Ellmau lies in the wide valley that separates the dramatic peaks of Wilder Kaiser mountains to the north and the gently rolling hills to the south. The views around here are straight out of a film set. Well, TV set, technically; this little Tyrolean village is the filming location of the popular German-Austrian TV show Der Bergdoktor (which translates to the mountain doctor). However, don’t be fooled by its bucolic setting, Ellmau is for those who want to get stuck into the action, with footpaths, cable cars, a golf course and mountain-view outdoor swimming pools. There’s also an excellent bus network that connects Ellmau with the other villages dotting the valley of the Wilder Kaiser, like nearby Söll.
The tourist information office in the centre of the village is a great first stop on a walking holiday in Ellmau. Discover short village circuits via river, forest and meadow footpaths, easy day walks exploring nearby Hintersteinersee (a glistening blue lake with mountain backdrop), or longer hikes complete with strategic refreshment stops at remote mountain huts.
Fancy taking things up a notch (and up 1,000 metres)? Hop in the cable car from Ellmau the Hartkaiser. At the top is a restaurant where you can pull up a chair and marvel at the mountains that stretch as far as the eye can see. Once you've refuelled with Tyrolean delicacies like schlutzkrapfen (half-moon stuffed pasta) and kaiserschmarr'n (sweet pancakes), head back to the cable car station – or out onto the panoramic mountain trails.
Get to know Ellmau
Learn all about the folk history of Ellmau at Heimatmuseum, a grand 19th-century house built by a master carpenter. There's a lively weekly market and music evenings in July and August. Restaurants include one of the best pizzerias in the Wilder Kaiser, as well as alpine inns with roasted pork, dumplings, lake trout and sauerkraut on the specials boards. Walk to the Visitation Chapel for one of the most impressive views in town – a panorama with the Kaiser Mountains as a backdrop.
Making a splash in the outdoors
The Kaiserbad offers swimming pools and saunas with mountain views. There are flow channels, turbo slides, a playground, an indoor climbing wall, and a reed-lined pond made for almost-wild swimming. Adults can enjoy the pine sauna and wellness area with herbal steam baths. In nearby Going, the Badesee swimming lake offers outdoor swimming and water slides. Families with smaller children should keep the mountains in their sights too. The cable car in Ellmau leads to the enchanted forests of Ellmi’s Magic World.
Follow the post routes to Innsbruck and Salzburg
The grand old post office is a reminder of Ellmau’s once-vital spot on the trade route between Innsbruck and Salzburg. These days, the road sees more tourists than parcels, with buses transporting walkers between the villages of the Wilder Kaiser valleys. Söll is just a 15-minute journey west – the gateway to the footpath-packed Hohe Salve mountain – and the baroque town of St. Johann in Tirol lies to the east. Or you could trundle to the medieval riverside town of Kufstein, where the Kaiserlift - a single-person chairlift - offers a different view of the Wilder Kaiser mountain range and Inn Valley - a real hidden gem.
Why book a summer holiday in Ellmau with Inghams?
At Inghams, we do walking holidays differently. With no fixed itinerary, you have more time in your destination and the freedom to walk as much or as little as you like, discovering some of Ellmau’s best walking routes and activities at your own pace.
With over 85 years of outdoor travel experience, our holiday packages to Ellmau include flights, transfers, and accommodation, so you can relax and leave the small details to us. Our experts can help you choose the best holiday for you, and our team in resort can give you the inside scoop on how to spend your time away with us.