Valley of the Alms
Hiking and Walking in the Valley of the Alms
Also known as the Valley of the Alms, the Grossarl Valley in Salzburger Land is a delightful place for summer holidays in Austria.
Famous for its 400 km of clearly marked paths and trails, appropriate for the hiking skills of young and old alike, the Valley of the Alms, which covers 230 sq km and stretches for 27 km in length, lays at the entrance to the spectacular Hohe Tauern National Park, the largest national park in Central Europe. In 2010, the Grossarl Valley acquired the Austrian Hiking Seal of Quality, based on the quality of the area’s accommodation, walks and services offered in the 2 small towns of the area, Grossarl and Huttschlag. Grossarl, a small market town, is the starting place for many short walks, suitable for the whole family. During the summer, the Panorama cable car takes passengers to alpine meadows for relaxing strolls. From spring to late autumn, the meadows are alive with a variety of alpine flowers, including edelweiss, gentian and alpine rose. Hikers may catch a glimpse of beautiful lilies, arnica and marsh or vanilla orchids. Also in the summer, wardens from the national park offer free guided walks three times a week. These walks are ideal for first-time visitors to the area.
For those looking for a more lengthy hiking experience, the 350 km Salzburger Almenweg, which can be walked in sections, wanders through the Grossarl Valley at an elevation of 1500 to 2000m. Winding through beautiful alpine meadows and forests, the Almenweg passes lakes, waterfalls, small chapels, wayside crosses and mountain huts. With 120 alpine huts, 40 of which are located in the Grossarl Valley, Salzburger Land has more unique named huts than any other area of Austria. Some of the huts serve regional specialities, such as cheese noodles, veal schnitzels and bilberry dumplings to hungry hikers, and because the huts are close to alpine farms, there is a plentiful supply of fresh milk, cream, cheese, yoghurt, bacon and of course schnaps. About 25 of the huts offer overnight accommodation to guests.
For those wishing to experience the joy of hiking and walking in Austria, the natural beauty and charms of the Grossarl Valley are easily reached from Salzburg’s W.A. Mozart airport.