Insider tip in the Alps: The Alpengasthof Zollwirt

Deep snow and high emotions in the Defereggen valley in East Tyrol.

16 December 2020

In St. Jakob, at the end of the East Tyrolean Defereggental, lies the Alpengasthof Zollwirt. The partner business of the Hohe Tauern National Park stands for fantastic winter experiences away from mass tourism, down-to-earth hospitality and authentic cuisine.

Of course, many skiers come to the original Defereggen valley to experience the typical East Tyrolean snow and sun safety without any hustle and bustle. But above all, it is true winter romantics who branch off from the Felbertauern Road because of the magic of the landscape at the gateway to the Hohe Tauern National Park. At Gasthof Zollwirt with the Leitner family in St. Jakob, all the threads for a winter full of gentle winter experiences come together. The family runs the hotel with great commitment and personal hospitality. Whoever arrives here is immediately at home. This feeling is evoked by the cosy ambience with lots of East Tyrolean wood and also by the Zollwirt cuisine, which is based on the best traditions of East Tyrol. Regional food and seasonal specialities such as game and fish, are served in the beautifully decorated parlours.

After a day on the boards, the mountain air of the Defereggen valley and the feel-good atmosphere in the pine wood rooms let guests sleep soundly.

Ski centre St. Jakob: Not grandiose, but great

The free ski bus stops directly in front of the Alpengasthof Zollwirt and after 4.8 kilometres you have already reached the insider tip among the leading skiing areas. Families and winter enthusiasts can count on high snow reliability, top grooming and the reliable sun of the south side of the Alps in the St. Jakob im Defereggental ski centre. The wide carving slopes and fun slopes above the Brunnalm reach up to 2,500 metres above sea level. The children romp around at the valley station at 1,400 metres with the beginners' ski area, ski courses and the ski kindergarten. Those who want a little more effort try the black training course or the long family valley run through the forest zone.

From magnificent cross-country ski trails to black runs: the Defereggen valley has a lot to offer.

With the National Park Ranger on a game tour

The nature of the East Tyrolean Defereggental also deserves good marks: on winter and snowshoe hikes you can track down the hidden corners between Deferegger Gebirge, Lasörling and Staller Sattel. Together with a National Park Ranger, you will walk through the glittering nature on snowshoes, just like in grandfather's day - always with the magnificent panorama of the Hohe Tauern National Park in front of you. A wildlife observation tour in the rear Defereggen valley promises an experience you won't soon forget. Well-equipped with snowshoes and a telescope, nature explorers can quietly track down chamois. A much shorter, but romantic tour takes you through the winter forest on a guided lantern hike. For tobogganists, things are also going according to plan in the snow-secure Defereggen valley. You can try your hand at tobogganing in St. Jakob, on the Alpe Stalle or in the Leppe valley. The kids are winding down the slope on the children's toboggan run Oberweißen, with 60 metres of altitude just right for little nature adventures. To warm up, a small, fine wellness session in the sauna or steam bath is recommended - or immediately the cosy bed in the comfortable feel-good room. Those who prefer to stay in complete privacy can book one of the spacious apartments in the old customs house next door.

Everyone gets their money's worth at the Zollwirt.

Picture Credits: Belinda Leitner / Alpengasthof Zollwirt, Peter Leitner / Alpengasthof Zollwirt

Scroll to Top