The Innsbruck Card is one of the best value for money tourist cards I have come across. Not only does it include the popular, but pricey, Nordkette cable car, but also the Swarovski Crystal Worlds and a number of worthwhile museums. This guide will help you decide whether you need the Innsbruck Card, how to get your money’s worth, and what itineraries to consider.
Innsbruck Card price overview
|Period||Adult||Child 5-16 yrs|
An Innsbruck Card Combo, which includes the 48-hour Innsbruck Card as well as cake and coffee at an Austrian café and dinner in a traditional brewery, is also available for €110,00.
Unlike many other city cards, the Innsbruck Card is valid for 24, 48 or 72 hours from the time you first use it. Therefore, it can be valid from 11:00 to 11:00 or 17:00 to 17:00 on different calendar days.
The Innsbruck Card includes one free ticket for more than 20 attractions, cable cars, the hop-on-hop-off sightseer bus, a walking tour, and public transport in the city.
Popular attractions included on the Innsbruck Card
|Attraction||Normal Adult Price|
|Swarovski Crystal Worlds||€19,00|
|Imperial Palace||€ 9,50|
|Court Church||€ 7,00|
|Museum of Tyrolean Folk Art||€11,00 (including Court Church)|
|Ambras Castle||€ 10,00|
|Bergisel Ski Jump||€ 9,50|
|Tyrol Panorama + Imperial Infantry Museum||€11,00|
|City Tower||€ 4,00|
Find the full list of attractions and activities here.
Cable cars included in the Innsbruck Card
|Cable cars||Normal Adult Price|
|Rangger Köpfl Oberperfuss||€19,00|
Note: The Glungezer and DreiSeen cable cars are only included in the Innsbruck Card in summer. Also, be aware that most cable cars close for a period in spring and autumn. Therefore, always check the individual cable car websites for the most up-to-date information. The Nordkettenbahn is the only cable car that is open year-round except for about 3 weeks in November when it is closed for maintenance.
Where to buy the Innsbruck Card
The Innsbruck Card is available online here or from the following places in and around Innsbruck.
- The Innsbruck Information office in the city centre.
- Most tourist offices in the holiday villages around Innsbruck.
- Participating cable car stations.
- Ticket offices of attractions that are included on the Innsbruck Card.
- Most hotels in the city.
- The Trafik shop at Innsbruck Airport.
- Press & Books shop at the Innsbruck train station.
Proposed itinerary for a 24-hour Innsbruck Card
My proposed itinerary for 24 hours with the Innsbruck Card looks like this:
Start your day bright and early with a trip on the Nordkettenbahnen to enjoy superb mountain views from an Alpine peak. To make the most of your Nordkette mountain experience and leave enough time for other attractions, you should start by no later than 09:00. Plan at least 3 hours for this excursion.
If you are travelling with kids or love wildlife, it’s worth getting out at the Alpine Zoo station of the Nordkettenbahnen on your way back to Innsbruck. The Alpine Zoo or Alpenzoo is the highest lying zoo in Europe, and home to Alpine fauna and flora only. You can see 20 of the 80 alpine mammal species and a number of bird, reptile, amphibian and fish species in the beautiful mountain setting.
Grab a lunch bite at the Alpine Zoo before starting the last cable car stretch back to Innsbruck. Or you could get out at the Löwenhaus Station in Innsbruck and have lunch at the like-named traditional restaurant next to the Inn River.
By now, it should be around 14:00 to 14:30 when you arrive back at the Congress station of the Nordkette cable car. From here, it is a 5-minute walk to either the Imperial Palace or the Museum of Tyrolean Folk Art with Court Church.
You don’t have to spend a lot of time in the palace or at the museum. However, the Giant Hall in the palace is quite impressive. So are the 28 so-called “black men” in the Court Church.
By now, it could be as late as 15:30. You have enough time to walk down the Hofgasse to the heart of the Innsbruck old town when leaving the Court Church or the Imperial Palace. It will only take 3 minutes to reach the famous Golden Roof or Goldenes Dachl. You can just admire the 2,657 fire-gilded copper tiles from the outside, or you can visit the Golden Roof Museum.
While in the old town, I highly recommend climbing the Innsbruck city tower which is a stone’s throw away from the Golden Roof. The 133 steps aren’t that taxing and well worth the views over Innsbruck’s rooftops and the Nordkette mountains in the late afternoon sun.
This is about as much as you will fit into 24 hours in Innsbruck. I think it’s a good mixture of nature and history that will certainly leave you with a lasting impression of the Capital of the Alps.
- Enjoy your coffee and cake at Café Sacher next to the Imperial Palace if you buy the 48-hour Innsbruck Card Combo.
- If the mountain is covered in clouds in the morning, swap your itinerary around. Start with the Innsbruck old town attractions and end with the Nordkette cable car trip and Alpine Zoo.
- Likewise, base your itinerary on the weather if you have an afternoon and morning of the next day in Innsbruck.
The total cost of activities and attractions on my 24-hour Innsbruck itinerary: €70,80
Total savings: €70,80 – €43,00 = €27,80
Proposed itinerary for a 48-hour Innsbruck Card
If you have 48 hours to explore Innsbruck, you can use my 24-hour Innsbruck Card itinerary on day one or two – weather depending.
My suggested itinerary for the additional 24 hours is as follow:
Take the shuttle bus to Swarovski Crystal Worlds in Wattens if this is something you are interested in. The chambers of wonder and the vast crystal park landscape can keep you busy for two to three hours. Kids especially enjoy the big play tower, labyrinth and other outdoor activities.
Have lunch at Swarovski or return to Innsbruck to grab lunch at the Market Hall next to the market square.
Then catch the hop on hop off sightseer bus to Ambras Castle. On the way, you will pass other attractions and learn a lot about Innsbruck via the headphones. The castle is in a beautiful setting and boasts impressive chambers of armour.
Get back on the hop on hop off bus to visit the Bergisel next. On this historic hill, you can take the lift to the top of the Olympic ski jump and marvel at the Tirol Panorama. The latter is Tyrol’s largest oil painting depicting the historic Third Battle of Bergisel.
Tip: End your 48-hours in Innsbruck on a highlight with a 3-course dinner at Theresienbräu included in your 48-hour Innsbruck Card combo.
The total cost of activities and attractions on day 2 of the 48-hour Innsbruck Card itinerary: €75,00
Total savings over 48 hours: €145,80 – €50,00 = €95,80
Cost of the 48-hour Innsbruck Card combo including coffee, cake and a traditional 3-course dinner: €110,00
Proposed itinerary for a 72-hour Innsbruck Card
After following the itineraries for 24 and 48 hours in Innsbruck, I will recommend a 72-hour Innsbruck Card to explore some of the mountain resorts outside of Innsbruck. Most of them are worth a day trip, especially if you depend on public transport. Unless you ski or like frolicking in the snow, the 72-hour Innsbruck Card is also more suitable for summer than winter.
My best recommendation in summer is to use the extra day with the Innsbruck Card to hike the beautiful Zirbenweg trail. This easy hike offers amazing views of the Inn Valley and the Nordkette mountain range. It is easily accessible via public transport and the Patscherkofel and Glungezer cable cars. The tram to Igls where you get the Patscherkofel cable car is included in the Innsbruck Card, as well as the bus between the two cable car stations.
Another nice day outing is to take the tram from Innsbruck to Mutters, and the Muttereralm cable car from there. The Muttereralmpark has many attractions for young and old.
The total cost of Zirbenweg cable cars: €22,50
Total savings over 72 hours: €168,30 – €59,00 = €109,30
Verdict: Why you should buy the Innsbruck Card
The Innsbruck Card REALLY saves you money. The proof is in the numbers. If you like taking cable cars and exploring attractions, there is no reason not to buy the Innsbruck Card.
The Innsbruck Card takes you places. With the Innsbruck Card, travel on Innsbruck public transport is free. It includes the Innsbruck hop-on-hop-off bus or Sightseer bus, which stops at 18 strategic points throughout the city to bring you to the attractions included on your card. There are even audio guides with a special kids’ version on the Innsbruck hop on hop off bus to give you all the important facts.
Unfortunately, all regional buses (the mostly yellow Postbuses) are not included. These would be the ones taking you to Glungezer, Axamer Lizum, and Kühtai, among other places.
When you shouldn’t buy the Innsbruck Card
It’s worth buying the Innsbruck Card for at least 24 hours if you plan to go up the Nordkette and see or do one or two other listed attractions/activities.
However, if you only have a few hours in the city or don’t want to take the Nordkette cable car all the way to the top you may be better off buying individual tickets.
Accommodation suggestion: Save time and money by staying within walking distance from all the Innsbruck old town attractions and restaurants. Hotel Zach is ideally located for this.
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