Winter in Austria conjures visions of snow-capped mountains and villages populated by smiling locals in lederhosen. You’ll find this is often not a far cry from reality. Amidst Austria’s idyllic scenery you’ll find dream ski conditions, family-friendly après ski bars and some of the best snow schools Europe has on offer. To top it off, the locals bring the area to life over Christmas with traditional markets, decorations and parades, adding a touch of old-world magic to your next family holiday.
Known as the capital of the famous Tyrol ski area, Innsbruck is renowned for offering much of the best skiing in Austria. There is a wealth of immaculate slopes to choose from and it can be hard to navigate your holiday plans towards one particular resort. Igls and Mutters both offer slopes that are suited to families in need of beginner and intermediate runs, while Seefeld is often rated one of the most child-friendly resorts in Austria. At Seefeld you will find plenty of programs to keep kids entertained on the slopes during the day, as well as off-slope activities for the evenings. Being the biggest centre of the Austrian ski slopes you will never be at a loss for entertainment, and Innsbruck’s popularity ensures there is a holiday package to suit all family budgets.
Pristine slopes, stunning accommodation options and bustling activity both day and night have consolidated St Anton’s position as one of the most popular Austrian ski getaways. Often overlooked by families due to the renowned difficulty of some of their runs, the ski resort offers a number of family-friendly features that should definitely be taken advantage of. These include ski schools, childcare facilities, beginner runs, toboggan slopes, and off-slope activities such as ice rinks and bowling alleys. St Anton presents the perfect opportunities for families to enjoy the whole ski-resort experience against one of Austria’s most beautiful, natural backdrops.
Kitzbuhel prides itself on being the Austrian base for all things sports and leisure the whole year round. Ski schools and programs such as Kitz4Kids ensure that children will never be bored, and on top of providing some of the best ski slopes in Europe, families can take advantage of other fun activities such as ice skating, curling, sledging or relaxed winter walking paths. Kitzbuhel is also home to Water World Aquarena, allowing guest access to the popular Austrian pastime of a day at the spa. Kids can enjoy the kid’s playroom, swimming and tubing while parents take a break from the slopes and relax in the spa and sauna facilities.
Ellmau SkiWelt has a long-renowned and proudly upheld reputation for being the popular family resort of Austria. Here families will find superb nursery slopes, ski schools, crèche programs and daily activities to keep younger family members entertained while parents are then able to freely explore over 250km of piste. All slopes are directly connected to the village centre, meaning it’s possible for loved ones to split up for the morning and reconvene over a warm lunch in town. The loud party scene all takes place at nearby resorts such as Soll, ensuring families can take time in the evening to peacefully enjoy the quality restaurants and bars found in Ellmau.
With its quality ski schools, toboggan runs and snow tubing, Filzmoos is a family ski resort that manages to be lively without getting overcrowded. Floodlights come out at night to ensure the fun on the slopes lasts well into the evening, and there are extensive runs for beginners and intermediates suitable for kids of all ages. If you are ever in need of a day off the mountains, families can choose to relax in the scenic Filzmoos area or venture out to a number of nearby Austrian towns, castles and fortresses. Salzburg, the birthplace of Mozart and The Sound of Music, is only 50km away.