Innsbruck: Full of Surprises

I don’t exactly know how we chose Innsbruck as our Christmas destination on December 2011. I personally wanted to have a white Christmas. As a person living in a tropical country (almost) all my life, it was one of those “wishlist”. Even when I was living in England, the English weather didn’t allow me to see real snow. When my friend suggested Innsbruck, all she needed to convince me was two things: great food and old town – basically what I love and look for when I travel. So I immediately said yes but didn’t expect anything more than that.

After a 6 hours train journey from Zurich, we headed for Innsbruck, Austria. The train journey was the usual – you know sitting next to a stranger, eating morning sandwiches, drinking left over soda. We were completely tired so we slept (well, OK, I slept) almost half of the journey. When I opened my eyes, I couldn’t believe what I saw through the windows. White, like all white! Pure excitement flowed through my veins and we haven’t even reached there yet.

Snow-covered village

We arrived on 24th December evening, definitely not a good time to come as almost everything was closed. Starving as ever, we asked the guy at the hostel if there was any restaurant open in the centre, he gave a sorry-dude-it’s-Christmas-eve-are-you-mad look. We went to the centre anyway, it was gorgeous. They had it decorated in fairy tales theme. But we saved our awe and frantically search for a place to eat. After an hour attempt of searching for a restaurant (including trying to ask a taxi driver with my stuttered German with no luck), we finally found one Italian restaurant open. Hallelujah!

We had pizza and pasta for our Christmas Eve dinner and then at midnight we decided to go inside one of the beautiful churches to attend the Christmas service. With snow and choir, it couldn’t get any better, can it?

I love to travel spontaneously. Yes, I have plans, but it’s those spontaneous moments that really makes your travel memorable. And this was definitely it. We decided to take one tram that was supposed to take us to one castle. We somehow missed it, and instead got off at the last stop. It turned out we were in a village called Igls.

The village was unbelievable, snow everywhere, little houses with snow on its rooftops, frozen little river- I just couldn’t believe I was there, it was like out of a Christmas movie or something! And that wasn’t the end of it, we took a cable car up the Alps…and well, breathtaking. I remembered just standing there, never in my lifetime have I seen so much snow.


9 Comment

  1. Wow… it’s very great view you had… hope one day I’ll see the same scenery… 🙂

    1. I hope you will one day! Innsbruck is one beautiful city especially in winter, it’s certainly on my will-be-back-one-day list 🙂

  2. […] Like the time I was in Innsbruck. I had the best time of my life, with the Alps and the food, and it was just perfect nothing could possibly mess up my time in Innsbruck, except one: luggage locker. My friends and I were leaving Innsbruck after lunch, so we did what anyone would do. We dropped our bags at the luggage locker at the train station so we could pop over to the Sacher Cafe. Shortly after we inserted our money, we got a round black coin which was supposed to open our locker later. We didn’t know our trip nearly turned disastrous in Innsbruck […]

  3. Christmastime is the only time when I tolerate snow… I didn’t get to experience Innsbruck in winter, but had plenty of holiday Euro charm when I lived in Europe. There’s nothing quite like it…

    Yours is a neat story, Aggy, and I bet you will remember that Xmas pizza dinner for a long time! This is how great travel memories are made. Glad you had fun. 🙂

    1. I still remember it and giggle sometimes. Innsbruck is especially beautiful in the winter Pola 😀

  4. It is so great to find your information on here. We will be driving around Austria, Germany and Holland for 2 weeks this Christmas time and we too will be arriving in Innsbruck on December 24th-26th. I know that most everything will be closed down, but do you happen to remember the name of the church you went to for midnight Christmas Eve service? Was it near or in the “Old Town”? We go to church and always go to a Christmas Eve service no matter where we are traveling. I would love to go to a candle lit service and I know our 12 year old daughter would love it as well. Thank you so much for any information you can give. We are from Texas and we too are seeking out a place for a magical white Christmas. 🙂

    1. Hi Brandie, I can’t remember the name of the church but yes it was in the old town and was the biggest one. It was a really great service although it was in German and I didn’t quite understand everything but there was something lovely about spending Christmas in another country. Hope you get that magical white Christmas in Innsbruck, pretty sure you’ll get it 🙂

  5. Hi! So nice to come across your blogpost about Innsbruck. I’m an Indonesian studying in Hong Kong and planning to go on an exchange to MCI in Innsbruck. Is Innsbruck english friendly? I have zero knowledge in German and am very nervous of going to Innsbruck. Hearing about Innsbruck from a fellow Indonesian would help! Thanks 🙂

    1. Hi there Melissa! I was only in Innsbruck for several days and survived on English (with some of my little German knowledge!) but I don’t know how life is there everyday using only English. I know though that it’s a gorgeous place to be, hope you enjoy your stay there. An advice from me would be to try to learn a few important phrases in German, it would help you a lot and also the locals would appreaciate it 🙂

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