Alpine crossing for pleasure hikers – 7 stages from Lake Tegernsee to Sterzing

Hiking Collection by
komoot

The Alpine crossing from the Bavarian lake Tegernsee to Sterzing in South Tyrol is regarded as a real pleasure route. This hike across the Alps has one special feature that makes it stand out: Between the individual stages, you can comfortably bridge longer sections by bus, train or cable car. In this way, there are no dry stretches along busy roads, no strenuous ascents and no trembling knees on long descents - instead, you can already look forward to relaxed hikes through dreamlike nature.

In contrast to many other transalp routes, this hike does not focus on mountaineering skills. This route is all about enjoying the spectacular landscape you're hiking through, as well as sampling all those wonderful Alpine delicacies along the way. Much like the views, the menus change as you head south, with each Alpine hut presenting the best regional cuisine imaginable. In Bavaria, you'll start your journey with a belly full of hearty beer and roast pork or fish. As you head deeper into the mountains, homemade cheese and fresh milk await you on the pastures. In Tyrol, you'll enjoy Kaspressknödel and the obligatory Kaiserschmarrn. And in Sterzing, a glass of wine is served with the world's best knödels.

The Alpine crossing from Tegernsee to Sterzing takes you in seven daily stages over the Bavarian Mangfallgebirge, along the Tyrolean Achensee, across the Zillertaler Alps and through the picturesque South Tyrolean Pfitschtal. You will cover a total distance of about 71 miles (115 kilometers). On this route, you'll only have to climb around 10,000 feet (3,000 meters) and descend around 11,000 feet (3,500 meters). This means that you don't need to arrive in the best shape of your life — you'll be sticking to comfortable hiking paths and well-developed trails most of the way.

Numerous hotels, Alpine inns and cozy guesthouses await you at the individual stage destinations. Many of the accommodation options along the hiking route even offer luggage transfer services — so all you need on your hikes is a simple daypack with weatherproof clothing, water and provisions.

On The Map

All stages across the Alps from Lake Tegernsee to Sterzing

  • Difficult
    06:10
    23.1 km
    3.7 km/h
    300 m
    220 m
    Ferry
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required. The tour includes crossing by ferry.

    The first leg of your Alpine crossing takes you along the shores of Tegernsee into the mountains of the Mangfallgebirge. Here you hike along the Weißach to Wildbad Kreuth. Thanks to well-developed paths and little slope, the tour is perfect for immigrating in peace. If the 23-kilometer route is too long for you, then you can also take the train to the Tegernsee train station and start your tour here. This will save you around six kilometers of track.The first stage of the Alpine crossing for connoisseurs begins in the tranquil Gmund on the shores of Lake Tegernsee. From Gmund train station, follow the promenade for a stretch of road until the route takes you along the Kurstraße up to the Tegernsee Höhenweg. Up here you can hike on a comfortable trail off the road and enjoy a magnificent view.At the town of Tegernsee, it goes back down to the shore and past the brewery of the same name. Beer lovers should definitely take a break here. Continue along the lakeshore until you reach the landing stage of the rowing ferry. Take the ferry over to the opposite bank, where the trail will take you along the Tegernsee for a final stretch until you reach the confluence of the Rottach.Upstream, it goes out of the city of the same name. Soon the path turns south and you wander across wide meadows. At the foot of the mountains, the trail runs along the edge of the forest in the direction of Weißach. Without significant height differences, you hike along the Weißach river upstream.Around you spreads the Weißachtal, which is framed by impressive mountains on both sides. You cross the village of Kreuth, where several guest houses invite you to take a rest. Continuing along the Weißach River, you will reach Wildbad Kreuth. As a conclusion to your today's hike, you can expect a cozy guesthouse and a fish farm with attached smokehouse. As there is no overnight accommodation in Wildbad Kreuth, after your well-deserved break you will take bus number 9556 or 9550 back to Kreuth, where you will find a good selection of accommodation.Timetables can be found at rvo-bus.de/oberbayernbus/view/fahrplan/kursbuchtmpl.shtml.

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  • Difficult
    07:31
    21.0 km
    2.8 km/h
    880 m
    840 m
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Sure-footedness, sturdy shoes and alpine experience required.

    The second leg of the crossing of the Alps from Tegernsee to Sterzing takes you over the green mountains of the Mangfallgebirge. High up on the ridge, you also cross the border to Austria. After a break on the Blaubergalm you follow the path down to the valley to Achenwald.Start of today's stage is the bus stop Siebenhütten, which you can reach from Kreuth with the bus lines 9550 and 9556. Here you cross the Weißach and follow the footpath into the forest. The path climbs quickly and leads below the High Gernberg up to the green alpine meadows of the uncultivated Geißalm.Even if you can not stop here, it's worth taking a breather to enjoy the magnificent mountain panorama. Afterwards you continue uphill through the mountain pastures. Soon, the trail leads you back into a light mountain forest. After a while, a path branches off in the direction of Schildenstein - if you like, you can climb the summit and enjoy a magnificent view of the Mangfallgebirge from above.Without major differences in altitude, you will hike further to the Blaubergalm. Here you have earned a long rest and a hearty meal. Freshly rested now begins your descent into the valley. After only a few meters, you will meet the Klammbach, which will accompany you on the rest of the hike.On a comfortable forest path, you walk leisurely side by side with the Klammbach downhill. On both sides rise wooded mountain slopes and you can enjoy nature to the fullest. Arrived in the valley, the Klammbach flows into the Walchen and at the same time awaits you here also your stage destination Achenwald.In Achenwald there is a small selection of accommodation. Alternatively, you can still take the bus 9550 or 4080 to Achenkirch, the starting point of the third stage.Timetable information is available at vvt.at.

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  • Intermediate
    03:42
    13.5 km
    3.7 km/h
    120 m
    100 m
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    The third stage takes you on an exciting and promising high altitude path along the shore of the Achensee. On the hike from Achenkirch in the north to Maurach in the south, you will enjoy breathtaking views of Tyrol's largest lake at every step. Due to its size and its natural beauty, the lake is also affectionately known by the Tyroleans as "the Tyrolean Sea".Your stage today starts at the bus stop "Achenkirch branch Achensee", which is approached from Achenwald by the bus lines 9550 and 4080. From here it goes directly to the shore of the Achensee. After crossing the Oberaubach, you will reach the Gaisalmsteig, which leads along the steep western shore of the Achensee.In the constant ups and downs of the narrow trail meanders under the steep mountain slopes. At any time you enjoy a fantastic view of the huge lake and the opposite mountainsides. After about four kilometers, you will meet the Gaisalm, which is picturesquely situated on the shore. The inn can only be reached on foot or by boat and therefore enchants with a fantastic tranquility.After a break, continue along the west bank towards Maurach. The trail is here quite narrow and leads several times over steps uphill and downhill. In tranquil Pertisau you cross the Pletzachbach, which flows into the Achensee. Here ends the narrow Gaisalmsteig and you wander the rest of the tour on comfortable paths along the lake promenade along to the stage destination Maurach.In Maurach you have a good selection of different accommodations.Timetables for the bus routes 9550 and 4080 can be found at vvt.at.

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  • Difficult
    04:15
    12.6 km
    3.0 km/h
    280 m
    670 m
    Expert Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Sure-footedness, sturdy shoes and alpine experience required.

    On the fourth stage you will hike through the picturesque mountains of the Zillertal Alps. For this purpose, it is first of Maurach by bus and train to Fügen. Then you take the cable car up to the Spieljoch. From here you hike on well-developed hiking trails across wide mountain meadows to the resort of Hochfügen.At the beginning of the fourth stage, you can take bus 8332 or 4080 from Maurach to Jenbach station. Here you change to the regional train R149, which is also known as Zillertalbahn. Take the train to the train station Fügen-Hart in the Zillertal. From the train station, it is a 15-minute walk to the valley station of the Spieljochbahn cable car, which comfortably takes you up to the Spieljoch with a stopover at the middle station.From the top station of the Spieljochbahn cable car, it is only a few steps to the Spieljoch summit, which spoils you already at the beginning of your hike with a wonderful view of the Zillertal. From here you first hike up to the Uncle yoke and then follow the signposted hiking trails in the direction of Loassattel and Hochfügen.Here you hike on a well-developed mountain path over wide mountain meadows and along small pine forests. From Unclejoch, the walk is almost downhill all the time, so you can enjoy the picturesque mountain scenery without much effort.After about four kilometers worth a first break at the cozy Jausenstation the Gartalm. If you do not need a break now, you can continue your trek up to the Loass Saddle. Here you will find the Alpengasthof Loas, known for its excellent Tyrolean food.After a long break at the Loas, you will hike across meadows and through sparse forests down to the Hochfügen stage destination, where you will also spend your night.Timetable information for buses and trains is available at vvt.at.

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  • Intermediate
    04:12
    10.8 km
    2.6 km/h
    830 m
    300 m
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    On the fifth leg of the crossing of the Alps from Tegernsee to Sterzing, things really get off the ground in the truest sense of the word: about 830 vertical meters in the ascent will be tackled. However, you will also be fully rewarded for this ascent, because you are standing on the highest point of your entire hike on the 2,258 meter high Rauhenkopf. From the summit, it's a leisurely downhill to the Melchboden. Here you get on the bus and drive along the Zillertaler Höhenstraße to the stage destination Mayrhofen.Without further bus transfer, your fifth stage starts in the resort of Hochfügen. From here you hike upstream along the Finsing stream through the valley of the same name. On your ascent towards Rastkogelhütte you can enjoy the beautiful nature of the valley and pass several small alpine villages. First you hike on a comfortable dirt road through the narrowing valley until a mountain trail branches off towards Rastkogelhütte.Here you cross the Finsingbach and follow the mountain hiking path over wide alpine meadows upwards. During the ascent you will be spoiled with magnificent views of the Finsing Valley and the Zillertal Alps. Soon you will reach the saddle between Rosskopf and Kraxentrager. From here, the trail runs without significant height difference to the Rastkogelhütte. At this point, you have almost completed the entire ascent of today's stage and you have earned a long break.After a meal with a wonderful view of the Zillertal Alps, you will hike on to the Rauhenkopf. The path leads uphill and continues to offer you magnificent mountain panoramas. After you have crossed the Rauhenkopf with some pride, it goes evenly downhill to the snack station Melchboden.With a piece of apple strudel, you can comfortably bridge the time until the bus 8340 brings you comfortably down to Hippach. Here you change to the Zillertal Railway and continue to the stage destination Mayrhofen.Timetables for bus and train are available at vvt.at.

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  • Difficult
    04:50
    14.0 km
    2.9 km/h
    490 m
    820 m
    Expert Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Sure-footedness, sturdy shoes and alpine experience required.

    The sixth stage of your crossing of the Alps begins at the Schlegeisspeichersee and leads you from the dam wall through the vast alpine world of the Zillertal Alps to the Pfitscher Joch. Here you cross the Austrian-Italian border and wander on comfortable hiking trails through the picturesque Pfitschtal valley to St. Jakob in South Tyrol.On the morning of your sixth day of hiking you drive from Mayrhofen with the bus line 4102 to the starting point at Schlegeisspeichersee. The ride takes about an hour and you can admire the magnificent view of the mountains.At the huge dam wall of the reservoir you finally start your hike. Here you start along the shore until you reach the confluence of the Zamserbach. Through the Zamserbach you walk evenly uphill in the direction of Pfitscher yoke.First, the trail leads you through wide mountain meadows and along small wooded areas, but slowly the area becomes barren and rocky. Soon only short grass and mosses grow along the path and on both sides of the valley towering mountain peaks tower into the sky.Before you reach the Pfitscher Joch, you can take a rest on the Lavitzalm and enjoy the dramatic mountain scenery of the Zamsertal during a delicious meal. Afterwards it goes in some hairpin bends up to the pass. At Pfitscher Joch you finally enter Italian soil. Only a few minutes away from the pass is the Pfitscherjoch-Haus. In the oldest mountain lodge in South Tyrol there are typical Tyrolean delicacies as well as Italian specialties - so you can experience the border crossing also culinary.From the Pfitscherjoch-Haus a wide gravel track leads in turns downhill to the stage destination St. Jakob. Once there, you will find a good selection of comfortable accommodation.The timetable of the bus line 4102 can be found at vvt.at.

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  • Difficult
    05:35
    20.6 km
    3.7 km/h
    110 m
    610 m
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The seventh stage is the culmination of your Alpine crossing. On barely traveled roads and wide hiking trails, you hike leisurely through the picturesque Pfitschtal downhill to the stage destination Vipiteno.The starting point of your last stage of the day is the small alpine village of St. Jakob im Pfitschtal. From here you hike on a narrow side road over wide mountain meadows and pass through sleepy villages and farms. In Kematen, next to an inn, you will also find a small supermarket where you can stock up on fresh food for the hike.From Kematen you continue gently downhill to the shore of the Pfitscher Bach. The first flows slowly through the valley, until it is dammed at the biotope Riederau to a small pond.From this point, the valley falls steeper and next to the trail rushes the brook merrily into the depths. After a short stretch along the main road, the route will take you back on trails and narrow back roads. On your way you will enjoy a magnificent view of the narrow valley and the mountain slopes towering on both sides.Soon the valley will make a turn and here you can see for the first time your stage destination Vipiteno in front of you. Once in Sterzing, the mixture of Italian and Austrian flair will enchant you. The old town of Vipiteno is rightly considered one of the most beautiful old towns in Italy - especially in connection with the surrounding Alpine panorama. So a perfect place to end your crossing of the Alps stylishly.From Vipiteno you can easily travel home by train or by long-distance bus.

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Collection Stats

  • Tours
    7
  • Distance
    116 km
  • Duration
    36:15 h
  • Elevation
    3,010 m