Sightseeing in Innsbruck
Innsbruck's city center fills a triangular chunk of land bordered by a kink in the wide Inn River and the autobahns to the south. The old town, or altstadt, lies at the western edge of the center and remains the focus of the city’s tourism. The nucleus of the altstadt district is a pedestrian area along Herzog Friedrich Strasse, a cobblestone road lined with shops, arcades, and cafés. The university and most of the churches and museums of note sit on the old town’s northeastern edge. Markt Graben and Burg Graben loop around the southern edge of the altstadt, perpendicular to Maria Theresienstrasse, the inner city’s wide boulevard and its shopping district. The main station – now under dramatic reconstruction – sits at the southern side of town, a 10-minute walk southeast of the altstadt.
Old Town Innsbruck
Innsbruck’s small but charming old town is the center of the city’s tourist action. Here, visitors wander back alleys, shop in the boutiques, and dine in outdoor cafés. Additionally, Innsbruck boasts 18 museums on topics ranging from alpinism to bells, running second only to Vienna among Austria’s museum cities. At Herzog Friedrich Strasse 15, beneath the landmark Goldenes Dachl, or Golden Roof, is the Maximilianeum Museum. The museum memorializes the life of Emperor Maximilian I, great patron of Austrian art, music, and architecture.
Tiroler Volkskunst Museum
The Tiroler Volkskunst Museum, or Tyrolean Regional Heritage Museum, documents the Tyrol’s history with fascinating displays of interior design and artistic craftsmanship. It’s at Universitatsstrasse 2, near the Hofkirche. The nearby Hofkirche houses the tomb of Emperor Maximilian I.
A visit to the Innsbruck Alpenzoo is a hit with kids, and involves a ride up the Hungerburgbahn funicular at the base of the Seegrube and a pleasant stroll through the woods. The zoo is home to more than 2,000 Alpine animals – 150 species are represented. The park can also be reached by car.
Bergisel Ski Jump
Just south of town, the new Bergisel Ski Jump offers tours of its 47-m tower. The sports stadium below was the site of the Olympic Winter Games ski jumping events and today hosts training and competitions throughout the year. Visit daily, 6 am-5 pm, i6. Also south of town, near a stop along the Igls tram route, Schloss Ambras offers a nice collection of historical art, armor, and artifacts, all housed within the splendid surroundings of the 16th-century palace grounds.
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