Experience Alpine diversity: “Discover your true nature” is the motto of Garmisch-Partenkirchen, the multifaceted mountain region at the base of the 2,962 meter (9718 foot) high Zugspitze mountain. Pure natural surroundings, traditions that are still kept alive, genuine hospitality, plus a wide range of sporting activities make Garmisch-Partenkirchen your first choice, be it for an active vacation or relaxation.
Scenic Alpine perspectives
The colorful diversity of hiking in Garmisch-Partenkirchen and surroundings, past the Wetterstein mountains and to the Karwendel range, offers varied landscapes and breathtaking views along more than 300 kilometers (124 miles) of paths. The GaPa tour planner at www.gapa.de/tourenplaner with detailed route and trail descriptions, including tips for breaks and where to stop for a bite to eat, lets you plan your individual favorite tour ranging from a simple walk to a tour of several days with overnight stays in rustic mountain lodges. At the same time, visitors can select from a large assortment of guided hikes ranging from herbal excursions to therapeutic climatic healing hikes.
Highlights for rock climbing freaks
Whether in a climbing garden or in the cliffs, the right balance of courage, skill and creativity is of the essence. Climbers can select from varied protected climbing routes, known as Klettersteig or Ferrata, and alpine trails on the Alpspitze mountain, the landmark of the outdoor destinations around Garmisch-Partenkirchen. Up on top, you will be rewarded with a stunning view of the surrounding peaks. There are also challenging, but well-secured routes for climbing enthusiasts in the Oberreintal valley right next to the classical route to the top of the Zugspitze. The Alpspitz Ferrata leading to the top of the “jewel of the Werdenfelser Land”, the Alpspitze, at 2,628 meters (8622 feet) above sea level offers the ultimate summit high with an awe-inspiring view into the Loisach Valley on one side and down into the Höllental gorge on the other. The Jubiläumsgrat ridge with the traverse of the Eastern Alps is an attractive challenge for experienced alpinists. The Flying Fox from the ski jump lets jumpers experience an adrenaline rush while speeding up to 70 kilometers per hour (43 mph) down the stretch of 270 meters (886 ft.). No matter what the weather is like outside, climbers can boulder to their heart’s delight in the bouldering hall boasting a climbing surface of around 350 m2 (3767 ft2) indoors and 80 m2 (861 ft2) outdoors.
Outdoor fitness and fun - walking and jogging
Walking and jogging have never been so much fun on countless routes ranging from 1 to 4 1/2 hours past fragrant meadows of herbs and wildflowers, through freshly scented forests and accompanied by stunning mountain views. You can even book a personal Nordic walking trainer at the health meeting point of Garmisch-Partenkirchen, the Gesundheits-Eck. Joggers can enjoy the magnificent outdoors and clear mountain air on a fantastic network of trails, both flat and with inclines.
The cycling mecca for everyone
Take your choice: from challenging trails for pros to leisurely cycling tours, you are sure to find the perfect ride. A network of well-marked routes (453 km/281 mi.) and more than a dozen challenging mountain bike trails in and around Garmisch-Partenkirchen lead to inviting restaurants, lodges and rustic beer gardens. You can also stop at one of the crystal-clear lakes and take a refreshing dip, in addition to numerous other spots along the way bidding for a scenic stop or revitalizing snack. Again, you will find suggestions for tours with detailed route descriptions, maps and route profiles at the GaPa Tour Planner link.
In the water and in the air
The untamed torrents of the Loisach River are a challenge to water sports fans seeking the thrill of churning water in their kayak or canoe. Sheer contrasts: The crystal-clear mountain lakes — Pflegersee, Riessersee, Geroldsee and Eibsee — entice visitors to immerse themselves and get away from it all. You can also discover Garmisch-Partenkirchen from above in a paraglider or hang-glider. The Wank mountain, for example, is a thermal paradise, and the Osterfelderkopf knoll and Kreuzeck mountain are also known as excellent take-off sites.
Outdoor recreation for all
“You can, but don’t have to, do it all” holds true for Garmisch-Partenkirchen where you can choose from even more recreational activities. Tennis, horseback riding, fishing, archery or a ride in a historic horse-drawn carriage. And to top it off: 23 golf courses within a radius of just one hour’s drive make this vacation wonderland a mecca for golf enthusiasts as well.
AlpenTestival — the three-day outdoor adventure package
Families, novice athletes and pros alike can get a taste of the outdoor diversity offered by Garmisch-Partenkirchen during the three-day AlpenTestival. This is the perfect opportunity to try out climbing, cycling and hiking of all levels of difficulty and enjoy a varied sideline program. The Olympic Ski Stadium below the ski jump is the center of the event. Here you will find the Test Center with numerous outdoor products for testing and a camping village where visitors can spend the night and share with like-minded fellow athletes and sports enthusiasts. Detailed information about the AlpenTestival is available at www.alpentestival.de.
The market town of Garmisch-Partenkirchen has gained worldwide acclaim over the decades as an international winter sports resort with events of world renown. The who’s who of alpine skiing line up for the Ski World Cup in Garmisch-Partenkirchen every year. On New Year’s Day, the world’s best ski jumpers soar to glory here. The traditional major events climaxed in 2011 when the FIS Alpine Ski World Championships were held here for the second time. As a flagship of German winter resorts, Garmisch-Partenkirchen features winter sports with 60 kilometers (37 miles) of top-notch ski runs. State-of-the art lifts bring skiers and non-skiers into the ski areas, including the Kandahar, the famous World Cup run with a vertical drop. Snow machines guarantee reliable snow conditions on four long runs into the valley. Last, but not least, there is the Zugspitze, Germany’s highest ski area with 20 kilometers of varied runs for all abilities.
Backcountry skiers can also enjoy a memorable ascent and descent far from the hustle and bustle of the slopes on the panoramic mountain of Partenkirchen, the Wank. Or they can climb up and ski down the Eckbauer near the legendary ski stadium and ski jump. Tuesdays and Thursdays, the Bayerische Zugspitzbahn invites ski alpinists to a “Ski Tour Evening” including a cheery round with fellow skiers in the popular Drehmöser 9 lodge in the Garmisch-Classic ski area.
Cross-country skiing enthusiasts can ski their hearts out on around 28 kilometers (17 miles) of cross-country ski tracks that are conveniently accessible on foot or by bus or car and free of charge. The loop from the Hausberg ski area to the Olympic Ski Stadium is a very popular easy round near the center of town and the train station. The breathtaking Alpine panorama makes this run of about three kilometers (1.9 miles) an unforgettable experience. At the famous biathlon and cross-country ski center in Kaltenbrunn, snow machines guarantee reliable snow conditions and flood lights let skiers also ski at night on the “sporty” loop of around 10 kilometers (6.2 miles). Visitors are welcome to take part in the Visitors’ Biathlon in Kaltenbrunn every Wednesday.
The racy 1.6 kilometer run down from the cozy lodge, St.-Martins-Hütte am Grasberg, is an insider tip for bold sledders. Garmisch-Partenkirchen also offers 110 kilometers (68 miles) of groomed winter hiking trails for breathtaking walks through snow-covered meadows and forests, an unforgettable torch hike through the Partnachklamm gorge featuring amazing ice and snow formations and a romantic ride in a horse sleigh - all perfect ingredients for a winter vacation to remember. From early January to the end of March, visitors can book guided winter hikes at the Gesundheits-Eck meeting point.
Those wanting to do pirouettes on the ice or enjoy a round of Bavarian curling will find all their heart craves at the Olympic Ice Sports Center (starting July) or on one of the many natural lakes.
Protect nature — travel and electric mobility
The German railway company, Deutsche Bahn, offers environmentally friendly and stress-free connections to Garmisch-Partenkirchen. On Saturdays, there is an ICE connection from Hamburg, Berlin and Dortmund-Ruhr Area-Cologne with no train changes. Thanks to the scenic A95 highway, Garmisch-Partenkirchen is very conveniently accessible by car. You can also travel by plane, by flying either to the Munich or Innsbruck airports.
After you arrive in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, there are diverse environmentally friendly electric mobility options available among many others.
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