If you're wondering where to stay in Austria on your next trip there, this post will help you out. During our eight-day road trip through five regions, we stayed in different places every night.
Now, I'm not saying these are necessarily the best hotels in Austria as I obviously haven't tried all of the hotels in the country, but I had a good night's sleep at all of them and think they're a great choice as a base for exploring the regions they're located in.
The good news is that while visiting Austria, accommodation won’t be a problem. There are options for all travelers and budgets, so you’ll definitely find the best place to make your trip unforgettable.
Where to stay in Austria: 7 hotels in 5 different regions
1. NALA Individuellhotel Innsbruck
In Innsbruck, we spent a night at the Nala Individuellhotel. It might be the best place to stay in Innsbruck if you're looking for something a bit unique, as every room is designed in a different way.
Mine had closets with thick doors which had – surprise! – storage room built into them. I also had a bathtub smack in my bedroom and a wooden ladder as a towel hanger.
The Nala Hotel is located just a 10-minute walk from the Innsbruck train station and a two-minute walk from the commercial center. It has an elevator and wide hallways, making it easily accessible for all.
There's free WiFi throughout the property and guests can use the small fitness room and the infrared cabin. Guests can choose between a small breakfast and the elaborate breakfast buffet during the week. On Sundays and holidays, the large buffet is always served. Breakfast takes place at the restaurant, which later in the day offers Italian dishes à la carte to both guests and passersby.
Hotel Nala doesn't have its own parking, but there's a public parking nearby that only costs €9.5/day.
Want to stay at hotel Nala too? Check here for more reviews, prices and availability.
2. Hotel Outside, Matrei in Osttirol
The Hotel Outside is a family-run hotel in Matrei in Osttirol that focuses strongly on ecology and working with local products and craftsmen. The paintings that decorate the rooms and halls of the hotel come from a local painter.
At the hotel's spa, a line of skincare products is sold that was developed by a local pharmacist specifically for Hotel Outside. All the employees are from the region and the kitchen only works with local ingredients.
Ah, the kitchen.
Upon our arrival at Hotel Outside in Matrei, we were greeted by chef Werner Wibmer (remember that name!) for a ravioli making demonstration. We'd prepare ravioli in two different ways, using the cheese we'd picked up at a cheese factory earlier that day.
I'm already not the handiest person as it is, but next to chef Werner, I felt like a complete clums. It was astounding how his massive hands could handle the pasta so much more delicately than my tiny fingers could and I didn't have to look at him to see that he needed all of his patience to not step in and take over when he saw me at work.
Now, I know I'm not a kitchen princess and so I didn't mind my failure, but I did have to chuckle a bit when later that evening Werner prepared one of the most refined multi-course dinners I've ever had for us.
Here's a list of what we had, followed by some photos.
- Different amuses-gueule
- Organic rocket carrot with apple
- Ravioli with East Tyrolean mountain cheese – not the ravioli we made, it was way too pretty for that :D
- Sorbet with dandelion and meadow sage
- East Tyrolean lamb with beet roots, potato and herbs
- A dessert with cherry, walnut and caramel
As you can see, every dish was prepared with an impressive amount of detail and creativity, turning it into a work of art.
You'd expect a dinner like this to take place in a rather formal setting, but that’s just wasn’t the case here. It was relaxed and peaceful that night at Hotel Outside's restaurant and the ambiance was perfect for talks in between the delicious tastings.
What really topped things off, though, was when the kitchen staff came out after dinner and started to play music. I'm not kidding. This amazing chef and his assistants were playing music for us. I just couldn't wipe the smile off of my face. What these people felt and communicated was a pure love for their job and their region.
How could we not fall in love with the place as well?
Most of you who've been out fine dining in the past will probably struggle to imagine this scene, so let me share a moment of it with you:
We ended our evening with some schnapps and a last drink at the bar, before heading to bed, deciding we'd be back soon.
In regards to the rooms, there isn't much point in showing you mine as Hotel Outside renovated all of its rooms shortly after my visit. The photo above is of a room that's already been renovated and yes – mine was pretty big too. Aside from a double bed, a separate bathroom and a separate toilet, I also had a little seating area with a table and a television, plus a large balcony.
Here's a photo of what the new bathrooms look like:
As mentioned, Hotel Outside has a spa area as well as an outdoor relaxation garden. You can simply enjoy the pool and sauna or book a spa treatment to spoil yourself even more. Outdoor lovers can join a free hiking tour or snowshoeing tour led by a park ranger.
Another option is to rent one of the hotel's e-bikes. There's parking right in front of the entrance, or you can get picked up at the station with the hotel's Tesla.
The hotel has both a fine dining restaurant and a “regular” restaurant. The latter is where the breakfast buffet with fresh smoothies and lots of other healthy options is served in the morning. There's also always a little breakfast menu with warm dishes, like eggs sunny-side-up, to choose from.
If you're looking for a unique Austria lodging experience with an unforgettable local flavor, this one is a must.
Excited to stay at Hotel Outside as well? Check here for more reviews, prices, and availability.
3. Nationalpark Lodge Grossglockner in Heiligenblut
We didn't spend much time at Nationalpark Lodge Grossglockner, but it was the perfect base from which we could go hike the first part of the Alpe-Adria-Trail. The lodge is possibly the best located out of all hotels in Heiligenblut, as it lies right next to the famous St. Vincent pilgrimage church.
My room there was simple but spacious and equipped with everything I needed.
Nationalpark Lodge Grossglockner offers a breakfast buffet consisting of all you need to start the day off right – including huge mugs of coffee and tea. There's free public parking nearby.
Want to stay at Lodge Grossglockner too? Check here for more reviews, prices, and availability.
4. Hotel See-Villa in Millstatt am See
Hotel See-Villa Millstatt is located right on the shore of Millstätter See, a lake surrounded by forests and stately homes where the Austrian upper class used to reside in summertime. Several of the hotels in Millstätt are now housed in homes like these, but none stand out from the lake as much as the yellow Hotel See-Villa.
My room was up two flights of wooden stairs that gently echoed the sound of bygone days. After opening the door, I was met with a space big enough to move into. Not only did I have a large bedroom with a seating area and desk. There was also a large separate bathroom and a walk-in closet.
Let me repeat that: I had a walk-in closet.
Not that I'd packed that much. Have a look inside my suitcase for this trip.
As it fits a stately house, the Hotel See-Villa has a large terrace overlooking the lake with elegant white furniture. It's the scene for breakfast, lunch, dinner and coffee breaks. We enjoyed both the breakfast buffet and a three-course dinner at that terrace.
For dinner, guests can choose to eat à la carte or order a fixed menu. We went for the menu, which included different options for the starter and main course, followed by the dessert of the house.
I had a shrimp and avocado salad as a starter, a fish and pasta dish as my main course and gladly finished the whole dessert as well.
There's free WiFi and guests can enjoy the private beach, spa area, children's pool and tennis court. The hotel also offers free private parking on-site.
Want to stay at Hotel See-Villa Millstatt? Click here for more reviews, prices, and availability.
5. The Kaltenbachalm in Naturpark Sölktäler
If you're looking for some typical accommodation in Austria, try a mountain hut! The Kaltenbachalm is located in the Naturpark Sölktäler and it's an actual summer hut used by an Austrian farmer's family during – well yes – summer.
From June until September, guests can spend a night sleeping above the cow stable and that's exactly what we did.
Now, I have to admit I was a bit worried about this stay beforehand. I'm not ashamed to admit that I like my comfort and I could already see myself trying to keep my balance as I peed above a hole in the ground in the middle of the night.
None of that, though!
The Kaltenbachalm's guest room is indeed located above the cow stable, but it has comfortable beds with mattresses and duvets for its guests. There's also an extra building which holds the family's cheese-making facilities and… a proper toilet! And there's a free parking lot.
Food and drinks can be ordered straight from the hosts and so we enjoyed a platter with meat and more in the evening and a sturdy breakfast in the morning, after our sunrise hike.
What I loved the most was how we were invited into the living room of our hosts when it (or better: I) was getting chilly outside in the evening and how we all sat there by the stove, tasting schnapps (me: water) and telling each other stories.
I could tell life isn't easy here, but boy, did these people look happy! Our hostess seemed to have a permanent twinkle in her eyes and her kids looked as if straight out of one of those idyllic children's books, playing outside and helping their parents around the farm.
It's all about the people, isn't it? No matter how fancy a place, it's the connection to the staff or your hosts that stays with you. And that's why I think the Kaltenbachalm and Hotel Outside are some of the best places to stay in Austria. They're both run by people that have such a passion for what they do and hold nothing back to share that passion with you.
You can find more information about staying at the Kaltenbachalm, including prices here.
6. Mondi-Holiday Seeblickhotel Grundlsee in Grundlsee
Unfortunately, when we arrived at the Mondi-Holiday hotel Grundlsee, both my camera and my phone's battery were dead and by the time they were charged, my suitcase had somehow exploded all over the room so I don't have photos of this place.
But I'll do my best to paint the picture for you :-)
The Mondi-Holiday Grundlsee is located on the shore of the Grundlsee and consists of a main building and several large wooden houses, in which the rooms are located. I don't know if it's the case for every room, but mine was more like a little study with a small table, a kitchenette, a double bed and a separate bathroom.
I could also access the garden with views of the lake from my back door.
The condos were a bit old school but other than that, I really can't make a remark. I loved the feeling of having a tiny home by the lake for one night.
There's free WiFi and the main building boasts a spa, an indoor pool and a restaurant. The hotel also has a large parking lot, though that can get a bit crowded.
The restaurant is where the massive breakfast buffet can be enjoyed in the mornings and in the evenings, it welcomes guests for à la carte dining. There's also a seasonal menu.
I ordered a pancake soup – my food discovery of the week – followed by a pasta. For once, I skipped dessert. Must have been that amuse-gueule beforehand that had filled me up!
While the food and service were fine, I do have to remark that while we were dining, a wedding was going on in a part of the restaurant that wasn't sealed off and while we didn't mind singing along to the DJ's music, I can imagine some people wished they could've had a more quiet meal.
That being said, staff offered to seat people on the front patio where none of the music could be heard.
Want to stay at the Mondi Grundlsee too? Check here for more reviews, prices, and availability.
7. Motel One Salzburg-Mirabell
Lodging in Austria can be a concern if you’re on a budget. So if you're wondering where to stay in Salzburg and fear that you'll only find expensive places, fear no more. The Motel One Salzburg-Mirabell is located right by the water in a safe and quiet neighborhood, a short walk from the city's Old Town and major attractions.
Rooms are basic but rather spacious. I had a double bed, a desk and a flat screen television that weirdly enough started playing each time I walked past it. I also had a view of the river and a decent bathroom.
There's free WiFi in all areas of the hotel and the bar is a great place to have a drink before you catch your flight back home or while you wait for the others to get ready. In the mornings, it's also where the breakfast buffet is served. And your car? You can leave that in the hotel's private parking while you explore the city.
Thinking of staying at the Motel One Salzburg-Mirabell too? Check here for more reviews, prices, and availability.
I hope this post has given you a few good ideas about where to stay in Austria. Feel free to let me know if you have any questions about my stays!
Practical information for travel to Austria
As I spent two days in Vienna before joining the others in Innsbruck, I flew from Brussels to Vienna and then I took the train from Vienna to Innsbruck. To go home, we flew from Salzburg directly to Brussels. It's possible to book flights to Innsbruck as well but there are no direct connections from Brussels. You'll have to change plans somewhere.
Before booking, it's best to compare flight prices across different airlines and see which price / time / connection combination works best for you depending on where you're coming from. Skyscanner is a great flight search engine for that.
If you'd also like to check train options, you can do so here.
The car we drove around in was a rental from Sixt. You can find the best deals on Rentalcars.com. This site compares hundreds of rental car companies to give you the best option available.
Don't forget travel insurance
Plan for the best, prepare for the worst. Travel insurance has you covered in case (part of) your trip gets canceled, you get sick or hurt abroad, and sometimes even when your electronics break or get stolen. I always make sure I'm covered every trip I go on.
Don't have travel insurance yet? Check out SafetyWing. They offer super flexible plans that you can even sign up for while you're already on your trip. On top of that, they were the first travel insurance to cover COVID, and when I got COVID, they reimbursed all of my expenses without making a fuss. Their customer support team is great and I can personally recommend them.
PIN FOR LATER
I was invited on this road trip through Austria by the Austrian Tourism board. They didn't ask me to write about any of these hotels. I just wanted to share with you some great bases for exploring the different regions. Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. If you book or buy anything through them, I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. If you'd like to support the site, this is a great way of doing so. Thanks!