Head to St Anton with easyJet holidays and you’ll find a resort that is continually among the top rated in the Alps. Skiing here offers plenty of thrills. With a lively après ski scene and some rugged off-piste areas, St Anton favours experience, though there are ski schools and nursery slopes if needed.
Over the years St Anton has grown to incorporate several surrounding villages, which are all linked by buses. There is also a huge network of cable cars, making this Austria’s largest inter-connected ski area. The skiing extends from St Anton to Lech and Zurs, and Warth and Schrocken in Vorarlberg. Though there are some blue routes, these can be difficult for beginners and the step up from the nursery slopes is quite a steep one. There are children's ski schools at Nasserein and St Christoph and a kindergarten for children aged from two and a half. Accommodation-wise, think classy chalets and small Alpine hotels.
190 miles of marked runs
124 miles of off-piste runs with some particularly steep slopes and deep-snow runs.
At last count:
- 65 blue runs
- 45 red runs
- 15 black runs
There are enough pistes to accommodate the village’s annual visitors without it feeling overcrowded. For snow boarders there are a number of fun parks and carving areas, as well as racing circuits.
There are 88 state-of-the-art cableways that link St Anton to a number of different areas, including St Christoph, Stuben to Zurs and Lech, as far as Schrocken and Warth.
St Anton has about 60 to 80 sunny days throughout the winter season and typically snow until at least the end of April.
There are numerous schools offering ski and snowboard lessons and courses, either in groups or one to one. There is also a Children‘s World at Nasserein and St Christoph, where young skiers can be dropped off for lessons.
For value equipment hire, book online in advance. Intersport Arlberg and Sport Jennewein are among the brands on offer.
Activities off the slope
St Anton is a relatively small village, which for many years was purely a skiing and snowboarding destination, but now there is more than just slopes. The multi-functional sports centre at Arl.Rock can provide hours of entertainment for people in need of a break from their skis. There is a large climbing wall and bouldering walls with some fairly testing overhangs. There are also two indoor courts, which can be used for tennis, basketball or volleyball, as well as squash courts. For the slightly less energetic there is the ten-pin bowling alley.
St Anton has skiing heritage - it was the birthplace of the ‘father of modern skiing’ Hannes Schneider. The Museum St Anton am Arlberg gives visitors an overview into his life, the area and its impact on skiing as we know it. Historic maps, photographs, retro skis and portraits of great downhill racers are all on show, as well as interactive exhibits making it a fun choice for children.
St Anton is gaining a reputation for its spa and wellness facilities. Arlberg-Well is a large complex just on the outskirts of the village, which as well as various large conferencing facilities, has saunas, fitness suites and an outdoor swimming pool set amongst the mountains. There is also an outdoor flume with super-powered jets that leads to another swimming pool inside. For children there is a paddling pool and in summer guests can enjoy a waterslide with plunge pool and a wet play area. From December to March there is an ice rink at the entrance to Arlberg-Well for skating and traditional Alpine curling.
The relatively new addition of the Arlberg1800 art and concert hall in St Christoph means exhibitions and concerts are now a regular occurrence. Otherwise, if you are in need of shopping there are some great boutiques. With all the major brands available, there is plenty of mooching to enjoy, from the usual ski and cold weather clothes to some state-of-the-art- equipment.
St Anton is famous for its après ski and its on-slope bars. The famous MooserWirt and Krazy Kanguruh bars on run 21 have an international reputation. With sun terraces, large bars and a dance floor, many skiers have felt the lure of these bars. Come 3pm every afternoon crowds gather and spill out onto the slopes to begin drinking beer, schnapps, or just about anything else. Just remember you have to get down the rest of the slope afterwards. Inside there is a nightclub where the dancing starts early, and with everyone dressed in head to toe skiwear it can get quite sweaty.
For a different tone try Verwallstube, a refined but relaxed restaurant up in the mountains. There is a sunny terrace if the weather is warm enough, or there is an option for a romantic candlelit dinner when every Thursday they run a nighttime gondola to take guests up to the restaurant. For more rustic local fare try Alber's Rodelalm and Robi's Rodelstall, an old toboggan hut and barn where traditional Tyrolean dishes are served up to hungry skiers. Think venison sausages with bread or roast potatoes with beef, bacon and onions. Spare ribs and cheese fondue are their other specialities.
The slopes leading down to the bottom of St Anton finish at more bars and restaurants. Classic raclette and fondue restaurants are easy to find, but there are also a choice of pizzerias and steak houses. After the capers around the MooserWirt the rest of the town is quite refined. Galzig Bistro Bar is a great place for delicious wines and cocktails as well as classic international menus. Restaurant Vinzenz in the Mooser Hotel is the fine dining option with floor to ceiling windows looking out over the slopes.
Tirolerhof is a cosy little café and restaurant specialising in traditional Austrian cuisine - think homemade strudel and hot coffee to warm up a snowy day. Der Backer Ruetz also sells traditional Tyrolean cakes and pastries and is a popular choice for breakfast.