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Tauern Bicycle Path

The Tauern Bicycle Path is a bicyclist’s dream come true. Stop and listen to the wind in the trees, the birds, the small brooks and the distant waterfalls. Breathe in the scents of fresh-cut hay and moist moss hanging in the air. Look ahead to the first of several ruins you’ll see along the way. You’ve found alpine paradise.

Tauern Bicycle Path © Salzburg State Board of Tourism
Tauern Bicycle Path © Salzburg State Board of Tourism
Tauern Bicycle Path © Salzburg State Board of Tourism
Tauern Bicycle Path © Salzburg State Board of Tourism
Tauern Bicycle Path © SalzburgerLand Tourismus GmbH
Tauern Bicycle Path © SalzburgerLand Tourismus GmbH

The path cuts across some of the world’s most mountainous terrain, yet it’s almost all downhill. The clearly marked path starts in Krimml, elevation 3,400 feet, and ends 100 miles and 2,000 vertical feet later in Salzburg.

Most prefer to pack their bikes and gear and take the train from Salzburg to Krimml, a three-hour trip to the west. The bike path passes by Europe‘s highest waterfall, the Krimml Waterfalls, and also the world‘s biggest ice, the Werfen Eisriesenwelt. It runs along the northern boundary of the Hohe Tauern National Park, Europe’s largest, complete with 246 glaciers and 304 mountains over 9,000 feet. Villages are just moments apart and by late summer, trees brim with apples, pears and plums. Ask a farmer if you can buy a piece, and you will likely end up with a free bag of fruit - and a new friend.

The path runs through tiny hamlets - some no more than a few farmhouses and a chapel. Lock your bike in the market square and search out a local tavern for lunch. Start, perhaps, with dumpling soup followed by cheese spätzle. For dessert, how about strips of crepe mixed with blueberries and powdered sugar? That’s another benefit of riding: gorging without guilt!

You might wish to spend several days in Zell am See, an idyllic lakeside town encircled by mountains. On your journey take in the wild, untamed Liechtenstein Gorge and marvel at the majestic Hohenwerfen Fortress. Before long, you’ll be in Hallein, an ancient Celtic settlement and a “must stop” for a visit to the salt mines. The last nine miles carry the anticipation of seeing the famous Hohensalzburg fortress that dominates the Salzburg skyline. The bike path runs through dense forest, and the city comes on you almost without warning. Through a break in the trees, the fortress towers over the baroque spires of the city. Welcome to Salzburg!

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