1 day in Innsbruck
Innsbruck – that is city AND mountains.
And that’s what we want to show if you have just one day to discover the city. If you walk from Maria Theresien Street into the Old Town, then it’s all spread out before you – the beautiful Medieval buildings of the Old Town, the famous Golden Roof glinting in the sunlight and, towering above it, the 2,000 metre-high peaks of the Nordkette mountain range.
Take a pleasant stroll through the arched passageways of the Old Town that offer wonderful protection on a rainy day and a wealth of little shops offering everything from culinary keepsakes, to fashion both traditional and trendy, to intricate handicrafts. Feel like a spot of exercise? Then, weather permitting, climb the steps of the city tower – the view is quite spectacular. The Golden Roof is just a few steps further away, and you can visit the magnificent „Helblinghaus“ which, with its Rococo facade, forms a striking contrast to the Medieval buildings. You should still have plenty time for a visit to the cathedral and, if you leave the Old Town in an easterly direction, you’ll find yourself in front of the magnificent „Hofburg“ imperial palace. There won’t be enough time for a tour but what you shouldn’t miss is a look at the „Hofkirche“ (imperial church) right next to it where you can see the empty tomb of Emperor Maximilian I and the over-dimensional bronze figures known as the „Schwarze Mander“ (black men).
A break for coffee and cake in a pavement café in the Old Town will soon have you revived for the next part of the day – the mountains! Right next to the Old Town, in one of the stations designed by the world-famous architect Zaha Hadid, you can board the „Nordkettenbahn“ funicular which takes you in just 20 minutes from the city centre first to the Hungerburg plateau and then up to the Seegrube. Here, at an elevation of almost 2,000 metres, you’ll come across skiers, hikers or day-trippers, depending on the time of year. Have a stroll, take in the breathtaking view of the city below and the surrounding mountains peaks, enjoy lunch on the terrace and then soar back down into the valley in the cable-car.
Before you continue your exploration of the city, you might like to take a little wander through the lovely „Hofgarten“ imperial gardens right opposite the funicular station. Next take a saunter up the Maria-Theresien-Strasse and visit the Rathausgalerien shopping centre – exquisite shops and stunning architecture (by Dominique Perrault) await you there. Take the lift to the very top, enjoy the fantastic view from the platform and stop for a short break in the Panorama Café.
Right opposite is the newly built Kaufhaus Tyrol shopping centre which offers an equally tempting selection of shops and boutiques. As you continue in a southerly direction, you pass the Baroque „Landhaus“, the Tyrolean assembly building, in the inner courtyard of which you can visit the beautiful chapel of St. George. The end of Maria-Theresien-Strasse is marked by the „Triumphpforte“, the distinctive triumphal arch with its „happy“ and its „sad“ side which was commissioned by Empress Maria Theresa to commemorate the wedding of her son Leopold during which her husband, Franz Stephen of Lorraine died.
Our tip for day visitors: The 24-hour Innsbruck Card affords you admission to many museums and attractions. It also includes ascents and descents with the region’s lift facilities, as well as free transport in the Sightseer bus that takes you quickly and comfortably to all the city’s major sights. For just € 31 the 24-hour Innsbruck Card offers you a wealth of advantages.