Innsbruck, Austria

My active duty Army husband was in Garmisch, Germany for a couple of months of training, so I took the opportunity to go visit him, without our kids. You can read the first part of this adventure via a layover in Copenhagen and fun in Garmisch here. After hitting 10,000 steps before 11am in Garmisch, I walked to my husband’s class graduation, we grabbed lunch at Edelweiss resort, then hit the road towards Innsbruck, Austria.

Now when I tell you we sometimes travel with very little preparation or research I’m not kidding. Short of booking an airbnb outside of town and searching on my favorite travel bloggers website for suggested activities, Helene in Between, we didn’t go with a major agenda or schedule planned out. We decided to find a dinner spot and wonder around the city, which is my favorite activity to do in any new city – just wonder! Then knew we wanted to try a hike near our airbnb one day and to take a gondola up some of the magnificent mountains in Austria during our quick weekend trip!

Our AirBnB

Our airbnb deserves recognition here. I booked a place a bit removed from the city center and quite frankly that made me nervous. But I also liked the idea of seeing all that Innsbruck has to offer and that means the mountains. Guys, this apartment was up this cute neighborhood and quiet mountain and a short three minute walk to the train was perfect in every way – except for the lack of air conditioning! I adore the modern scandinavian design with its sleek lines and functionality. I’m obsessed with the doors that functions as windows and absolutely must have then when I build a forever home someday! Even the view from the little train stop was breath taking, and we never would have experienced that if we’d stayed in the city! You can check out and book our Innsbruck Airbnb here.

My husband, having been in Germany for over a month, was really missing a hearty steak dinner. I came across a restaurant called Woodfire Steak & More where we had a phenomenal experience. Their special of the evening happened to be our favorite cut of steak and the wine pairings were reasonable and delicious. You know when you describe dinner as an experience that it was really, really good!

A full day of hiking

The next morning we started walking towards where the GPS on my husband’s phone said was a trailhead. Well, we never exactly found that trail head, but we began what would be a short one and a half kilometers distance, but also 650 ft. elevation in that short distance! The trail kept going on for what seemed forever, but it kept getting more narrow and challenging.

After we saw this stunning view, took a moment to soak it in, we were satisfied to turn around and head back down.

After our hike we walked down to a nearby mini grocery store and picked up some breakfast & coffee – protein yogurt for me, cheese & sausage for him. We ate breakfast on our balcony, my favorite feature of our airbnb, especially first thing in the morning and at night since Austria was so hot that particular weekend. The cool air felt great!

Top of Innsbruck

Then we were off to begin the journey up towards the Nordkette Mountain Chain, also known as the top of Innsbruck. We rode a bus up to the gondola starting point. The villages tucked into these higher elevations of the mountains fascinate me. I’m used to cities and towns down in valley’s however in Austria, you can see little villages tucked very high up in the mountain. From there we took the gondola up to the first stop and a restaurant at 6,000 ft. Right as we stepped off the gondola I noticed a couple of people running so I quickly followed to catch right as a hang glider took off from the mountain side! Wow!!

We then had lunch outside with the most magnificent view before getting into the next gondola up to the very top at 7,500ft , plus a short hike to the very top that definitely challenged my lungs! There were several directions people were hiking from there and I was most taken aback that there weren’t really any restrictions, or barriers, for where you can go. It’s truly enter at your own risk – but there are absolutely safe and simple options to take in the scenery. Just look at these views!

We took the two gondolas back down then decided to try the Hungerburgbahn instead of the bus for the remaining descent. The Hungerburgbahn is a unique train where each car is separate, remains level, and you travel standing it traverses up and down the mountain. The train took us right into the city of Innsbruck where we toured a single museum before our bodies were completely and utterly done. We found a nearby restaurant, sat down and I realized I was looking directly at the Golden Roof – the most iconic symbol of Innsbruck!

Overall a success since we were not up for any more walking and exploring. After a brief sit, we decided on which route we wanted to get back to our airbnb, and then made it almost to the station to realize the train runs MUCH less often on Saturdays and we had to wait an hour for the next available one.

We decided to go sit, again, and have a beer nearby, then headed towards the train station an hour later only to realize our train was inexplicably delayed with no time listed! This just serves as a reminder that travel doesn’t always go as planned! We took an Uber home and then ordered food delivery for dinner after a nice cold shower. Oh yeah, late Summer in Germany & Austria can be hot and most places, including our airbnb had no air conditioning.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *