Zugspitze, Germany

The Zugspitze is the highest mountain in Germany and offers one of the best views in the Alps on a clear day. The summit can be reached comfortably and without effort via 3 cable cars.

The Zugspitze is the highest mountain in Germany at 2,962 meters and is one of our top 10 most famous and beautiful mountains in the world. It is located 11 kilometers from Garmisch-Partenkirchen and directly on the border between Germany and Austria and is one of our top 10 sights of Germany.


When is the best time for the Zugspitze?

The summit of the Zugspitze is best climbed from the end of June to September. Then the snow is not quite so high and the temperatures move above 0°C. July and August are the warmest months.

By train to the Zugspitze

Panoramic view from the 2,962 meter high Zugspitze into the Alps, Germany - © Bergfee / Fotolia
© Mountain Fairy / Fotolia

The summit of the Zugspitze is relatively easy to reach by means of three cable cars leading up to it:

  • The Tyrolean Zugspitze Railway runs 3,600 meters from Ehrwald-Obermoos (1,225 m) to the Zugspitze (2,950 m).
  • The Bayerische Zugspitzbahn is a rack railroad and takes about 45 minutes to travel 19 kilometers from Garmisch, 4.4 kilometers of which are through the Zugspitz Tunnel, to the glacier station at 2,588 meters above sea level. There you change to the Zugspitz Gletscherbahn, a 1,000-meter-long cable car, to reach the summit.
  • The Eibsee cable car leads from Eibsee at 1,000 meters above sea level over a length of 4.5 kilometers to the summit.

Hiking to the Zugspitze

The Munich House on the Zugspitze, on the west summit at an altitude of 2959m, Germany - © rainbowgames / Fotolia
© rainbowgames / Fotolia

Of course, you can also climb the Zugspitze on foot. There are several paths with different levels of difficulty.

For all variants, however, good mountain equipment, endurance, mountain experience and surefootedness are necessary. You must never forget that you are in high alpine terrain. The easiest ascent - but at the same time also the longest - has its starting point at the ski stadium in Garmisch-Partenkirchen.

To reach the Zugspitze summit, you have to climb more than 2,200 meters in altitude. You need eight to ten hours of pure walking time(!) without breaks for the ascent. So attention! This requires quite a bit of fitness and you should also get up early.

Unique mountain panorama on the Zugspitze

The Zugspitze is one of the best view mountains in the Alps, as there are no similarly high peaks all around. On a clear day, you can enjoy excellent and unforgettable views for miles. Over 400 other peaks can be seen, including the Grossglockner, Austria's highest mountain, or the Piz Bernina. In good weather, even the TV tower of Munich can be made out in the distance.

Weather station Zugspitze

Since 1900, there has been an observatory for weather observation on the Zugspitze, which has been operated by the German weather service since 1952. The webcam mounted there sends videos of the current weather conditions on the Zugspitze around the world.


Premieres, activities and events on the Zugspitze

  • On March 19, 1922, the first airplane landed on the Zugspitze 50 meters from the summit.
  • On April 29, 1927, a glider, disassembled into individual parts and transported up by cable car, took off from the Zugspitze for the first time.
  • 1931 saw the first balloon launch from the Zugspitze.
  • Every year the Zugspitz-Extremberglauf is held, which gained sad media fame in 2008 when two athletes died of exhaustion and hypothermia after a weather-related fall.
  • There are three glaciers in the Zugspitze massif. The Höllentalferner, the Southern Schneeferner and the Northern Schneeferner glacier. A small but fine ski area can be found on the Zugspitzplatt directly below the summit.
  • The adventure museum "Fascination Zugspitze" informs about the history of the mountain massif and leads its visitors on a walkable area in airy heights over the summit world.
  • A panorama restaurant with various events around the year banishes hunger and thirst on the Zugspitze. Its highlights include the full moon ride, the sunrise breakfast or the "highest Wiesn in the world" for the Oktoberfest.

Related links:

Official website for travelers of Germany with info about weather, prices, events and attractions
Official site for travelers from Austria with info about weather, prices, events and attractions