A fantastic land, the Austrian Tyrol, dominated and marked since time immemorial by the city of Innsbruck, a symbolic area for all this great area. But this is also an area of villages, of small realities that have so much to say and tell about themselves. Yes, not only the classic and archaic winter tourism region, a land elected in this respect since time immemorial; not only the eclectic and elegant city where patriot Andreas Hofer is buried, nor only the famous tourist resorts and renowned ski resorts of the place (two Winter Olympics here in history, we recall). But also, we would say above all, villages, charming villages with unspoiled air and nature, plus many historical-artistic curiosities and many cultural events. We will review some of these historic realities, interesting from several points of view. Realities to visit that we highly recommend. This last adverb does not seem out of place: the Innsbruck area is always appreciated, in all temperatures!
Villages in the urban area
There is plenty of beauty to get lost in. Here is Rum, on the road from Innsbruck to Hall. Distinctive Gothic church, the large Karwendel Alpine Park, lots of little trails: absolute splendor. Downstream the Inntalradweg bike path. Then you can't fail to pass by Kematen, with the small hamlet Afling, with its original old farmhouses. Famous are its ovens and granaries, also here beautiful Gothic church. In summer the village offers many sports areas, its characteristic; while in winter, of course, the ski slopes. Afling is part of the Compostela Way: highly recommended. And Völs? Old village, now famous for winter tourism, connected to Innsbruck by subway. Here the well-known "Cyta Cup," a soccer tournament, but also ice-skating competitions. For skiing, here is Olympia SkiWorld Innsbruck nearby. Lake Völs, then, to the west of the town, will captivate you. The municipality of Zirl is well worth a visit. Nature reserves, public swimming pools, charming railroad tracks, at Christmas beautiful handcrafted nativity scenes.
Natterer Lake Landscapes
To understand the scenic beauty of the Tyrol, their eternal charm, the splendor of silence. To "hear" the Tyrol, to smell it, this is where you must come. Where: it is quickly said: to Lake Natterer. Picturesque, off the beaten track, it ensures scenic contemplation but also the chance to be experienced directly, by swimming. Of morainic origin, it feeds on water of known and excellent quality. We are at an altitude of 830 meters. So many attractions here: for a relaxing vacation for couples, but also for families. Facilities galore. There is something for everyone. In the area, there is the resort of Axams. Ten kilometers from Innsbruck, famous for its old flax cultivation, it offers the great Axamer Lizum ski resort. Several Olympic Games competitions were held here. Relaxation and recreation with the Axamer Freizeitzentrum: center with heated indoor and outdoor pools, beach volleyball court, wellness areas. For art lovers, not to be missed is St. John's Church. Lots of riding stables: the little ones will love the area's famous ponies.
Villages south of Innsbruck.
We start here with five hamlets: Aldrans, Prockenhöfe, Wiesenhöfe, Rans and Herzsee, located by a beautiful lake. They make up the territory of Aldrans. Paths, an ancient abbey and then the curious Herzsee, the heart-shaped lake. This area is also close to the important town of Hall in Tirol. Don't miss beautiful Rinn, on a plateau, with the historic Judenstein church and then St. Andrew's, in the Rococo style. In winter, children can have fun at the "Kinderland Rinn" center. You will also be surprised by Ampass, on the ancient Salt Road. A very quaint village, it too boasts a lake, the Taxerhof. These centers have always been renowned for the therapeutic virtues of their landscapes. A view that soothes the spirit. Also 8 kilometers from Innsbruck go to Lans, also a beautiful lake here, with a recreation area. Finally, Sistrans, southeast of Innsbruck. Here ancient Tyrolean legends, paths honoring patriots of the past, endless skating rinks, and the Sistiger Bannzaun, a 600-meter-long dry stone wall separating the village from nearby Aldrans.
Miscellany of attractions
Also worth mentioning is Gries im Sellrain, 25 km from Innsbruck: an area in the Sellraintal valley. Pleasant hiking and walking, to be enjoyed with good cheese and typical bacon, so renowned in the area. Trails, ski areas: a country well-stocked in this respect. Then, there is Kühtai, in the municipality of Silz, in the Stubai Alps. Sparsely inhabited but very atmospheric, it is perhaps the smallest village in the Tyrol. Here a very old farmstead. The farmstead is the classic Tyrolean farmer's dwelling. Very famous is its cable car, known as the "three lakes" because it provides access to as many small lakes. Finally, worth seeing are Sellrain (the little church of St. Quirico is famous), Oberperfuss (mountain peaks that can be visited thanks to the many trails), Unterperfuss (well-structured hiking area "Rangger Köpfl"), Ranggen (here the characteristic meditative trail "Weg der Befreiung," "of liberation"), St. Sigmund (with the hamlet of Praxmar and the possibility of many winter sports activities: skiing but also snowboarding).
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