Mayrhofen Ski Holidays
Skiing in Mayrhofen, Austria...
Mayrhofen is a popular choice with British skiers and snowboarders, with over 142km of runs available you have plenty of time to explore this beautiful Tirolean resort.
Situated at the base of the Ahorn and Penken mountains Mayrhofen is a ski resort that appeals to intermediate skiers and boarders alike. If you enjoy spending time in the snow parks then head to Penken Park, one of the leading freestyle snow parks in Europe, with over eight areas on offer. Mayrhofen is home to the infamous Harakiri piste, with a gradient of 78% it is Austria’s steepest piste. If you manage to complete the run, you might get a “I survived Harakiri” t-shirt which you can proudly wear to the many après bars in Mayrhofen.
SKIING IN MAYRHOFEN
What to expect…
Mayrhofen is a favourite with intermediate skiers as there is opportunity to progress to more difficult slopes but the choice is not overwhelming. The main ski area can be found on the Penken mountain, accessed by the Penkenbahn in the centre of the resort. For beginners the more suitable slopes can be found on the Ahorn mountain which is located on the other side of the resort, a regular free ski bus service runs between the two lift stations.
"In general, the ski area in Mayrhofen is high and varied, with a good mix of terrain which is why it’s a great choice for mixed ability groups looking for a ski holiday in Austria."
LOCAL SKI AREA - MAYRHOFEN
Mayrhofen is linked to Lanersbach, Finkenberg and Hippach so there are 142km of piste on offer. The majority of runs available are reds and blues, great for intermediates looking to progress.
Around 80% of Mayrhofen’s slopes have snow making facilities so snow coverage is good throughout the season. Located just an hour from Innsbruck airport, Mayrhofen is a great choice for those looking for a short break Austria ski holiday at any point in the season.
The Penken ski area is the main ski area in Mayrhofen, it is accessed by a gondola located next to the Ziller river, it can also be access from neighbouring villages Hippach and Finkenberg. With many blues and reds, as well as a few black runs including the Harakiri, it is a popular choice with most visitors to Mayrhofen. You can also find Europe’s best snowpark here, the Vans Penken Park. This snowpark attracts snowboarders and freestyle skiers from across Europe.
For those who prefer to take it a little slower, the Ahorn mountain on the other side of the resort has more gentle, wide slopes which are ideal for carving your way across the piste. It is important to note that beginners will require a full lift pass from the very first day as the nursery/green slopes are accessed by lifts. Advanced skiers will enjoy the 5.5km red run that winds down from the summit to valley level, although there is no home run back down to Mayrhofen centre.
WIDER SKI AREA - ZILLERTAL SUPERSKI
Mayrhofen is interlinked with Hippach, Finkenberg and Lanersbach, but this isn’t the full extent of the ski area on offer.
For those who buy a Zillertal Superski multi-day pass there are over 515km of piste on offer in the Zillertal area in addition to the Hintertux Glacier. Zillertal offers incredible panoramic views and is home to some of the most advanced lift systems in the world.
The Zillertal ski area in general is a great choice from a range of skiers from those just starting out to the extremely advanced skiers of the world. It is also a popular area for snowboarder with several snowparks equipped with kickers and obstacles, great for those who want to improve their skill level.
The main point of access to the Zillertal valley is Innsbruck airport, which is only an hour away from Mayrhofen, the short transfer makes it a good choice for families with younger children.
This isn’t to say that the Zillertal valley can’t be enjoyed by everyone. If you are travelling as part of a larger group there are a range of pistes available for everyone as well as plenty of après ski bars and restaurants in each resort.
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Approximate transfer times:
- INNSBRUCK: 1 HRS 15 MINS
- SALZBURG: 2 HRS 30MINS
- MUNICH: 2 HRS 40 MINS
Mayrhofen is a traditional large Austrian village at the upper end of the Ziller Valley.
Having maintained much of its traditional character over the years, Mayrhofen is very much a picturesque Austrian town that has grown as is welcomes more and more visitors every year.
The town is lively all day long with a range of shops and bars lining the streets. For those who prefer to be closer to the slopes, aim to stay near the Penkenbahn lift, not to worry if you stay a little further out there is a fantastic bus service available.
This is a resort known for its après scene so prepare to find a new favourite bar every night, whether you’re looking for cheesy Europop or rock ‘n’ roll there is something to suit every taste.
RESTAURANTS & BARS
In general, the gastronomic scene in Mayrhofen is focused more on hearty, filling meals rather than fine dining.
Mayrhofen has an array of restaurants and bars on offer, from traditional Austrian cuisine to vibrant nightlife and music festivals there is plenty to experience.
One of our favourite restaurants Wirtshaus Zum Griena, is in a 400-year-old farmhouse with an intimate ambience. The tables are in different rooms, and the staff dress in a traditional Austrian style. The menu consists of a local dishes heavily focused around meat a dumplings, great after a hard day on the slopes in the dead of winter.
Gasser is a butcher’s that is renowned throughout the Ziller valley. If you have the opportunity to eat here head straight for the semmel filled with hot fresh meat, other great options include fresh bratwurst, schnitzel and burgers.
For a unique bar experience head to Scotland Yard, imagine traditional British pub mixed with Austrian charm. Located in the basement of former police station it is one of the busiest bars in Mayrhofen for good reason.
There are 30 mountain restaurants and bars on offer, meaning you are never too far from a quick lunch or refreshing beer.
If you are looking for seafood at 2000m head for Schneekarhütte, despite its significant distance from the sea you will find a range of seafood on the menu including salmon and prawns served alongside fine wines. You can also enjoy fresh Wiener schnitzel and tart flambee here in case you don’t want seafood.
If you ski past the Nordhang charlift you will smell Christa;s Schi-Alm restaurant’s outdoor grill. Stop here for hearty food and outstanding views across the valley and up towards the Hintertux glacier. A similar restaurant with low prices but great food is Grillhofalm near the Sunjet station. Grillhofalm has a large sundeck with good music and a great view of the snowpark. If pizzas are your dish of choice head here for lunch, there are plenty of toppings available.
A great mid-range option is the Ahornhütte at the top of the Ahorn cable car. For groups travelling with non-skiers this is a great spot for lunch as it can be accessed by pedestrians from the lift station. This restaurant is covered wall to wall in photos of the family members who built and run the restaurant. Ahornhütte serves good food and hearty potions at that!
Mayrhofen is famous for its après scene, a popular choice for many British holiday makers looking for great pistes and equally as good bars.
Après ski starts to build a few hours before the slopes close, starting close to the lifts and spreading through the town as the evening goes on.
In the village you’ll find numerous pubs, hotel bars, disco/music bars and a few nightclubs. For those looking to stay out until the early hours you’ll need to make your way to Sport Arena and Schlussel nightclubs.
The most popular après spots in Mayrhofen is Pilzbar next to the Penken cable-car top station (post-lunch but pre-dinner après, the lifts back down stop at 5pm), and then head back down the mountain to Sporthotel Strass Ice Bar which is at the bottom of the Penken gondola.
Mayrhofen has a wide variety of activities available on the mountains other than skiing.
Try your hand at snow tubbing, paragliding, tobogganing sleigh rides and snow shoeing to name just a few. For a slightly different experience a visit to The White Lounge is a must. This is a combination of igloo hotel., igloo bar and chill-out area on top of the Ahorn mountain. There is a party held at the White Lounge every Tuesday, the last cabin heads back down the mountain at 22:30 so don’t get caught out!
For some family fun head to Pistenbock toboggan on the Ahorn mountain. The course is separate from the piste and it is a hit with everyone both young and young at heart. You can choose to ride in a single or double toboggan and children from age 5 years and up can ride alone. Pick up your toboggan from the bar of the White Lounge Igloo.
Mayrhofen is a popular choice for skiers and non-skiers alike.
There are plenty of options available for non-skiers how want to make the most of the ski season. If you want to see a similar view to the skiers in your group head out on the many snow-shoeing trails around Mayrhofen. Rent your snowshoes in town and spend the day taking in the spectacular views on offer.
Got a head for heights? See Mayrhofen from a different angle and take to the skies with a paragliding experience. Make sure you wrap up warm for this one as you’ll most likely be landing in snow!
Of course, not all activities have to be snow based. Join your friends at some of the many après bars on offer in Mayrhofen and dance the night away without having the get up early to be on the piste in the morning.
WHO IS MAYRHOFEN SUITABLE FOR?
Here are the highlights...
Mayrhofen does predominantly appeal to intermediate skiers, but this isn’t to say it’s not a great resort for mixed ability groups.
For those who don’t mind separating during the day and heading to their retrospective ski areas Mayrhofen can be a resort that works for every ability. Beginners can try skiing for the first time on the Ahorn mountain and more advanced skiers can head across to Penken mountain for some more challenging terrain. This is a great resort for anyone who wants an equal balance of apres and great pistes. Mayrhofen brings together traditional Austrian charm, vibrant bars and excellent pistes.
Intermediates will enjoy the slopes on both Ahorn and Penken mountains, depending on your level of proficiency there is plenty for everyone.
Though the ski area in Mayrhofen alone isn’t a hugely significant size it is plenty for most people. If you are looking for a larger ski area the rest of the Ziller valley can be accessed by purchasing the Zillertal Superski multiday lift pass. Regardless of whether you are a skier or a snowboarder everyone can enjoy the Vans Penken Park. This snowpark attracts snowboarders and freestyle skiers from across Europe and you can improve your freestyle technique on the kickers and various other facilities in the park.
Keep an eye on the weather...
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MAP OF mAYRHOFEN
Find your way…
Here's our map of Mayrhofen showing you the key hotels and apartments as well as some of the main points of interest.