Innsbruck, the perfect weekend getaway | Private jet charter
Austria’s Tyrolean capital, alongside the River Inn, is famed for its impressive mountain backdrop. Home to winter sports, superb hiking and mountain biking in the summer months, Innsbruck also boasts a vibrant cultural life and historic Gothic and Baroque buildings in its well-preserved Altstadt. Here are 6 reasons to visit Innsbruck:
Golden Roof and Golden Roof Museum
A potent symbol of Innsbruck’s Gothic old town, the Golden Roof comprises 2,657 original gilded copper tiles on the roof of the Neuhof balcony in the main square. The three-story balcony was built for Emperor Maximilian I who would watch swordfights in the square below. The museum features the life and times of this powerful Emperor as well as the history of the Goldenes Dachl.
Nordkette cable car ride
For incredible views of over Innsbruck, take a ride in the Nordkette funicular followed by an ascent by cable car to Hafelekar. The funicular and its stations were designed by the late architect Zaha Hadid. The first stage station is located in the Altstadt, next to the Congress building. Take the funicular from here to Hungerburg, where you alight and take the Nordkette cable car up to Seegrube. Either stop here for lunch at the restaurant, or continue on with the cable car to Hafelekar at 2256m.
Swarovski Crystal Worlds
Just 20km east of Innsbruck (ride the shuttle bus from the main station), you’ll find the world-renowned Swarovski crystal museum. Based in the village of Wattens, there are 16 Chambers of Wonder to explore, created by international artists. Stop for lunch at Daniels Kristallwelten and sample some of their delicious pastries and international cuisine. For souvenirs visit the Swarovski Kristallwelten stores that feature Swarovski as well as designers such as Jean Paul Gaultier and Versace.
Hofburg, Innsbruck’s Imperial Palace
Situated in the centre of the Altstadt on Hofgasse, the Hofburg was a favourite residence of Hapsburg royalty. Under Emperor Maximilian I the magnificent place was enlarged in the late Gothic style, and was extensively remodelled in the 1750s by Empress Maria Theresa. The 31-m long Giant’s Hall is especially impressive, while the vaulted Gothic Cellar in the basement of the north wing can be hired for private functions.
Fans of arms and art will enjoy this medieval fortress-turned-Renaissance palace, located 100m above the Inn valley floor on a rocky promontory. Notable past residents include Archduke Franz Ferdinand whose private weapons and armour collection is featured in the lower castle, including jousting knights on horseback. There’s an impressive art collection in the Portrait Gallery with works by Titian, Van Dyck and Velázquez.
Bergisel Ski Jump
For fans of Eddie ‘the Eagle’ Edwards (the UK’s greatest ski jumper) a visit to Innsbruck’s Bergisel ski jump on Isel mountain is a must. Star architect Zaha Hadid designed this too, and it’s a death-defying feat just taking the lift to the viewing platform of this 50m-jump. Ski jumping as a sport had its origins here back in 1927. Stop a while and enjoy the outstanding views from the Bergisel Sky café.
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