Luxury Holidays Ski Holidays Zell am See - Kaprun
Two of the most stunningly beautiful luxury ski resorts in the world, Zell am See and Kaprun provide a truly magnificent picture postcard setting. Whilst Zell am See is the larger town, with larger hotels and restaurants, not forgetting the stunning lake that lines its promenade, Kaprun should not be overlooked as it is as equally stunning. The latter with its picture perfect village centre, smaller, but warm and welcoming hotels and ski chalets, and the stunning medieval castle that in every photo provides the perfect backdrop.
Skiing Zell am See-Kaprun
Zell am See and Kaprun, the latter the pretty ski resort village above Zell am See, offer high altitude skiing, with the Kitzsteinhorn glacier that provides a number of summer ski camps, and skiing therefore all year round. Kaprun and the more renown resort of Zell am See offer 138km of pistes with the highest lifts taking you up to the top if the Gipfelwert and the glacier skiing at 3,000m. With skiing all year round, it offers a snow sure location. The skiing above Kaprun on the piste is great for beginners and intermediates although more limited for experts unless you are willing to venture off-piste. Zell am See however is better suited for intermediate and competent skiers on piste with the blacks situated in the trees particularly challenging.
The Ski Villages
Two of the prettiest ski resorts in the world. Just 7km apart, Zell am See is situated in an idealic spot on the lake, whereas Kaprun is situated higher up, just under the Kitzsteinhorn and its glacier that towers 3,203m above it.
Situated next to the lake, Zell am See has to be one of the most idealic locations in the Alps. However Kaprun isn't outshone as it is equally as pretty, if not more so and for the perfect chocolate box charm, one of the must visit luxury ski resorts for charm and picture perfect moments. Kaprun Castle towers above the village, built in the 12th century by Counts of Falkenstein, it makes for a picture postcard setting with the Kaprun village itself equally impressive with its medieval character architecture and alpine hotels and ski chalets. A sight to behold whenever you visit, but Christmas and New Year ski holidays are particularly atmospheric and special! This said, whenever you go, Kaprun will leave an indelible mark on your memory and holiday experiences.
Both are steeped in history, and Zell am See’s unique lakeside location allows winter, snow lined walks along its promenade, and winter conditions permitting, even allows skating on the lake. A popular all year round holiday destination, due to its lakeside position, there is a great deal to do in the town with several bars, restaurants and shops to browse. A famous, must visit attraction has to be the Saint Hippolyte's Church which is stunning by day, but even more so lit up at night.
Family Ski Holidays Zell am See-Kaprun
Kaprun is particular good for family ski holidays, not only because of its high altitude skiing and good snow record, but the fact that the runs are well suited (mostly reds and blues), with excellent tuition, and a town centre that is warm and welcoming.
Zell am See skiing is slightly more challenging with a higher prominence of reds and blacks, but this said, not particularly challenging reds and blacks, is therefore better suited for more competent intermediate skiers. This with the smaller, more intimate nature of Kaprun and its catered ski chalets, for family ski holidays, we would recommend Kaprun (it is also the higher of the two ski resorts), slightly over Zell am See.
So impressed with these two ski resorts from a family perspective, we would place Zell am See and Kaprun as one of our favourite family ski destinations in Europe (and for the moment, let's keep this secret just between us).
Expert and Off-Piste Skiing and Snowboarding
Whilst not as extensive as larger ski resorts, the Kitzsteinhorn glacier provides one of the best freestyle off-piste skiing in the form of its Freeride XXL routes, the X1 Ice Range, X2 Westside Story, X3 Left Wing, X4 Jump Run and X5 Pipeline routes. Great itinerary runs to home one’s off-piste techniques, however you still should be competent off-piste and carry the appropriate off piste equipment (receiver, shiovels, probe, etc).
Eating Out On The Mountain
In Kaprun, the family run Alpengasthaus provides a very warm welcome, serving good, honest, mountain dishes, complimented by stunning views. Our number one recommendation when skiing in and around theKitzsteinhorn glacier. In Zell am See we loved the traditional mountain food Blaickner’s Sonnalm, its character interior, and its pretty views when the suns shining.
The main ski school is the Ski und Snowboardschule in both Zell am See and Kaprun.
The après-ski in Kaprun is generally a low key affair, quiet and sophisticated drinks in hotel. The Partykeller is one of the more energetic bars and there is also the Baumbar. Kitsch & Bitter is quite classy and popular too.
Zell am See-Kaprun Restaurants
Kaprun is more limited than Zell am See on the restaurant fron, although Da Jagawirt offers good food and a warm welcome, but is a little out of town.
In Zell am See there is an excellent choice all year round and number one our list for fine dining is Mayer Restaurant. The food is of a Michelin Star standard although it should be said, prices are too so not for the budget conscious. Great selection of Austrian wines too.
In Zell am See the main nightclub is Club Sunrise.
Getting Around The ski Resorts
A free bus service operates between and in the two resorts which are relatively close also (7km).
Paragliding, sledging, sleigh rides, snowshoeing and much more. Conditions permitting, ice skating on the lake!
Zell am See Austria