When winter arrives, nature takes the field to set up its most beautiful show. The streets and neighborhoods of the cities we know and love are enveloped in the white embrace of snow, ice sculpture festivals, and sub-zero concerts entertain our days and become the unprecedented protagonists of our icy adventures. Thus, the winter season surprises us year after year.
And if it is true that it is common to desire to retire within the home, to admire the surrounding landscape from the heat, it is also true that there are many extraordinary experiences that the most daring travelers can live. Just leave the house and be inspired by the thrilling adventures.
Mountain lovers know well the place where the most beautiful winter magic manifests itself. And it does so not only through extraordinarily evocative landscapes but also through experiences to be lived and shared. Ice baths and swims in underground rivers and then again descents on the snow-covered slopes and graceful pirouettes on the ice, these are just some of the sub-zero adventures that we can experience without going too far.
In the Austrian Tyrol, and more precisely in Zillertal, there is a place of enchanting beauty open to all daring travelers. We are talking about the natural glacial lake of Hintertux, already a favorite destination for swimming enthusiasts. Here, in fact, it is possible to immerse yourself in the frozen waters with temperatures below zero. You just need to be in excellent health and have a pinch of madness.
It is not the only experience that can be lived in the same place, however. After swimming, in fact, it is possible to cross the belly of the glacier thanks to the caves located at a depth of 30 meters. They can be traveled seated on board a dinghy or on a Stand Up Paddle, for enthusiasts. And those who still can’t get enough of the cold can choose to swim in the frozen river and be fascinated by the stalactites, the frozen waterfalls, and that white and those plays of light and shadows that are reflected in the water.
The sub-zero experiences continue on the Tyrolean lakes nestled between the snow-capped mountains. The Piburger See in Ötztal, already known for being the most scenic lake in the area, turns into a natural ice skating rink in winter. The Haldensee, on the other hand, is the only lake in the whole of Tyrol that also allows it to be crossed on cross-country skis.
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And it is always on the frozen lakes that we recommend staying when the wind blows because it is precisely in these moments that it is possible to enjoy snowkiting. Kites tow experts and beginners along plains and small snow slopes.
And if you are not tired yet and you need even more adrenaline-pumping emotions, you just have to reach the Kaunertal valley for ice climbing. The majestic and mighty waterfalls that descend from the glaciers in the valleys of Tyrol freeze in winter, creating incredible and spectacular walls complete with columns and cones to cling to.
Another very popular hotspot for ice climbing is the Sellraintal valley, near Innsbruck. In addition to the evocative and popular 110 m Bafflfall waterfall, we also find the Seigesbackfall which, with its 30 meters, is certainly more suitable for beginners.