St.Johann in Tirol is a quaint small town, nestled in the Austrian Alps. It is a popular international winter sports destination and has a lot to offer!
Incidentally, this is my home town and who else, but a local, can better recommend the best things to do in St.Johann in Winter, right?
Where is St.Johann in Tirol?
St Johann in Tirol is located in Austria, Central Europe. Tirol is the German name for the Tyrol region where the town can be found.
We have to call it by the full name with “in Tirol” because there are other Saint John villages in Austria such as St.Johann in Pongau and St.Johann im Walde. So gotta call it by its name!
Sankt Johann is located near the German border and near the Salzburg region, in a large valley. The town is special because it gets a lot of sunlight in the day, which kind of is a luxury in some shady parts of the alps.
Besides, St.Johann can be easily recognized because the Kitzbüherlhorn mountain is facing it and the area is centrally located. You gotta pass this place if you want to move ahead in this area.
The town is the main hub for almost anything in the area. Shopping, hanging out with family and friends, good food and winter sports!
10 things that you can do in St.Johann in Tirol in Winter!
Winter and summer are both exciting seasons to be in St.Johann. However, today we will focus on winter and the fun things you get to do during your stay there.
Skiing & Snowboarding
Let’s start with the most obvious and most popular winter holiday activity in the region!
St Johann has 16 Lifts with a total of 43 km skiing slopes. Most of the slopes are great for beginner and amateurs alike. St.Johann ski resort is combined with the neighboring village, Oberndorf.
The skiing areas are known as Eichenhof, Bergbahn, and Penzing. I think Eichenhof is the best place to learn skiing for kids and grown-ups alike. Small children aged 3 can learn skiing and they usually turn out to be natural talents.
The skiing schools are great and attentive. Best is if you talk to the skiing schools at the bottom of the slope or ask the hotel reception for help to set you up.
Skiing and snowboarding equipment can be arranged near the slopes but those tend to be pricey. To get a better deal check out Hervis stores in the town center.
Winter Skipass rates tend to increase every year a bit. This is because the region keeps on updating the lifts and public facilities. You pay for quality and assurance.
Cross Country Skiing
St.Johann in Tirol is known for a famous cross country skiing event, known as the Koasalaf (translated – the emperors run).
Cross country skiing is almost as popular as regular downhill skiing and it’s completely free! Other nearby villages (such as Hochfilzen) charge to use the cross country skiing trails.
In St.Johann you just need to rent equipment and seek out the nearest cross country trail. You might be surprised because the trails often while pass by your holiday apartment or hotel.
You can enter anywhere and the trails are numerous and never-ending, connecting all the villages in the area.
Ski touring is a real sportsmen’s thing! St.Johann offers a few ski touring areas, which you can discover on your own.
The most popular ski touring area is the main mountain, the Kitzbühler Horn.
Just know that you need to follow the safety rules for ski touring to avoid accidents with skiers. There are designated times and slope areas which can be used by ski touring fans.
You can take a guided tour too, to discover the other areas such as the beautiful Wilder Kaiser area.
Snowshoe hiking is a great sports activity for the whole family. You need to be fit to be able to do this.
The tourism department has collaborated with local snowshoe guides. They provide the equipment and will take you around.
They offer easy and medium snowshoe tours. I think they are quite doable and definitely worthwhile!
You can book a snowshoe hike via the tourism office. Some hotel receptions might be able to help you out as well.
I love to slide down the mountain, full speed of course! They have a decently sized toboggan run which is quite fun, especially at nights.
The run is well lit and up to a certain hour, you can travel up with a lift. Or you simply walk up.
I personally, however, prefer the toboggan run in Gasteig (a nearby village), that’s a killer run but they don’t have a lift there.
Yep, you can paraglide in winter. It’s cold but definitely, a holiday hit. Imagine you in the skies and the snow-covered trees and homes below you.
Balloon rides are popular as well. Remember to wear a good set of warm clothes. The winter view from above, however, is worth every penny!
Ice Skating is a fun activity for the whole family. The skate park is situated at the panorama outdoor complex.
I think the best time to visit is in the evening when it gets dark. The lightning is great and you can hire the equipment on a place.
Swimming Pool & Sauna
The swimming pool is one of my favorite places in St.Johann because I love to swim. They have an indoor area with a hot water pool (which is powered by renewable energy from the nearby plant) which leads out. This is one of the most relaxing places to be after a long day at the slopes.
The sauna is separated but you can get a ticket for both venues.
Apré Ski & skiing break fun
Apré ski is like a small fun party. The idea is to have fun with friends in a quaint looking hut. Great comfort food such as a Goulash, Käsespätzle and a hot alcohol spiked Jagatee just make it all the better and unforgettable.
I recommend the Grander Schupf inn for all that. The atmosphere is energetic, authentic and fun and this are good people there.
Best time to visit St.Johann in Tirol in Winter
The best time of the year to visit St.Johann in Tirol depends on your needs.
If you want to party and enjoy the apreé ski fun or a real Christmas in the Alps with your family then visit during Christmas time, from the 22nd to after new years.
Most winter sports fans like to visit in January and February due to the excellent snow conditions in the mountains.
March can be a great month to visit as well if you are looking for a more quiet holiday experience. Keep in mind that Easter can be a rather busy time in the year and that room rates usually increase during that time.
How to get to St.Johann in Tirol?
From Munich (Germany) to St.Johann in Tirol
The best way to reach St.Johann by flight is to land at Munich airport (MUC) It’s about 2 – 2 1/2 hours drive to St.Johann in Tirol and in Germany but the airline connections and flight ticket rates are better than say Salzburg or Innsbruck. Vienna is too far.
By Taxi or rental Car – Take the Highway direction Salzburg and then direction Innsbruck/Kufstein. If you have a rental, make sure to get a toll sticker for the Austrian highway.
The highway length to Kufstein is short so you might want to leave at Kiefersfelden before the Austrian border and take the country road to cross Kufstein city. Don’t drive through Kufstein city, take the road towards St.Johann/Kitzbühel.
Taxi costs about 250-300 €.
By Train – Take the Aiport train connection towards Wörgel Austria. Usually, that’s a Euro express In Wörgel you will have to switch the train to go to Kitzbühel/St.Johann in Tirol direction Saalfelden.
Be aware that the train connections in Wörgel can be 20 minutes apart from each other. In winter trains can delay. You can ask the train guy to call in Wörgel so that the regional train waits for you. I have done that a million times. The station is small in Wörgel.
From Salzburg to St.Johann in Tirol
The closest airport to St.Johann in Salzburg, however, I do not recommend the Salzburg airport. Instead, check out what I wrote at the Munich.
By Taxi or rental Car – You have the option to take two different roads. The more common road is to take the so-called little German corner and to cross Bad Reichenhall and the pass Unken and Lofer in Austria to get to St.Johann.
The second road is to cross Hallein, Bischofshofen, Saalfelden, and Fieberbrunn. This is the longer route but you get to see more of the landscape and mountains before reaching St.Johann in Tirol.
By Train – I don’t recommend to take the train from Salzburg to St.Johann, except if you have a lot of time on your hand and patience, then this might just be fun! The train route starts at Salzburg and crosses Zell am See over Saalfelden and Fieberbrunn to St.Johann. This can take over 2 hours and you need to find a direct train.
From Innsbruck to St.Johann in Tirol
Innsbruck has a small airport, it’s limited and it’s mainly for charter flights.
By Taxi or rental Car – Take the highway direction Salzburg. it’s straightforward and the drive takes about 1 hour to St.Johann. In Wörgel you will need to switch from the highway to the country road direction St.Johann.
Be aware that you need a toll sticker for the highway in Austria. You can buy it in petrol pumps, that’s the easiest way. Also be aware that you can’t drive faster than 100 km/hour.
By Train – The connection from Innsbruck to St.Johann in Tirol is better than say from Salzburg to St.Johann. You will find a couple of intercity, euro city and regional trains traveling to St.Johann, direction Salzburg.
The train ride takes about 1 hour and the fair is somewhere priced at 40€ per Person one-way
From Vienna to St.Johann in Tirol
Vienna is on the other side of Austria, so you might want to land in Munich or Salzburg. You can travel from Vienna to St.Johann by crossing Salzburg and the little German corner.
This usually takes about 5-7 hours via highways or train and it highly depends on the snow situation.
Other well-known Tourist destinations near St.Johann in Tirol that you might want to visit
- Kitzbühel – About 15 minutes drive from St.Johann. This small quaint city is known to be a jet-setters paradise. Every year in Jan, celebrities from all over the world meat up in Kitzbühel for the famous Hahnenkamm ski race.
- Going am Wilden Kaiser – About 10 minutes drive tops! The starting point for the Wilderkaiser ski resort, Austria’s biggest Ski resort. Also famous for the beautiful view to the Wilder Kaiser.
- Kufstein – 30 minutes drive across the mountains to Kufstein. This medieval city located next to the German border has a beautiful castle and is home to the world-famous Riedel glass company.
- Zell am See – Located in the region of Salzburg, over an hour away from St.Johann in Tirol. Known for the lake and nearby ski resort of Kaprun, Zell am See is also another international jet setter place. The Hohe Tauern Natural Resort is located nearby as well.
Dear Reader, when are you coming to visit us in St Johann in Tirol Austria?
Please feel free to share your thoughts and ideas with us in the comment section further below!