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Zell am Ziller, Austria – Hitting the Slopes

We finished our 5 month stint in London in mid December just as winter really hit – apparently this was the coldest winter London and in fact Europe had experienced in close to 70 years…. half our luck.

The coldest winter in 70 years hits London....

The coldest winter in 70 years hits London.... This picture was taken outside our place in Inverness Terrace, Bayswater, London.

The day before we were due to fly to Austria, Easyjet sent us a message to advise that our flight had been cancelled due to heavy snow fall. We were literally stuck in London and looking at every possible way to get to Austria including asking a taxi driver how much it would cost us for him to drive us… about 1500 pounds. Overnight buses and the Eurostar were also majorly expensive and car hire was totally impossible. Flights to other locations were a maybe but had a possibility of being cancelled. So we said a few prayers and thankfully Easyjet opened the very next day and we had the first delayed flight out of Gatwick. We were on our way.

Looking out at Salzburg from our flight

Looking out at Salzburg from our flight

After a good flight, we caught a local bus (~2 euro pp) into Salzburg’s main train station and then caught a train (well two trains in fact ~81 euro pp) from Salzburg, through Jembach to Zell am Ziller. We advise you to buy your tickets for the train journeys at the train station. It is a beautiful train ride through the Austrian Alps, that took 3 hours. There are some really nice Hostels/Lodges to stay at including our lodge called Tirolerhof.

Our first night at Tilerhof Lodge in Zell am Ziller

Our first night at Tirelerhof Lodge in Zell am Ziller

The reason we chose Zell am Ziller can actually be credited to our friends Daniel and Ellen Cusack who we met there, and skied with for the next 3 days. Daniel’s whole family was there which really meant we were crashing the party, but we had a ball and we’re very thankful for the invitation to share the mountains with them. Thanks to Peter, Sue, Dan, Ellen, Alistair & Sophie and Mia for such a great time….

Thanks Cusacks for a beautiful dinner at Theresa's...

Thanks Cusacks for a beautiful dinner at Theresa's...

Dan and Mia about to take on the slopes

Family time as Al, Dan and Mia get ready to take on the Austrian slopes.....

The beauty about a place like Zell am Ziller is that from there you can get the bus to several different mountains. If you buy a superpass (167 euro pp for 3 day pass)  the mountains are all within about half an hour or so reach by bus.

The stunning view looking down on the valley where Zell am Ziller lies.

The stunning view looking down on the valley where Zell am Ziller lies.

We mainly skied/boarded on Zillatel mountain which had enough runs to keep us interested for our days. We timed our visit well which is worth consideration to. We were there just before Christmas and there were very few people on the mountain. Apparently after Christmas/New Years there are thousands of locals and neighbours crowding the slopes.

Our first day on the slopes with Elle and Dan

Our first day on the slopes with Elle and Dan

We loved the long Gondola/Cable Car rides with heated seats. The chair lifts are also worth a mention because they have capsules that cover you in harsh weather. Some chairs can carry 8 skiers. The runs are long and wide, with a good range of easy, medium and hardcore (suited Pete, Dan and Al) runs that test ones skills.

Dan and Pete on their way to one of the best views in Zell am Ziller

Dan and Pete on their way to one of the best views in Zell am Ziller

How good is this chair lift? Covered and comfortable...

How good is this chair lift? Covered and comfortable...

One thing to note is that it is very difficult to hire Ski Clothing so make sure you bring your own however ski’s, boots and poles are a plenty from a number of different shops in the town. The cost for 3 day hire of this gear was about 55 Euros per person.

Lovin' it!!!!

Pete is lovin' it!!!!

This place was amazing and we’d love to go back one day….

A hot chocolate break was always appreciated while enjoying the view...

A hot chocolate break was always appreciated while enjoying the view...

To see more of our photos, please see our gallery:

Hot Air Ballooning, Cappadocia

Tigers in India
MADAGASCAR VOLUNTEERING
GORILLA TREKKING
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