Winter Fun in Austria!
A winter fun weekend in Austria filled with skiing, hiking, horses, a spa and pizza? If you love to romp in the snow enjoy the glow of the white, glistening mountains and blue, blue skies, you should definitely incorporate a weekend in the Austrian Alps. This easy itinerary will entice you to keep this in your top two winter wonderlands.
My friend Stes is an adventure seeker, lover of travel and super chill. I LOVE traveling with her, she mellows me out and finds beauty and serenity in nature just like me. Oh, yea and she likes meeting new people and puppies too? Definitely not the talker I am, and bonus, she has a sweet and pleasant disposition making her a great travel buddy and friend.
She also loves to stay at hostels and affordable accommodations. She is a massive traveler and has stayed in probably a bajillion, well maybe not that many. So when I told her we needed a trip away before she scooted from Europe she mentioned one of her absolute favorite hostels in Ehrwald, Austria. The Alm of Ehrwald (which I found out are multiples mountains in the Alps) is unbelievably gorgeous and has plenty of winter fun. Here’s a recap of our incredible sunny, snowy adventure.
Mellow Mountain Hostel and B&B definitely lived up to its name. This laid-back and easy-going accommodation did not feel or look like any hostel I’ve ever stayed in before. Stes became friends with Mellow Mountain owners Sebastian and Lisa on a previous trip and with her glowing recommendation, we rented a shared room (for 4) hoping to meet a few people and we knew we wouldn’t be spending a lot of time in our room. So it didn’t need to be packed with extras.
However, the amenities in this B&B/Spa Hostel are glorious. You could choose to add-on your breakfast or make your own. We paid a little for the prepared breakfast buffet (which were a little more than our room charge) but totally worth it. You could pack your own food too. The shared kitchen was fully equipped and many people used this to prepare all their meals. You have to label your food and clean up after you are done, but it would save you a considerable amount on eating out.
Mellow Mountain also has a sauna and spa. AHHH! So relaxing and totally worth it after a cold day on the slopes or in the fields (in our case.) We really enjoyed warming up and chilling out in the spa room.
They also have a laundry room if you need to tidy up. Our bedroom was two bunks that had this incredible view of the backside of the Zugspitze.
Mellow Mountain is also walking distance to ski-lifts in Ehrwald and the Cross-country ski trails start right behind the hostel. It doesn’t get much closer than that.
One of the best reasons to stay in a hostel is the friends you’ll make. Our roommate was avid traveler Rosie Kelly. Rosie has traveled all over the world beginning in the early ’70s. She broke all kinds of social and cultural barriers by traveling solo before it was Instagrammable and has met thousands of people. I am proud to say she is quite the American Ambassador. Rosie is from the East Coast, a ski instructor who speaks wonderful German, a storyteller, and made us laugh with stories until our heads hit the pillows. We were totally blessed to have her as a roommate.
On the suggestion of Sebastian, we made our way to the ski rental store just a few feet down the main street in town. Our cross-country skis, boots, and pole rentals were €17/full-day and there was also a half-day rental available.
So many trails for downhill skiing and one advantage of skiing this area is your lift ticket covers multiple lifts and trails from blue to black diamond. Snowboarding and skiing schools are available on the slopes as well.
The trails were endless for X-Country Skiing. Stes and I decided to make our way to Lermoos and Biberwier. These two winter resort towns are withing ski trail distance. The views of the valley and these are some shots I took that are unforgettable.
We also found out we could have taken a horse-drawn carriage sleigh ride through the valley. If you are looking for a weekend romantic winter fun getaway, making this reservation would definitely score some points.
On our second day of exploration, we decided to make our way up the EhrwaldAlm. Both of us were not too psyched about downhill skiing. The lift passes were not that expensive but for not being great at it, we both wanted to hit the “winterwandern,” or winter hiking.
If you are hesitant about hitting the slopes, you definitely don’t need to let that keep you away from winter fun. We found so many trails and hikes we could have easily spent a month here and still only touched a few mountains.
We took the cable car up the Ehrwald Alm and from there inquired about the hiking trails around the ski resort.
I will admit I was a little bit confused at first, but after we were straightened out by some helpful, rule-following Europeans. HA! Thankful for my hiking adventure with hiking guide Bert the previous summer or I wouldn’t have known which trail to start at or where to go.
Stes and I were the only hikers on these trails. We did see one group make their way at dusk but that did not seem to smart to either one of us.
Before you head out on these hiking trails pay attention to all the signs and make sure you have the proper gear. Although we had amazing weather if you may find lots of ice or need snowshoes for deeper areas.
Hiking the Eibsee
Another hiking region is the Eibsee. This glorious glacier lake is wonderful to hike around, easy to get to (park), it’s €5 and is an easy trail. We saw parents with kiddos in strollers. Yea, it was pretty amazing.
There is also an ice-skating rink here if you tend to carry your skates. Stes is a professional skater, unfortunately, we didn’t find out about the rink until after we arrived.
Hiking the Eibsee is also a no-brainer since it is within close proximity to the Zugspitze and an easy day hike. You can easily add this to your itinerary coming or going into the Austrian Tyrol.
Since we didn’t pack a ton of food, we did end up finding a few Good Eats! along our journey.
With not a big price tag and tasty pizza and pasta, this was a great evening snack/dinner for us within walking distance of Mellow Mountain.
Another great restaurant is the Gasthof Alpenglühen at the top of the mountain. We enjoyed some soup, salad and a nice hot chocolate.
This unforgettable adventure with Stes was like visiting little towns in a snow globe. Consequently, we were so glad we were able to chill at the Mellow Mountain Hostel with Sebastian and Lisa and hike to our heart’s content.
If you are considering a winter fun getaway the north Austrian Tyrol is definitely a MUST!