Powder dusted peaks, lush valleys, slopes blanketed in pines, quaint villages and historic cities – Tyrol is a beautiful region in Austria, nestled in the Alps.
While it is extremely popular in winter for its numerous ski resorts, thanks to its mountainous terrain, the area is also the perfect summer destination for outdoor enthusiasts and hikers. Head out into the hills on foot and admire absolutely stunning views of the valleys, lakes and flower-dotted meadows. There are over 400km of trails to discover in the Wild Kaiser mountains, and the High Mountain Nature Park in the Zillertal Alps is considered one of Austria’s most beautiful.
The picturesque medieval town of Rattenberg was founded in the 14th century in the shadow of Rat Mountain as a way of protecting itself from marauders. In fact, it was such a successful plan that in recent decades the town even considered installing special rotating mirrors (heliostats) to direct sunlight into some parts of the town over the winter months. These days, the town is renowned for its glass manufacturing and there are numerous crystal glass shops to discover.
In Innsbruck the Kaiserliche Hofburg (Imperial Palace) is one of the main attractions. It was built by Archduke Sigmund the Rich around 1460, and it is considered one of the most significant cultural buildings in Austria. It now houses five themed museum areas focusing on various aspects of the palace’s political and cultural history. Besides Innbruck, Kufstein is the second largest town in the region and its there you’ll find Kufstein Fortress which was first mentioned as Castrum Caofstein in a document dating back to 1205.
Head into the mountains and you’ll find plenty of activities and places of interest, like working farms to explore, waterfalls and lakes and nature parks where there are exhibits about the region and its history.
This is a landscape of textures: smooth shining snow, sharp mountain peaks against the blue sky, bouncy moss along panoramic paths. Here, merely looking is not enough and you’ll find yourself wanting to embrace the landscape.