With its essentially red-gradient mountains and spa-town resorts, the Gastein valley is a bit different from Austrian ski resort norms. Some prefer spacious Bad Hofgastein to steeply tiered, rather urban Bad Gastein. However little rustic Dorfgastein, down the valley is an attractive option. Bad Gastein is an old spa town near the head of the Gastein valley. At its heart is the original spa area, laid out in a compact horseshoe on steep slopes. Above this, at the level of the railway and the gondola station, is a modern suburb with more lodgings. The Stubnerkogel slopes above the town link with Bad Hofgastein, down the valley. Further down, a separate area of slopes above Dorfgastein links with Grossarl in the next valley. Way up the valley is another separate area at Sportgastein. Various ski-bus routes and trains connect these points, and 'run as per timetable'. Lots of resorts in this region (including Schladming) are covered by the lift pass (Ski Amadé) and are easily reached by car.
Pros

Excellent, testing long runs for confident intermediates

Good mix of high, open slopes and lower woodland runs

Good mountain restaurants

Excellent thermal spas, but ...

Cons

Main resorts are spa towns, lacking the usual Austrian resort ambience

Valley slopes are split into five areas, and having a car helps

Lacks genuinely easy long runs for painless progression

Getting there

  • Salzburg airport: 1.5 hours
  • Bad Gastein train station: In resort

Contact Details

Good For

Ability
  • Advanced
  • Intermediate
In Resort
  • Village Charm
On Slope
  • Fast Lifts
  • No Queues
  • Snow Reliability

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