There are resorts in the Alps with better snow and more imposing mountains, but Kitzbühel is unsurpassed when it comes to a combination of Tyrolean charm, liveliness, and easy access from a major gateway city. The resort is just 90 minutes by car from Munich, which means you'll encounter weekend crowds in addition to vacationers.
Kitzbühel was one of the first true destination ski resorts, and still draws visitors from all over the world. The resort draws a combination of staid Europeans who love the tradition and party-hearty young skiers and snowboarders for whom nightlife is prime.
Kitzbühel (www.kitzbuhel.com) sits in a broad valley, surrounded by three major ski areas: the Jochberg Pass-Turn area, the Kitzbüheler Horn and the Hahnenkamm. If the latter sounds familiar, it's because this splendid mountain lent its name to the one of the premier downhill courses on the World Cup circuit, contested on the Streif run.
But Kitzbühel has a softer side too, found on such sunny slopes as on the Kitzbüheler Horn and the Bichlalm, a smaller ski area in the town orbit. Because of its relatively low elevation, Kitzbühel has been increasing its reliance on snowmaking, especially on lower slopes. Its ski school maintains an international reputation for excellence, and its wide-ranging intermediate terrain is excellent as well, inviting long cruising runs.
You can ride nearly 60 lifts in Kitzbühel and interlinked Aurach, Kirchberg, Thurn Pass, and St. Johann in Tyrol.
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication