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Help with Austria Itinerary.

Hi everyone. We are a couple in our 50s that like easy hikes/e-biking/scenic drives during the day and drinks and dining in the evening. We are coming from The United States and flying into Munich. We can allocate 14-16 days for this trip. The trip is planned for late July/early September 2024. (avoiding Octoberfest). Also will consider the weather on the high drives/mountain viewing. Moderate budget.

Fly into Munich, rent a car, and head to Garmisch-Partenkirchen/Mittenwald
3 nights: Garmisch-Partenkirchen/Mittenwald
3 nights: Val Gardena/Ortisei
This is where I'm at a loss.

The best route to get to Grossglockner Alpine Rd? Stop along the way? Stay in Lienz?
Interesting in the following:
Gosausee Lake
Hallstatt (maybe skip this)?
Salzkammergut( St Wolfgang (Schaburg Peak), St Gilgen, Bad Ischi) Easy hikes.
Berchtesgaden (Konnisee Lake, Eagle Nest/ Easy hiking).

We do not mind staying one night at places to avoid backtracking. We can adjust the nights at a place as well. We do not NEED to do all that is listed. If this was your vacation, what would you do? Thanks in Advance.

Posted by
1205 posts

I'm partial to Osttirol. If you want a little adventure off the beaten track, from Val Gardena/Ortisei to Großglockner-Hochalpenstraße, from near Bruneck head towards Antholz (Biathlon Weltcup & Antholzer See) over the Staller Sattel into Austria and the Defereggental. You will probably have to wait at the Staller Sattel as it alternates one way each half hour. I would consider an overnight in St. Veit in the Defereggental, possibly at Alpengasthof Pichler (room with balcony facing the valley). If the weather is bad from St. Veit and/or you don't want to go to Lienz and the Großglockner-Hochalpenstraße, you could drive north from the Defereggental thru the Felbertauerntunnel towards Mittersill. Or...
from Lienz drive towards Mallnitz and put the car on the train on the Tauernbahn and come out near Bad Gastein in the Gasteinertal. Lots of options along the way.

Just to add... from the Defereggental you can drive to Kals am Großglockner. From Kals there is a small toll (Maut, have small change) road to the Lucknerhaus. Good views of the Großglockner on a clear day. You can hike up to the Lucknerhütte if you are able. Roads and Alm should all be still open in early September. Many who climb the Großglockner start from here.

I like the Virgental too.

Posted by
1205 posts

Berchtesgaden... Definitely the Königssee boat and hike along the Obersee to the Fischunkelalm.
I recommend Gasthof Auzinger in Ramsau bei Berchtesgaden for overnight or dinner. They are always packed nowadays. Many holiday apartments in the area. Lots of recommendations in the Forums.
Visit St. Sebastian in Ramsau and Wallfahrtskirche Maria Gern near Berchtesgaden for the famous views.
Not a recommendation but, stayed here a few times. Great view of the Watzmann. 20 years ago, we were able to stay in the old farm house now used to house the staff. Hotel Garni Hanauerlehen. Easy walk to the Jennerbahn, Königssee and restaurants.
Rossfeld Panorama Strasse as an alternative to the Kielsteinhaus (toll).

St Wolfgang, definitely the Schafbergbahn. Make sure you walk to the top to see the Mondsee and the Attersee!

Posted by
5295 posts

The suggestions you got on Trip Advisor are 100%!

Posted by
1205 posts

In my opinion, if you are going to stay near The Wolfgangsee with a car, you might as well go to Hallstadt. It is unique even overrun with hordes of tourists. I would go early or late for a few hours. Parking can be an issue. "Been there done that."

If you just want to hit the "Highlights," you can do Salzburg in a day. I like to use Park and Ride Süd. Otherwise I would plan several nights.

In the Salzkammergut, I think Rick stayed here in Werfenweng in old videos, or appeared to:

Posted by
2854 posts

September is ideal. No worry about Oktoberfest, as outside of Munich you’ll never be aware it’s going on.

I’d stick with Munich to GP, but stay in nearby Mittenwald instead.

3 nights - Mittenwald.

4 nights - Ortisei. I’d go with St. Christina instead or even better, stay in the nearby Alta Badia. We love staying in La Villa, Alta Badia. I say 4 nights in the Dolomites since… a) your sightseeing is dependent on weather and b) you won’t find more scenic, more amazing, stunning drives in a concentrated area than in these parts of the Dolomites. In the immediate area are the Gardena Pass, Sella Pass, Pordoi Pass, Giau Pass, Falzarego Pass. All stunning drives with up close Dolomite peak scenery. All are free to drive. All have places to park and walk among the peaks. A few have a cafe rest stop at the “top”. Yes, they’ll be open in September.

1 night - Heiligenblut. Drive from Val Gardena or Alta Badia via Cortina, Misurina, Dobbiaco, Lienz.

Drive the Grossglockner Road, stop in Zell am See and wind up in Berchtesgaden area.

4 nights - Berchtesgaden area. We love staying in Ramsau bei Berchtesgaden. You can easily visit Konigssee, Salzburg, Wolfgangsee and Hallstatt.

Head back to Munich or the airport area.

We also use a moderate budget.

Here are our recommendations for a trip like this. Some we’ve stayed in numerous times.
Mittenwald -

Val Gardena -

Alta Badia -

Heiligenblut -

Berchtesgaden area -

Also, the Rossfeld Panorama Road is just above Berchtesgaden and well worth driving. If you’re interested in luge rides (Sommerrodelbahn), salt mines, cable car trips, there are a few in the area as well. I’d allow one day or a good part of a day to drive to St. Gilgen and cruise the Wolfgangsee by lakeship.