Why Austria is Best for Après-Ski
From rustic huts to clubs, fancy dining, and music festivals - find out what makes Austria's après-ski scene so unique.
A long, exhilarating day on the slopes is not complete without some proper après-ski. Many of us love to unwind and celebrate with a drink or two, hearty food and some sing-along songs after all. Party animals might even argue that the quality of the night scene could make or break a winter holiday. In Austria, the après-ski fun starts right by the pistes, which are often lined with cosy huts and bars.
Why not warm up with a cup of Austria’s legendary Jägertee (literally: "hunter’s tea“, a concoction of tea, wine, rum, brandy, orange juice, spices, and lemons) or mulled wine while the sun sets over the snowy mountains, then hit the dance floor to shake off your tired arms and legs to some banging tunes?
Find out why Austria is your perfect destination for après-ski!
The atmosphere is cosy, comfortable, and friendly
At Austria’s rustic ski huts, you’ll immediately feel like you’re among friends. After all, there’s a saying in this part of the Alps: Once you’re above the tree line, everyone’s on a first-name basis.
No matter if you arrive with your mates from back home, acquaintances you have just met at the ski lift or all by yourself, you will certainly have a great time - and make some new friends.
As guests squeeze together around the huts’ wooden tables, conversation – and sometimes shots – start to flow freely. And while we by no means want to encourage excessive binge-drinking, it's part of the Austrian experience to try traditional locally made schnapps at least once. Pear and stone pine are especially popular.
The cuisine is traditional, tasty, and filling
Ski huts are not just for partying, they’re also for dining. Especially in the small huts, meals are often prepared directly on an old rustic woodstove as the mouthwatering aroma wafts through the room.
Try traditional dishes such as Tiroler Gröstl (a fry-up made with potatoes and bacon), Kärntner Kasnudeln (cheese-filled pasta from Carinthia) or the all-time crowdpleaser Kaiserschmarren (fluffy shredded pancakes traditionally served with stewed plums - look for "Zwetschkenröster" on the menu). The latter one usually comes in large portions, making it a great dish to share.
Found your favourite? While we do suggest to try as many Austrian foods as you can fit into your schedule (and tummy!), pretty much every chef has his or her very own version of all the classics. So, don't feel guilty if you order Kaiserschmarren for the third day in a row - we do it, too!
You can also go stylish and extravagant
However, it’s not all traditional and rustic in the Austrian mountains. If you have a special occasion to celebrate - or just want to go fancy for one night - there's plenty of choice, too. Keep that in mind when packing your suitcase - you might want to add a nice top or smart trousers to your sportswear just in case.
Places like the popular ice Q gourmet restaurant in Sölden (which doubled as a futuristic clinic in the James Bond movie "Spectre" with Daniel Craig), the Swarovski-encrusted Top Mountain Star in Obergurgl, or the Kristallhütte lifestyle hotel in Zillertal are stylish spots for dining and wining.
We have some unusual experiences in store
In the midst of the SkiWelt Wilder Kaiser – Brixental in Tirol (one of the largest and most modern ski resorts in the world), you’ll find a world made completely of ice. The ALPENIGLU® igloo village’s hotel, church, and bars consist of solid ice – and even your drinks will be served in ice glasses. Sounds cool? It sure is. Don't forget warm clothes though!
Live music in the heart of the Alps anyone? Zillertal's Mayerhofen is home to one of the largest winter music festivals in Europe, Snowbombing. Liam Gallagher, Foals, Fatboy Slim and Kasabian have all played here. Who knows, your favourite band might just be next. Make sure to secure your tickets in time. Electric Mountain in Sölden and Saalbach's BERGFESTival are also well worth checking out.