Skiing the SkiWelt, Austria’s gargantuan, charming and fun-filled resort

Sponsored post: With the SkiWelt Wilder Kaiser – Brixental, one of Austria’s biggest ski areas, on its doorstep and some rambunctious aprés action down in the valley, you will never get bored in Wilder Kaiser, as Mary Creighton discovers

It’s 9 am, the clouds are starting to clear, and I’ve just met up with Janine, from SkiWelt Marketing, at the bottom of the Hochsöll Gondola. She’s on a mission to give me a whirlwind tour of the gargantuan SkiWelt Wilder Kaiser – Brixental area. The twist? We’re not going to use the same piste or ski lift twice.

Over the next few hours, we whizz around all six of the sections that make up the region. It’s a vast, valley-spanning area that lives up to its name (SkiWelt = ski world, for the non-linguists). We hardly make an impact on the 284km pistes; you could ski all week and still not tick them all off. And that’s before you take into account the connection with the Kitzbühel ski region. Buy the Kitzbühel Alps All-Star Card (from €51) and you get access to 2750km of slopes. That’s one seriously good value lift pass.

284km of pistes and views like this? We’re completely won over |

I soon understand why Wilder Kaiser is so popular. Despite its size, it has a friendly, family feel. Nothing is too pricey, from the lift passes to the drinks. Everything from the 20 ski schools to the night skiing area above Söll – the largest in Austria – have been built with visitors in mind. You can choose to stay in any of the nine villages surrounding the area, from rowdy Söll to quaint Going. Each area has a great selection of runs for every level: it can be as cruisey or as testing as you like. And while it’s not exactly known for its freeride offerings, there are 21 ski routes in the area, plus numerous lift lines and tight tree runs to play in when conditions are right.

Probably the most impressive thing, though, are the views. The mountains are all under 2000m, but offer incredible vistas of the Kitzbühel Alps and the Wilder Kaiser mountains, a chain of rocky peaks that pierce the sky. One of the best places to soak them up is from the Gipfelalm Hohe Salve restaurant, which has a rotating terrace offering panoramic views.

After a late lunch, we make the long descent down to Söll, taking in a skiercross run and a snowpark along the way. By the time we return to our starting point, we’ve been skiing a total of five hours and circuited the entire ski area, without repeating a lift or piste once. That’s my kind of ski resort.

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