The historic city of Innsbruck, Tirol is one of the most populous cities in Austria, located in the western region of the country.
It is well known for its fabulous ski slopes, the Alp Mountains framing the city’s magical green landscape, and its medieval old town and architecture telling the tale of European history.
If you’re looking for the perfect place for sightseeing in Europe, do yourself a favor and visit this stunning, unique city in Austria.
Here are five reasons why Innsbruck should be next on your travel plans.
Skiing and snowboarding
Innsbruck is a haven for winter sports aficionados because of its location by the beautiful Alp Mountains.
The city offers the opportunity for skiing, snowboarding, ice climbing, ski touring and tobogganing, among other winter-based sports and activities.
There are beginner slopes and expert pistes, as well as four freeride areas for snowboarders and skiers alike. This makes for a whopping 260 km of pistes.
Of course, accommodation is of the highest quality. With nine ski resorts, 90 lifts and cable cars and free ski buses to take you the pistes, tourists are set to enjoy their winter vacation in full comfort.
Due to Innsbruck’s location between two Alpine mountain ranges, the town became an important strategic location for hundreds of years.
This turned Innsbruck into a cultural and commercial hub for Europe, but its history dates back as early as the Stone Age.
It was in the 11th century that the city became a hub for European politics and even housed the Holy Roman Emperor, Maximilian I.
Through the centuries, Innsbruck experienced many of the turning points in history, such as the invasion of Napoleon Bonaparte and falling under control of Nazi Germany in the Second World War.
The stories are told throughout its architecture, memorials and museums and those who hear it can be easily captivated by its rich history.
Aside from being a top-notch winter sports destination, Innsbruck is world renowned for its Imperial and modern architecture.
Its Gothic-styled architecture characterizes the medieval period of Europe and displays many of its most famous features, such as ribbed vaults, pointed arches and flying buttress.
Most buildings in the city are old, and some even date back to the 12th century.
While there, you don’t want to miss some of these architectural masterpieces, such as the famous Triumphpforte (“Triumphal Arch”). The arch was made to celebrate the engagement of a future Austrian emperor to the daughter of a Spanish empress, a celebration that ended abruptly on his death. The happiness and misery is depicted through the engraved figures.
Innsbruck offers a view into the past while providing a window into the present through its modern, clean architecture. Urban areas display modern structures that are considered masterpieces. Zaha Hadid herself designed one of the cable car stations.
Easy and quick getaway
There are two airlines that fly non-stop from the UK to Innsbruck: British Airways and EasyJet. The flights are only 2 hours long and can go for less than £30 pounds each way during off-season.
If you prefer a train ride, the train from London takes 12 hours, passing by Paris and Munich on the way.
By car, you must either take the ferry or cross the Eurotunnel. From the other end, the drive is 10 hours long with motorway the whole way through.
Depending on your mode of transportation, Innsbruck could be a great getaway for a long weekend.
Innsbruck welcomes tourists of all budgets and interests.
Whether you’re looking to stay in a luxurious 5 star hotel or a quaint hostel with friends, you can easily find the right accommodation for your budget.
The city also offers bed & breakfasts, guesthouses and even housing in private homes.
Of course, you want to book early in advance, particularly if visiting during high seasons. The city is a popular destination both in the summer and winter.
However, it really comes to life during the winter when thousands of tourists come to experience the Alps.