The Bavarian Alps in the Zugspitze area offer a large choice of activities - from easy and medium tours to demanding mountain treks and exciting climbing routes.
The area is known for its excellent alpine infrastructure that provides for secure, stress-free and comfortable touring. Alpine roads and paths are well maintained and signposted, visitor parking lots are available, alpine chalets offer food and overnight stay opportunities, and in emergency the rescue services are there to help. Don't forget to take your ID with you on cross-border trips.
Secure on tour
When you start on a tour, make sure you have the right shoes on and check the other 'basic equipment' in your backpack. Don't forget to put on a layer of sun cream. Check the weather report before you go and whether the alpine chalets are open on your way. What to do in emergency and how to activate the Alpine Emergency Call? Read our blog on this - that will secure you a safe stay in the Alps.
Plan your tour in advance. On our interactive map you will find multiple suggestions for routes in this area.
The Alps 'For Dummies': Safety in Alpine Terrain for Beginners in Summer - The Badersee Blog
Hiking & trekking
If you specialize on trekking, you will discover endless opportunities in Garmisch-Partenkirchen area, from easy to difficult - at any time of the year. Use the interactive map to find your perfect tour.
You can reach the following tours directly from the Hotel am Badersee (most links are in German):
- Höhenrainweg (easy)
- To Garmisch-Partenkirchen over Hammersbach (easy)
- To Neuneralm Chalet (easy)
- To Lake Eibsee (easy)
- Kramer Plateau Trail (easy)
- Mount Ziegspitz (difficult)
- Hammersbach - Riffelscharte - Eibsee (difficult)
- Hell Valley (Höllental) (medium to difficult)
- Almhütte Chalet - Stepbergalm Chalet - Mount Kramer (difficult)
- Mount Zugspitze over Höllental (difficult)
In our Badersee Blog we regularly introduce local tours that our team members did personally.
Hiking Tips in the Badersee Blog
Also, the Tourist Office Grainau offers guided tours as well as theme tours (e.g. 'Photo Tour', 'Discovering plants' etc.) at any season.
Mountaineering with kids
Guided tours from the Tourist Office are suited for families with children. Beside that, try the following for your family trips (links are in German):
- 'Fantastic Forest' („Sagenhafte Bergwald“) - a theme park for kids in Grainau on the slopes near Hammersbach
- Partnach Gorge in Garmisch-Partenkirchen
- Eibsee Round tour
- Kramer Plateau Trail with wild animal feeding - make the appointment in advance!
- Kochelbergalm Chalet at Hausberg
- Werdenfelserhütte Chalet with the Werdenfels Castle Ruin in Burgrain
- Gschwandtnerbauer Chalet in Partenkirchen
For ambitious mountain lovers the Zugspitze area offers an enormous wealth of summit tours and sophisticated treks. The Wetterstein Chain with Mount Zugspitze as its highest summit, the Ammergau Alps, the Karwendel and the Ester Mountains invite you to exciting clambers. Before you start out to the summit, prepare yourself and check out your route as well as the weather report.
High alpine tours in Zugspitze area
Lots of hikers and alpinists love to combine a tour with a visit to an alpine chalet. Below you will find a few popular chalets in this area. You will normally discover a number of different trails leading to the same chalet, so that hikers of all levels can enjoy the tour. If the chalet is your destination, check the opening times in advance - most of them take a break in low season. Some chalets can be alternatively reached with a cablecar so you can save time on descent. Please mind that most chalets are only open during the summer season.
↓ Alpine chalets in Garmisch-Partenkirchen:
- Neuneralm in Grainau 910 m (easy)
- Berggaststätte Gschwandtnerbauer in Partenkirchen 1.020 m (easy)
- Berggasthof Almhütte in Garmisch 800 m (easy)
- Berggasthof Pflegersee on Mount Kramer 845 m (easy)
- Werdenfelser Hütte with Werdenfels Castle Ruin in Garmisch / Burgrain 770 m (easy)
- Kochelbergalm on Hausberg 850 m (easy)
- Partnachalm on Hausberg 995 m (easy)
- Tannenhütte (old name 'Gamshütte') on Mount Wank 1.000 m (easy / cablecar)
- St. Martinshütte am Grasberg on Mount Kramer 1.040 m (easy)
- Kaiserschmarrn-Alm am Graseck (old name 'Wettersteinhütte') in Partenkirchen 910 m (easy / cablecar)
- Maxhütte in Wallgau 1.022 m (easy)
- Korbinianhütte am Kranzberg in Mittenwald 1.200 m (easy)
- Kolbensattelhütte in Oberammergau 1.270 m (easy / cablecar)
- Gamsalm in Ehrwald, Austria 1.278 m (easy)
- Wankhaus (Alois-Huber-Haus) on Mount Wank 1.780 m (medium to difficult / cablecar)
- Kreuzalm at Kreuzeck 1.600 m (medium / cablecar)
- Esterbergalm in Farchant / Partenkirchen 1.262 m (medium)
- Wettersteinalm from Elmau 1.462 m (medium)
- Schachenhaus from Elmau with the King's House on Schachen and the Alpine Botanical Garden 1.866 m (medium or difficult, depending on the trail)
- Stepbergalm on Mount Kramer 1.592 m (medium)
- Brunnsteinhütte in Mittenwald 1.400 m (medium)
- Pürschlinghaus (August-Schuster-Haus) in Unterammergau 1.564 m (medium)
- Pleisenhütte in Scharnitz, Austria 1.757 m (medium)
- Bockhütte in the Reintal, start in Partenkirchen 1.052 m (medium)
- Reintalangerhütte in the Reintal, start in Partenkirchen 1.369 m (medium)
- Höllentalangerhütte from Hammersbach, Grainau 1.387 m (medium to difficult)
- Weilheimer Hütte (Krottenkopfhütte) from Eschenlohe or Esterbergalm 1.955 m (difficult)
- Meilerhütte from Reintal, Elmau or Leutasch, Austria 2.374 m (difficult)
Our Hiking Highlight: The Spitzenwanderweg
The 'Spitzenwanderweg' was introduced just a few years ago. This long distance trail leads you in 12 sections across 200 kilometers through the picturesque manifold landscape of the Zugspitze region. With a total elevation of 6.800 meters, this route is quite sporty.
But it's worth the effort. The route goes through a number of alpine landscape varieties and lets you visit numerous culture monuments. The trail starts and ends in the picturesque town of Murnau. On the way you would have to spend two nights at the alpine chalets: the 'Soiernhaus' and the 'Schachenhaus'. Across 200 kilometers hikers enjoy tremendous views of the Alps, blooming alpine and moor meadows, deep blue alpine lakes, whirling torrents, the spectacular Partnachklamm and Hell Valley gorges, pre-alpine hills with panoramic views, cultural monuments like Schachen and Linderhof royal castles, as well as the typical Bavarian localities like Murnau, Krün, Mittenwald, Grainau or Oberammergau. There is a lot to discover on and aside the path.
Anticipation is the best joy, so we would hike one section after another, as the route will be a special experience for us locals as well. Sonja will walk the trail alone or sometimes with her colleague Polly. Follow us on the route - in our Badersee Blog.
This is an extremely sporty option to discover our mountains on foot. In our neighbourhood you will discover over 100 trails, from sophisticated to medium, as well as a few easy ones for beginners. Up and downhill over natural gravel trails and narrow paths - just what trail runners want! Here, at the venue of the annual Zugspitz Ultratrail, you will find the best conditions for your training, if you intend to participate in the event in the future.
The Zugspitze Area, together with the Zugspitz-Arena in Tirol, offers sport climbers a wide choice of natural rocks, designated climbing areas and climbing trails in all levels and grades. If you are interested, please contact the Garmisch-Partenkirchen Section of the German Alpine Club (Deutscher Alpenverein, commonly known as DAV) regarding the current status of the climbing trails, security matters and trained guides. Links are in German.
- Kletterwald - High ropes course in Partenkirchen
- DAV - Bouldering hall Garmisch-Partenkirchen
- Indoor climbing in Ehrwald
- Rock climbing at Frauenwasserl (Oberammergau / Ettal)
- Alpspitz-Ferrata Climbing Route
- Alpine climbing on Mount Alpspitze (arrival with Alpspitzbahn)
- Rock climbing at Fuchsschrofen Nassereith
- Rock climbing in Garmisch-Partenkirchen area
Want to know more?
Links are in German.
- German Alpine Club (Deutscher Alpenverein) - Section Garmisch-Partenkirchen
- Mountain Rescue Guard Grainau
- German Weather Service
See all hikes in the Badersee Blog