Autumn in Tirol: Großer Ahornboden, © Tirol Werbung/Mario Webhofer

Autumn Holidays in Tirol


10 Beautiful Autumn Landscapes in Tirol


Autumn in Tirol: Großer Ahornboden, © Tirol Werbung/Mario Webhofer

Autumn is an excellent time of the year to discover Tirol. The stifling heat of summer has passed, yet the temperatures are pleasant during the day and stay warm into the evening. The grass on the meadows is cut one more time and the trees hang heavy with fruit ready for harvest. And what about those majestic colours! We have put together our top ten tips on the best places to enjoy autumn in Tirol.

One does not need to possess the eloquence of a poet, but it would come in handy in order to express oneself as Rainer Maria Rilke did in his famous poem "Autumn Day" (1902): "Lord, it is time. Let the summer go. / Lay your long shadows on the sundials, / And over harvest piles let winds blow". The comparison between the cycle of the changing seasons and the birth and demise of human life springs to mind. Autumn is the interconnecting period between the extremes of summer and winter. It is a special time. And one of great beauty.

Check out our top ten beautiful autumn landscapes in Tirol from west to east.

Pfundser Tschey

This enchanting alpine valley with the beautiful ancient name of Pfundser Tschey lies above Pfunds, at 1,650 metres above sea level. It impresses autumn visitors with the perfect mix of summer warmth and a refreshing cool breeze, as well as scenery that soothes the soul; with pale-brown meadows, ready for winter dormancy after the final haymaking of season; a few hazy clouds scud across the horizon, only serving to accentuate the deep blue of the sky. Countless tiny barns of weathered timber, known as “Cooking Huts”, are dotted randomly throughout the countryside.

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Piburger See Lake

You don’t “stumble on” Piburger See lake by accident. A wooded ridge separates Piburg from the village of Oetz at the start of the Ötztal Valley. A massive rockslide, triggered in the last Ice Age, blocked the Ötztal Ache river back then, leading to the formation of the lake. While walking around the “Piburger”, as the locals affectionately call the lake, the last water lilies are in bloom, their petals an elegant white against the backdrop of green leaves, craving for the last few rays of autumnal sun. A few marsh marigolds enjoy a late second bloom on the shoreline, having taken root amongst the luxuriant evergreen sedges and reeds.

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Telfer Wiesen

Many locals who like to take excursions in this region mistakenly call Telfer Wiesen the "Telfeser Wiesen". Telfer or Telfeser, it doesn’t really matter. All you need to know is that the Telfer Wiesen belong to the village of Telfes in the Stubai Valley, one of the most beautiful areas in Tirol for pleasant autumn walks or mountain bike rides with the whole family. Expansive, sparse larch forests in the mid-mountain range on the sunny side of the Stubai Valley please both the eye and the soul with subtle shades of yellow, orange and gold. One’s gaze is repeatedly drawn to the Stubai and Wipptal Valleys far below the scattered settlement, or up to one of three nearby mountains: the dome-shaped Patscherkofel to the south of Innsbruck, the craggy Serles and the mighty Habicht.

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Eulenwiesen & Maria Waldrast

Nearer, My God, to Thee – those who undertake a pilgrimage in order to give thanks to his/her Creator, ask for forgiveness for any wrongdoing, or beg for help in a difficult situation, must be prepared to make a little effort. Otherwise, it does not count as a pilgrimage. Visitors who feel the need to visit the ancient pilgrimage site of Maria Waldrast should make their journey in early autumn. It is quite possible that stress and anxiety levels dissolve of their own accord as you walk through the vibrant larch groves and take a welcome break to catch your breath at the well-hidden Eulenwiesen meadows.

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Obernberger See Lake

Nature pools all its resources again on a sunny autumn day at Obernberger See lake, before gearing up for the long hibernation of winter. The water surface, flawlessly smooth like a precious mirror, shimmers in the most auspicious colours: the magical blue of lapis lazuli, delicate shades of turquoise with a hint of green, glittering Malachite and emerald. Expansive, yellow larch forests and the mighty Tribulaun peaks, sharply silhouetted against the incredibly deep blue sky, watch over this natural treasure trove at almost 1,600 metres above sea level. It is quiet, so very quiet and peaceful that you will be enveloped by calm when you stop to rest on a sun-warmed stone on the shores of the lake, and never want to leave this place again.

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Autumn in Tirol: Schloss Tratzberg, © Tirol Werbung/Mario Webhofer

Schloss Tratzberg

Let’s be honest, you would not want to be responsible for the upkeep of a Renaissance castle. Although after walking through the publicly accessible parts of Schloss Tratzberg, one can assume that life cannot be bad within its magnificent walls. This stately castle, privately owned and permanently inhabited by the Goess-Enzenberg family, stands prominently on a hill in the Inn Valley between Jenbach and Schwaz and can be seen from far and wide. A visit to Schloss Tratzberg can be combined with a short, steep walk through a blaze of autumn forest colours and a rewarding excursion through the castle’s cultural history. Visitors have the opportunity to tour through the Habsburg Hall with its stunning murals, numerous pieces of invaluable antique furniture dating back to the early 16th century, lovingly furnished rooms such as the "Frauenstüberl" ("Women’s Lounge") and the inner courtyard with its ornately painted facades.

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Großer Ahornboden

The people of Tirol realised early on just how unique and valuable the “Großer Ahornboden” at the end of the Rissbachtal Valley is. A preservation order was issued for the Großer Ahornboden (as well as the Kleiner Ahornboden) as early as 1927. With around 2,500 sycamore-maple trees covering this alpine terrain in the Karwendel Mountains north of the Inn Valley, it does in fact exude an almost fairytale charm when the leaves turn from yellow to vibrant red during the autumn months. Those wanting to find out more should visit the Hinterriss Nature Park House for information on the fauna, flora and geology of the Großer Ahornboden.

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Tiefenbachklamm Gorge

The morning sun still bravely battles against the impending cold season. The autumn chill can, however, be felt keenly in the ice-cold spray of the waters in the Tiefenbach gorge. Sturdy shoes and a windbreaker are recommended if you want to enjoy an adventurous walk along the old wood drift between Kramsach and Brandenberg without catching cold. Where precious wood was once floated through the narrow gorge on the Brandberger Ache in dangerous working conditions, visitors can now watch daring kayakers paddling through the white waters and rocky outcrops deep below. After all, it is with good reason that the gorge is called the “Tiefenbachklamm” ("Deep River Gorge"). After about an hour’s walk, the gorge suddenly widens into an idyllic meadow – time to take your jacket off, enjoy a tasty snack on the restaurant terrace and catch a few rays of autumn sun!

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Berglsteiner See Lake

Admittedly, it is a matter of taste as well as a question of local pride – which the Tiroleans possess in abundance – that determines which of the many mountain lakes in the province is a personal favourite. The Berglsteiner See lake between Kramsach and Breitenbach, however, has most definitely got what it takes to rank highly on the list of Tirol’s best mountain lakes – especially in autumn, when the blazing autumn colours of the mixed woodlands are reflected in the deep green waters of this secluded lake, in a jaw-dropping display of natural beauty.

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Villgratental and Winkeltal Valleys

Holidays in the mountains don’t get more easy-going than this. Infrastructural modesty is considered a virtue in the Villgratental and Winkeltal Valleys, a fact that is highly appreciated by hikers and mountaineers seeking respite from the madding crowds. Here, visitors share hiking happiness with just a few likeminded people scattered amongst the soft alpine pastures – joined only by a number of laidback cows and the famous breed of Villgrater sheep, who still have no idea that their magnificent season of summer grazing will soon be coming to an end this year. If you point your nose towards the fresh oncoming breeze, the unmistakable aroma of blooming alpine clover will flatter your senses.

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