Standing on Seegrubenspitze Mountain, at the top of the Hungerburg station (the name for the cable car), I felt like I was living inside of a postcard. Everything I had seen that day, from the world-renowned “Goldenes Dachl” (Golden Roof), to the lavish Innsbruck Cathedral was astounding, but the view from the top left me speechless and teary eyed. Innsbruck, Austria is simply stunning and jam packed with incredible history, beauty and nature.
Innsbruck, Austria is only about 30 kilometers from the town of Jensbach, where I have been staying with my dear friend, Fred, who I met at yoga school in India. Fred was kind enough to suggest we visit Innsbruck and it was only a short drive in his sports car. I didn’t know what to expect, but I’m so glad he suggested it!
Host of the IX Olympic Games
Driving into town, I saw in the distance the giant ski jumping venue towering above us from the IX Olympic Games in 1964. It now has a restaurant at the top of it, where customers can take in the gorgeous view of the town and surrounding Alps. At first the town seems very modern, but old town still must look a lot like it did back in the 18th century. It’s easy to picture Baroque area lords and ladies drinking mead in the old cobblestone streets.
The Golden Roof
You can’t miss Glodenes Dachi, famously known as the Golden Roof, and probably the most famous landmark of Innsbruck. It was built in the year 1500 for Emperor Maximilian I, and is decorated with 2,657 fire-gilded copper tiles. It was used for his wedding and his wife often enjoyed the balcony to observe festivals, tournaments, and other events in the square below.
Next, we toured the Innsbruck Cathedral, also known as St James Cathedral. On the outside it looks fairly plane, like most historic churches in the area, but inside the opulent details made me stare in wonder. The ceiling domes are covered in hand painted murals from famous artists of the 1700s. Every detail is perfect, from the hand carved woodwork to the smooth marble alters. Patrons were reverently seated in the antique pews and I tried not to disturb their peace as I discreetly clicked a few pictures for my blog.
Ice Cream and Sunshine
We continued on into the streets, enjoying the warm sunshine and buzz from all the smiling tourists. I treated Fred to some of the most delicious ice cream I’ve ever had. He suggested I try the Amarena, a sweet creamy cherry flavor. It was absolutely delicious!
Hungerburg Cable Car
As much as I loved the town, I loved the view of it from above even more! Fred bought us tickets for the cable car and we started to climb high above the city. We had to change stations mid-way, and as we waited a lot of rowdy people with camping gear started showing up. Turns out there was a big trance music festival at the top! We squeezed on to the tram with about 30 excited young adults with huge back packs and even bigger smiles. I stared down into the vast valley below and marveled at the view.
Incredible Views and Festivals
Just as we got to the top, a cloud bank moved in and all visibly was gone! So, we toasted to our bad luck with a good Austrian bier from the outdoor bar, and chatted with the festival crowd. I met Ben and Damion from Switzerland, which is where I’m heading next. They entertained us like only slightly intoxicated party goers can! Then suddenly, the clouds moved on and the most spectacular view appeared of the valley below.
Innsbruck is a wonderful town full of rich history and beautiful landscape. I see now why it is a must-see destination for so many world travelers! I highly recommend you put it on your list of cities to visit if you find yourself traveling to Austria.