Overview for Complete Tyrol: Garmisch to Sterzing
Traverse the entire Tyrolean Alps from Garmisch Partenkirchen in Germany across Wetterstein and Karwendel massifs to Innsbruck in Austria and then reach South Tyrol (Alto Adige) in Italy. You will walk through impressive gorges and balcony trails and following ancient pilgrimage and smuggler trails you will pass by stunning glaciers and cross the valleys of Stubaital, Wipptal and Pflerschtal. This 14-day trek is quite demanding and requires a good level of experience in alpine terrain, although no climbing skills are required and no scrambling is involved.
Itinerary for Complete Tyrol: Garmisch to SterzingGo to top of page
Day 1: Arrival Garmisch Partenkirchen
Welcome to Garmisch!
Day 2: Garmisch – Balcony path into Höllentalklamm (Hell Valley Gorge) – Garmisch
A non-demanding hike to the impressive Höllental gorge. Walk up into the gorge and to the beautifully located mountain cabin Höllentalangerhütte offering spectacular views to the highest peak in Germany, Zugspitze. Take a rest for the final walk up to Mount Kreuzeck following a high trail above the gorge. Return to Garmisch by cable car.
- Walking for the day: 11 km, 5-6 hours ↑950m ↓0m (return by cable car)
- Overnight in Garmisch Partenkirchen, dinner included (Atlas Grand Hotel, Garmischerhof or similar)
Day 3: Garmisch – Wetterstein Massif – Schachenalm Hut
In the beginning of the day you walk through another gorge to the foot of Wetterstein Massif. Make a steep ascent until you reach the “Kings Path” to Schachen Castle. The last stage to the mountain cabin offers spectacular views to the surrounding mountains.
- Walking for the day: 15 km, 4 hours ↑250m ↓350m
- Accommodation in a mountain cabin, rooms accommodate 2-4 persons (Schachenhaus or similar)
- No luggage transfer included on this day, your main luggage will be transferred directly to Scharnitz.
Day 4: Schachenalm Hut – Scharnitz
In the morning you will walk upwards to a mountain pass where you will reach the Meilerhütte (hut) next to the German-Austrian border. Then walk downwards through an impressive rocky landscape to the green Leutasch Valley. Then ascend through a gorge and walk to Scharnitz at the edge of the national park of Karwendel.
- Walking for the day: 18 km, 8-9 hours ↑900m ↓1,800m (bus transfer possible to shorten the route)
- Accommodation in Scharnitz (Geiger, Risserhof or similar)
Day 5: Scharnitz – Karwendel Valley – Hallerangeralm Hut
Walk into Karwendel valley (or an optional car transfer to the valley, included). Then a moderate hike will bring you to Halleranger alpine pasture. Enjoy the day, relax or walk up to Mount Sunntiger Spitze.
- Walking for the day: 19 km, 6-7 hours ↑850m (6 km, 3-4 hours ↑550m if using the car transfer)
- Accommodation in a comfortable mountain cabin with en-suite facilities (Halleranger Alm or similar)
- No luggage transfer included on this day, your main luggage will be transferred directly to Innsbruck.
Day 6: Hallerangeralm Hut – Karwendel – Innsbruck
A marvellous balcony path brings you across several ridges and passes to the famous Nordkette of Innsbruck. A short but steep ascent requires sure-footedness and stamina. After that you can walk light hearted – but better not light headed – to the summit station of Hafelekar cable car and you will be carried downhill to Innsbruck.
- Walking for the day: 13 km, 6-7 hours ↑1,150m ↓700m
- Accommodation in Innsbruck (Hotel Sailer, Hotel Café Central or similar)
Day 7: Rest Day Innsbruck
Enjoy Innsbruck with its beautiful multi-coloured houses. Spend the day relaxing in this Alpine town, and between sightseeing, enjoy a plate of fluffy pancakes with home-made jam.
Day 8: Innsbruck – Mutters – Pfarrachalm – Fulpmes
Using the tram you will leave Innsbruck and reach Mutters. Afterwards you will take the cable car up the mountain pastures of Muttereralm, where you will start your walk along the Innsbrucker Almentour trail. It is an easy trail mainly passing along a mountain road with wonderful views to the Alps. There is an optional alternative tour down in the valley if you prefer even easier walking or in case of bad weather. Overnight in Fulpmes, a popular winter sport resort.
- Walking for the day: 15 km, 6 hours ↑350m ↓1000m
- Accommodation in Fulpmes (Alphof Hotel, Waldhof Hotel or similar)
Day 9: Fulpmes – Maria Waldrast – Blaserhütte – Trins
You will start walking uphill along a long distance trail to Sonnstein offering great views down to the valley. Afterwards you will follow the pilgrimage trail to Maria Waldrast Abbey, the highest monastery in Europe. Maria Waldrast is one of Tyrol’s oldest Virgin Mary’s pilgrimage sites – and it has a nice restaurant where you can have lunch. You will cross over from one valley to another over a high mountain pass and then you have two alternative routes to reach Trins, a little village located in a side valley.
- Walking for the day: 18 km, 8 hours ↑930m ↓1415m (longer route) or 15 km, 6 hours ↑650m ↓1130m (shorter route)
- Accommodation in Trins (Wienerhof Pension or similar)
Day 10: Rest Day / Optional Hikes Trins
Spend the day exploring the surroundings of Trins. Trins offers a great natural landscape. A popular hiking destination is the Padasterjochhaus refuge above Trins, which represents an amazing viewpoint in the Stubai Alps. If you seek refreshment on hot summer days, we recommend you a hike to the Sarnthein waterfall. Reachable within half an hour only, this natural monument is in the heart of an enchanting forest.
- Accommodation in Trins (Wienerhof Pension or similar)
Day 11: Trins – Obernberg
Today you will follow the Romediusweg pilgrimage trail to the next valley. The trail will lead you then through a high mountain pass. Expect a lovely landscape with mountain pastures, summits with glaciers and little mountain lakes. A mountain road or a steep zigzag trail will lead you downwards to Obernberg, a small mountain village.
- Walking for the day: 11 km, 6 hours ↑970m ↓800m
- Accommodation in Obernberg (Almi’s Berghotel or similar)
Day 12: Obernberg – Sandjöchl – Gossensaß
You may walk or take the local bus into the valley where you start your walking tour to Lake Obernberg. Right after the lake, the ascent to the mountain pass of Sandjöchl will start and you will again enjoy a wonderful landscape with summits around. In the mountain pass, you will reach the Italian border and along a military road you will walk downwards to Gossensaß. It will be a steep descent but rewarded with great views to the Dolomites.
- Walking for the day: 16 km, 7-8 hours ↑840m ↓1130m (13 km, 6 hours if using the optional bus transfer)
- Accommodation in Gossensaß (Hotel Alpin or similar)
Day 13: Gossensaß – Ladurns – Rosskopf – Sterzing (Vipiteno)
Using the local bus, you will get to the starting point in Innerpflersch. You will then walk uphill passing by cabins with great views to the valley. When you reach Ladurns cable car station, you will follow the high trail slightly up and down passing by mountain pastures. Take a rest at a mountain cabin and enjoy the view to the Alps and Dolomites. The walk ends at the cable car station of Rosskopf from where you will glide downwards to Sterzing. Sterzing (its Italian name is Vipiteno) is Italy’s northernmost town with a long history and a very nice city centre. Enjoy the combination of Alpine and Mediterranean flair.
- Walking for the day: 17 km, 6-7 hours ↑700m ↓1200m (shorter option: 13 km, ↑700m ↓580m)
- Accommodation in Sterzing (Hotel Mondschein or similar)
Day 14: Departure or Onward Travel
Hotels for Complete Tyrol: Garmisch to SterzingGo to top of page
11 nights in a mix of country inns, 3 or 4-star hotels and 2 nights in mountain cabins, one of them basic and the other more comfortable. We have carefully hand-picked all places and regularly monitor their quality. We have tried to choose accommodations that offer friendly service, clean and comfortable rooms and local flavour.
*Hotels are subject to availability. In case a particular hotel is fully booked for your desired dates, we will replace it with a hotel of equal value and quality level. We will provide exact accommodation details to you upon booking confirmation.
Breakfast is included. When no restaurant location is available on route lunches and snacks should either be bought from local shops, or packed lunch can be pre-ordered from your hotel the night before. Dinner is included on Days 1 and 2 in Garmisch and on Day 6 in Innsbruck. Dinner when not included is available either from the restaurant in your accommodation or restaurants in the village near your hotel.
Travel for Complete Tyrol: Garmisch to SterzingGo to top of page
Our recommended arrival airport for this holiday is Innsbruck.
Please note that flight information can change rapidly, and not all flights run daily. Please do check directly with the airlines’ websites or Skyscanner before finalising any booking with us. Please do not book your flights before we have confirmed your booking.
Transfers to/from Airports
Garmisch is 1.5 hours from Innsbruck Airport and 2.5 hours from Munich Airport by train. Visit the OBB website for up-to-date timetables and fares or check the Rome2Rio links below.
Airport transfers by train or bus are recommended for this trip, as they are much cheaper and take less time than car transfers.
Hotel to hotel luggage transfers on most walking days are included, the only exceptions being Days 3 and 5. On Days 3 and 5 your main luggage will be transferred directly to the Day 4 and Day 6 accommodations respectively.
A comprehensive and reputable travel insurance policy is essential to your enjoyment and peace of mind while on an active holiday. It is highly recommended when booking with us that all group members have valid travel insurance which includes cover for all activities included in your trip. We have teamed up with to offer you adequate cover at a great value from a reputable insurer, and it takes only a few minutes to buy online.
- Up-to-date travel advice on Germany is available here.
- Up-to-date travel advice on Austria is available here.
- Up-to-date travel advice on Italy is available here.
Trip Info for Complete Tyrol: Garmisch to SterzingGo to top of page
Difficulty Grade: Moderate to Strenuous
This holiday is appropriate for very experienced mountain walkers and requires a sound level of fitness, you will walk on average 15 km (6-7 hours) per day (read more about difficulty grades).
We strongly advise you to follow only marked trails and never try to shorten the path through the unknown and unmarked terrain. We will provide you with detailed road notes and maps, and you can call our 24/7 local assistance phone number anytime. More detailed info on route navigation will be included in your holiday information pack.
When to Go
This trip is available to start every day from mid June until end of September.
The climate in the region is continental, cold and temperate. Depending on location and altitude, temperatures vary, but, in the June-September period, the daily averages are 15 – 25C. Spring and autumn are cooler with occasional rain. Expect the weather to change rapidly during the day.
What to Bring
We recommend that you travel as light as possible – airlines might charge you an extra fee, and during ground transfers, the place might be limited. Ideally, you should bring one piece of luggage weighing not more than 25 kg (to be checked in) and a daily pack (15 – 20 l rucksack) for your everyday essentials (snacks, drinking water, camera, etc.). Below is a non-exclusive list of what you should bring to this trip. More detailed info will be included in your holiday information pack. If you need further advice, please contact a reputable outdoor retailer or us.
- Good hiking boots
- Hiking socks
- Several t-shirts (cotton or preferably breathable/fast drying)
- Packable waterproof and windproof jacket with hood
- Synthetic mid layer or warm fleece
- Trainers and/or sandals – to relax and wear inside accommodation
- Sunglasses, sunscreen and lip salve
- Hat/Baseball cap
- Personal First Aid kit (wet wipes, flu remedies, stomach remedies)
Included for Complete Tyrol: Garmisch to SterzingGo to top of page
- Detailed holiday information pack including GPS-checked and regularly updated route descriptions, road notes and maps (electronic copy + one printed copy per party)
- GPS tracks
- 11 nights in 3 or 4-star hotels or guesthouses with breakfast included (dinner is also included on Days 1 and 2 in Garmisch and Day 6 in Innsbruck)
- 2 nights in mountain cabins with breakfast included
- Cable car Garmisch Partenkirchen
- Optional transfer into Karwendel Valley on Day 5
- 24h Innsbruck Card (free tram, cable cars)
- Luggage transfers (note: on Days 3 and 5 your main luggage will be directly transferred to the Day 4 and Day 6 accommodations respectively)
- 24/7 phone assistance by our local office / representative
- Single room supplement: available in hotels and guesthouses (11 nights), not in mountain cabins (2 nights)
- This holiday is NOT available for solo travellers
(please click the CHECK AVAILABILITY button above to see the price of the holiday and the different options and supplements for your desired dates)
Other Trip-Related Costs
- Airport train fares
- Entrance fees for attractions and museums
- Flights and airport transfers
- Luggage transfers on days 3 and 5 (private transfers to mountain cabins not possible, your main luggage will be directly transferred to next accommodation)
- Lunches on all days and dinners on Days 3-5, 7-14
- Entrance fees into gorges (reduced fees available with local card)
- Mountain cabin sleeping pack
- Cable car Nordkette Innsbruck (Euro 20+ pp)
- Travel insurance
- Personal expenses such as snacks, drinks, phone calls, extra transfers, tips, etc.
- Local tourist taxes (EUR 1-1.50 per room per night)
- Cable car mount Rosskopf (EUR 8.50 – 10.50)
- Bus Innerpflersch (c. EUR 1.50)
- Any items not specifically mentioned as ‘included’ in the programme
- Extra nights in Garmisch or Sterzing