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Achenkirch is a town in the Achen Valley on the northern shores of Achensee Lake in Tyrol, Austria, and a popular holiday resort for winter sports.

Understand[edit]

Achenkirch in winter, under a picturesque snow cover
Lake Achensee seen from Achenkirch

Achenkirch is a town in the northern part of the Achen valley and formed around its church (kirche is German for church). The town is about 3 km north of the lake shore, and the northernmost parts of the town almost reach the state border with Bavaria at the Achen Pass.

Modern Achenkirch is a popular tourist destination around the year, with winter sports being particularly popular during winter months (December - March). During the rest of the year, Achenkirch provides hikers and nature lovers access to the Karwendel Nature Park.

1 Achenkirch Tourist Information Office, Im Rathaus 387, +43 5 95300 50, fax: +43 5 95300 59, . 08:00-12:00, 14:00-17:00. Free.

History[edit]

There is mention of an early church predating the current parish church in a deed of donation as early as 1120 and is still referred to as a parish in the Emaus valley. The name Achenkirch soon became in common use. Since 1313 the Achen valley was named as a separate local community. Today's political division emerged from the Bavarian administrative reforms of 1811, when Tyrol was briefly governed by Bavaria. In 1867 the municipality was assigned to the Schwaz district administration.

Get in[edit]

By bus[edit]

There is a bus line from Tegernsee Lake (rail connection to Munich) to Achensee Lake. Line Bus-logo.svg 9550 of the RVO stops in Achenkirch, Buchenau and Maurach. The line end is in Pertisau. There is no bus service on federal motorway 13 between Lenggries and Achenkirch, you'll need to arrange your own taxi service for this part of the journey.

By train[edit]

The nearest train station is in Maurach and can be reached from Jenbach in the Lower Inn Valley with the very traditional and picturesque Achenseebahn. The railway leads right up to the lake shore to the ferry port. Note that the Achenseebahn is only in operation during summer months.

The Jenbach train station in the Inn Valley is on the Lower Inn Valley Railway from Kufstein to Innsbruck.

Continue from Maurach to Achenkirch by bus, boat or taxi.

By plane[edit]

The nearest international airports are in Innsbruck, ca. 46 km away and Salzburg Airport, ca. 145 km away. Also within easy reach is Munich Airport / "Franz Josef Strauß" north of Munich , ca. 104 km away.

Get around[edit]

The AchenseeCard includes free use of regional buses in the Achensee region year round. With the white guest card, holiday guests from Achenkirch, Pertisau, Maurach, and Steinberg am Rofan can use the buses in the Achensee area free of charge. In summer, a hiking bus runs every hour between the towns in the region.

Bus lines Bus-logo.svg 4080 and Bus-logo.svg 9550 traverse the town from north to south.

See[edit]

  • 1 Sixenhof (Heimatmuseum Achental), Achenkirch 29, +4352466508, . 13:00-17:00 daily. Ethnographic museum with 21 rooms portraying historic living conditions in Tyrol, displaying the way of life and working conditions in the Achen valley region. Sixenhof (Q79106180) on Wikidata
Bell tower roof of the St. John the Baptist Parish Church, a shape typical for the region
  • 2 Parish Church of St. John the Baptist (Pfarrkirche zum Hl. Johannes dem Täufer), Achenkirch 386. Parish church built from 1748 to 1750 according to plans by Jakob Singer. Free. Parish Church of St. John the Baptist (Q79106415) on Wikidata
  • 3 St. Anna Chapel (St. Anna Kapelle) (Dollen hill southwest of the center). A chapel built in 1670 by Christoph Unterberger, consecrated in 1732. The impressive altarpiece is from the hand of an unknown painter from the mid 18th century. Free.

Do[edit]

  • 1 Adventure Park Achensee (Abenteuerpark Achensee), Achenseebundesstrasse 7a, +43 699 190 89 968, . 10:00-17:30 daily. Outdoor activities in the forested hills around Achensee Lake. There are outdoor escape games, climbing activities, archery ranges, and treasure hunts for children. Adults €27, students €22, under 12 €17.
  • 2 Achensee North Beach, +43 5246 6247, . Bathing and beach north of the Achensee Lake, and a perfect entry point into the crystal clear waters of the lake! There are sunbathing facilities, beach volleyball, showers and changing cabins. Free entance.

Winter sports[edit]

Achenkirch has the most extensive winter sports facilities of any of the towns around Achensee Lake, albeit modest to Tyrolean standards.

Ski lift and slopes

The infrastructure is tailored towards experienced skiers, with only a single easy (blue) practice piste and all other pistes intermediate (red) or difficult (black). The chairlift up the mountain is one way, and an intermediate (often icy) piste is the only way back to the valley — posing a serious challenge to beginners. At the same time, the ski resort is somewhat isolated and too small to challenge experienced skiers for more than a day or two. Achenkirch is therefore mostly popular as weekend destination for Germans and Austrians owing to its favourable location that can easily be reached from southern Germany and eastern Austria. Long queues at lifts should be expected during weekends (especially at the 3 valley chairlifts and the 4 Mosenlift next to the practice slope), but week days are usually a lot calmer.

Because of its low altitude, ski conditions in winter are variable, and natural snow often needs to be complemented by snow cannons. The difficult slopes, particularly the 5 black valley piste (no. 4) are closed when there is insufficient snowfall, often early in the season. All pistes are best enjoyed in the morning and tend to become icier throughout the day, so try to get up as early as possible. The lift infrastructure is somewhat outdated in comparison with nearby ski facilities, with only 2 modern chairlifts and the remainder being slow double chairlifts and T-bar surface lifts.

Name Tel. Altitude Sym CableCar.png / Sym SkiLift.png / Sym DragLift.png Sym Skil-L.png / Sym Ski-M.png / Sym Ski-S.png
Ski resort Christlum +43 5246-6300 950 - 1.800m 13 Lifts: 0 / 4 / 7 27 km Pistes: 6 / 16 / 5

A day ticket costs €47 for adults and €24 for children. Tickets can be purchased at the lift base station.

Buy[edit]

Eat[edit]

Drink[edit]

  • 1 Hochalmlifte Christlum, +43 5246 6623. Cafe and self service restaurant targeted at skiers, open throughout the year. Relatively pricey, i.e. €2.90 for 33 cl of water or €3.50 for a small bottle of ice tea. A strudel with vanilla sauce will set you back €5.20, a small Kaiserschmarren €6.50 and a large portion €11.50. it's theoretically prohibited to consume a lunch box or own drinks, but this rule is not enforced in practice.

Sleep[edit]

Connect[edit]

Go next[edit]

In the Achen Valley:

  • 1 Pertisau — posh resort town a few km north-east of Maurach
  • 2 Maurach — end station of the Achen Lake Railway
  • 3 Steinberg am Rofan Steinberg am Rofan on Wikipedia — tiny village tucked away in the Rofan mountain range

In the Lower Inn Valley:

  • 4 Jenbach Jenbach on Wikipedia — economic centre between the Achen Valley and the Ziller Valley
  • 5 Schwaz — historic silver mining town
  • 6 Innsbruck — state capital city of Tyrol
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