The Zugspitze, One Mountain…Two Countries

The Zugspitze, One Mountain…Two Countries. The famous Zugspitze is the highest mountain peak in Germany at a height of 9718 feet (2962 meters). Did you know that the mountain is actually shared by Germany and Austria with the border for the two countries running over the western summit. You take a cogwheel train from Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Grainau or Eibsee or a cable car from either the German or Austrian side. Once you reach the top of the mountain, you have spectacular views of Austria, Italy, Switzerland and Germany.

The majority of tourists who plan to visit the Zugspitze tend to stay in Garmisch-Partenkirchen which is a modern town that also has a historic center. The town has lots of hotels, restaurants and shopping so it makes it a well-known tourist destination.

Click on any photo in the galleries below to see a slide show.

While Garmisch-Partennkirchen is very nice, my husband and I find that it is too touristy for our taste. Instead, we like to stay in the quiet village of Lermoos, Austria which lies at the foot of the Grubigstein, Wettersteingebirge, and the Zugspitze mountain ranges.

View Of The Zugspitze From Lermoos, Austria
View Of The Zugspitze From Lermoos, Austria

We enjoy staying at the Hotel Post. It has been a family run hotel since 1560. The rooms are wonderful, it has a great spa, absolutely delicious food and outstanding views which keep us coming back. What we really like about staying in Lermoos is its central location. It is very convenient for visiting both the Tirol region of Austria and the Bavarian region of Germany. After a day of touring the nearby regions, it is nice to come back to the hotel for a cocktail in the bar and a multi-course dinner in the restaurant.

If you read my previous post on Bavaria, you might be surprised that we did all our touring of Bavaria from Lermoos. When traveling by car, Garmisch is just a twenty minute drive and the castles of King Ludwig II are no more forty-five minutes away.

The Zugspitze is an impressive mountain shared by two beautiful countries. I do hope that you have the opportunity to visit the top of the world in this part of Europe. If you are planning on visiting the top of the Zugspitze, please be sure to check the weather at the top of the mountains as you want to go up on a clear day.

Cable Cars On The Austrian Side Of The Zugspitze
Cable Cars On The Austrian Side Of The Zugspitze
Pick A Clear Day To Go To The Top Of The Zugspitze
Pick A Clear Day To Go To The Top Of The Zugspitze

This is just the beginning of our adventure into Austria and the weather has been fantastic. I hope you will continue to follow along as we explore more of the Tirol…it a great place to visit.

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I travel the back roads of the world, sharing great food and interesting places and enjoyable pastimes.

117 thoughts on “The Zugspitze, One Mountain…Two Countries

  1. What beautiful photos, Karen! What a lovely part of Germany-Austria to visit. I am so glad that you are having good weather so far on your trip. I hope you have a great time in Austria!

    1. Thank you Laura, for your nice compliment. I’m happy that you liked the photos…this really is a beautiful part of the world to visit. We are having fantastic weather this year and it really adds to the pleasure of traveling. Thank you for your nice wish.

    1. Hi Lisa, We are having a wonderful time thank you. You are right about how steep the cable cars are. I’ve gone up once and that is enough to last me a lifetime. 🙂

  2. I am so excited to see your pictures Karen. This is such as pretty part of the world. Your photos are just amazing. I can’t get over how long that hotel has been in business. Wow. Many years ago in early January we went to the top of the Zugspitze and I’ve never been so cold in my life waiting for the car to go up. Once there the sun was out and it was almost warm. We saw ladies sunbathing with fur stoles thrown over the back of their chairs. In the restaurant we had a Hungarian goulash soup that was to die for. Keep the pictures coming…

    1. Thank you Sam, for your lovely compliment. I’m happy to know that you enjoyed the photos. We have had wonderful weather and that always helps getting nice photos…we haven’t even needed jackets for most of our trip this year. Goulash soup is a favorite of mine but I haven’t had it once on this trip.

    1. Thank you for your kind words, Boleyn. I really appreciate that you enjoyed the post and photos. This certainly is a wonderful part of the world to visit…it is beautiful.

    1. Hi Kelli, I’m happy that you liked the post…thank you. We really enjoyed the hotel, food and countryside. The dessert was as good as it looks. 🙂

    1. Hi Dahlia, Spectacular is the perfect word to describe the Zugspitze and also the ride on the cable car. Thank you for your nice compliment.

  3. Glad you are having fantastic weather, makes for a much more pleasant trip. I am continuing my journey with you and enjoying every frame of your gorgeous photos. Thanks.

    1. Hi Norma, We have really been blessed with the weather this year…we have only had a few drizzly and cloudy days. I so happy that you are enjoying following along on our adventure. Thank you as always for your nice compliment.

    1. Hi Maureen, We have traveled to Europe in the spring but prefer the fall, the weather usually is very nice. I’m happy that you enjoyed the photos…thank you.

  4. Oh dear…..I’m actually CRYING as I look at this. Oh, do I miss it! I’ve been to all those places. You lucky LUCKY lady!
    The one neat thing about Garmisch is watching the cows come in at night from the hills. Quite a sight to see them go to their homes—they know where they live. I have a photo of my mother standing in the street while they filed around her—very determined to get home in time!

    1. Hi Sue, I enjoyed reading your lovely compliment and I’m happy that it brought back such nice memories. I smiled because cows were heading home on the little lane behind the Hotel Post…so I knew exactly what you were talking about. 🙂

    1. Hi Tin Man, We are having spectacular weather this trip…and it certainly makes traveling such a pleasure. I agree with you about the food, everything has been terrific.

  5. The Zugsptitze was my first mountain. I had never seen a snow-capped mountain before, and was amazed I was walking in snow in August! Back then (1972) Garmisch-Partenkirchen didn’t seem too toursity to me, but I imagine as an adult I would prefer the quiet of Lermoos. Atop the mountain, I remember eating Leberkäse with an egg, and how kind the waiter was to us young American boys – he was worried we didn’t know what we were ordering and that we woudln’t like it! (We loved it!) I look forward to returning and taking Mark – I know he will love it!

    1. Hi David, Seeing the Zugspitze for the first time really is a memorable moment. You would probably not recognize Garmisch-Partenkirchen except for the historic center as it has grown quite large. I tend to agree that you would enjoy Lermoos as it is such a beautiful spot and perfect for touring the nearby areas.

    1. Thank you John, for your nice compliment. I would never call your comments boring and I’m happy that you are enjoying following along with our travels. 🙂

  6. What a stunning place with magnificent views. Thank you for taking so many photos to share. When we returned from D.C. a couple weeks ago I realized I did not take nearly as many photos as I should, especially of the food. The chocolate ‘wheel’ in the dessert photo is impressive. Looking forward to your next post.

    1. Thank you Judy, for your nice compliment…I’m happy you enjoyed the photos. I always worry that I may bore my readers with too many photos. The places we tend to visit are so beautiful that it is hard not to share what I’ve been seeing. I’m glad you are following along on our travels and enjoying it.

    1. Hi Donna, I’m happy that you enjoyed the post about the Zugspitze. I’ve been to the top just once because I’m not comfortable with heights.

  7. Wow, what a scenery – just amazing … some beautiful places you have chosen for your trip.
    Food looks excellent to .. but that big thick spring of mint in the dessert – looks totally wrong .. who could a chef such nice dessert look that clumsy, but it has nothing to do with the taste.
    Of all the places you have shown your meals – visual this is the weakest … Between the tuna and rabbit .. nearly the same layout – very green both of them. And both wrapped. Now I pick.
    The food wasn’t priceless … I guess, but the views are. So envy. *smile

    1. Hi Viveka, You are so right…the scenery is truly amazing. I think we have been traveling to some of the most beautiful places. The food at the Hotel Post really is good but I know that your chef’s eye sees things differently when it comes to plating. I think the chef had to use the mint sprig to hold a cherry that was suspended in liquid inside the little marzipan cake. The views definitely make up for anything that you might not like at the dinner table.

      1. Okay .. than I understand why the mint was to thick .. I really like the reading of that dessert, love marzipan. The chef is forgiven.
        The views are … so fantastic and after all it’s the taste of food and the company that is most important. Only me being picky .. probably because I’m full of envy. *smile

    1. Hi Dedy, Don’t feel bad, I’m afraid of heights as well. I’ve gone to lots of high places that I’m not comfortable with at the time but did it because they were once in a lifetime moments…the Zugspitze being one of them. Once at the top, it was amazing. 🙂

    1. Hi Mad Dog, I can’t believe the mountains in this region…as you say, they are amazing. This is the second time we have stayed at the Hotel Post and the food has always been delicious.

    1. Hi Meg, I have to agree with you about the beauty of this area…it is outstanding. The nice thing about this trip was that the sun was out, so it really made for nice photos. Thank you for your compliment.

    1. Thank you Helen, I’m happy that you enjoyed the photos. The last photo is a favorite of mine as well as the sky was turning beautiful colors while the sun was setting.

  8. The mountain looks amazing and how great it must be to see views of the surrounding countries on a clear day. Gosh, a hotel which has been family run since 1560, it must be one of a kind and it looks lovely. Enjoy the rest of your trip. 😉

    1. Hi B, It reminds me of the song…on a clear day, you can see forever. Isn’t it incredible about hotels in Europe being run by families for so many generations. Most every hotel we have stayed in is family run and they really care about you having a wonderful time and returning.

    1. Thank you Elizabeth, for your lovely compliment…especially since you are a wonderful photographer. The food was terrific at the Hotel Post. 🙂

  9. Karen, this is simply stunning! Just stunning! I love coming with you on your travels. When I went to Austria, I had my Hungarian cousins in tow and to them it was just another trip from Budapest to Vienna and they were not keen to ‘allow’ us the opportunity to explore further afield. You have inspired me to travel again. Many thanks xox

    1. Thank you for your kind words, Lizzy. I am thrilled that you enjoy following along on our adventures. You must definitely travel to Austria again…I think it is one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. 🙂

  10. Cable cars are not my favourite, nor are heights. But to have that view must be worth the anxiety! Although, I can understand why you’ve only been to the summit once.

    Have to say, you’re very savvy about choosing locations to stay. Then doing trips where and when you want them – very impressed!

    1. Hi Johnny, It sounds like you and I are alike. Being suspended high up in a cable car scares me to death but sometimes we just have to do it…but once is enough. 🙂 I’m glad that you like the way I travel. I do put a lot of time and effort into the planning but the trips are very memorable.

  11. It’s very beautiful, Karen. I love how green the grass is – we don’t see that in Australia. And I love the mountains – we don’t have those in Oz either. I love the bar stools in that family run hotel – what a great place to stay xx

    1. Hi Charlie, We have mountains an hour away from our homes in both New Hampshire and Maine but none as majestic as the Alps. Isn’t the grass amazingly green…my husband always jokes that it looks like you could drizzle it with olive oil and eat it. 🙂 This was our second time staying at the Hotel Post and we love everything about it.

  12. I’m trying to think how to say this without sounding silly, Karen, but I will just jump in! These photos remind me of post cards. I’m not talking quality, because your photos far surpass an ordinary post card, but it’s the perfection of the settings. Each one is so what I would hope to find if I were in Austria. I want to start singing “The Hills are Alive.” Believe me, I know how corny I sound, but you’ve really managed to convey a true sense of just how special this lovely country is. I can really see why you would return and return. It’s truly another world. 🙂

    1. Thank you Debra, for your lovely and kind compliment. I think I am very lucky to have such kind readers such as yourself that enjoy my travel adventures. I smiled because my husband was humming “the hills are alive” several times during our drives through the hills and mountains in Austria. You don’t sound corny and I’m happy that my posts convey the beauty we are seeing.

  13. Hi Karen,
    We once traveled to the top of the Zugspitze via the cog railway. There were many locals on board carrying their skis as there was a glacier area at the top. There were also ice caves through which we could walk. The view from the top was exhilarating although I found the caves to be terrifying and eerie and very cold! I think we took that trip to the top around 1990. I would love to go back! Thank you so much for your gorgeous photos. The hotel sounds and looks very inviting and I will definitely put it on my list for the next time! Linda

    1. Hi Linda, Your trip to the top of the Zugspitze sounds just like my first trip…we went up on the cog railway and came down by cable car. If you ever get a chance to visit this area again, I can definitely recommend the hotel. It was our second stay and one I would return to again and again.

  14. Wow again – I feel as if I just visited with you. The mountain being shared by Austria and Germany reminds me of the ending of the Sound of Music where the family is walking over the mountain to escape. I am glad you are having a wonderful time.

    1. Hi Southern, I’m happy to know that you enjoyed the post and photos. So much of Austria reminds you of the movie…we are heading to the lake district where many of the location shots for the Sound of Music were filmed. I think you will recognize some of them. We are having a wonderful time…thank you!

    1. Thank you for your nice compliment, Sophie. I’m glad that you enjoyed the photos…there is definitely a wow factor when enjoying the Alps. 🙂

  15. Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful photos, Karen! I can envision the colorful landscape through your eyes! Bet you don’t want to come home anytime soon!

    1. Hi Jan, I’m happy that you enjoyed the post and photos…it certainly is a beautiful area. It’s always hard time leaving such beauty behind. 🙂

    1. Hi Tandy, We have been very lucky with the weather on this trip. There was snow to make things pretty, sun and mild temperatures, with just a few drizzly days. Thank you for your nice wish, we are having a great time.

  16. Oh Karen. what beautiful scenery. I think I would have to push my fear of heights to the back of my mind, & be brave, to get up there. but to miss seeing those views would be sinful. What wonderful memories you will take back home of this fabulous trip you have organised.

    1. Hi Barbara, I’m happy that you enjoyed the photos. I’ve been doing exactly what you said because this trip has lots of heights involved. This will certainly be a very memorable holiday.

  17. You are in the mountains Karen, a favourite place of mine to be. Something about seeing snow capped mountains in the distance with green fields all around and sunshine too! Something truly magical and spectacular.

    1. Hi Claire, Yes, we have lots of beautiful mountains to visit on this trip. We can see the mountains from both our home in New Hampshire and the cottage in Maine but they are nothing compared to the Alps…they are spectacular.

    1. Hi Lidia, We are having a wonderful time…especially as the weather has been so nice this trip. I’m happy that you enjoyed the photos. Thank you!

    1. Thank you MJ, for your nice compliment. Having sunshine while traveling in of Austria made for some nice photos…I’m glad you enjoyed them. Majestic is the perfect word to described these beautiful mountains.

    1. Hi Charlie, I’m happy to know that you enjoyed the photos. This is our fourth visit to Austria and we keep discovering more wonderful areas that we enjoy.

    1. Thank you Kristy, That is one of my favorite photos as well…the sun was starting to set. I have to agree with you about the towns looking like they are out of a storybook. They are so picture perfect.

  18. Karen, you’ve really captured the beauty of this area but I’m sure it’s nothing compared to seeing it in person. I know my husband would shame me into getting on one of those cable cars, but I would be the person sitting on the floor in the middle of the car whimpering.

    1. Thank you Diane, for your lovely compliment. You are right, a camera can never capture scenery like it is in real life. You had me laughing so hard about riding in a cable car. If we were traveling together, we would both be sitting on the floor. 🙂

    1. Hi Ducky, I agree with you about the wonderful architecture in Germany. I’m happy that you enjoyed the post…thank you for your compliment.

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