Tirol, Austria

It was a bit of shock to the body to go back to Europe after my time in hot, sunny & humid Indonesia.  And I wasn’t home for long until I met up with Christian in Switzerland, where he was working and then we drove to the Tirol (Tyrol) state in Austria for the long Easter weekend.  We stayed in the town of Waidring in the Kitzbühel district.  Tirol might sound familiar because we have visited Südtirol, which is the area in Northern Italy, for hiking and skiing.  There was still snow on the tops of the mountains and ski resorts weren’t officially closing until the end of Easter weekend but we were only interested in hiking over the weekend in Waidring. 

We stayed at the Kuhotel, which offered half-board (Halbpension).  Kuh means cow in German, so the hotel had a bit of a cow theme in the lobby and outside.

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On our first full day, we hiked up to the Steinplatte.  During the winter, you can ski up there and in the summer, they have hiking, biking and a large play area for kids called Triassic Park.  The path was pretty much straight up and then back down.  No big switchbacks to make it a more gradual climb!  On the way up we didn’t encounter any snow, but as soon as we reached the upper skiing area there was still quite a bit of snow to hike through.  It was fun to sort of slide down the hill in the snow & was definitely faster than walking up in it!  We had great views of the surrounding mountains and Waidring in the valley below.

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On the second day, we hiked starting again from Waidring and went towards Breitaulm and through the Grießbachklamm (a canyon) to the town of Lärchenhof, where we took the bus back to Waidring.  In the first picture below, you can see where part of the trail disappeared.  We ended up climbing up a bit around the side of the hill to get through that stretch! 

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On Easter Sunday, we visited the town of Kitzbühel, a popular ski resort town.  Christian said it is like the St. Moritz of Austria.  They had the town decorated so cute for Easter. 

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Unfortunately, it was cold and rainy, so we didn’t last long walking around Kitzbühel.  We decided to drive south in hopes of finding nicer weather, which is how we ended up at the Krimmler Wasserfälle (Krimml waterfalls).  It is a tiered waterfall with three sections.  We weren’t in our hiking clothes but we had decent walking shoes on and raincoats, which were important because we didn’t find warmer or drier weather!  There is a well-maintained path going up to all three sections of the waterfall.  You are required to pay an entrance fee at the bottom to visit and use the path.  Even though we were soaked from sweating and the rain, it was definitely a well-worth visit.  I am glad that we made this unexpected stop at the highest waterfall in Austria!

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