Top Ten Attractions in Tirol
While Tirol has its share of stunning natural attractions, it is also rich in culture, so there are a lot of cool places and attractions to visit—find the ones that suit your interests and you and the kids will be playing all day: From cultural sights and attractions over museums and galleries to zoos and spectacular contemporary architecture.
Even the most active outdoor enthusiast can have a challenging time deciding which sport to enjoy in the Heart of the Alps. It’s the same for those who seek out Tirol’s cultural scene. There are so many great sights and attractions, it can be hard to decide just what to do. Experience Tirol’s rich history at the new Tirol Panorama Museum, stroll through the sparkling chambers of wonder at the Swarovski Crystal Worlds and take in 360-degree views of Tirol’s capital Innsbruck from the Bergisel Ski Jump.
1. Swarovski Crystal Worlds
A visit to Tirol would not be complete without a visit to Wattens-based Swarovski Crystal Worlds, Western Austria's most visited attraction. Since its inception in 1995, Swarovski Crystal Worlds has astonished and amused its viewers. Built as a subterranean labyrinth of caves hidden under a park, playground, and garden, visitors enter through a giant's head to the main hall.
2. Innsbruck Alpine Zoo
See the more than 2,000 animals that call the four-hectare Innsbruck Alpine Zoo home in a mountain setting that makes this one of the most unique zoos you’ll encounter. Peer into habitats of animals native to the Alpine area: you’ll find that most animals are in open areas that simulate their natural environments - it’s the visitors who follow enclosed paths within these habitats.
3. Tirol Panorama & Kaiserjäger Museum
On historic Bergisel Hill, the new Tirol Panorama & Kaiserjäger Museum tells the stories of Tirol inside a beautiful new building. The new space creates new ways to experience Tirol’s rich history. The exhibits highlight the courage, persistence, triumphs, tragedies and character of the men and women who created Tirol. The museum is the new home of the giant panorama painting. This famous oil painting dates back to the late 19th century and depicts the Third Battle of Bergisel of 1809. Under the leadership of Andreas Hofer, the Tirolean farmers fought heroic battles to defend their homelands against the superior forces of the French and the Bavarians.
4. Kufstein Fortress
Mighty Kufstein Fortress towers high above the charming small town of the same name and is definitely worth visiting. Attractions include the world’s largest outdoor organ and the interactive Fortress Museum.
5. Bergisel Ski Jump
The spectacular Olympic Bergisel Ski Jump, designed by star architect Zaha Hadid, is another architectural jewel in Innsbruck’s crown—and a visual sign that Tirol’s architecture has arrived in the 21st century. The restaurant offers fine dining with awesome, uninterrupted panoramic views of Innsbruck.
6. Court Church Innsbruck
The Court Church in Innsbruck, also called “Schwarzmanderkirche“ (literally “Black Men Church”), is famous for its namesake “Black Men” – 28 over-life-sized Renaissance bronze statues of important historical figures that flank the empty tomb of Emperor Maximilian I.
7. Imperial Palace Innsbruck
Built in the 18th century, the Imperial Palace is one of Austria’s shining examples of Baroque secular architecture. The palace, flanked by a set of domed towers, once was the seat of the Tirolean sovereigns. The structure has splendid halls that are painted in white and gold and filled with portraits of the Habsburgs.
8. Schwaz Silver Mine
The historic Schwaz Silver Mine is an unmatched "underground adventure": enjoy an exhilarating time travel to the world of medieval miners. History and modern technology are the key elements of the 90-minute tour, creating an unforgettable and fascinating experience.
9. Ambras Castle
Towering high above Innsbruck, the beautifully preserved romantic Renaissance-style Ambras Castle includes Europe’s oldest collection of arts and armories, the Spanish Hall, and the Portrait Gallery. Special guided tours for children feature a wide variety of hands-on activities that are fun and educational and engage their imagination.
10. Tirol Farmstead Museum
Tour the unique Tirol Farmstead Museum in Kramsach and see what living in a historic farmhouse and farming on the mountains of Tirol was like. The 14 authentic farmhouses from all parts and valleys of Tirol have been meticulously preserved and restored for future generations to enjoy.