The best activities surrounding the Zugspitze
Thanks to the beautiful location of PURE Resort Ehrwald at the base of the Zugspitze there is plenty to discover and undertake during summer in the area. Are you curious what you can organize in the Zugspitze region? For example, go to the top of the Zugspitze, visit the charming villages or be surprised by the special mountain lakes and rivers.
- Atmospheric villages
- Magnificent views
- Mountain lakes and rivers
- Hiking and mountain biking
#1. Enjoy a beautiful view of the Zugspitze
The Zugspitze is one of the biggest tourist attractions of the region, and that is with good reason. At 2962 metres, this mountain is the highest in Germany and the gondola takes you from the valley to the top in fifteen minutes. There is a magnificent view of not only the German, but also the Austrian, Swiss and Italian Alps. You can even walk to the Austrian part of the mountain, and a smaller gondola takes you to the slightly lower glacier, where you can stand in the snow all year round. Do not forget to bring a jacket even if it's summer in the valley.
A visit to the Zugspitze costs €58 per person, the gondola to the glacier is included. You can choose to take the gondola back, but it is more fun to take the train, which takes a beautiful route through the forest.
#2. A day of relaxation at Lake Eibsee
A beautiful lake, the Eibsee, is located at the base of the Zugspitze. This lake is perfect to visit when you plan to visit the Zugspitze. There are a number of restaurants where you can settle down for coffee, lunch or dinner. Around the lake there is a path of about 5 kilometres, which is well passable for every walker, including strollers.
There are several small beaches surrounding the lake, however they fill up with people quite quickly. What most visitors do is climb down the rocky edge and put a towel on the rocks. Here you can enjoy the beautiful view over this blue lake, with the snowy peaks of the Zugspitze in the background. This lake is also perfect for canoeing or SUP (Standup paddleboarding).
#3. Visit the Partnachklamm
From the Zugspitze region springs the Partnach river, which, among other things, flows through the Partnach Gorge. Pay a visit to this gorge and you will be treated to spectacular rock formations and a clear blue, swirling mass of water.
From the parking lot you walk in half an hour to the entrance of the gorge. The entrance fee is €5 per person, which you can only pay in cash. There is also a possibility to view the gorge for free. From the left side of the entrance you can walk up the stairs. This brings you to the top of the gorge wherefrom bridges present the beautiful view. By the way, it's also an option to take this route on your way back, so you'll see the gorge in two different ways.
The hiking trail next to the cliff (the one you have to pay for) is well passable for less experienced walkers and people with strollers. The road at the top of the gorge however is not easy passable, we advice you to bring good walking shoes if you are taking this route.
A magnificent view of not only the German, but also the Austrian, Swiss and Italian Alps.'
#4. Take a hike in the Höllentallklamm
Fancy a less touristic, and therefore a more adventurous walk? Then visit the Höllentallklamm! You park in the village of Grainau and follow the signs. The hike starts immediately with a steep climb, and takes you through muddy forest paths to the entrance of this gorge. Again, the entrance costs €5 per person and you have to pay in cash. Also important: wear good hiking boots and possibly bring a rain jacket - during this hike you'll walk a number of times under small waterfalls. Via a bumpy, rocky path full of tunnels and bridges you'll walk through this cliff, a real adventure!
When you arrive to the end of the gorge you can walk another half hour to a mountain hut for a delicious lunch, after which you can follow the same path back. There are also other paths that take you back to your starting point, but these are not always open. That's why you should inform yourself well before you hike back.
#5. Visit Garmisch-Partenkirchen
The border town of Garmisch-Partenkirchen has probably only been passed by many travelers on the way to their winter sports destination. However, this nice place has enough to offer for an afternoon of shopping or an evening out! Sit down on the terrace of Fischer's Mohrenplatz next to the church for a perfect German meal with a delicious white beer. The perfect way to end an active day in this area!
Extra tips for a carefree holiday...
An hour's drive from Garmisch-Partenkirchen is the fairytale like Neuschwanstein Castle. Nowadays, you can only visit this castle by buying a ticket for a guided tour in advance, which may be sold out a long time in advance. Another option is to visit the nearby and at least as beautiful Hohenschwangau Castle. For a visit to this castle you'll also need a ticket, but because this is a less popular option, you'll have a better chance of succeeding in getting a ticket for this castle if you book shorter in advance.
AlpspiX or other elevators
Of course, the Zugspitze is not the only mountain in this area, and if you find the price for a ride to the top too expensive, there are plenty of other options that provide for stunning views of the Alps. The AlpspiX for example, which has a modern platform. Naturally, you can not only travel to the top with the Zugspitze cable car, but there are also a number of nearby elevators that help you voyage into the Alps, which are also priced less than the Zugspitze. Another famous one is the Alpspitzbahn, which offers a futuristic viewpoint.
At many parking lots you can only pay with cash. It's always good to have some cash with you, but in a number of places digital payment is also possible using the ParkNow app. Useful tip to install it before your visit.
The small village of Ettal is a 20-minute drive from Garmisch-Partenkirchen and is best known for its abbey, the Benediktinerabtei Ettal. Pleasant for a short visit to the church, and of course for tasting their beers in the on-site cafe.
Not only do you need cash for parking lots or entrance tickets, but also in many mountain huts you can only pay in cash. So make sure you have enough in your pocket to last you a day.