Saalbach – Hinterglemm

Saalbach-Hinterglemm Ski Resort

Saalbach, aka Saalbach-Hinterglemm Ski Resort, is part of the Ski Circus Saalbach Hinterglemm Leogang Fieberbrunn ski area, one of the largest lift-interlinked ski resorts in Austria.

Saalbach from northeast. Hinterglemm in the bkgd. ©, Daniel Roos

Saalbach from northeast. Hinterglemm in the bkgd. ©, Daniel Roos

Saalbach-Hinterglemm is one of the liveliest resorts in Austria and hugely popular in the area, known for its relaxed vibe and huge free-ride terrain.

In this article, you will learn the most important things that you need to know before booking a vacation in Saalbach. Then, if you read until the end, you’ll get some great tips that will help you make better decisions, save time and money and have a more enjoyable vacation.

Saalbach at night. Hinterglemm in the bkgd. ©, Daniel Roos

Saalbach at night. Hinterglemm in the bkgd. ©, Daniel Roos

How to get to Saalbach?

The closest airports to Saalbach are Salzburg Airport, with a transfer time of an hour and a half and Innsbruck and Munich Airports, each with a transfer time of two and a half hours.

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Both Salzburg and Munich Airports can be reached easily with the Holiday Shuttle from the resort, which operates seven times a day in both directions.

If you plan on coming by train, the nearest train station is at Zell am See, and buses leave the resort on an hourly basis heading up to the train station, while a taxi to the resort from Zell am See train station should cost you around thirty euros.

The Ski Circus ski area

Saalbach-Hinterglemm, and part of Ski Circus from the east

Saalbach-Hinterglemm, and part of Ski Circus from the east.

The Ski season in Saalbach begins in late November and lasts until mid-April.

The ‘Ski Circus’ name comes from the layout of the lift system in the area, which forms a circuit route on the mountain around the two main resort villages. You can ski the circuit both ways, either clockwise or anti-clockwise.

Grober Asitz on the border of Saalbach and Leogang. From here you can ski to Zell am see Xpress1 new gondola.

Grober Asitz on the border of Saalbach and Leogang. From here you can ski to Zell am see Xpress1 new gondola.

Since the connection of a fourth ski resort of Fieberbrunn to the ski circus in 2016, the ski circus now spreads across two federal states in Austria: Salzburg and Tirol. The above gave the alliance the excuse to make five recommended circuit routes.

Four of the routes range from 19 to 26 kilometers of runs and will take you around two to two and a half hours, including lift times, so you’ll have plenty of time for stops and further exploration of each area. The main four routes are: The Saalbach circuit

The Hinterglemm Circuit, which you can ski clockwise as well as anti-clockwise The Leogang Circuit, which is comprised of 100% blue runs, and intended for people staying in Leogang, but can easily be adapted for guests staying in Saalbach.

The Tyrol Circuit is undoubtedly the hardest of the four so far.The fifth circuit — the largest circuit route in the world, contains 65 kilometres of ski runs. It’s formed of a circle around the entire ski circus and will take seven and a half hours without stops for advanced skiers, so that’s why they call it ‘the Challenge’. With most of the terrain elevation sitting below 2100 meters, the resort has invested heavily in snow-making facilities to make up for any natural shortfalls, and all major pistes are covered.

The ski circus’ elevation spans from 840 meters to 2096 meters above sea level. The Ski Circus rose from 200 to 270 kilometres of connected ski runs after the connection to Fieberbrunn. The entire network is served by 70 state of the art lifts.

Overall there are 14 black runs, 55 red runs and 87 blue runs throughout the ski circus.

Since 2020 the ski pass has been called Alpine Ski Pass and includes the Zell am See and Kaprun ski resorts, with 408 kilometres of slopes. There’s also a new gondola connecting the Glemm Valley to Zell am See mountain, the Schmitten, in Viehoffen, and you don’t need a ski bus to get there, only on the way back to Saalbach.

The ski circus itself is an intermediate skier’s paradise. Experts can test themselves with a long steep black run with a vertical drop of around 1000 meters, under the Schattberg and Zwolferkogel lifts, and a world cup black run in the area.

There are decent off-piste options when snow conditions allow, and if you feel adventurous, you can hike up above the Hochhörndl chair, where a leg of the free ride World Tour extreme ski and snowboard competition takes place each year. Freestylers have a park immediately above Hinterglemm.

In another park above Leogang, they can test their skills on the airbag.

Where to stay in Saalbach -Hinterglemm

Saalbach-Hinterglemm has every style of accommodation, from basic apartments up to luxurious five-star hotels.

The big question is where to stay? Staying in the centre of town in Saalbach offers a range of Apres Ski activities with easy access to the lifts, or for a comparatively quieter time, you can stay in Hinterglemm.

You can travel from Saalbach to Hinterglemm via Ski bus from 8:30 am to 5 pm. The ski bus departs every twenty or thirty minutes, and ski pass holders can use this service for free.

During the night there is a night bus which costs around three euros with departure times of 7:50 pm, 9 pm and 11:15 pm. After that, you’ll need to take a taxi at the cost of around 14 to 17 euros.

Saalbach is an attractive Tyrolean village with a river running through the centre. Its main street is traffic-free and very pleasant to wander down.

During the day, it’s a loving and peaceful environment, but when the apres-ski hour starts, the place quickly becomes packed with revellers that continue late into the night.

If you need good eight hours of sleep every night, we advise you to stay in a different part of the resort.

Apres -Ski

Regarding Apres-ski, if you finish your day on the southern face of Saalbach, we recommend you give a visit to Hinterhag Alm, situated at mid-mountain above Saalbach, on your ski back to the village. Thank god it’s a blue run back to town after Happy Hour!

From here, ski down to Bauers Schialm near the Kohlmais gondola’s bottom in central Saalbach.

If you stay in Hinterglemm, and you finish your skiing day on Reiterkogel southern face, don’t miss out on Goaßstall, close to the bottom of the Reiterkogel gondola in Hinterglemm, where the Apres-ski party goes on and on.
Another good option in Hinterglemm is Der Schwarzacher, just below the snow park.

Nightlife in Saalbach-Hinterglemm

In Saalbach, go to underbar, on the bottom of the main street, at 08:30 if you love live gigs and cover bands. Underbar is famous for its strong cocktails. On the other side of the street, you will find Bobby’s pub, a sports bar with a good Pizza. Another place is Castello, in the middle of the street, and The Taverne, just a bit further up the street with live bands and DJs, ideal for a late-night in Saalbach.

Another option after midnight-1 am is to take a taxi to Hinterglemm centre and go to the Tanzhimmel, an excellent apres-ski bar with typical apres-ski hits and happy dutch songs. At the basement of this party hub, we recommend the club, where they play good techno music, darker and feels more like a nightclub.

Saalbach offers many other attractions: there’s night-skiing in Hinterglemm which operates every day until 9:30 pm, except for Sundays; tobogganing, and for the brave of heart, why not try paragliding, and go for a tandem flight where you can see and feel all the fantastic views that Saalbach has to offer.

Ratings by Criteria of Saalbach-Hinterglemm

here are our ratings for Saalbach-Hinterglemm:

  • For Beginners: 7.5
  • intermediates: 9
  • advanced skiers: 8
  • Snowboarders: 8.5
  • freeriders: 8
  • freestylers: 8
  • Apres-ski: 8.5
  • Nightlife: 8.5
  • Resort charm: 8.5

Total score: 8.7


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