The Arlberg Trail: Milestone of a long journey to each other

With the new long-distance hiking trail, the Arlberg will have its first joint summer project in 2021. However, the vision of growing together has shaped the region since the end of the 19th century.

In the heart of the Alps and yet remote from the world. This is how the mountain villages presented themselves at the end of the 19th century, where the Verwall Group, the Lechquellengebirge and part of the Lechtal Alps merge. With the construction of the Arlberg railway tunnel, the pass region moved closer to Europe and from 1885 the first tourists travelled to the Arlberg. This set the course for reports of deep snow-covered slopes and daring first attempts at skiing to spread rapidly. In 1901, six local pioneers founded the Arlberg Ski Club, one of the largest and most traditional ski clubs ever. Many more chapters in the history of skiing were to follow: in 1904 the first ski race in the Alps took place on the Arlberg, in 1906 the first ski course, in 1920/21 Austria’s first ski school was founded by Hannes Schneider. As the “cradle of alpine skiing”, the Arlberg gained world recognition – and a first strong, unifying imprint.

From pioneering spirit to shared vision

Winter tourism was booming. And hand in hand with the economic success, the technical infrastructure developed earlier on the Arlberg than elsewhere. In 1937, Austria’s first t-bar lift was built in Zürs. In the same year, the Galzigbahn in St. Anton am Arlberg, the first cablecar on the Arlberg designed for winter tourism, went into operation. In 1970, technical snowmaking for the pistes was developed in Lech – a practice that has long been established worldwide today. And while they ceaselessly increased quality and comfort for winter sports enthusiasts, the people on the east and west sides of the Arlberg dreamed a common dream for many decades: to make the five classic Arlberg resorts universally accessible by ski. This vision was finally realised with the construction of the Flexenbahn, and since 2016 the Arlberg, Austria’s largest connected ski area and the fifth largest in the world, has included a spectacular 305 kilometres of ski runs.

Closing the circle

The newly created, almost limitless possibilities for winter sports enthusiasts are manifested in the RUN of FAME. Over 85 km, the longest ski circuit in the Alps leads through the entire Ski Arlberg ski area. And because true pioneering spirit never runs out of visions, the counterpart for passionate hikers followed in 2021. The Arlberg Trail is not only a logical step to further enrich the attractive summer offer. With it, the region also pays homage to its very own strengths. The cross-border long-distance hiking trail combines a sporty alpine challenge with first-class comfort. In 3 stages and over 50 kilometres (almost a fifth of which are covered by mountain railway), long-distance hikers experience the Arlberg and its five villages Lech, Zürs, Stuben, St. Christoph and St. Anton with their respective characters up close, intensively and decelerated. It is not entirely by chance that the Arlberg Trail, unlike many multi-day hiking tours, forms a loop. A loop that connects and brings the Arlberg even closer together.

Book with ASI Reisen

ASI Reisen is the official booking centre of the Arlberg Trail. You can book your perfect tour in just a few steps. We organise accommodation, luggage transport, trip notes, guide if necessary and 24/7 service number for you.

The Tyrolean family business has been offering sustainable active and adventure tours since 1963. These lead to more than 100 countries all over the world, from the pleasure region to the high alpine. Where fresh air, the sounds of nature and narrow paths await.