Innsbruck is a city in western Austria, and the capital of the Tyrol province. It is located in the Inn valley at the junction with the Wipptal (Sill River) which provides access to the Brennerpass, just about 30 km south of Innsbruck. It is an internationally renowned winter sports centre.
Due to its location in between high mountains, Innsbruck serves as an ideal place for skiing in winter, and mountaineering in summer. There are several ski resorts around Innsbruck with the Nordkette served by a cable car and additional chair lifts higher on being the closest to the city itself. Other ski resorts nearby include Axamer Lizum, Igls, Seefeld, Tulfes and Stubai Valley. The latter makes skiing possible even in the summer due to the glaciated terrain there.
Lower down in the valley there is a network of great footpaths for walkers. Take a rest from sightseeing, skiing, walking, shopping or mountain climbing to sample Innsbruck’s other attractions. There are Tirolean evenings where you can enjoy brass bands, yodelling, folk dancing and a drink. Or why not spend an evening listening to fine music from Innsbruck’s own symphony orchestra. Drama, comedy, opera and ballet are also on offer, as well as cinema. A hive of bars and clubs can be found in the Viaduktbogen district, and if you’re feeling lucky there’s a casino at Landhausplatz.
The Golden Roof (Goldenes Dachl)
This famous balcony in Innsbruck’s historic neighborhood was constructed out of gold to honor the marriage of Maximilian I and his wife.
Imperial Palace (Hofburg)
Built in the late 15th century, this grand imperial palace includes its original elegant interior decorating.
Hungersburg–The Hungerburg mountain plateau (872m/2,860 ft.) is the most beautiful spot in Tyrol, affording the best view of Innsbruck, especially on summer nights when much of the city, including fountains and historic buildings, is brightly lit.
Schloss Ambras–This Renaissance palace, 3km (2 miles) southeast of the heart of Innsbruck on the edge of the Mittelgebirgsterrace, was built by Archduke Ferdinand II of Austria, Count of Tyrol, in the 16th century.
How to get there
There are many airlines to choose from which fly to Innsbruck.
The Innsbruck Airport (3 km (2 mi) west of Innsbruck, is served principally by Austrian Airlines and its subsidiary, Tyrolean.
Austrian Airlines (tel. 0845/601-0948 in London; www.austrianair.com) has two daily nonstop flights to Innsbruck from Heathrow.
Flying time is 8 hours from New York, 11 hours from Chicago, 13 hours from Los Angeles, and 90 minutes from London.
It’s faster to travel on the motorways going through Frankfurt, Cologne, Passau (Germany), and Linz (Austria). One of the main roads into Austria is the Autobahn from Munich via Salzburg to Vienna.
From Switzerland, the main arteries are via Feldkirch to Innsbruck (capital of Tyrol).
To get to Innsbruck, exit from the east-west autobahn (Route A12/E60) or from the Brenner autobahn (Route A13/E45) running south to Italy. Since the Old City is a pedestrian zone and much of the rest of the downtown area is paid parking only, you’ll be best off leaving the car in a central garage, unless your hotel has parking. – Make absolutely sure your car is equipped with the Autobahnvignette,, a toll sticker with a highway icon and the Austrian eagle, or with a calendar marked with an M or a W. This sticker, generally called the Pickerl, allows use of the autobahn, and not having one can lead to high fines.
Rail travel within Austria itself is superb, with fast, clean trains taking you just about anywhere in the country and going through some incredibly scenic regions. Train passengers using the Tunnel under the English Channel can go from London to Paris in just 3 hours and then on to Austria.
Direct trains serve Innsbruck from Munich, Vienna, Rome, and Zürich, and all arrive at the railroad station at Südtiroler Platz.
Austria has an extensive national network of buses run by post offices and railroads. Where Austrian trains don’t go, buses do, and you’ll find the railroad and post-office buses (bright yellow for easy recognition) in the remotest regions carrying passengers as well as mail. You can buy tickets on the bus,
Festival of Early Music & Ambras Palace Concerts – July-August – One of the most important festivals of Early Music worldwide. The Innsbruck Festival of Early Music is now in its 29th year: In the past few decades, it became renowned for performing some relatively unknown, but above all transcendently performed works of the Renaissance period.
Eating Dining Shopping
Tyrolean cooking is fairly hearty, with bacon and cured pork featuring in many dishes. Traditional dishes include Gröstl (pan-fried onion, meat and potato), Schlipfkrapfen (ravioli-like parcels filled with meat and/or potato) and Tiroler Knöödel (dumplings with small pieces of ham). Bauernschöpsernes is another regional speciality – lamb seared with fried onion rings, braised and then cooked with red wine and potatoes until tender. Traditionally, it should be followed by doughnuts or stewed apple for dessert, and perhaps a glass of fruit schnapps, too. Many villages produce their own varieties of schnapps, so it is worth asking to try the local brand.
The best shops are along the arcaded Herzog-Friedrich-Strasse in the heart of the OldCity; along its extension, Maria-Theresien-Strasse; and along the cross-street Maximilianstrasse in the newer part of town.
The first documented quotation of Innsbruck dates back to 1187 (“Insprucke”).It served as an important crossing point over the river Inn. Then, the route over the Brennerpass was a major transport and communications link between the north and the south and the easiest path to cross the Alps. The revenues generated by serving as a transit station led to a flourishing development of the city. A large and famous district in Innsbruck – ‘Wilten’ – got its name from an old Roman settlement ‘Veldidena’
Useful telephone numbers
Emergency Number Tel: 112
Airport Information (Innsbruck International) Tel:+43 512 22525
Train station:Tel: 0512/1717
Tourist Office:Tel: +43 (512) 5320-0
Holiday rents online:
National Transport Line
24 hour medical service