24 Hours in Innsbruck

Greetings everyone! I’m continuing on with a series of posts to recap my 2010 Euro Adventure with David.

Many weeks of planning and iterations of our Google doc spreadsheet had taken place – so finally David and I were ready for our first big overseas trip together. We were packed to the hilt with hiking supplies, and ready to go, but the day of our departure Hurricane Earl hit the East Coast and delayed our flight through Newark. At the last minute we changed our flight to Lufthansa so that we could fly straight to Frankfurt and avoid any delays (our tight schedule didn’t allow for cancellations).

At first we were excited to try Lufthansa; the gate wasn’t too crowded and the food was good, but we quickly realized the seats were small and the plane lighting was really bright. Unfortunately, we got < 3 hours of sleep on the way over.

On arrival in Zurich we picked up our rental car, a small Mazda we named Egbert since he’s shaped like an egg. He was our companion for the whole trip. Thanks to David’s skills, we had international maps on our Garmin, so we plugged it in and headed straight to Innsbruck.


We were extremely tired and there were tons of tunnels; one was 10km, the longest tunnel ever! Luckily we got to our clean and lovely Hotel Zillertal in Innsbruck with minimal issues (except some confusing Austrian road signage).


Bitte Warten Crossing Signal – “Please Wait!”

We wanted to stretch our legs and not fall asleep, so we took a walk to Aldstat (Old Town) where we saw old, colorful houses, the Golden Dach (roof), and large, stone churches. The town was small, quaint and extremely quiet – we couldn’t hear any traffic or noise!



For dinner, we stopped at a German-style restaurant recommended by our hotel. I loved the restaurant, because it was reminiscent of my time in Germany. We ate a Bruschetta-Mozarella appetizer with tomatoes, herbs, vinegar & salad. We were starving for “real” food after the long trip, so for the main course we both ordered beef. The meat was extremely tender (as German meat should be), and was served in a wine sauce. We dined outside with white lights – my favorite. Then we took our 10 minute walk back to the hotel and crashed.


After a great night’s rest, we did a bit more exploring on the town before stopping by the tourist info center for a day hike recommendation.


The tourist office recommended a hike that was accessed via gondola (wish I remembered the name!).  People were even taking their dogs up on the gondola.  Warning: don’t hit your head on the glass.


Once on the mountain, the views of Innsbruck below were amazing.


What a great sky.


The hike was good too; a bit muddy, but there was a nice gasthaus on top of the mountain and a band randomly playing on the mountain.


And there was even some snow, a warm-up for the hikes to come.


After a few hours of hiking, it was time to hit the road, and we were on to our next stop 2.5 hours away, Cortina D’Ampezzo, Italy.


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