An amazing underground chamber with giant ice walls lies beneath the slopes of the Hintertux Glacier Ski Resort at the southern end of Zillertal Valley: A fairyland of needle like icicles awaits inside the Natural Ice Palace. Glowing blue walls of ice, giant, sparkling ice crystals, frozen waterfalls and a glacial lake evoke feelings of awe and wonder.
The scenic gondola ride up onto Hintertux Glacier might give visitors the impression they are on their way to a castle in the sky, but in fact what awaits at the viewing platform 3,250 meters above sea level is quite the opposite: an underground palace carved by Mother Nature out of snow and ice. The entrance to this subterranean complex of caves and tunnels is a spectacular experience in its own right as you pass through a giant lobby of shimmering turquoise ice into the heart of the structure.
Equipped with a helmet, safety harness and rope, it is then time to plunge deeper into this fascinating natural phenomenon beneath the slopes of the Glacier Ski Resort. Adventurous guided tours or special children’s tours of the natural ice cave are available. The journey takes visitors through the crystal chamber with its sparkling ice crystals, along the bottom of a crevasse, past frozen waterfalls and across a glacier lake into the blue chamber and the ice chapel lit up in red. The undoubted highlight is the ice palace itself, 15 meters high and situated directly below the ski runs. The Natural Ice Palace can be visited all year round. Appropriate footwear is advised and warm layered clothing is required as the average temperature in the cave is 0° C all year round. A discovery tour of the Natural Ice Palace is an exciting experience that will be remembered for years to come.