When most people think of the Austrian Alps they think of skiing and snow. And it’s true, the Alps are a great place to visit in winter to enjoy all the sports and hot chocolate. The very same places though can also be a fantastic outdoor holiday in summer. Here’s a look at things to do in Saalbach-Hinterglemm in summer.
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Summer in Saalbach-Hinterglemm
Located conveniently between Innsbruck and Salzburg, Saalbach-Hinterglemm is now officially opening for the summer season. That means when you get there, you will be able to find accommodation easily, the gondolas will be open to take you up into the mountains and there will be events and festivals to help celebrate the warmer weather.
I have written about my visits to Saalbach-Hinterglemm here and here, so you can see what I got up to during my visits, but here are many more ideas for things to do in the Austrian Alps in summer.
No longer do you need to ask where to hike in Austria. There are dozens of hiking trails around Saalbach-Hinterglemm. They can be as simple as walking between the two townships, or you can climb a mountain. Some of the most popular hikes leave from the top of Schattberg mountain, and to get to the top, right in the middle of Saalbach township is the Schattberg Xpress gondola.
Once at the top, there are again many options for hikes of all lengths and difficulties. One of the most challenging is the Seven Summits walk. Not for the faint hearted, this 24km hike visits all seven summits in the Saalbach-HInterglemm region. They are all over 2000m, so the views during the hike will be stunning. I only hiked to one during my visit, but would love to try the whole hike.
During the summer there are mountain bikes everywhere. There are many companies in town that offer bike hire, lessons, guides, group tours and much more. There are dedicated mountain biking paths, and it looked like the riders were having a fantastic time. There’s even a pump track that has been built to help develop mountain biking skills. The weekend after we left, there was the Glemmride Bike Festival with a whole weekend dedicated to everything mountain biking.
Biking for fun
If you are more like me and don’t know the first thing about mountain biking (I got a lesson from a nine year old as we hiked!) there are plenty of paths around for casual riding. If you are worried about the hills, then consider hiring an e-bike from one of the many bike hire stores for that little bit of extra help.
High Rope Park
Right down the far end of the valley is Europe’s biggest high ropes park, the Baumzipfelweg. Amongst the 8km of ropes, bridges and other stations, it is also home to a scary-looking zip line that is so high it can only be used when the weather conditions are just right. The park is able to be used by people of all ages so long as you have a basic level of fitness. There are some easier areas that are appropriate for younger children, who do need t one accompanied by an adult.
The park also includes the Golden Gate bridge and a treetop trail that gives spectacular views over the valley.
Right next door to the high rope park is a rustic playground. It’s not all swings and slides that are in most playgrounds, but wooden toys made by a local so that the children can really used their imagination. There’s a fort, an airplane, a pond, and my favourite, a small creek around the edge with a supply of rubber ducks for races. Each year more items are added and updated, so there is always something new for the kids.
Along side the main walking path from Saalbach to Jausern are various pieces of parkour-style equipment. There’s everything from balancing activities to group challenges, strength tests and dexterity. This is a great way to get out and about and practice some of those skills and build the body strength for the more vigorous outdoor pursuits. This is a great, free way for the kids to let off some steam too without having to venture far from the town.
Visiting the Alms
I have to admit I didn’t do my homework on what exactly an alm is and why they were built, so this is my take on them. Alms are these great places built up in the hills on the hiking and bike paths to provide passers by with refreshments. I imagine these were originally started out of people’s houses to provide respite in the harsh winters and to earn a little bit of extra money on the side. Now these are full blown businesses, providing not only drinks and basic foods, but full restaurant menus with large indoor and outdoor areas used alternatively in the winter or the summer. I suggest calling in to any you pass while walking or biking for a quick drink or bite to eat, or even search one out just for lunch. We got some delicious goulash soup at Lindlingalm for only a few Euros.
Festivals and Events
Almost every weekend in summer there seems to be a festival or event scheduled in Saalbach-Hinterglemm. I have mentioned Glemmride above, but there are also events such as the Lake of Charity event in July. Here a small lake – now called Lake of Charity – is set up with all sorts of water sports. There is live music, food, and of course, fireworks to entertain throughout the weekend.
Other weekends host farmers markets, beer festivals, outdoor concerts and more.
And There’s More
If that isn’t enough, there are multitudes of other activities throughout the area, such as golf, mini golf, archery, rock climbing, paragliding, tennis, swimming pools, more playgrounds, ski museum, horse riding and go-karting. How about taking the kids Geocaching or escaping them on a trail run? There’s restaurants, shops, cafes and bars to meet every budget.
The Joker Card
Still not convinced to visit the alps in summer? During summer there is a fantastic offering from the community called “The Joker Card”. This card cannot be purchased but will be supplied to you by your accommodation provider. It gives you free transport on the buses, cable cars, and the little train at the end of the valley. It also provides free or discounted activities at many of the local attractions. This means huge savings. Note that these cards are only valid during the summer season, so check the dates of your visit.
Saalbach-Hinterglemm is about 90 minutes drive south west of Salzburg.
It can also easily be reached by public transport. Take the train from any major centre to Zell Am See. Right outside the train station is a bus stop for the 680 bus which will take you into the valley and stops regularly along the main road. Most accommodation will be within a couple of hundred metres of the road, so should be easy to find.
You can also arrange private transfers to Sallbach-Hinterglemm from both Munich and Salzburg Airports
Click here for private transfers from Salzburg
Click here for private transfers from Munich
The 680 bus makes it’s way regularly up and down the valley and will get you to most places you need to go.
At Lengau, the far end of the valley there is a little train that will take visitors even further up the valley to Lindlingalm, the High Rope Park and other activities in the area.
Many of the main cable cars and gondolas will be running to take hikers, mountain bikers and general sightseers up the mountains.
Where to Stay
We stayed at – and recommend –
Kollingweg 442, 5754 Hinterglemm, Austria
Starting from €95/night one bedroom apartment
On our second visit we stayed here, right in the centre of Saalbach
Apartment Residence Top 1
Schulstraße 341, 5753 Saalbach
Starting from €200/night
Looking for more accommodation options? Check Booking.com for prices and availability here.
As opening for the summer season is still new for Saalbach-Hinterglemm, I suggest you check all information and dates carefully to ensure services are running. We found a couple of instances of services not being what they would be in the middle of winter. Most notably was one restaurant offered only a set menu rather than their full a la carte menu which was starting two weeks after our visit.
The best website for information is Saalbach.com Not only will it help you out with what is open, but there are up to date weather details and livecams showing exactly what the conditions are like. These are vital if heading up into the mountains. The website also provides maps of the area and safety information. Ensure you check all these out before heading out.
There are also information centres in both Saalbach and Hinterglemm townships. Call in to visit them to pick up hiking maps and other essential information. Opening hours and addresses are on the website above.
You might also like these posts
Travel Diaries – Innsbruck & the Alps
Travel Diaries – Salzburg and Vienna
The State Hall, Vienna’s Beautiful Library
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44 thoughts on “Summer in Saalbach-Hinterglemm, Austria”
Living close to the Alps I wasn’t aware that most people associate winter holiday with the Alps. I think the Alps are a deligtful place in every season. Saalbach-Hinterglemm is a great destination and offers so many possibilities also in summer. I love your photos, especially the one with fog.
Thank you! Yes, being from the other side of the world (Australia) when we think about the Alps we think about snow! Maybe it’s just because we don’t have any!
The hiking and mountain biking would be on the top of my list! I actually didn’t realize the amazing scenery that Austria offers and your photos are stunning!
Thank you Lisa! My photos don’t nearly show how spectacular the mountains really are! I spent most of my time saying “wow!”
Such breathtaking landscape you were capturing! Your article has gathered very useful information about Saalbach-Hinterglemm in the summer, from the activities to the accommodations and transportation modes. I’d really love to go hiking among these mesmerising sceneries. Thanks for sharing!
This made me so excited for my upcoming trip to Austria! Fingers crossed for as much sunshine as you got 🙂
I must have done well with the photos, because in reality when I was there it mostly rained! It had been perfect for days beforehand, and was perfect again once I left, but we joked that I brought the rain with me! I seem to do that regularly. It was still fantastic though, and it rained only in bursts or very lightly, so we could still get out and about.
We also visited Vienna, and it was hot there with not a cloud in the sky!
I’m living close to Switzerland and we plan to go to Austria in 2 weeks for summer holidays 🙂 Austria is a country for culture and hiking,so I’m pretty sure I will love this country. And we plan to go to Saalbach-Hitnerglemm !!
I hope you have an absolute ball in Saalbach-Hinterglemm. I wish I was going back with you!
Must admit my first thought of this region is the ski season, though it looks amazing in summer. Will have to add it to our ever growing list.
I have to say I was surprised at how much there is to do. I needed to stay longer to test more of it out.
I was there last summer and think I prefer Austria in warmer months to Austria in the snow even. I love sitting outside on a patio and sipping a beer until well after dark!
Hahaha, yes, there might have been a bit of that happening on our visit too!
A very useful article Josie. I would much prefer to go there in Summer rather than Winter and I love the Joker Card – a great way to encourage summer tourism.
Thanks Megan. It really was a lovely, relaxing place to stay. I just wish we had been there longer.
Very informative blog. Heard a lot about Austria and this one makes me want to go there now!
The whole country is beautiful! I also recommend a visit to Innsbruck too.
I love summer because there is so much to do. I would have certainly enjoyed taking in the views of the flowers and the biking for leisure. The rope park looks exhilarating and knowing me, I would at least attempt it.
I would absolutely give it a go next time we are there! We didn’t this time, because the people we were with had been there two days earlier. They had a great time.
Yes! This looks absolutely amazing. That landscape is to die for ! 🙂
Yes, and my photos don’t even come close to the reality.
Austria has always been one of the places that I’ve been itching to visit, but never really looked into the Austrians alps. Looks like a great time.
Definitely worth considering if you are in the area, it is simply stunning.
It looks and sounds like such an amazing place to visit in both summer AND winter! Sounds like there’s a lot to do and that scenery is breath-taking. Gorgeous photos!
Thanks Caroline. I seriously cannot recommend it enough! I just loved the scenery
This looks so awesome. I am craving some hiking big time (and especially in milder temps!). I’ve been to Vienna but haven’t made it to the mountains yet.
Yes! The European temperatures have been a bit hard to handle the last couple of weeks. The cool of the mountains would be lovely around about now.
Austria is on our list for the winter, but now after seeing your photos I feel like we need to go in the spring! Such lovely, gorgeous greens and flowers!
Be careful in spring Lena, some places in the mountains close down for a month or so between the winter and summer seasons, so spring and autumn can have less facilities open. But check, it might be okay for what you want.
So many things to do! The hiking trails also look amazing. Love hearing about the story of alms.
I only passed by Innsbruck once on a Contiki tour and all I saw was the Swarovski shop, lol. I have fond memories of Austria though and would love to go there again to properly discover it!
Hahaha – was it the Swarovski Crystal World you went to? Definitely not representative of Innsbruck or Austria (although we went there too!) I’ve written about that in one of my other Austria posts.
Looks incredible! How cute is that playground?
I’m definitely a summer person myself, so I’m far more inclined to visit the Alps for something like this than for the winter sports (…we don’t need to talk about my disastrous prior attempts at skiing).
Hahaha…I’ve never tried skiing, but I am fairly sure with my coordination (or lack thereof!) I would be bad at it too!
Austria has been on my bucket list for long now. I need to make it there. look how cute Schitza’s Holzpark is. Great pics.
It really surprised me! I expected it to the beautiful, but I didn’t expect there to be much to do apart from hiking. How wrong I was.
So pretty! It’s funny how certain parts of the world are associated with one season/weather but are often even nicer at different times.
Thanks Caroline. Very true! I am sure there are lots of other places that are the same!
I enjoy learning about the summer side of the Austrian Alps because as you mentioned, I always think of the Alps as the perfect winter holiday!:)
Thanks Raquel. Glad you enjoyed it!
Such a wonderful country and amazing places! Loved your stories. So many things to do!
Thanks Aurelia. Yes, there are lots of things to do.
This looks so lovely, and the photos remind me of those travel posters for the Alps – just breathtaking! Also as a person from San Francisco, I love how they have a Golden Gate Bridge too 😉
Hahaha…I haven’t been to San Francisco, but fairly sure your version of the bridge is much more impressive.
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