Self Guided Hut to Hut in the Hohe Tauern National Park
Hike the rooftops of Austria in central Europe’s largest National Park
- 3 breathtaking 7 night walking tours amidst high peaks, tarns and waterfalls
- Easier moderate, moderate and hard itineraries
Self Guided Hut to Hut in the Hohe Tauern
Choose from 3 spectacular itineraries
New for 2018, we are extending our offering of self-guided hut to hut routes to our newest resort, Austria’s Hohe Tauern. Our three 7-night itineraries have been tailormade to offer our guests the opportunity to explore some of Austria’s most spectacular alpine scenery and enjoy the unforgettable experience of watching the sun rise and set from spectacular high-altitude locations. Our three routes venture into the heart of the Hohe Tauern, an area of striking glacial landscapes, flower-strewn meadows and idyllic mountain lakes.
While this area of Austria is already noticeably less “discovered” than much of the Austrian Alps, the true beauty of these itineraries is the opportunity of spending the night in the mountains and appreciating a rare feeling of solitude once most walkers have descended to the valleys.
We have prepared comprehensive route notes for each itinerary, providing you with a thorough description of the route, the terrain you will encounter and any logistical information that may help along the way.
Each route crosses a variety of alpine terrain and traverses one of the main mountain groups in the region, visiting mountain lakes, glacial corries, crossing rocky alpine cols and passing through rustic East Tyrolean hamlets and farms.
The Hohe Tauern seems tailormade for multiday hiking, and the region is liberally studded with mountain huts and traditional working farms. On a Collett’s hut to hut itinerary, you will stay in rustic but well-appointed mountain huts, all serving local cuisine and offering the perfect refuge after a full day’s walking. In some cases you will stay in more comfortable local guesthouses in hamlets nestled in the valleys.
One of the charms of the Hohe Tauern is its freedom from overdevelopment and the areas explored by our itineraries are free from the scars of ski infrastructure or excessive tourism. However, access to some of the routes is facilitated by public buses and by also jeep hut taxis which offer a convenient means of ascending (or descending!) the valleyside.
Collett’s offer airport transfers from Salzburg Airport (approx. 2.5hrs) on Saturdays and Mondays, or alternatively you can hire a car and arrive on any day you wish (except Wednesday, our staff day off).
On a Collett’s hut to hut holiday, we take all the hard work out of the planning for you, and leave you to simply enjoy the trek! At the planning stage, we offer a factsheet for each of our itineraries which give a brief day by day description of what to expect, along with figures indicating height gain, total descent and distance covered each day. Once you settle on your preferred route we make the relevant reservations for the huts and then, nearer the time, send you the detailed day by day route notes printed on waterproof paper. We also supply the relevant 1:50,000 Hohe Tauern map. Upon arrival in Matrei, you will be greeted by our Hut to Hut Host who will talk you through your itinerary, confirm any transport or tailored booking arrangements and answer any final queries.
Three Superb Self Guided Itineraries
Our hut to hut holidays are available between late June and mid-September, depending on the itinerary. We especially recommend late July, late August and early September, when the routes are usually in the best condition and the huts are generally quieter. The earlier you book, the easier it is for us to guarantee your accommodation and confirm your arrangements.
We have three 7-night itineraries to choose from, of Easier Moderate, Moderate and Hard grades. The nature of the terrain here in the Hohe Tauern means that these itineraries are more challenging than our other hut to hut routes in the Dolomites and Zugspitz Arena, and on the whole, are half a grade harder. Please read the downloadable PDF factsheets below in detail to get a clear picture of the terrain and day by day route.
Your first and last nights of the week are spent in a hotel in Matrei. The first night is on a half board basis, but your last night does not include dinner, giving you the opportunity to choose a local restaurant in the village to end your week with.
If you would like us to check availability in the huts, please contact Kelly to talk through the itinerary of your choice and to let her know your specific travel dates. We ask you not to book flights or travel plans until we have confirmed all the accommodation for your itinerary.
Tour 1 – Virgental Balcony Traverse
This itinerary incorporates 2 nights in a hotel in Matrei at the beginning, allowing you to explore the area and ease yourself in with a day walk, before commencing the 5-day 4-night hut to hut route. You explore the panoramic balcony paths of the Lasörling mountain group above the Virgental valley. You end with two final gentler days visiting the Umbalfalle waterfalls. Accommodation is a mix of 3 mountain huts with basic yet comfortable facilities, a charming guesthouse, along with 3 nights in a hotel in Matrei. The route is an excellent introduction to the hut to hut experience in the Hohe Tauern.
Tour 2 – Lasörling Group Traverse
The first and last night is spent in a hotel in Matrei, and then in 5 mountain huts situated in scenic locations. This is a varied traverse of the Lasörling gruppe, one of the main mountain groups of the Hohe Tauern. Offering an excellent introduction to the area, the route explores steep-sided valleys and stunningly panoramic balcony paths, visiting idyllic mountain tarns and offering superb, far-reaching views. Access is aided using a public bus followed by a jeep taxi on Day 1, enabling you to begin your tour high in the mountains.
Tour 3 – The Venediger Hohenweg
The first and last night is spent in a hotel in Matrei, and then during the 5 night trek you stay in 2 valley guesthouses and in 3 remote yet comfortable mountain huts, always with stunning views and serving good hearty food. This is a true classic of the area, and explores the wild and remote alpine terrain of the Venediger Hohenweg, a high-altitude traverse through some of the most stunning scenery in the Hohe Tauern. Crossing varied and challenging terrain, including an exposed protected path, the tour offers stunning, close-up views of the expansive glaciers that characterise the Hohe Tauern. The final day ventures onto the parallel Lasörling group.
Accommodation in Guesthouses and Alpine Hütte
Your first and last nights (and second also for the Easier Moderate route) will be spent in the East Tyrolean village of Matrei. Very much a working village, Matrei has retained a “lived in” feel and, nestled at the junction of three major valleys, and is an ideal base from which to embark on a multi-day hike.
During your trek, accommodation is provided in Hütte, traditional Austrian mountain huts. Not only does this offer the unique opportunity to experience sunset and sunrise high up in the mountains, the huts also serve hearty food and drink, often with an emphasis on local produce with locally produced milk, cheese and meat, and offer basic yet comfortable facilities and a convivial atmosphere – everything you could wish for after a good day’s walking. Sleeping arrangements are mixed sex and in dormitory-style accommodation, in bunk beds or in some cases, on sleeping platforms where you sleep on mattresses in a row alongside one another. In some huts, it is possible to upgrade to a private room, subject to availability and a supplement – see the individual factsheets for details. All of the huts have washing facilities and showers, some of which are coin operated. Sleeping bag liners are required in all of the huts.
Food in the Mountains
Each hut serves breakfast and an evening meal. Breakfasts are usually offered in the form of a simple continental buffet, varying in selection depending on how remote the hut is. Huts in more isolated locations tend to offer a more basic breakfast such as cereals, cheese, ham, bread and preserves and tea and coffee, while other huts may offer a wider choice including fruit, yoghurt and boiled eggs. Lunch is not included in your holiday and while on some days you may wish to eat in a different mountain hut encountered on the route, lunch items and snacks can be purchased at each accommodation. Some huts are happy for guests to make a simple sandwich from the breakfast selection to take away with them, whilst others charge a small fee for this. In the evening, dinner is usually taken from a set menu with two or three choices for each course. However, some of the more isolated or basic huts offer a fixed menu with no choice. The food is invariably hearty, filling and tasty, and usually gives a good representation of local cuisine. Vegetarians are catered for, but please be warned that meals tend to be much more limited in choice and variation; given their remote locations, certain huts do not have a ready supply of fruit and vegetables and consequently the choice of ingredients is more restricted.
If you wish to sample other local food at lunchtimes, you will often pass other huts along the route serving traditional dishes such as Knödel (dumplings) Schlutzkrapen (ravioli) and of course Strudel, while may huts serve their own locally-distilled Schnapps.
Airport Transfers from Salzburg Airport
Return Transfers at £80 per person to the Hohe Tauern
Available Saturdays and Mondays
Our airport transfer service is easy to use and popular. If you need any help or advice or have any questions regarding how our Airport Transfer System works please call us on 01799 513331 or make an enquiry here.
Our transfer service is not a personal taxi service and waiting can be unavoidable, so please do not book a transfer unless you are relaxed about the possibility of having to kill time in Salzburg (if time permits) or at the airport. In short, we send one vehicle down to the airport to drop off all our departees for their flights home, whilst the same vehicle will collect all our arrivals to take them up to the mountains.
Transfer Times – We will contact you about 2 weeks before your holiday with the times of your transfers. These are determined by the flight times of everyone we collect on that day but 5pm is the deadline for a transfer, as this allows us to get everyone up to the mountains in time for dinner. We try to keep waiting to a minimum but we can make no guarantees. For example, if your flight lands at 11am and we have other arrivals landing at 4.30pm, the transfer is likely to set off at 5pm. On the other hand, you might be our only arrivals on that day, in which case we will meet you from your flight and take you straight to Matrei.
On your outward journey, your flight should arrive before 5pm and leave after 10.30am on the day of your departure. Make sure you understand how our transfer system works by reading this page in full – Thank you. Before booking a flight or transfer, please make sure your desired accommodation is available.
Journey Time from Salzburg to Matrei – 2½hrs
Homebound Transfers – on your day of departure, be prepared for an early start. If someone has a flight home at 10.30am, we have to leave the mountains at about 6am – 10.30am is the earliest we allow guests to book a return flight. Again, departure times are dictated by the flight times of all our transferees.
- Consider fly driving – we can help you arrange a safe, comprehensive and competitive car hire package giving you ultimate flexibility for your arrival and departure days. There is parking in Matrei for you to leave the car for the duration of the trip. See the next tab for car hire details.
- Taxi – efficient but expensive – about €425 one way.
We send you the times of your airport transfers and meeting details 14 days before your holiday.
Fly-driving is popular and most of our guests choose this option, if you need any help or advice please call us on 01799 513331.
Having a car gives you complete flexibility to arrive on any day and based on your own flights and timings.
The journey from our nearest airports (Salzburg, Innsbruck and Munich) is simple. Driving conditions are good and motorists are civil – the spectacular surroundings tend to remove the need to hurry.
How car hire with Collett’s works
Collett’s have teamed up with Car Trawler in order to offer you car hire from all the big name brands (as well as some of the lesser known local suppliers), at some of the most competitive prices available anywhere on the internet. All we ask is you give our car hire a try before making your final decision – you may well be pleasantly surprised by what we can offer you. Fill in the details in the form below and the search engine will open up in a new tab or window – If you need any help or advice please call 01799 513331.
Please note that:
* Cartrawler deals direct with all customer service issues, and their Helpdesk number is 0207 043 9764 or alternatively visit their Frequently Asked Questions Webpage.
* it is essential that you read carefully the full rental conditions of the vehicle you intend to book, paying particular attention to matters such as whether unlimited mileage is included, fuel policies (eg. some rentals require you to buy a full tank of fuel on collection and then return the vehicle empty), the accepted forms of payment and ID, and the applicable cancellation policy. It is very important that you are familiar with all rental conditions in order to avoid incurring any additional fees or unexpected charges on collection or return.
* your rental will be direct with the supplier identified on your confirmation e-mail not Collett’s.
* if you return the vehicle at a later time than your collection time you will be charged an extra days rental. Pro rata.
* you may add additional drivers when you collect your vehicle. Prices vary but are approximately €8.50 per additional driver per day.
* Worldwide Insure can offer you Excess Reimbursement Insurance for only £2.50 per day, click here to take out this cover.
Hiring a vehicle abroad
After 8 June 2015 if you are hiring a vehicle you will be asked to provide evidence of your driving record (entitlements and/or penalty points), you will be able to do this online for free by accessing the DVLA's 'Share Driving Licence' service. This service is currently in development but will be available before the counterpart is abolished. The service should be used by both paper and photocard driving licence holders and will also allow you to download a summary of your licence record which can be printed or shared.
For full details please visit the DVLA's website here.
To view or share your driving licence information visit the DVLA's website here. You must take this as a printout with you to show to your car hire company.
Please see Individual Factsheets for Exact Pricing
Late June to late September, with limited availability in August when the huts and alms are particularly busy.
£750 per person with Airport Transfer (Saturday & Monday only)
£670 per person without Airport Transfer
Arrive on the day of your choice, except Wednesday which is our day off.
Please note that all bookings are subject to availability in the accommodation – please do not make any travel arrangements until we have confirmed your accommodation arrangements.
Based on Half Board accommodation in dormitory style rooms in mountain huts/alms and private double rooms in the hotels.
NOTE: Some dormitories have sleeping platform bed arrangements; sleeping side by side in a row.
A few huts have the option to upgrade to a private room – subject to a supplement of £15 per person per night.
All dormitories are mixed sex and vary in size from hut to hut.
No single supplements apply for dormitory accommodation but are applied to private rooms.
You must supply your own sleeping bag liners for all hut accommodation.
Towels are not provided in any hut accommodation (but are in the hotel and guesthouses) – please bring your own.
- If required – return airport transfers from Salzburg. (Flights arriving in Salzburg must land before 5.00pm, and depart from Salzburg no earlier than 10.30am – please see the Airport Transfers tab
- Accommodation in Matrei for the first and last night of your trip – normally in a hotel – B&B basis for last night
- Breakfast and dinner each day
- A meet and greet in Matrei with a member of the Collett’s team, who will talk you through your route and itinerary
- All accommodation
- Detailed route laminates
- Relevant map
- Detailed pre-departure information including packing suggestions
What’s Not Included
- Evening meal in Matrei on last night.
- Lunches (lunch items are available for purchase at each hut and hotel)
- Drinks/snacks and any other purchases in the accommodation
- Lifts/cable cars, buses and trains – see routes notes for details and estimated costs
At Your Own Risk
Your self guided hut to hut itineraries will be spent entirely at your own risk and it is important that you understand that whilst these routes are accurate at the time of writing, the situation on the ground may change and the itineraries rely on your sound judgement and decision making throughout.
Our self-guided hut to hut itineraries are put together on a basis of goodwill so that you might enjoy a route you may not otherwise have discovered having organised the itinerary yourself. It represents nothing more than the opportunity to go out on a beautiful walk in a part of this wonderful walking area, with the support of knowing that many of the logistics have been arranged for you.
It is a fact that mountains, mountainous areas and activities undertaken in them are associated with personal injury and death. By coming to such areas, you are exposing yourself and your party to the possibility of personal injury or even death. In such an event, Collett’s Mountain Holidays will not be held responsible for your interest in mountainous areas and your involvement in mountain pursuits, which can occasionally have tragic consequences.
It is important that you understand that these routes are put together using our extensive knowledge of the area, to provide a route which we believe will be enjoyable and realistic for people who decide that they have the appropriate level of fitness and ability in order to complete the itinerary safely. The information provided uses only marked paths which are in use at the time of writing, however, it is your responsibility to continually assess the suitability and safety of the route throughout the walk and to undertake any action necessary to avoid any terrain which each or any member of the group is not comfortable with. The route choice also assumes an ability to read maps and navigate competently.
It is the responsibility of each individual in the group to make an assessment of the information provided, and to make an informed decision about whether the itinerary is suitable for them.
Finally, during your holiday with Collett’s Mountain Holidays you act at your own risk on any ideas, information and opinions you might acquire from our walk organisers or from material prepared by us to help you get the most from the area.
In pictures – Self Guided Hut to Hut in the Austrian Alps with Collett's
Guest Reviews - Hut to Hut Hiking
Had been to Pyrenees with you a few years ago. Chose Collett's then because we knew Spanish mapping wasn't great so wanted to walk with people with local knowledge. Dolomites highly recommended by other guests in Pyrenees and we had never been there. Hut to hut was attractive option.
We had a great holiday and may well return to do a differ(...)
We have been to Corvara in 2015 and 2016 with you.
We also did a bespoke hut to hut which your team organised and explained to us very well.
What stands out about Collett's is the quality of the host team in Corvara, who were great (again). They were unfailingly helpful, interested, friendly and great company. Our thanks to them, again.
Extremely welcoming and friendly staff. We did a self guided 4 day hiking in Alta Badia and your route choice was outstanding! Your website was easy to follow and the photos were excellent. When I inquired about a self guided trip the response was prompt, clear and helpful. Your pricing is also reasonable.
The routes were superb, the staff was very helpful and welcoming, the scenery magnificent, the hotels excellent, the food great, and the directions very precise. There were only a couple of times in our five days that we had any doubt about the route to follow. We were absolutely delighted with the trip.
I would say that this was the trip of a lifetime, except that we plan to return. We hiked "hut to hut", or more accurately chalet to chalet. The routes were well planned, the scenery was incredible, the accommodations were great, the food was wonderful, the directions were meticulous, and I am running out of superlatives. We did the five-da(...)
Friend recommended & you seem to provide a competitive comprehensive service which suited our needs. We did 6 day high route hut to hut so spent night in angelo arrival & verena at end. very impressed with all staff & facilities.
I have previously done hut to hut trekking in the Dolomites and my wife has always been keen to do this. I looked at trying organise this myself but after looking at Collett's and they did everything but the walking it was an obvious choice.
First time we have travelled with Collett's and it won't be our last. Organisation was excellent fro(...)
My holiday was a Hut-to-Hut Walk in the Dolomites, to which I added some Via Ferratas. Having booked all my accommodation for the eight days, the pack of information you sent me was very comprehensive. Consequently, everything went like clockwork.
I wanted to amend my Hut-to-Hut itinerary slightly, to spend 2 days on Via Ferratas, and you w(...)
Many thanks for an excellent hut to hut holiday. The trip notes provided were thorough and it all went without a hitch but best of all are your chalet staff who were all extremely helpful and a credit to Collett's.
The trip itself was demanding but well worth it with some of the best scenery that I have ever seen.
No doubt I will holiday(...)
We had an excellent week of walking, despite unexpected snow in August! The route was well thought out and at a good level for our children (the youngest being nine). The scenery was stunning, the accommodation and food along the way were great. A fantastic week and one that we'd love to do again.
Collett's were one of the few that organizes short (3-4 days) self guided hikes in the Italian Dolomites (as far as we could find on the internet).
Value for money?: Yes, the planning of the routes, booking the rifugios and the information we got on arrival were well worth it.
I thought the three staff members I met in the reorder and during my hut to hut tour were absolutely first class, friendly helpful and I enjoyed meeting them as they happened to be doing some visiting of the rifugi. They were Beth, max and Alison.
They are also really loyal to Collett's and spoke so warmly of the company.
The so-called huts are 3* chalets with great food and each day begin with a chair lift to get right up close and personal with alpine fields of wild flowers and amazing rocks formations. This part of northern Italy was part of Austria before WWl which explains the Italian Tyrol which still looks, feels and sounds more like Austria. La Marmola(...)
Chris was very knowledgeable & thorough with the self guided routes &maps plus additional info such as bus times. He put all my concerns to rest.
The hut to Hut routes & plans were excellent. The hut to Hut tour was right in the area I wanted to explore & it was the perfect level for my first solo trek. Good support, but plenty of independ(...)
The professional image of the website determined our decision to go with Collett's for our holiday.
It would have been nice to receive the hard copy of the itinerary, guest handbook, maps and route prior to our departure for us to vet. We live in Australia, and were told on the 15th June that these would be posted to us, however, we had al(...)
We were a grownup family of 6, each person thought the hut to hut holiday was one of the best they had enjoyed. The "huts" were very welcoming and standards were high for that type of accommodation . Thank you.
The reception hosts at the Haus Valentin where outstanding friendly and informative with attention to detail, I was impressed that even though I was a late arrival and missed any talks, the Hut to Hut people made a clear point of seeking me out to chat about my routes starting the next morning.
When I return I would with out doubt look at s(...)
We were a grownup family of 6, each person thought the holiday was one of the best they had enjoyed. The "huts" were very welcoming and standards were high for that type of accommodation . Thank you.
Chalet was great.
We walked largely from hut to hut where the food was very good. The first night was in the Hotel Panorama where the food was excellent.
We spent in total 3 off 11 nights in the Chalet Angelo. We were a self guided group using an outline of a route supplied by Colletes. This worked very well. The routes were excellent and ju(...)
We were recommended you by friends who stayed with you last year. We chose Collett's because it offered assistance in booking the hut to hut walk and we liked the idea of getting help with planning our own itineraries for day walks. We also very much enjoyed the organized walks. Kelly was extremely helpful and friendly in going over our hut to(...)
We did the hut-to-hut tour and all the hotels and one hut we stayed in were excellent apart from the hotel in Ortisei which felt a little tired. Really well organised holiday and all the staff were really helpful. The hotel Panorama in Corvara was excellent.
2 years ago I was searching for a Dolomites wildflower guide and stumbled across you online. We had a few days open before a hut-to-hut hike starting from Bolzano, and I'd always wanted to try Via Ferrata. After those days in the Dolomites, my husband promised me we could return. So we did this year - and will again, I hope. And what price cou(...)