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Austria | Taking the Gerlos Alpine Pass to Camping Aufenfeld

Austria | Taking the Gerlos Alpine Pass to Camping Aufenfeld

It seems almost impossible to take a road trip without stumbling upon yet another wonderfully scenic journey in Austria…. a country we’ve enjoyed visiting, especially our time in Vienna. So where better than an Alpine Pass to remember!!

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However ‘stumbling’ might not quite describe it accurately… as the wonderful Gerlos Alpine Road website conjured up some exciting images that meant we simply couldn’t miss a scenic drive through the raw, rugged natural beauty of the Austrian Alps.

 

Whilst it might not be Austria’s most famous Alpine Pass’, the Gerlos Alpine Road is worth every one of the 9 Euros it costs motorhomes. It’s winding alpine pass through the High Tauern National Park reminded us at times of the wonderful scenery seen on the Rondane route through to our ranch style horse-riding adventures in Kvistli. Scenery that makes you ‘jam’ on the brakes for yet another ‘must see/take’ photo opportunity..

 

Built by the same architect as the Grossglockner High Alpine Road in 1962. Elegant sweeping  turns seem to fit the terrain perfectly (maximum gradient of 9%) allowing panoramic views over snow capped peaks and alpine meadows full of early summer colour. .We picked up the route well before Krimml and Gerlos , as we’d heard the best part was from Mittersill to Zell am Ziller Well over 50km of fantastic driving experience then awaits you!

 

So much to experience?

There’s plenty to experience enroute (click here for more) and excellent parking opportunities too. At 1,630 m, the High Tauern can be seen to the south and the Kitzbühel Alps to the north. Families with children will love the playground with it’s observation tower and an opportunity to let off steam in fresh mountain air! Or even just enjoy the panoramic view point below that offers spectacular views up/down the valley from your picnic lunch table. But if you visit one thing, spare some time to see Europe’s largest waterfall (380m high) at Krimml.. you can even walk up the three cataracts towards the thunderous noise above you (see above picture)

Glacial Landscapes

It was fast becoming apparent that Cordoba’s religious history is as rich as its vibrant culture. So where better to see a different side to Cordoba than the Juderia. A labyrinth of small street with bars, shops and museums! A truly wonderful, wonderful place to spend 2 hours!!

 

We took in the Jewish Synagogue and also the Inquistador museum… a real eye opener for the girls! It is truly terrible how much the Jews were persecuted….

Rather than launching into guide book territory…. here’s a great link to find out more about Religion and Cordoba….. but rest assured that if you have kids willing to learn about oppression, suppression and religious tolerance… Cordoba is definitely the place to take them!

If you’ve never visited Norway, this Alpine Pass reminded us a little of the sense of perspective you can experience at Geirangerfjord. A green carpeted valley stretching out to meet the newly tarmac road…. all overlooked by imperious snow capped peaks
Unlike the Grossglockner High Alpine Road, the Gerlos Alpine Road is also open to traffic in winter, allowing you to reach the extensive Zillertal Arena ski and winter sport region from Zell am Ziller or Mittersill. 139 km of slopes are connected with 51 mountain railways and lifts up to an altitude of 2,500m. Both girls loved seeing the wooden chalets and enormous ski hotels pass by us… all next to the most glacial green river that flows through Gerlos.
So what did we think after finishing the 69km of varying terrain on the Gerlos Alpine Road? Apparently a few years ago, Top Gear declared Italy and Switzerland’s Stelvio Pass one of the best driving roads in Europe whilst others might vote for Napoleon’s Route through the French Alps. For us, this was the perfect road to take the girl’s grandparents across on their first Alpine Pass. Easy enough to enjoy yet hard in places…. If you like the sound of testing your driving skills then this more complete list might offer a few new ideas too (click here)

​It proved a brilliant success as it took us straight into our next stay at Leading Camping’sCamping Aufenfeld‘… with hopefully the chance to revisit the Stubai Glacier again tomorrow!

Need a map to help you?

grossglocken

so where did we park the bus for the night?

our top tips to help you?

Top tip number 1 If you’re looking to visit just double check the weather conditions online

Top tip number 2 -The route is a fantastic opportunity to pack a picnic and enjoy a view… for us, it was at the viewpoint after the spectacular waterfalls

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About The Author

Richard

Ever wanted to pack your bags, just jump in a motorhome and go off and explore Europe as a family? Well, that’s exactly what my family has done since September 2015. Visiting 35 European countries, travelling over 54,000 miles and grabbing over 450 family experiences on the way… enjoying Bobsleigh in Norway, Climbing into Mt Etna in Sicily or Kayaking the River Dordogne.

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