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KNOW BEFORE YOU GO - STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD (foreign office travel advice)

Scheffau

Scheffau Holidays

If you're looking for an idyllic alpine getaway, Scheffau is the perfect destination. Set in a sunny valley at the foot of the majestic Wilder Kaiser Mountain, this charming hillside village is a popular base for walkers and cyclists looking to explore the Austrian countryside.

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A picturesque village with stunning scenery

Scheffau is exactly what you would expect from a typical Austrian alpine resort – chalet-style buildings, a quaint village centre and breathtaking mountain views. The village lies in the foothills of the Wilder Kaiser Mountain range and is part of the Kaisergebirge nature reserve, together with the Zahmer Kaiser. It's no surprise that this area of outstanding natural beauty is a popular choice with families searching for a peaceful, relaxing Austrian holiday.

A great base for exploring the surrounding landscapes, Scheffau offers a variety of walking trails suitable for all levels of ability, including the picturesque forest track to the Rehbach Gorge. Mountain lifts operate throughout the year, giving visitors access to high altitude walking routes with spectacular views of lush hillsides and pine-clad peaks.

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Family friendly activities

In addition to hiking, cycling is one of the most popular family friendly activities for those staying in Scheffau. There are a range of exhilarating bike circuits around the Wilder Kaiser, with a selection of rustic mountain huts along the way to grab a bite to eat and admire the scenery.

A popular pit stop is the Brandstadl Mountain Restaurant, which sits next to the Scheffau KaiserWelt recreation area. Kids will love exploring the adventure playground, tree houses and forest trails, while adults can sit back and enjoy the views.

From June until September, the village comes alive with a variety of festivals hosting live music, crafts and food stalls. The Scheffau Village Evening, for example, takes place every Thursday throughout summer and gives visitors the chance to learn about Tyrolean culture, sample local delicacies and enjoy an open-air concert during their holidays to Austria.

Peaceful lakes

One of the main highlights for holidaymakers in Scheffau is a visit to the Hintersteinersee Lake, often hailed as the most beautiful lake in Tyrol. To get there, you can embark on a scenic one hour walk from the village or opt for the 10 minute bus journey.

Located at the foot of the Wilder Kaiser mountain, the lake is sourced by underground springs and has some of the clearest and cleanest water in the area. Swimming is possible if you're brave enough to take a dip in the refreshing waters, or you can simply sit back and relax on a deckchair or grab a coffee at the lakeside café. The 5 kilometre track around the shoreline is ideal for a leisurely stroll, where you can soak up the scenery and admire the wildlife along the way.

Food and drink

Food-wise, the village has a small selection of restaurants and cafés serving traditional Austrian food, as well as a local pizzeria. Gastof – located in the lower village – is a popular choice for families thanks to its affordable menu and children's play area. Those looking for more choice can hop on the bus or take a taxi to the nearby towns of Ellmau or Söll, where you'll find a wider choice of restaurants.

Known for its laid-back ambience, Scheffau has a fairly quiet nightlife scene. Most visitors spend their evenings relaxing in the hotel bar, or head to The Village Pub for a casual drink at the end of the day. For more lively nightspots, you can head to the neighbouring towns.

Where to stay

When it comes to accommodation, there's a variety of choice on offer - from All Inclusive hotels to cosy B&Bs, and self catering apartments. Hotels in Scheffau are mostly traditional, chalet-style buildings with large sunny terraces. Although most are fairly central, the area is quite hilly, so you'll need to be prepared for a bit of a climb when getting around. There's also a few hotel options near the Brandstadl gondola station for those who want easy access to the mountains.

Many of the hotels include their own restaurants and bars, allowing guests to relax and enjoy an evening meal and drinks without leaving the property. If you want to add a touch of luxury to your holiday, some residences also feature private pools, spas and saunas perfect for a spot of pampering after a day of outdoor adventures.