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Innsbruck, Tirol, and Vorarlberg Travel Guide

Ischgl and Galtur

Ischgl, the best-known resort in the Paznaun Valley, has become as renowned for its party scene as for its excellent skiing—it links with the Swiss resort of Samnaun and has a wealth of high-altitude runs. In summer it's a popular health resort, with activities including hiking, climbing, and mountain biking. There are many high-profile events here, both summer and winter, including big-name rock

concerts, mountain biking and culinary events, and one of Europe's leading snow sculpture (as opposed to ice sculpture) competitions.

Slightly higher up the valley is Galtür, equally popular as a winter-sports area, summer resort, and a base for mountain climbing. Although Galtür is a starting point for practiced mountaineers, many of the climbs up the Blue Silvretta are easy and lead to the half-dozen mountain huts belonging to the Alpenverein. Galtür and the Silvretta region inspired Ernest Hemingway's novella Alpine Idyll; the author spent the winter of 1925 here, and the town still remembers him.

You can get to Idalp, at 2,286-meter (7,500-feet), via the 4-km-long (2½-mile-long) Silvretta gondolabahn. The enchanting Paznaun Valley follows the course of the Trisanna River for more than 40 km (25 miles). The valley runs into the heart of the Blue Silvretta mountains, named for the shimmering ice-blue effect created by the great peaks and glaciers, dominated by the Fluchthorn 3,189 meters (10,462 feet) at the head of the valley.

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