurgl ‘s two best runs for intermediates are red run 25 from Hochgurgl down to the bottom of the Hochgurglbahn gondola with its mixture of twisting turns through the treeline. For those wanting to measure their improvement, the blue run from the top of the Wurmkogl then connects with red run 25 to provide a varied and really exhilarating downhill experience, a descent of 1,200 metres.
Obergurgl has a handful of testing black runs, the most challenging being black 11 from the top of the Hohe Mut Festkogl down to the Nederhutte. There are also lots of off-piste skiing, freeriding and ski-touring possibilities to discover with a guide, both locally and in nearby bus-linked Solden (also covered by the Otztal ski pass). In Hochgurgl, there are likewise a number of black runs with black 27 from the Top Mountain Star Restaurant and black 32 on the Konigstal side being the pick. Off-piste there are an abundance of good slopes on either side of the Festkgol and Hohe Mut which depending on the snow conditions open up descents visible from the Hohe Mut restaurant and the Festkogl. Similarly, in Hochgurgl there are a number of favourite areas close to the pistes and a series of exciting runs from the top of the tree line down though the woods Solden is only a 20-minute bus ride away, and well worth visiting to ski Solden’s famous Gaislachkogl peak (3058 m) for great off-piste skiing.
In all honesty, this is not a a great area for snowboarders. That being said, slopes are wide and uncongested and the gondolas and chairlifts lifts are great from a snowboarder’s point of view.
Ski Mountaineering Tours
Enjoy a new challenge with ski touring by exploring untouched nature on skis or snowshoes from dawn to dusk. Certified mountain guides accompany you safely to the area’s countless Alpine huts. This is great for those who enjoy new adventures with friends and explore fresh tracks.
ORTOVOX Safety Academy Lab
Skiing off-piste can be some of the best skiing you will ever do. Floating down the mountain in knee deep powder with your friends and enjoying the wilderness. But there is a real danger to off-piste skiing, and this can be easily prevented with knowledge and practice. ORTOVOX has developed a new dimension in avalanche hazard prevention. The new, interactive website under the name SAFETY ACADEMY LAB offers avalanche tutorials, interactive learning tools and plenty of useful information on avalanches, about their origins and the right behaviour in risky situations. You can also practice at the training park using you transceivers, shovel and probe. Get gear, get the training, get the knowledge and enjoy the powder.
Upsprung Spa Dome
Looking for a unique spa day? 10 minutes down the road from Obergurgl is the Aqua Dome Spa Center. It’s spacious architecture, embedded in Otztal@s stunning mountain scenery, make a perfect combination of scenic Alpine landscape and natural building materials like wood, stone and glass. The large thermal spa area is located at the heart of the AQUA DOME. Entering this giant spa dome is a truly unique experience you should not miss! Google it, and you will see why we highly recommend it.
Tobogganing & Sledging
There is nothing more rewarding than a toboggan adventure together with your family or friends, followed by a stopover at a picturesque mountain inn. Open from 9 am to 4 pm; this is an absolute must during your winter holiday in Obergurgl-Hochgurgl. The unrivalled highlight can be found in Hochgurgl: a winding, three-kilometre long natural toboggan run leads from the top station of Hochgurglbahn mountain gondola down to the valley. Enjoy an effortless ascent with the mountain gondola from the hamlet of Pill. Romantic night sledging is scheduled once a week on the floodlit track, followed by a stopover at ‘Downhill Grill’.
The rink can be located opposite of the old St. Bernhard’s Mountaineers chapel. The spacious ice rink nestles into the Obergurgl mountain slope where ice skaters can float across the ice and enjoy the view of the glacier giants, and in the evening the rink is floodlit. Drink at the Sportsbar Ice-berg is the perfect treat afterwards. Bavarian ice curling is getting increasingly popular: groups of 8+ persons can book the rink also outside of the regular opening times. Open daily from 03:30 pm to 10:30 pm and closed on Sundays.
View the live snow report for Obergurgl here
Obergurgl-Hochgurgl, as a ski resort, is family and child friendly. Children up to 8 years old can ski for free with their parents and the wide slopes are very suitable for families. In the Bobo children’s area in Obergurgl, located a bit away from the crowds, children can learn to ski in a playful way and can play indoors with Bobo on cold days. The fun slope in Hochgurgl and the wild animal safari Zauberwald in Obergurgl are always very popular with the little ski guests. In Hochgurgl, there is a magic carpet right next to the hotels where the little ones can practice their first curves. Once they are a bit more secure on their skis, they can explore the easy slopes at the Krumpwasser lift. In the Wiesental children’s area, there are three magic carpets, a tow rope and a playground. The little skiers can make their first attempts on skis here accompanied by qualified ski instructors. Those who get tired can build a snowman or use the sleds.Since 2008, there is a second children’s area with a meeting spot in the Pirchhatt area in Obergurgl (right behind Hotel Hochfirst). In addition to two magic carpets, there is a tow rope lift as well as a carousel.
Hotel Edelweiss and Gurgl
Innsbruck Airport – Both major airlines – such as Easyjet, Austrian Airlines, British Airways or Lufthansa – as well as smaller companies land and take off at Innsbruck Airport on a daily or weekly basis.
Located in Tirol, the Otztal valley branches off to the south and is the longest side valley of the Eastern Alps. Arriving by car, you travel along Inntal valley until you reach the entrance to Otztal, where you follow the federal road. Besides the toll motorway you can also travel on federal roads.
Public transport systems are very well developed in Otztal, bus lines are running at short intervals and have numerous stops between Oztal-Bahnhof and the rear end of the valley.
Skiers can reach Otztal by train from all directions. Seven daily direct connections take guests from Zurich to Otztal-Bahnhof in only 3 hours without having to change trains. Also the Railjet towards Bludenz via Arlberg pass stops in Otztal-Bahnhof every two hours. In winter, there is even an additional route from Munich to St. Anton am Arlberg, which stops in Otztal-Bahnhof. The journey from the north can be made overnight with OBB Nightjet (from Hamburg or Dasseldorf via Nuremberg and Munich to Innsbruck). So you won’t lose a single day.