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Things to Do in Zell am See, Austria

SmarterTravel

Inhabited since ancient Roman times, Zell am See, Austria, is a popular destination for world travelers today. Come here in the winter to ski some of the best slopes in Europe, and during the summer to explore the area’s many sparkling lakes.

Zell am See Things to Do

The resort city of Zell am See is filled with natural wonders like a glacier and beautiful lakes.

A Winter Destination

Zell am See comes alive during winter: The lake freezes over and makes for a glorious place to go skating, and the mountain town draws skiers and hikers. Take a cable car to the glacier of Kaprun and the funicular down to the snow plateau. Many mountains here have wide slopes that are ideal for beginners. Up on the slopes, there are several rest stops offering classic Austrian dishes and beverages such as sausages with cabbage, and a glass of schnapps.

During Summer

The summer season is just as popular as the winter months. Take the funicular to Mooserboden reservoir. This is Europe’s largest open funicular lift, and it offers spectacular views along the way. Visit the Maiskogel recreation park for lots of access to many kinds of slides and a roller coaster. Hike up the KLAMM for a look one of the area’s loveliest waterfalls. Head up to the Schmittenhöhe, a mountain just west of the town that has many hiking paths.

The Lakes

The center of the town is Lake Zell, which is about four kilometers long and one kilometer wide, and you can easily walk along it for hours via the promenade. During the summer a music pavilion hosts many concerts, and several boats will take you out on the lake. Boat trips start at the Esplanade next to the Grand Hotel and generally take about an hour. You can also take a boat to other cities along the lake on a day trip, stopping to swim along the way. You can enter the lake for a small fee, and there are also slides and kiddie pools for families to enjoy.

The Town Square

The town’s main square is small, but has sites like St Hippolyt Parish Church and two of the town’s fountains. The church dates from the 11th century, and the older town fountain dates from 1885. The more modern fountain is the work of Friedensreich Hundertwasser, a famous contemporary Austrian artist. Another historic local site is the Schloss Rosenberg Town Hall, a traditional Salzburg residence. Check out the Kastnerturm tower, a medieval landmark home to a local museum.

Editor’s Note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about things to do in Zell am See.

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