Salzburger Almenweg: Hiking Alpine Meadows

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Salzburger Almenweg: Hiking Alpine Meadows
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The Salzburger Almenweg is one of the most popular treks in Austria. This relaxed trek takes you "von Alm zu Alm", which means that you trek from one alpine meadow to the next. The Salzburger Almenweg is a 350-kilometer long trail divided into 31 stages. The beauty of this trail is that it can be easily divided into smaller sections, allowing you to choose your own adventure and to start and end the trek wherever and whenever you want.

The Salzburger Almenweg is divided into different stages with different difficulty levels which allow experienced mountaineers and families with little children to enjoy the beauties of the region. Moreover, many of the huts also allow dogs to spend the night so you don't have to leave your four-legged friend at home! It doesn't matter if you are trekking alone or if the whole family is coming along, the Salzburger Almenweg welcomes everyone!

Best season for the Salzburger Almenweg

The best season for the Salzburger Almenweg, like all hut-to-hut tours in Austria, is from mid-June to late September. During this period of time, you will enjoy good weather and most of the huts along the trails will be open. At the end of September, beginning of October, the weather starts to get colder and there isn't enough grass for the cattle. For that reason, the hut hosts have to get down to the valleys with their animals to feed them until the next season!

Best season for the Salzburger Almenweg

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How do I get to the starting point of the trek? How do I return to my original starting point?

Each stage on the Salzburger Almenweg has it's own starting and ending point, which allows you to start and end the trek when and where you want to. The starting points of the 31 Salzburger Almenweg stages can be easily reached in many ways, by car, train, or plane.

By plane

There are flight connections from many European cities directly to Salzburg. More than 25 airlines connect Berlin, Frankfurt, Cologne, Dublin, Amsterdam, London, Istanbul, and many other European cities directly to W.A. Mozart Airport in Salzburg. From the Airport, you can continue your journey by cab, public transport, or rental car to the starting point of your Salzburger Almenweg.

By car

If you live close to Salzburgerland or you enjoy road trips, you can easily access the stages' starting points by car. For example, if you come from the north (Munich/Salzburg) to Werfen (starting point stage 31), you should take the A8 and A10. Coming from the east (Liezen) to Radstadt, you can reach the starting point of stage 27 via the B320. From the south (Villach) to Flachau, the A10 will take you to stage 21. The wide net of roads makes it very easy to move around Salzburgerland, from one stage to the next, without any stress.

By train

Traveling by train is always a good idea in Austria. The wide and well-designed network of railroads allows you to travel in a relaxed and easy manner while enjoying the mountain views. Within the country, the Austrian Federal Railways take you comfortably to the starting points of the Salzburger Almenweg's stages. At the ÖBB website, you can easily find the trains' timetables and the best combination to get to your next adventure!

At the end of your trek, you will find several buses, shuttles, and hiker's taxis that will take you to your next destination. The region welcomes thousands of hikers every summer and has a good infrastructure when it comes to connecting each stage to the next.

Salzbuergerland: Salzburger Almenweg Map

Here is a map of the Salzburger Almenweg. The map shows the whole circuit, including all 31 stages, starting and ending in Pfarrwerfen (marked as "B").

Stages and routes on the Salzburg Almenweg

The Salzburger Almenweg includes 31 stages, each with its own highlights and beauty. Depending on whether you are traveling alone or with your family, and whether you are a beginner or an experienced hiker, there are different options for you to choose from. The Salzburger Almenweg is pretty much a "choose your own adventure" kind of path. It is possible to just do day-hikes and then return to the valley below and drive to the next starting point, or you can choose to stay in the mountains for several days, going from one hut to the next. You can learn more about these routes below.

4-day Hiking in Hochkönig

Being around the mountain Hochkönig in summer is a paradise for hikers. Walking through an impressive landscape, resting in cozy mountain huts and enjoying all the regional dishes at dinner is what makes this region so attractive. Walk the first part of the Salzburger Almenweg!

During this 4-day hike you walk about 48 kilometers including 2300 altimeters. The highlight of this four-day hike is stage 3 where you reach Schneebergkreuz at 1900 meters. The view here is unforgettable.

Day
1

Pfarrwerfen - Arthurhaus

Duration: 05:55 h
Distance: 11.5 km
Ascent: 1130 m
Descent: 160 m
This stage is relatively long, but easy. The hike starts at the train stop in Pfarrwerfen, where you will also find ample parking. The path takes you through forests and valleys, with magical views. At the end of the stage, the path goes steadily downhill to the Arthurhaus.

Berghotel Arthurhaus

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Berghotel Arthurhaus
Day
2

Arthurhaus - Erichhütte

Duration: 04:15 h
Distance: 9.7 km
Ascent: 260 m
Descent: 230 m

This second stage takes you through a picturesque landscape without any significant climbs. This stage is accompanied by breathtaking panoramas of the Alps and the southern walls of the Hochkönig. Along the way you can stop in numerous mountain inns for a bite to eat and a drink.

Note: The Erich Hütte is a wonderful example of an authentic Austrian mountain hut and only accepts cash payments on site. The reservation is arranged for you by Bookatrekking.com but bring enough cash to pay for the overnight stay, dinner and personal expenses. The overnight stay, which includes breakfast, costs about €50 per person. In addition, the hut does not have a shower or towels.

Note: The Erich Hütte is a wonderful example of an authentic Austrian mountain hut and only accepts cash payments on site. The reservation is arranged for you by Bookatrekking.com but bring enough cash to pay for the overnight stay, dinner and personal expenses. The overnight stay, which includes breakfast, costs about €50 per person. In addition, the hut does not have a shower or towels.

Erichhütte

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Erichhütte
Day
3

Erichhütte - Schneebergkreuz - Mülbach

Duration: 04:45 h
Distance: 9.1 km
Ascent: 580 m
Descent: 530 m
During this stage, you'll enjoy stunning views of Hochkönig. The route includes steep climbs through occasionally swampy terrain to the Schneebergkreuz. The panoramic views from this summit are the highlight of this stage! Via the Karbachalm you take the Mülbarger Bergbahn to Mülbach, where you will spend the night.

Hotel Alpenrose

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Hotel Alpenrose
Day
4

Schneebergkreuz - Goldegg/Böndlsee

Duration: 07:10 h
Distance: 16.2 km
Ascent: 550 m
Descent: 1270 m
The next day we take the Mülbarger Bergbahn back to Karbachalm, where stage 4 begins. Stage 4 offers a scenic route with some steep descents. Along the way you can enjoy panoramic views in all directions at Gamskögerl. From Böndslee, it is about a 45-minute walk to the Lend/Salzbach Bahnhof train station. From here you could take the train back to Pfwarrwerfen or Salzburg.
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At Bookatrekking.com, we not only book your huts, we also send you on your way with a comprehensive hiking guide with the most important information for your Salzburger Almenweg, including interactive Komoot maps. Browse all our options here and turn your dreams into reality.

5-day Hiking in Salzburger Sportwelt

Are you looking for a challenge and already have experience hiking in the mountains? Stage 18 (day 1) and stage 21 (day 4) in particular will put your physical condition to the test. On average, you'll walk between 5 and 7 hours per day. Along the way, you'll stay in cozy mountain huts. Mountain peaks, lakes, waterfalls and well-marked routes make a hike in the Salzurger Sportwelt a guaranteed success!

Day
1

Grafenberg valley station Wagrain - Kleinarl hut

Duration: 04:25 h
Distance: 8.3 km
Ascent: 540 m
Descent: 490 m
Today's stage follows a path with a somewhat strenuous climb to the Kitzstein ("Gabel") and a long descent to Kleinarl. After reaching the top of the Kitzstein, the trail descends along the western flank of the mountain. You head down the footpath into the valley where you will encounter your sleeping place for tonight on the way. The Kleinarl Hütte.

Kleinarl Hütte

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Kleinarl Hütte
Day
2

Kleinarl Hütte - Weissenhofalm

Duration: 05:30 h
Distance: 10 km
Ascent: 820 m
Descent: 790 m
As soon as you leave the Kleinarl Hütte you walk further into the valley and end up in the village of Kleinarl. From here you follow a beautiful forest path through larch woods to the Steinkaralm. From here you follow a narrow path until you reach the ridge at 1832 meters. From here the alpine meadow path with beautiful views leads to the Weissenhofalm. The finish for today.

Weissenhofalm

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Weissenhofalm
Day
3

Weissenhofalm - Kogelalm - Waldgasthof

Duration: 05:25 h
Distance: 11.3 km
Ascent: 410 m
Descent: 800 m
From the Weissenhofalm walk on a largely flat route along Mooskopf past the ski elevators to the Ahornkarkof, the Saukarkopf and Saukarfunktel to the Kogelalm, which is located at the ski elevator the 'flying Mozart'. This first section is originally still part of stage 19, from the Kogelalm officially begins stage 20 of the Salzburg Almenweg. Stage 20 goes via over wide open ski slopes and high forests. This hike takes us mainly through the ski area, past numerous mountain huts such as the Latschenhof, Jandlalm and finally the Waldgasthof.

Berghotel Waldgasthof

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Berghotel Waldgasthof
Day
4

Waldgastof Flachau - Gamskogelhütte - Zauchensee

Duration: 10:20 h
Distance: 20 km
Ascent: 1320 m
Descent: 1330 m
Get ready for the toughest day of this trip. After the Waldgasthof, you trek down through an enclosed high forest to the forest path that takes you to Flachau. From Flachau, the trail goes along the highway until you reach the "Neuer Sattelweg" and then continues uphill through the forest. The last part leads along the access road to the Berggasthof Sattelbauer. From there, a beautiful hiking trail leads through the forest to the Lackenalm, and about 800 m before the alpine meadow it connects to a goods path. From here it's uphill to the Lacken Kogel junction, where you've earned a small rest after overcoming 1,050 meters of elevation gain. From here you will cross the mountain pass between Ache and Tageweideck, after which we will descend to today's official stage goal, the Gamskogelhütte. From the Gamskogelhütte you will descend in about half an hour to the village of Zauchensee, where you will spend the night. You can shorten the route with around 5 kilometers by taking the skilift from the Gamskogelhütte or Bergstation Roskopf.

Liftgasthof Apartments (Zauchensee)

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Liftgasthof Apartments (Zauchensee)
Day
5

Zauchensee - Gamskogelhütte - Vordergnadenalm

Duration: 03:40 h
Distance: 8.2 km
Ascent: 160 m
Descent: 760 m
This is an easy stage with a long descent, if you take the lift from Zauchensee to the Gamskogelhütte today. From the Gamskogelhütte there is a short climb to the Stubhöhe and a long descent to the Vordergnadenalm. This is the end point of your hiking trip through the Salzburger Sportwelt!
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Family in Salzbuergeland: The Salzburger Almenweg with Kids

Trekking with children, of course, depends on the age of the kids and how used they are to spending hours walking in the mountains. If you are planning a family trekking trip, the Almenweg is a great option. The Salzburger Almenweg is divided into several stages of different difficulty levels, some of them categorized as "family-friendly".

If you are going with kids, it is always advisable to choose easy trails with wide paths. Along some of the stages, you can also find some attractions aimed at keeping kids interested in the adventure, such as hanging bridges, themed paths, swings, and climbing stations.

The second stage, "Majestic Panoramic Views", is highly recommended for families with kids. This section of the Almenweg is an easy trail that has several points where you can jump on a bus and return to the starting point of the trek if needed. Stages 16 – 19, 20, 22, and 26 are equally family-friendly.

Hiking with kids can be challenging, especially when it comes to keeping them interested in the adventure. We advise planning the trek in advance, choosing wide paths where they can run and jump freely without any dangers, and choosing realistic goals for each day. It is also a good idea to play some games along the way to keep them interested and motivated. If you are taking babies, a baby-backpack is advisable.

Family in Salzbuergeland: The Salzburger Almenweg with Kids

Did you know that we can book all huts and refuges for the Salzburger Almenweg for you? Check out all our options here.

Accommodation in Huts on the Salzburger Almenweg

On the Salzburger Almenweg, there are around 550 huts that offer accommodation and food to hikers and mountaineers. While staying in traditional mountain huts you will spend your nights away from the hustle and bustle of cities and towns below. Although booking the huts in advance is not compulsory, we highly advise doing so, especially if you are trekking with several other people. The huts usually provide bedclothes in their rooms and dorms, but if you want to carry your own sleeping bag, you can also do so.

At the huts, you will be able to get to know the hosts, their lives in the mountains, and enjoy delicious home-made meals, mostly with ingredients from their own farms. You could do daily hikes and then spend the night at a fancy hotel in one of the towns on the Almenweg, but we advise spending at least one night in one of the many options available in the mountains. Enjoy the peace and quiet of nature, far away from the crowded and loud cities below!

Accommodation in Huts on the Salzburger Almenweg

Food on the Salzburger Almenweg

During your Salzburger Almenweg, you will have the pleasure of tasting some of the most delicious local dishes of Salzbugerland. Every hut offers a typical rettljause, a country dish including cheese, bacon, sausage, butter, and bread. On the huts, you can also find a wide range of local specialties, likeFleischkrapfen, Blattlkrapfen with sauerkraut, Bauernkrapfen, Wetzstein noodles, pressed-cheese dumpling soup, cured beef, pork roasts cooked in a charcoal oven, a wide variety of cheeses, Kaiserschmarrn, and homemade pastries. The huts also offer fresh milk, homemade fruit juices, and home-distilled schnapps!

Food on the Salzburger Almenweg

What are the Hiking Pins on the Almenweg?

While trekking on the Salzburger Almenweg, you can track your progress on your Guest Card, which you can get at anytourist office in the Pongau region. At any of thealpine huts located along each stage of the Almenweg, you can get the stamp corresponding to that stage. At the end of the trek, you can make your way to the closest tourist information office where you will be able to get the Hiking Pin corresponding to the number of stages that you have completed!

  • Bronze Pin: 1 stage
  • Silver Pin: 5 stages
  • Gold Pin: 10 stages
  • Diamond Pin: 31 stages

Not sure yet or want to discuss your plans for the Salzburger Almenweg with one of our trekking experts? Get in touch today and turn your dreams into memories!

Packing List for the Salzburger Almenweg

It doesn't matter where you are going trekking or for how long: Carrying the right equipment with you is paramount. For a hiking trip in the mountains, you will need, first and foremost, a good backpack. Its size will depend on how many days you will be spending in the mountains, the season, and the clothes you will be taking with you. We have prepared a packing list with some essential clothing that you should include and some extras that you may find useful:
  • Essentials

  • Extras

How hard are the trails?

The Salzburger Almenweg has different difficulty levels so that everybody can enjoy the trails depending on their experience and physical state. From experienced mountaineers to families with small children, the Almenweg in Salzburgerland has options for everybody! On the Pongau region, you will find clear paths with well-signposted intersections. On each sign, you will find the trail number, the difficulty level, and the kilometers and walking time to each destination.

Color codes for the difficulty levels on the Salzburger Almenweg:

  • Beginner
  • Moderate
  • Mountaineer

Safe hiking tips for the Salzburger Almenweg

When you go on walking holidays it is wise to be aware of a few points. Even if this is not your first time, you should never underestimate the mountains. Good tour planning and compliance with the regulations on the mountains will significantly increase safety. To ensure that your hiking holiday is a safe and enjoyable experience, here below you can find a list of 8 recommendations for safe hiking in the mountains:
  • Know your limits

    Hiking the Salzburger Almenweg is the perfect outlet to escape from daily life. It is an endurance sport along with a beautiful nature experience with a positive effect on body and mind —as long as one is in good shape and has a realistic picture of one's possibilities and limits—. Never overestimate yourself or underestimate the route. Don't overdo it! Always choose the slower variant and take more time for your plans. Hiking under time pressure is not fun and at too fast a pace it can be dangerous. Be wise!

  • Plan carefully

    Good planning is half the work! Hiking maps, literature, the Internet and expert advice are invaluable when planning the route in the Salzburger Almenweg and enable you to determine the length, altitude difference, difficulty and conditions of the hike. When planning group treks, the itinerary should always be planned for the weakest member of the group! The weather in the mountains can change incredibly quickly and rain, wind and cold all increase the risk factor. For this reason, always check the weather forecast beforehand and contact our trekking experts to find your way around before you start.

  • Be fully equipped

    Equipment is everything. In the most extreme case, it makes the difference between life and death, and in any case, it definitely makes the difference between having fun and having a bad time. Food and water, sunscreen and waterproof and warm clothes must always be in your backpack, as well as a first aid kit and a mobile phone with a full battery (in case there is an emergency). However, packing light makes walking easier, so don't take too much extra luggage with you. Your equipment should always be suitable for the terrain you'll be hiking on in the Salzburger Almenweg.

  • Wear suitable footwear

    Good walking shoes protect your feet and provide a better fit. Shoes with a good fit, with non-slip soles, water-resistant and lightweight are a must for additional walking pleasure during the Salzburger Almenweg. Trail running shoes are great for a weekend in the mountains, but on longer hikes or more technical trails, you'll want at least A/B hiking boots. That means it is recommended wearing high mountain shoes that are water-repellent with extra ankle support to prevent sprains.

  • Stay on marked trails

    Salzburger Almenweg has endless marked hiking trails, which are controlled and maintained and should not be deviated from. It may be tempting, but it's not a good idea to take shortcuts or alternative routes through unmarked terrain. It increases the risk of disorientation and you're more likely to get lost and have accidents or fall in the mountains. Even steep slopes of packed old snow are often underestimated and dangerous. Are you in doubt? Better don't do it. For easy navigation we work with our trusted partner Komoot, whose interactive maps, also available offline, provide you with the necessary digital means to get from A to B. As a backup, make sure to bring a hiking guide or a paper map with you. FYI, 75% of stumbles occur due to carelessness on marked paths or roads, not in open terrain!

  • Take regular breaks

    Remember you're on a hiking holiday. Timely and regular breaks not only provide welcome relaxation but also make it possible to enjoy the Salzburger Almenweg. The body needs a regular food and drink intake to maintain performance and concentration. Our advice is that if you have little time, it's better to follow the short itinerary than to speed up the long one.

  • Stay reachable

    If you are hiking solo or in small groups it is advisable to inform people back home about your plans, what route you are taking and when you plan to return. Even small incidents can lead to unpleasant emergencies so make sure you are available at all times. Bring a charged phone containing at least the phone numbers of immediate family members, your accommodations en route and the emergency phone numbers operating in the Salzburger Almenweg.

  • Respect nature

    Leave no rubbish behind, prevent noise, stay on the marked trails, do not disturb wildlife or grazing animals, and respect protected areas.

Where Can I Book the Salzburger Almenweg?

At Bookatrekking.com you can book the self-guided Salzburger Almenweg and many other treks. We take care of all the details for you, including arranging accommodations and providing you with relevant information well in advance of your trek. Find our offers here. Our easy-to-use platform allows you to browse and compare different trekking options and find the perfect fit for your interests, abilities, and budget.

If you have any questions about a specific trek or need help choosing the right one for you, our team of trekking experts is here to assist you. Simply reach out to us and we will be happy to provide you with personalized recommendations and advice to help you plan the trekking adventure of a lifetime.

Is the Salzburger Almenweg not your cup of tea and are you looking for other epic adventures? Check out one of our following blog posts:

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