Skiing in Kitzbuhel

Country: Austria

In a nutshell: One of the prettiest ski resorts in the world, with a large and extensive ski area

We like:

  • Kitzbuhel is gorgeous. The town is breathtakingly pretty and the rolling hills and mountain pastures are straight out of The Sound of Music
  • The ski area is enormous with great skiing for intermediate skiers.
  • Lots of modern lifts to whisk you up the mountain quickly
  • Lots to do in the town for non-skiers; great shopping and some excellent restaurants
  • Great, friendly Austrian apres-ski
  • It’s possible to buy the wider region ski pass that includes the Ski Welt ski pass, which more than doubles the size of the ski area

We don’t like:

  • The low altitude can make snow unreliable in early and late season
  • Limited challenges on piste for advanced skiers. Some excellent off-piste though
  • The nursery slopes for first-time skiers aren’t very good


  • Resort altitude: 800m
  • Highest lift: 2,000m
  • Lowest piste: 800m
  • Transfer time from most convenient airport:
    • Salzburg: 1h 15m
    • Innsbruck: 1h 20m
    • Munich: 2h
  • Number of lifts: 54
  • Number of runs:
      • Blue: 22
      • Red: 25
      • Black: 13
  • Size area size: Large – 215km of piste


  • Apres ski
  • Big ski area
  • Traditional charm
  • Great for intermediates
  • Great for advanced
  • Great for foodies
  • Great for non-skiers


Kitzbuhel was once a medieval silver-mining town, and has over time transformed itself into one of the world’s most prestigious ski resorts. It’s one of the world’s most beautiful ski resorts. Inside the heavy city walls is a stunning old town centre, with pedestrianised cobbled streets, beautiful stone buildings and delicately painted murals. From the town rise the stunning Wilder Kaiser mountains, providing a dramatic and jagged backdrop to the gentle, rolling alpine pastures.

The ski area is already large, but buy the wider region ski pass and you have access to a ski area so big that it challenge the 3 Valleys for scale. For most people upgrading to this ski pass isn’t necessary as the Kitzbuhel skier area itself is already large with over 200km of predominantly intermediate-friendly piste to explore.

Despite hosting the Hannenkahm – most fearsome race on the ski world cup circuit – there are limited challenges on piste for experts. Although most advanced skiers won’t be disappointed with range of fun red runs. On a powder day, the off-piste is brilliant, and we’d recommend taking a guide.

It’s not the easiest resort to learn to ski in as the nursery slopes in town aren’t brilliant, but the ski schools are good, and first-timers wanting a winter wonderland experience will love the town.

There’s no hiding from the number one issue Kitz faces though: altitude. With a village height of 800m and no skiing above 2,000m, snow can be unreliable in early and late season. Although from early January to the end of February the snow is as reliable as anywhere else, and the resort has one of the most impressive snow-making operations in the world.

There’s plenty to do outside of skiing, with a beautiful town to explore, lots of high-end shops, some wonderful restaurants, and of course some of the best apres-ski in Austria.