Top Lift: 3333m
Ski area: 130km of piste
Adult lift pass: 216.50€-238.20€ for six days
In a Nutshell
A cute village in a stunning valley, Neustift is tailor-made for first-time families. But the only other people who’ll warm to it are those who want to ski out of season, on the nearby glacier.
Essential Advice for the Perfect Trip
The attractive little village of Neustift is located in the Stubai Valley and is great for young families, and out-of-season skiers. But few other Brits will warm to it. It doesn’t get more Tirolean than this: a steep, wooded valley, topped by craggy peaks and scattered with cute, traditionally-styled villages. There are four ski areas including the Stubai Glacier at the far end (one of the best for skiing in the Alps) which is reached by ski-bus from Neustift, followed by gondolas, and is open almost year-round for skiing. Access from Innsbruck is almost instantaneous: the commute from the airport takes 20 to 30 minutes.
Even so, its appeal for most Brits is limited, largely because the skiing is so bitty (“Not many lifts and very crowded slopes. Very friendly people the Austrians though and always ready to help” said a reporter). A few nursery slopes here, a couple of interesting pistes there, and then the glacier – they’re scattered right along the valley, and over the course of a week a group of mileage-hungry intermediates will be driven mad by all the commuting required to get between them. Advanced and expert skiers won’t like it much either. This is a long way from the convenient, integrated and exciting lift systems of the A-list resorts.
Good for children, but dress them warmly
That said, however, there is one group of skiers who’ll love the place: parents with young children. This is the first Disney-franchised resort in Europe, and it’s also one of the bases for a British tour operator which specialises in family-friendly holidays, Esprit. It’s tailor-made for anyone wanting to give their children a gentle introduction to snow. Don’t leave a visit here until your children are already skiing well, however: that’ll mean heading to the glacier, and chances are they won’t enjoy the cold.
One other interesting thing about the valley: one of our editors knows lots of Czechs, many of whom ski extremely well, who insist on coming to the Stubai Glacier every season. They won’t don’t care about the limited extent of the pistes. Glacier skiing is what they’re after – it has a glamour for them which just doesn’t translate to the British skiing psyche.