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Overview

Obergurgl is a picturesque and quaint village (population 400) bookended by ski lifts. This classic Tyrolean village is the highest town in Austria at an elevation of 6,330 feet, and is situated in a pristine valley rimmed by panoramic summits. Between December and March it’s a major winter sports haven, but one with a subdued après-ski scene. The village "center" is mostly traffic-free, and entirely so at night — with the majority of visitors choosing to entertain themselves in their hotels. Obergurgl first gained fame in 1931 when Auguste Piccard, a Swiss explorer, landed on a nearby glacier during a historic balloon flight that made him ...

Obergurgl is a picturesque and quaint village (population 400) bookended by ski lifts. This classic Tyrolean village is the highest town in Austria at an elevation of 6,330 feet, and is situated in a pristine valley rimmed by panoramic summits. Between December and March it’s a major winter sports haven, but one with a subdued après-ski scene. The village "center" is mostly traffic-free, and entirely so at night — with the majority of visitors choosing to entertain themselves in their hotels. Obergurgl first gained fame in 1931 when Auguste Piccard, a Swiss explorer, landed on a nearby glacier during a historic balloon flight that made him the first man to reach the stratosphere. Today it is most beloved for its sublime skiing and snowboarding on a variety of terrain. Should you visit during the off season, i.e., summer, you’ll be greeted with fewer people and the same stunning scenery, just more green than white, and excellent hiking – including many trails that cross glaciers to dramatic wooden mountain huts and others leading south into Italy.

Aaron Anderson
About the Expert

Aaron Anderson is coauthor of Lonely Planet's Washington, D.C. City Guide, a contributor on western states to Lonely Planet USA, and he wrote the Austria chapters for Lonely Planet's Western Europe and Europe on a Shoestring.

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Aaron Anderson for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Obergurgl is a village in the Ötztal Alps in the Austrian state of Tyrol. The village has approximately 400 year-round inhabitants, and is mainly a tourist resort. At an elevation of 1,930 m (6,330 ft), Obergurgl is the highest parish in Austria.
  • Language: German
  • Currency: Euro
  • Research: Wikipedia

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    November through April for the best skiing, summertime for hiking.