Innsbruck is the center of the province of Tyrol and one of the most famous cities in Austria. Named after the Inn River, the alpine town is a real paradise for nature lovers. In winter, skiers and snowboarders, in summer hikers take over the countryside.
Due to its location and environment, Innsbruck is a popular destination, where those who want to relax and rest can easily find suitable programs for themselves. We are now trying to help you with this, as we have gathered for you all the main sights and the best programs around Innsbruck.
The preview is divided into two parts
- Sights of Innsbruck (6)
- The area of Innsbruck and its attractions (9)
But before we get into the sights, let’s take a quick look at the history, the weather, and how to approach Innsbruck.
If you are looking for accommodation in the province of Tyrol, you should check out booking.com. We have copied here an interactive map to help you start sorting. ❤️
History of Innsbruck
According to some historical fossils, the city was already inhabited in the Stone Age. The same is shown by the remaining sources of information from before the Roman Empire. It came into the hands of the Andechok family in 1180 and was acquired by the Counts of Tyrol in the middle of the 13th century. Its importance in historical times was due to the fact that the easiest ways to get through the Alps crossed the city, so it had to face heavy traffic.
It has already become a political center in the 15th century. It was one of the most important residences of the Austrian royal families, thanks to which, in addition to the fantastic nature, you can also see special architectural wonders in Innsbruck.
In the summer months, the average maximum temperature is very pleasant, around 24 degrees, but in the evenings it is usually only around 11-12 degrees. You may want to take care of layering throughout the year. The spring-summerlike weather lasts from May to September, however, the majority of rainfalls happen also in this period, mostly in July.
The winters are not so cold, in a freezing January the average minimum temperature does not go below -5 degrees, so the cold is bearable with warm clothes.
Innsbruck has great geographical features. The Alps are within a stone’s throw from here, as is the Inn River (the city’s got its name from the river).
It is also worth coming here because you can start a small European tour from here. Germany is only 32, Italy is 40, and Switzerland is also only 110 kilometers away. But still, why would you think of leaving for another country right away when the local attractions are just waiting for you to explore them?
#1 The Golden Roof
The Golden Roof is a symbol of Innsbruck. It was built at the end of the 15th century, during the reign of the German-Roman emperor Miksa I., after marrying Maria Sforza Bianka. The royal couple loved to watch the various festivities from here, and the shadow over their heads was provided by a balcony roof laid out of gilded plates. The roof consists of 2657 gold panels.
There is also a small museum in the building, which is open every day except Monday.
Opening hours and admission
- Every day except Monday, from 11:00 to 17:00
- Admission is around 3 euros per person
Although this is not an attraction where you can spend hours, it is worth to pay a visit if you are in Innsbruck.
- Address: Herzog-Friedrich-Strasse 15, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
#2 Ambras Castle
In the second half of the 16th century, Ambras Castle was the headquarters for the Austrian Archduke Ferdinand II. The most famous part of the Renaissance castle is the Spanish Hall, where classical music concerts are held regularly.
In the building you can see a wide collection of weapons and armor, and the castle also preserves a significant collection of art treasures, especially paintings and sculptures. ⚔️
There is a huge English garden around the castle, where it is also worth taking a walk, because the building offers an impressive view from the outside as well.
Opening hours and admission
• Every day from 10:00 to 07:00
• Adult admission: 12 euros / Student under 25: 8 euros / Under 19: free
• Address: Schlossstrasse 20, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
#3 Bergisel Ski Jumping Center
You should go to the Bergisel ski jumping center not only if you were born with skis on, but also if you are not so fond of skiing. The architectural masterpiece also functions magnificently as a lookout tower, the panorama that opens from above is simply fabulous.
The place also holds a sports historical significance, as it has hosted the Winter Olympics twice, before it even gained its current form. When there is no competition or the competitors are not training here, they regularly have ski jumping demonstrations on the track.
Interestingly, battles were fought here even before the place became a sports facility. At the beginning of the 19th century, the Tyrolean peasants clashed with the French and Bavarian occupiers and chased them away.
- Address: Bergiselweg 3, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
#4 Hofburg and Hofgarten
The most famous attraction in the Hofburg district is the imperial palace, having the same name. The three-story, Rococo-style building was erected in the 15th century and then renovated during the reign of Maria Theresa, and it was then that it gained its pomp. Each room is furnished with contemporary furniture, you can see the conditions in which the nobility has lived here.
Not far from the palace you will find a huge garden which locals call by the name Hofgarten. This park is a perfect alternative if you want to escape the crowds. It is a huge, peaceful and quiet place with colorful flora, hundreds of years old trees, small lakes and a playground.
If you are in the area, it is worth to visit the church (Hofkirche) next to the palace.
- Address: Kaiserjagerstrasse, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
#5 Wilten Basilica
In one of the southern districts of Innsbruck, Wilten, you can find one of the most beautiful and well-known buildings in the city, the Wilten Basilica. The original church was built in 1259 and it stood until 1751, when it was demolished, and the current parish and basilica was put in place.
The church, built in 1756 and in the Rococo style, also preserves something of its ancient nature, as under the main altar you can see a 14th century statue of Holy Mary made of sandstone. Also, the richly decorated interiors, paintings, icons and sculptures are also worth admiring indoors.
- Address: Pastorstrasse 694, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
#6 Maria Theresa Road
This road is Innsbruck’s perhaps most famous street where you can spend hours without even noticing that you have been on the same street all along. Here, each building has its own history. There are several sights on the street:
- St. Anne's Column (Annasaule)
- The triumphal arch, Triumphpforte
St. Anne's Column
The huge monument stands directly in front of the Town Hall (Rathaus) and was built in 1706 to commemorate the victory of the clash against Bavarian troops 3 years earlier. The decisive battle was fought on St. Anne's Day. There are several statues on and around the column, such as that of the Holy Mary or St. George, the patron saint of Tyrol.
The triumphal arch, Triumphpforte
Heading south on Maria Theresa Road, the Triumphpforte, built as the Roman triumphal arches, is almost at the end.
The attraction was built in 1765 by the name-giver of the street to commemorate the marriage of his son, Leopold (later Emperor Leopold II) and the Spanish Mary Ludovika. On one side it captures the moments of the engagement, while on the other it shows Emperor Francis I.
- Address of St. Anne's Column: Maria-Theresien-Strasse 18, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
- Address of the Arc de Triomphe: Leopoldstrasse 2, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
#7 Hall in Tirol city
Hall in Tirol is a small town near Innsbruck. It is 5 kilometers away, and it has only 13000 inhabitants. The name of the city appeared in writings as early as 1232, and its present name has been used since 1256.
Perhaps the most interesting fact about the city is that here you can find the world’s first automatic minting machine, which was used as early as the 16th century in Hall.
The town by the Inn River was one of the most important cities in the Habsburg Empire. Plenty of churches and church buildings have been built throughout history, many of which can still be found today. The military station built during the Habsburg period was bombed during World War II, but fortunately the rest of the city remained untouched.
Burg Hasegg, Hall in Tirol
The city’s most famous building is the Burg Hasegg, which also houses the Hall Mint Museum.
Opening hours and prices, admission
- Tuesday to Sunday: 10:00 to 17:00 (closed on Mondays)
- Last guided tour: at 16:00
- Adult ticket: 12 euros
- Children's ticket: 8 euros
- Family ticket: 25 euros
- Distance from Innsbruck: 5 km
#8 Alpine Zoo
You will find the highest zoo in Europe in Innsbruck. The zoo, which is about 700 meters above sea level, has more than 2000 animals. Particularly large number of animals live here, whose natural habitat would also be much above sea-level. There are about 150 species here that are native to parts of the Alps.
For families and travellers with children, visiting the zoo can be a very exciting experience, there is a huge playground, where everyone from the youngest to the oldest children can find the right entertainment. And the experience can be completed by the train leading to it. Although not far from the city center on foot, the zoo can be reached with the Hungerburg more quickly.
The zoo is not dog friendly!
Opening hours and prices
- Adult: 12 euros / child: 6 euros
- Address: Weiherburggasse 37a, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
#9 Bridge of Europe
At first glance, it’s just a normal bridge, and it is not the structure itself that is so impressive, rather than the environment in which it is located. The Bridge of Europe is a 777-meter-long valley bridge 190 meters above the Wipp Valley. On one hand, it has been the highest bridge in Europe for a long time, and on the other hand - and this has not changed - you can have an incredible view from here.
The bridge is part of the road when traveling by car between Italy and Germany.
Of course, the view can really be admired on the passenger side, but if you are traveling with at least one person, there is a solution to it. Someone drives on the way there, and the other is driving on the way back, so that everyone can get a little lost in the view.
Tip: if you want something really extreme, you have the opportunity to take part in bungee jumping from the bridge. The bridge offers the 5th highest bungee jumping point in the world. 😱
- Address: Brennerautobahn, 6143 Sconberg im Stubaital, Austria
#10 Hafelekar peak - Nordkette Mountain
Nordkettenbahn - Nordkette cable car
Nordkette is a mountain close the city, and is part of the Karwendel Nature Park in the Alps. There are many ways to get to the mountain, but it will be undoubtedly most exciting if you go by cable car or a lift. The view speaks for itself.
A cable car and a lift can help you ascending:
- Cable car from Innsbruck -> Hungerburg (860 m)
- Lift from Hungerburg -> Seegrube (1905 m) -> Hafelekar (2256 m)
On the way up, the lift stops several times, where you can get off. You should take advantage of this opportunity, because at each stop you can meet different attractions, as well as restaurants if you get hungry on the way up. On this route you can also reach the Alpine Zoo.
Getting out on the way or reaching the top, there are countless hiking trails waiting for you. You can do shorter ones with children, and if you want to hike all day, it will not be a problem either.
The top can be reached in just 20 minutes without stopping, but in this fantastic environment it is very easy to spend hours looking at the view. The terminus is the Hafelekar peak at an altitude of 2300 meters.
Opening hours and prices
You can buy tickets for the lift online on the page of the Nordketten Bahnen. On the website you can choose from different ticket types, depending on what you want to see and how long you want to go up with the lift. Admission ranges from 9.90 to 43 euros.
The summer season runs from late April to late October. The winter season starts in mid-November. In early November and mid-April, the lifts and cable-cars will shut down for 2-2 weeks because of maintenance work.
- Cable car opening hours: 08:00 - 19:00
- Lift opening hours: 09:00 - 17:00
Contact and address
- Address: Rennweg 3, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
#11 Obernberger Lake
The romantic alpine lake, surrounded by forest, is located at an altitude of 1590 meters. The lake is not only fabulous, but it is also the largest lake in Tyrol. The deepest point of the lake is 13 meters and the area covers 16 hectares. The lake is nourished by an underground source of the same name.
One of the most interesting sights at the lake is the chapel, built in 1935, to which the path is through a romantic wooden bridge.
There are many hiking trails around the lake. One of the most spectacular and easiest - so we recommend it with kids: try to walk around the lake, or at least walk along the shore.
By the end of spring, the lake has its highest water level, resulting in a huge, contagious water. It is worth knowing that the lake was actually torn into 2 parts thousands of years ago, which can also be seen at low water levels.
Swimming in the lake is prohibited, that is how they protect the algae and trout living in the lake.
- Address: 6157 Obernberg am Brenner, Austria
- Distance from Innsbruck: 50 mins / 45 km
#12 Baggersee Lake
Baggersee is the second largest lake in the area. Around the lake you can find the right distraction for yourself all year round. In summer you can swim in it, and not only because it is allowed, but also because the water is crystal clear and can even warm up to 24 degrees.
You will also find several sports grounds around it, such as volleyball, badminton, table tennis or streetball. Especially in the fall season, when there is more wind movement and there are fewer people swimming in the lake - surfers take over the lake.
When there are no people in the water, the wildlife also shows up better, swans and cormorants can also show up.
- Address: 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
- Distance from Innsbruck: 10 mins / 5 km
#13 Falcon Park
Greifvogelpark Telfes im, Stubai
Falcon Park, not far from Innsbruck, is not only a favorite of children, but also of adults. In the park you can meet with different types of birds, where usually 50 specimens live. To name a few species, you can also see hawks, owls and eagles.
Note: the presentation is only available in German. ⚠️
In the park, you can learn more about birds, their surroundings, and their habits. Moreover, if you want to see how a falcon can reach a speed of 330 km / h, you can also watch the flight demonstration.
Point of interest: The park was founded almost 40 years ago by Mathias Premm and he still runs it to this day.
Opening hours and admission
- Every day from 11:00 to 17:00
- Flying demonstration: every day at 15:00
- Adult admission: 8 euros / child admission: 5 euros / child under 6 years: free
- Telephone number: +43 664 34 15 878
- Address: Luimes, 6165 Telfes im Stubai, Austria
- Distance from Innsbruck: 25 mins / 22 km
There are two bike parks around Innsbruck.
- Bikepark Innsbruck - distance: 25 minutes by car
- Bikepark Serfaus Fiss Ladis - distance: 75 minutes by car
Both bike parks are ideal for children as well, as they include several routes. Lovers of downhill, masters of tricks, or those looking for a more comfortable family or romantic bike ride will all find something that fits their needs. You can rent bicycles and equipment in both places.
You can find our detailed summary of the bike parks here.
#15 Gorges of Tyrol
There are 14 gorges in the province of Tyrol that are registered with the Austrian Tourist Office and can be visited. Many of them are located close to Innsbruck.
The Tyrolean gorges are all real paradise where you can spend even half a day with children. It is good to know that most gorges can be walked back and forth in 2-3 hours, and their difficulty is considered easy. However, there are, of course, a few that are more difficult.
As we have written a separate summary of the gorges - The 14 most beautiful gorges in Tyrol, here I will only mention the gorges that are less than 1 hour from the city of Innsbruck.
- Kundlerklamm gorge Distance from Innsbruck: 40 minutes
- Wolfsklamm Gorge Distance from Innsbruck: 45 minutes
- Leutascher Geisterklamm Gorge | distance from Innsbruck: 50 minutes
- Gleirschklamm Gorge | distance from Innsbruck: 50 minutes
- Tiefenbachklamm Gorge | Distance from Innsbruck: 50 minutes
- Rosengartenschlucht Gorge | distance from Innsbruck: 50 minutes
- Kaiserklamm Gorge | distance from Innsbruck: 55 minutes
- sZammer Lochputz Gorge | distance from Innsbruck: 60 minutes
Plus: #15 Weidachsee fishing lake
If you enjoy fishing and taking your rod everywhere, you cannot miss Lake Weidachsee while visiting Innsbruck. The lake is already mentioned in Emperor Maximilian's book, a famous fisherman's book in 1500.
The fishing lake covers an area of 4.5 hectares, mainly there are trout and rainbow trout. Swimming in the lake is forbidden.
- From April to October, every day: 07:00 to 17:00
- Address: Weidachsee 6105, Austria
- Distance from Innsbruck: 50 minutes / 40 km
Some more attractions to visit:
- Rapoldi Park
- Tyrolean MuseumsBahnen (Railway Museum)
- Tyrol Panorama Museum
- Innsbruck Military Museum
The center of Innsbruck is rather strong in historical sights, we are talking about especially the Maria Theresa Road and its surroundings. In the suburbs and across the border from Innsbruck, more exciting programs come to the fore, such as the Alpine Zoo, the Bergisel Ski Jumping Center or the Nordkette Cable Car.
Anywhere you go, you will find yourself in beautiful surroundings, and that is true for the center of the city as well. There are plenty of green areas where you can have a good walk or just sit on a bench and listen to the sounds of nature. 🌲⛰
I hope the summary was helpful. There is nothing left but to explore the city of Innsbruck and its surroundings. Even in winter! :)