Seekarspitze (2053 m) and Seebergspitze (2085 m) are the mountains that flank Lake Achensee to the west, across from the Rofan mountains, in Tyrol, Austria.
One of the best ways to experience Lake Achensee is from the high trail that connects the Seekarspitze and Seebergspitze peaks.
This long ridge trail provides sweeping views of the Karwendel range as well as bird’s-eye views of the fjord-shaped Achensee, the largest lake in Tyrol. It’s an absolutely gorgeous hike, but it’s also a challenging trail, with significant elevation gain/loss.
This hike starts in Achenkirch, the village on the north side of Achensee, and ends in Pertisau, the village on the southwest side of Achensee. It’s easy to access the Achenkirch trailhead by bus, if you’re staying in Maurach, or Pertisau.
Find out how to integrate a visit to Lake Achensee into a Bavaria and Tyrol road trip in our 10-Day Bavarian Alps and Tyrolean Alps itinerary.
How to Hike the Seekarspitze to Seebergspitze Ridge Trail in Lake Achensee, Tyrol
- Starting Point: Wanderparkplatz Achenkirch | Google Maps
- Ending Point: Pertisau
- Distance: 12.4 km point-to-point
- Time Needed: 6:30 hours
- Elevation Gain/Loss: 1300 meters
- Difficulty: Difficult
- Minimum Elevation: 930 meters
- Maximum Elevation: 2085 meters
- Where to Stay in Pertisau: Seehotel St. Hubertus (midrange), Hotel Bergland (midrange), Hotel Auszeit (Adults-only luxury), Seehotel Einwaller – adults only (Adults-only luxury), or NOVA Moments Boutique Hotel (luxury)
- Where to Stay in Maurach: Hotel-Café-Restaurant Klingler (budget-midrange), Hotel-Pension Huber-Hochland (midrange), or Hotel St.Georg zum See (luxury)
- Where to Stay in Achenkirch: Appartements Waldruh (budget), Das Kronthaler – Adults only (luxury), or Natur- und Aktivresort Reiterhof (luxury)
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Seekarspitze – Seebergspitze Hiking Map
Seekarspitze and Seebergspitze Trail Difficulty
This 12.4 km point-to-point trail is a considerably tough hike, because of the tremendous elevation gain and loss (1300 meters).
The trail is rugged at times and you will need to use your hands to scramble up steep sections. There are no fixed cableways, or other aids, along the route.
The trail from Seekaralm to Seebergspitze is black (difficult alpine trail). The rest of the route is red (moderate mountain trail).
There’s no (or very minimal) exposure. Nonetheless, hikers shouldn’t have any fear of heights.
It’s important to only tackle this route in dry conditions and in stable weather. This hike can be potentially dangerous if it’s wet.
The difficulty of this hike will also depend on your comfort level with limestone terrain (loose rocks, karst, scree, etc…). If you find loose rocky terrain a challenge, we highly recommend using hiking poles like these Unisex Black Diamond Hiking Poles.
This trail is generously waymarked with the Austrian red-white-red blaze.
How to Get to the Seekarspitze Trailhead
If you’re staying around Lake Achensee, take the bus to Achenkirch.
If you’re driving from further away, you can park at the paid car park at the trailhead (Wanderparkplatz Achenkirch – Google Maps). To get back to the car park, you can either take the Achenkirch boat to Achenkirch, or take the bus.
Take the Bus to Achenkirch Abzw Achensee Bus Stop
Take the bus to the Achenkirch Abzw Achensee bus stop (Google Maps) in Achenkirch.
Use oebb.at/en/ to search for connections and look up timetables.
If you’re staying in Pertisau, take Bus 8332 to Maurach/Achensee Mittelschule and then transfer to Bus 4080 to Achenkirch Abzw Achensee. The whole journey takes about 30 minutes.
If you’re staying in Maurach, take Bus 4080 from Maurach/Achensee Mittelschule to Achenkirch Abzw Achensee. This bus ride takes 13 minutes.
Please confirm bus lines and times using the oebb.at/en/ website, or app.
Walk to the Seekarspitze Trailhead / Wanderparkplatz Achenkirch
When you disembark the bus, follow the road south in the direction of Lake Achensee for 400 meters.
When you reach the Fischerwirt restaurant, turn right and follow the side road (Seewinklstrasse).
The road divides at a junction, marked with a cross, bench and trail signs. Turn left in the direction of Seekaralm (red trail) and Seekarspitze (black trail) to the Wanderparkplatz Achenkirch paid car park.
Achenkirch – Seekarspitze – Seebergspitze – Pertisau Trail Description
Wanderparkplatz Achenkirch to Seekaralm (2 hours)
Pass the car park. After crossing the bridge, turn right in the direction of Seekar Alm, signed 2 hours, and Seekarspitze, signed 3:30 hours.
With the Hinterwinkel farm on your left, follow the wide gravel track. Soon, you’ll reach another signed junction, where the road forks.
Ignore the trail leading to the lakeshore towards Gaisalm (1 hour) and Pertisau (2 hours).
Maintain the same direction and follow the lower right path (the hiking trail) in the direction of Seekar – Alm, now signed 1:30 hours. The left upper trail is the forest road to Seekar Alm.
Follow the wide grassy trail along the Oberaubach stream through mixed forest and meadows.
The trail curves left, away from the Oberaubach stream, where there’s a dangling water pipe. Shortly thereafter, cross the wooden bridge over the tributary of Oberaubach and then turn left.
The narrow path ascends on the right bank of the stream and then steeply twists up a mixed forest of beech, maple, fir, and spruce.
It’s a continuous climb. I always think of trails in terms of meals, and this felt like a dinner of steamed vegetables (no seasoning) type of ascent.
After 50 minutes (from the bridge), the trail gradient eases amid larch stands. The ascent continues, though not as steeply, up to the Seekar Alm mountain pasture. Cross the pasture, grazed in summer, to reach the Seekaralm hut (1500 m). This is a managed hut, but it was closed during our visit.
Looking behind you, you can see Achenkirch village.
Seekaralm to Seekarspitze (1:30 hours)
Follow the signs to Seekar – Spitze (1:30 hours) and Seeberg – Spitze (2:30 hours), passing a few farm buildings.
At the bend in the road, continue straight.
The trail ascends moderately at first, between larch and spruce trees.
With time, the gradient steepens. There are some light scrambling passages, where you need to use your hands.
The trail twists up a belt of dwarf pine to reach the rocky ridge of Seekarspitze.
Always follow the waymarks as you ascend the rocky spine.
With elevation gain, you’ll start to see the turquoise waters of Lake Achensee.
The Gipfelkreuz (summit cross) is a welcome sight after the demanding 3:30-hour ascent. From the summit, there’s a spectacular panorama of the Karwendel range and less impressive Rofan range. You can see Sonnjoch towering above Gramai Alm, Gamsjoch Peak, and a multitude of other peaks.
The striking limestone range to the east is Wilder Kaiser.
Seekarspitze to Seebergspitze (1 hour)
Follow the ridge in the direction of Seebergspitze, the somewhat ominous-looking peak to the south.
From this lofty high trail, you can see the lakeside villages of Maurach and Pertisau.
The Seekarspitze-Seebergspitze ridge trail is very enjoyable, but requires concentration. There are a few rugged and slippery sections, because of the scree.
The undulating path crosses from side to side of the spine and rises to a minor summit before dropping down to the saddle between Seekarspitze and Seebergspitze.
At the saddle, you have the option to exit the ridge trail and return to Sekkar-Alm (1:30 hours) and Achenkirch (2:30 hours). This is a good option for those that want to complete a circuit hike. However, we don’t recommend it, because the best part of the trail is yet to come.
Continue up to Seeberg-Spitze, now signed 30 minutes, and Pertisau, signed 2:30 hours.
The path climbs up a rocky channel. There’s good traction on the rock, so it’s quite manageable.
It’s a steep twisting ascent to the peak with some light scrambling sections.
Seebergspitze to Pertisau (2:30 hours)
The Seebergspitze summit affords even more captivating views of Achensee. Beyond the Karwendel and Rofan mountains, you can see the Zillertal Alps and Hoher Tauern.
From the summit, a trail branches off to the right in the direction of Passill-Sattel and Passill-Alm. Ignore that trail and continue along the ridge to Pertisau.
The hardest part of the hike is behind you.
The Seebergspitze southern ridge is the most visually impressive part of the traverse. Enjoy the dramatic contrast between the turquoise water of Lake Achensee and the green forested slopes of the bordering mountains.
With time, the trail smooths out considerably.
After crossing a tussock meadow, the path twists down to the forest line. You’ll still see the lake through the trees.
The trail descends the southeastern flank of Seebergspitze, amid pine, maple, larch, and spruce. As far as descents go, it’s quite well-graded.
Continue along the serpentine trail all the way down to Pertisau, initially following signs to Prälatenbuche, a viewpoint along the lake.
We followed the most direct trail down to Pertisau, ignoring the path to Prälatenbuche (though that might be a good option). At the Mautstelle Karwendeltäler (25 min) and Zum See (10 min) junction, we turned left in the direction of Zum See (“to the lake”).
The path spits you out at the lakeshore. Turn right and walk into the village.
We ended the hike with a delicious meal at Hotel Christina – Café Konditorei Restaurant. The service was incredibly swift and friendly. The food was very satisfying.
We highly recommend basing yourself in Pertisau during your trip to Achensee. See recommended hotels below.
Where to Stay around Lake Achensee
We recommend staying in Pertisau, or Maurach. Achenkirch is also another option, but further away from the lakeshore. Most accommodations in Achensee are midrange to luxury. If you’re looking for a budget stay, check out nearby Camping Inntal and Gästehaus Waldrand Garni in Wiesing.
Pertisau is the main tourist center of Lake Achensee. The village is located on the southwestern bank of the lake along the border of Karwendel Nature Park. Pertisau is also the gateway to three alpine valleys that lead into the Karwendel Mountains: Gerntal, Tristenautal, and Falzurntal. These valleys serve as trailheads, cycling paths, and grazing areas.
Midrange | Seehotel St. Hubertus is a top-rated hotel with a private beach, on-site restaurant, and wellness area.
Midrange | Hotel Bergland is a traditional Tyrolean hotel with an on-site restaurant. All rooms have balconies. Guests love the location, the friendly staff, and the food.
Adults-only Luxury | The chic, 4-star Hotel Auszeit pampers guests with its relaxing spa facilities (4 modern saunas, relaxing room, outdoor pool, sun garden), beautiful rooms, scenic setting, and excellent breakfast.
Adults-only Luxury | Seehotel Einwaller – adults only impresses with its stylish rooms, lake-facing wellness area, à la carte restaurant, and scenic lakeside location. In summer, guests can enjoy the hotel’s private pier, furnished with comfortable sunbeds and umbrellas. Expect an excellent breakfast.
Luxury | NOVA Moments Boutique Hotel is a 4-star hotel with 34 air-conditioned rooms and suites, all tastefully furnished in an elegant, alpine-modern style. The hotel is set in a quiet location, 900 meters away from the lakeshore. Hotel facilities include an outdoor natural pool (open in summer), infinity whirlpool (open all-year-round), sauna, steam-bath, wellness relaxation room, garage parking with electric car charging stations, and fitness room.
Family-friendly Luxury | Hotel Wagnerhof is a half board (breakfast and dinner included) hotel with traditional Tyrolean-style rooms as well as plush, modern suites. Surrounded by meadows, this lovely accommodation boasts 3 swimming pools, a spa, and fitness center.
Maurach is located on the south side of Lake Achensee, 4.5 km away from Pertisau (8 minute drive). Home to the Rofanbahn cableway, Maurach is the main starting point for excursions in the Rofan mountains.
Budget-Midrange | Hotel-Café-Restaurant Klingler is a family-run hotel in the heart of Maurach village with an on-site café, fitness center, and newly renovated rooms.
Midrange | Hotel-Pension Huber-Hochland is a traditional half board hotel. Guests have access to a small wellness area, which includes an indoor pool, steam bath, Finnish sauna, and infrared cabin.
Luxury | The 4-star Hotel St.Georg zum See is an alpine-chic hotel with spacious rooms, modern wellness facilities, and a gourmet half-board offering (rich breakfast buffet and 5-course dinner).
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Austria Trip Planning Essentials
When to Visit Austria
Summer and early Fall are our favorite seasons in Austria.
Getting around Austria
Austria has an excellent public transit system. We’ve used it extensively to travel throughout the country. We highly recommend using transit if you’re visiting cities (Vienna, Salzburg, Innsbruck, Graz, etc…), and/or doing hut-to-hut hikes.
Some areas like Mayrhofen, Schladming and Lech am Arlberg have wonderful seasonal transit systems in place (e.g. summer hiking buses). However, if you’re not visiting during the high season, bus frequencies are significantly reduced and it’s far easier to get around with your own vehicle.
If you’re planning on visiting multiple destinations across Austria, we recommend renting a car.
Use these road trip itineraries for trip planning inspiration:
- 2 Week Austria Road Trip – starting in Vienna
- 1 Week Austria Road Trip – starting in Salzburg, or Munich
- 10-Day Bavarian Alps & Tyrolean Alps Road Trip – starting in Munich
We recommend using the Discovercars.com car rental reservation platform to search for and book car rentals. This easy-to-use booking platform compares car rental deals from 500+ trusted providers, so that you can choose the best option for your trip.
If you’re driving into Austria from a neighboring country, don’t forget to purchase a vignette at/near the border.
Hiking in Austria
Where to Hike in Austria
Read Austrian Alps Hiking Destinations for an overview of where to hike in Austria, with tips on specific trails and where to stay. Also check out Best Day Hikes in Austria and these region-specific hiking guides:
- Innsbruck Hiking Guide
- Salzburg Hiking Guide
- Filzmoos, Salzburg Hiking Guide
- Schladming, Styria Hiking Guide
- Lech am Arlberg, Vorarlberg Hiking Guide
- Vorarlberg Hiking Guide
- Vienna Mountains Hiking Guide
Hut to Hut Hiking in Austria
Austria is a premier hut-to-hut and long-distance hiking destination. The quality of the mountain huts are superb. We particularly love the high-alpine trails, which are called Höhenwege in German. We’ve summarized our favorite multi-day hikes in Trekking Austria. If you’re new to hut hiking, read this in-depth guide to Hut to Hut Hiking in Austria.
- Day Pack: Osprey Tempest 30 Women’s Backpack / Osprey Talon 33 Men’s Backpack
- Grade B/C high-cut hiking boots: Meindl Schuhe Island Lady (Kati’s Boots), Women’s Hanwag Tatra II GTX (Sabrina’s Boots), Men’s Hanwag Tatra II GTX (men’s equivalent)
- CAT 4 Sunglasses: Julbo Shield Mountain Sunglasses
- Hiking Poles: Black Diamond Trail Trekking Poles
- Backpack Camera Clip: Peak Design Camera Clip
What to See & Do in Austria
- Visit a gorge like the Liechtenstein Gorge in Salzburg, or Wolfsklamm Gorge in Tirol.
- Bathe in the thermal pools of an Austrian Therme like Aqua Dome in Tirol.
- Stay in a thermal spa hotel like Rogner Bad Blumau in Styria, EurothermenResort Bad Ischl in Upper Austria, or the Aqua Dome Hotel in Tirol.
- Hike to a mountain lake like Lake Tappenkarsee in Salzburg or Lake Drachensee in Tirol.
- Go Wine Tasting in South Styria.
- Marvel at the culture, music, and architecture of Vienna.
- Eat heartwarming mountain food in an Almhütte at Grosser Ahornboden in Tirol or Ursprungalm in Styria.
- Drive the Grossglockner High Alpine Road in Hohe Tauern National Park.
- Visit the castles, monasteries, and wine taverns of the Wachau Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Discover More of Lake Achensee and Tyrol