Travelogue – Kitzbühel, Austria
The small medieval town of Kitzbühel is situated along the river Ache in Tyrol, Austria. It has a population of about 8,200. The town is situated at in the Kitzbühel Alps about 100 kilometres east of the state capital of Innsbruck.
The name Kitzbühel is shaped by the extensive landscape paired with the majestic mountain backdrop of the Wilder Kaiser, Kitzbühler Horn and Hahnenkamm and has always represented two main things – sport and lifestyle. It is well known for its world famous ski resort and hosts the annual World Cup alpine ski races, the Hahnenkammrennen, which attracts 80,000 visitors every year. The most famous slope on the Hahnenkamm is the classic downhill course, called the Streif, which is regarded as the most demanding race course in the world. During the summer months it is possible to hike along the course having a look at the race’s key points.
Further places of interest can be found in the town’s centre:
St. Catherine’s Church, which was built between 1360 and 1365. It is a High Gothic church in the heart of the town with a coppersmith altar. The high tower is a striking landmark in the town centre. Its carillon sounds at 11 am and 5 pm.
Museum Kitzbühel presents the history of the town from 1,000 years ago to the winter sports era. It also includes a larger permanent exhibition of the Tyrolean painter Alfons Walde.
The diversity of restaurants on offer in Kitzbühel ranges from multi-award winning Gault Millau restaurants to traditional Tyrol guesthouses. There are no limits to the culinary delights of Kitzbühel. With around 10,000 hotel and guest house beds, Kitzbühel and its neighbours have an unusually high density of guest accommodation. The Schwarzsee is an alpine lake located about two kilometres away from the town and is perfect for relaxing and swimming.
The Austrian Open (currently known as Generali Open) is the annual ATP tennis tournament held at the Tennis Stadium Kitzbühel with a capacity of about 6,000 places. The event was part of the ATP World Series from the creation of ATP World Tour till 1998, International Series Gold from 1999 to 2008 and ATP World Tour 250 series in 2009. It was part of the ATP Challenger Tour in 2010, before regaining top tour status. It is once again part of the 250 series. The tournament has been held on clay courts since 1894.