City Guide: Kufstein, Austria

This valley town on Austria’s German border is a gold mine for wellness, outdoor activities and delicious local produce, providing an ideal catch-them-all getaway for time-poor urbanites looking to escape the city sprawl.

In partnership withAustrian National Tourist Office

It's known locally as "the pearl of the Tirol" and has a nature/ culture equilibrium similar to that of its larger siblings, Innsbruck and Salzburg. This year, Kufstein is on our radar as an off-the-beaten track Austrian city we want to get to know.

If this meandering valley town is a pearl, consider the encircling Kaiser Mountains its meaty oyster, offering a slew of outdoor activities coupled with a wholesome dining scene. From the mountains themselves, dotted with hikers in summer and traversed by skiers in winter, to the medieval city centre which is scored by the sparkling River Inn, Kufstein has retained a nostalgic charm, making it an attractive getaway for urbanites looking to escape the daily grind.

It's a place where those with enough get-up-and-go can feast on an endless buffet of mountain-top vistas; where natural beauty is distilled into meditative freshwater spas, food is laced with hillside herbs, and the largest free-standing organ in the world ricochets off the surrounding peaks at midday, everyday.

To really probe Kufstein's crannies, including the gorgeous satellite villages dotted across the surrounding valley, we suggest hiring a car. Otherwise, zip across altitudes by cable car or go on foot.



The last word when it comes to Tirolean mountainside luxury, Kaiserlodge isn’t your traditional Austrian hotel but it wins our vote for its wellness offering. To experience their 700m sq spa is to be transported to the serene peaks of the Kaiser Mountains; recline to a soundscape of trickling streams while being massaged with a slick of elixirs made from mountain herbs. Rooms here range from small apartments to their penthouse suite with panoramic views from the roof terrace.


Dorf 11, 6351 Scheffau am Wilden Kaiser, Austria


Das Seiben

This crescent-shaped hotel is an architectural marvel that blends into the hills surrounding Kufstein. A spa hotel with a focus on health, guests can sign themselves up to one of the hotel’s expertly devised programmes covering anything from mental health to muscle pain or detoxing. Alternatively, head into the hills for a spot of mountain biking or snowshoeing depending on the season. Don’t worry about arranging your own equipment or plotting routes: the hotel staff are clued up on the best trails and will kit you out with the requisite gear and information.


Kurstraße 14, 6323 Bad Häring, Austria


Viktoria’s Home

Run by the Fahringer family, these recently outfitted apartments serve homely hospitality with modern panache. Appartement Viktoria is the largest of the bunch, sleeping up to four and equipped with a sauna heated by infrared lamps (better for your health, apparently), as well as a steam room which uses water drawn straight from the mountain. Viktoria is somewhat of a local celebrity, in large part due to her cookery school which sits just beneath the apartments. Her restaurant, The Gourmet Tavern Tiroler Hof, is just a flight of stairs away and well worth checking out.


Am Rain 16, 6330 Kufstein, Austria