"We loved that the routes were flexible and adapted to our group. The last day's hike was probably our favorite, and it sounded like it's not always possible to do. Guides were knowledgeable, experienced and a pleasure to be around. We really enjoyed the hut lunches and the night in the hut on the mountain (though one was enough). It was a good amount of time for hiking -- both each day and in total."- Maria Klutey
Hiking past glacially carved lakes in the rugged Gosaukamm mountains.
Views of more than 100 limestone peaks in the Dachstein mountain range.
Two nights in Hallstatt, one of the most beautiful lakeside villages in Europe.
Brilliant blue lakes, lush meadowlands, and hundreds of limestone peaks with cascading glaciers are the hallmarks of our eight-day hiking tour through the Salzkammergut region of Salzburg, Austria. While the history runs deep in the Salzkammergut, with evidence of human habitation going back 7,000 years, it is the blend of spectacular mountain scenery and impeccable Austrian inn keeping that makes the region legendary.
Starting out from the historic town of Bad Goisern, recognized by UNESCO for its outstanding cultural treasures, we hike to a luxury four-star estate surrounded by the dramatic walls of the Gosaukamm Mountains. Climb into the rugged Dachstein Mountains, also a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the Alps’ northernmost high limestone range. The finale of the hike leads us to the lakeside hamlet of Hallstatt, a pint-sized jewel of a village lying at the bottom of steep, wooded slopes on the fjord-like Hallstättersee.
There is a reason why people refer to Hallstatt as “the most beautiful lakeside village in all of Europe.” Lovingly decorated gasthauses and cobbled alleyways make the secluded gem of Hallstatt feel like a storybook fantasy. Spend two nights at our hotel in Hallstatt enjoying the best of two worlds — stunning mountain scenery and a fairytale village on one side, and delicious lakeside views with glacially carved waterways and steep cliffs on the other.
Arrive in Bad Goisern. Transfer to your hotel and enjoy a lovely dinner.
Today we climb through mountain pastures and enchanting forests before cresting at Goisererhütte, with outstanding views of the distant Dachstein peaks and the Hallstätter See. Descend to the idyllic village of Gosau. Rugged and majestic mountains encircle the village, while rolling pastures and tranquil mountain lakes make the region feel like a fairytale.
Distance: 8 miles. Elevation gain/loss: 2600/2675 ft.
After a short transfer to Rußbach, we hike the Gamsfeld, famous for having the best preserved and varied fossil beds in the Alps. After a hearty and typical hut lunch, we return to Gosau.
Distance: 6 miles. Elevation gain/loss: 1600/3500 ft.
Today’s hike takes us from our hotel to the end of the valley to explore the area around Gosausee, the most famous lake of the region. We circumnavigate the lake and stop for a delicious lakeside lunch, while enjoying views of the imposing Gosaukamm above. Return to Gosau.
Distance: up to 10 miles. Elevation gain/loss: 1150 ft.
After a short transfer, we hike beneath the famous Plassen and connect to Hallstatt, the most famous village in the area. Perched on the lake shore, Hallstatt is one of the Alps most interesting places, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Distance: up to 6 miles. Elevation gain/loss: 1500/2900 ft.
(There is the option to take the Salzbegbahn lift down to Hallstatt. Elevation loss/ 1755 ft.)
We use the Krippenstein cable car to access the high karst terrain below the Hoher Dachstein. This plateau is home to the largest caves in the Alps. Our trek traverses the plateau to the Wiesberghaus on a superb trail with synoptic information stations. Wiesberghaus offers great food and we highly recommend their homemade dumplings (Knödel). We return via the same route or have the option to descend to Hallstatt on foot.
Distance: 8 miles. Elevation gain/loss: none/2000 ft.
Hike to Hallstatt: Elevation gain/loss: 2000/4422 ft.
On our last day we cross the Hallstätter See by ferry and hike along the eastern lakeshore on the Panoramaweg. If weather permits, we can take a dip in the lake and stop for Apfelstrudel before reaching Bad Goisern.
Distance: up to 8.5 miles. Elevation gain/loss: none.