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The European Alps are one of my favorite place on the planet. How can you not fall in love with their jugged snow-capped peaks and pristine beauty? I grew up snowboarding in Alaska, but I always had one eye on the Alps. “One day I will snowboard those gorgeous mountains,” I told myself, as I flipped through ski and snowboard magazines. Little did I know, that I would eventually be living at the foothills of the Alps, with the opportunity for weekly day trips out to snowboard. I can load up my gear, hop on a train or a bus, and for under 75 Euros I am shredding the pistes of some of the best terrain in Europe. You can as well, with these easy, well-priced options departing from Munich to Ski or Snowboard the German or Austrian Alps.
Getting to the Alps from Munich, for a day of riding, is much easier than one might think. This guide will cover a few different options for skiing or snowboarding near Munich in the Austrian or German Alps, including some all-inclusive bus tips, self-guided train options, and even a party option.
All-Inclusive Packages to Ski and Snowboard Near Munich
Ski Bus München
I think this option is the best for anyone looking for an all-inclusive, stress-free package to ride in Austria. There is even a host or guide that stays with your bus for the entire day and they do speak English. There are several packages, ranging in price and varying mountain terrains. Hochzillertal or St. Johan is my favorite, as they are reasonably priced and the transit time is manageable. Find more information in selecting an option that is best for you here.
Ski Bus München is one of my favorite activities to do as a local in Munich. It’s so well organized and stress-free that even guests traveling through Munich for only a few days can participate. Purchase your tickets online a few days before, because on busy weekends the buses can fill up and sell out. The ski bus typically picks up and drops off at the main Munich bus station, called the ZOB. You will want to be at the station between 6am-6: 20 am depending on which package you booked.
The easiest way to get there is to find an U-bahn that connects to an S-bahn, or just hop on an S-bahn heading to Hackerbrücke station. Cross the bridge at Hackerbrücke, enter the bottom of the station and look for a bus headed to your destination. Ask the drivers if you need help. Plan your transit out the night before, so you’re not late. You want to arrive 20 min early, at least, to find the right bus and get a seat next to your friends. You will need to show your ticket to the host or driver before loading up on the bus. As soon as the bus departs you will be given your lift ticket, in exchange for 2 euros, and a light breakfast. The host will explain the trip and what time to be back at the bus. If you have any questions, they usually speak enough English to help you. Always remember your bus driver and where you’re dropped off. Once you arrive in Austria the fun starts! Rent gear or head straight up the mountain for a fun-filled day of skiing and snowboarding in the gorgeous Austrian Alps. At the end of the day, turn your ski ticket into the driver for a refreshing beer! You’ll be back in Munich in time for a late dinner around 6-7pm.
Please note: Germans LOVE printed tickets. If you can print your ticket, please do so. If you don’t have access to a printer, bring your digital copy, but you will have to fill out a form on the bus. It’s super annoying, but it is what it is.
Winter Party: Ski and Snowboard with Aprés-Ski
If you like to party this option is for you! Start your day off with a full day of snowboarding in the Austrian Alps and then buckle up for 3-4 hours of Aprés-Ski. This option is perfect for uni students, young couples or groups of friends who are looking for a unique party experience.
This option is another all-inclusive guided trip for the party monster. For 75 euros you get an RT bus to and from the mountain, breakfast, energy drink, lunch, lift ticket, 2 drinks and time to party! Find more information on their website. It is in German and can be hard to translate, use google if you need help. Remember to buy your tickets a few days in advance and have them with you to get on the bus. The pickup and drop off location is near the Munich Ostbahnhof, which is accessible by all S-bahn lines. From there use this map to find the bus pick up location. Your host will welcome you aboard and provide you with the breakfast, energy drink, and any help you might need. Your host usually will know some English so if you need help figuring out times and location for your day just ask. After you arrive at the mountain you will have the day to snowboard or ski. Lunch is at a specific spot and you will receive lunch tickets from your host. At the end of the day head back to your bus to drop off any gear and then follow the music to the after party. Enjoy Alpine schlager music and a wild time. Drink as much as you want, since you’re not driving home! This is a long day and you will not be back in Munich until around 11 pm and you will most likely be very drunk.
Independent Ski and Snowboard Options Near Munich
Ski & Snowboard in Garmisch, Germany
This option is for a more independent traveler or local who wants to stick closer to Munich. You’re completely on your own to navigate the train system and there is no group host or guide with you. Your final destination is Garmisch Classic, famous for the Olympics, and it is a great place to ski in the German Alps.
Our journey starts at the Munich Central Train station or Hbh. I suggest getting in the DB (Deutsch Bahn) ticketing line to buy your Garmisch Classic train AND ski pass combo. You can purchase them from the machines as well, but it’s a bit confusing for a non-local. For 48 Euros you get RT train fare AND a ski pass to Garmisch Classic resort. If you don’t get the combo ticket you will end up paying almost twice as much. I recommend taking the 7:13 or 7:32 am train that departs on time from platform 29. Make sure to arrive 20 min early to get tickets and a seat. The train dead ends at Garmisch-Partenkirche Hbh. From there you will need to take your train tickets and follow the signs for the Zugspitzebahn. Exchange your ticket for your ski pass, which will get you on the next train and wait at the platform for it. This train is charming, as it is a classic train from the 80s or 90s! Ride this to Hausberg stop. From there you can rent gear or head straight up the mountain. I believe this train stops running around 7, so make sure after your day of skiing you wrap things by about 6:30 to head back to Munich! Worst case you can walk to the main Garmisch Hbh to get back to Munich. Almost everyone here speaks English, as it’s a popular destination for U.S. military members, with a base nearby.
Ski & Snowboard in Spitzingsee, Germany
This is a super tiny and intimate ski resort with just a couple of lifts. It is a great escape from the huge resorts and if you go during the week you are guaranteed to have this place to your self. Basically, you want to navigate from Munich Hbf to this location. I am not 100% positive if they rent gear here, but I have a feeling they do, most ski schools do. I am not aware of a ski pass train combo like for Garmisch, so I suggest you buy a Bayern ticket, which will be the best deal and enable you to ride local buses and transportation in Spitzingsee if you need.
Spitzingsee even has specials like Frauentag, which is discounts for women on Wednesday and night skiing on Thursday and Friday, so you can even hop over there after work one day!
Ski & Snowboard in Sudelfeld – Bayrischzell, Germany
This is a slightly bigger resort than Spitzingsee and has some pretty good lifts and runs and isn’t as crowded as Garmisch. So, it’s like your Goldie locks in Germany. You can start your day in Bayrischzell or Sudelfeld. For more information, check out their website. The ski school with rentals is in Sudelfeld and there are a few places in the town of Bayrischzell that rent as well, but if you have your own gear load them up in the train, grab a Bayern ticket from the Munich Hbf and enjoy your day skiing or snowboarding near Munich. This place is pretty reasonably priced and offers passes for 1 hour, half day for the morning or afternoon, and full day tickets.
Enjoy your fun-filled day in the beautiful Alps. Don’t forget to pin this to your favorite outdoor or German board! Happy Shredding!
Susanna grew up in small-town Alaska where the changing climate was always on her mind. Through traveling, she gained an interest in the power of sustainable and regenerative travel. She now attends a Master's program for environmental sustainability and bridges sustainable travel with environmental science. When she's not outside playing, you'll find her drinking whiskey with her cat and partner while trying to get to level 99 in life.