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Zell am See

Zell am See Ski Resort Guide

Zell am See, Austria

Rated: 4/5 (from 6 ratings)

Zell am See Ski Area Highlights
Recommended ForExpert Skiers, Intermediates, Beginners, Snowboarders and Apres-Ski!
Total Piste Length80km50 miles
Highest Lift1,950m6,398ft
Resort Height760m2,493ft
 Nearest AirportsSalzburg and Innsbruck Airport
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Zell am See

A small town on the shores of Lake Zell with a wide range of shops (pedestrianised centre), restaurants and off-slope activity options. Connected with Kaprun, although not quite lift linked to it.

Zell am See Summary

The Austrian ski resort of Zell am See is in the Austrian Alps at an altitude of 760m2,493ft, with 80km50 miles of marked runs.

Zell am See is part of the Europa Sport Region ski area with access to 130km81 miles of downhill skiing, with 81 marked pistes, served by a total of 53 ski lifts. In addition to the skiing in Zell am See itself (80km50 miles of pisted ski runs), the appropriate ski Lift Pass will allow you to ski or snowboard in the other Europa Sport Region ski resorts of Kaprun and Kitzsteinhorn.

Zell am See Snow Forecast

When will it snow in Zell am See?

The next notable snow forecast for Zell am See is 16cm6in, expected on 25 September.

See our Snow Forecast for Zell am See for the latest update, or   Join our Snow Mail Here

Snow this week

Snow Forecast by day for Zell am See

Ski Area Stats

Zell am See Ski Area

Piste and Lift Stats for Zell am See
Black Pistes
Expert Trails
 9 25km16 miles
Red Pistes
Intermediate Runs
1427km17 miles
Blue Pistes
Easy Trails
 6 25km16 miles
Total Length
80km50 miles
Cross Country
Total Length
58km36 miles
Ski Lifts
Number of Lifts

Europa Sport Region Ski Area

Piste and Lift Stats for Europa Sport Region
Black Pistes
Expert Trails
Red Pistes
Intermediate Runs
Blue Pistes
Easy Trails
Total Length
130km81 miles
Ski Lifts
Number of Lifts

Zell am See Altitudes

Zell am See Ski Area Height

Max Vertical and Resort Altitude for Zell am See
Highest Lift1,950m6,398ft
Lowest Piste760m2,493ft
Resort Altitude (Zell am See)760m2,493ft
Max Vertical1,190m3,904ft

Zell am See Rated

Ratings for Zell am See
Expert Skiers
Intermediate Skiers

Zell am See Overview

The attractive lakeside town of Zell am See has a different feel to it than most Austrian ski destinations. Perhaps because of its size or its water front location, this is not the normal mountain village made up of a few dozen giant wooden chalets. On the other hand the mountains are still there, towering high above to altitudes capable of maintaining glacier skiing at neighbouring Kaprun, so the comparatively low altitude of Zell am See doesn't prevent guaranteed skiing throughout the season. The two have been joined, on the same pass at least if not by lifts, in the Europa Sport Ski Region since 1968. Today there are more than 130km of trails (78 miles), 80km (50 miles) of which are local to Zell.

Even though it doesn't meet the standard Austrian resort model, it's still a very scenic spot, with the lake in front and the mountains behind. Another factor making Zell seem that bit different is the feeling of history that oozes from the medieval centre (now pedestrianised) and the culture of the place which stems from it. The water sports, beach parties, classical concerts, festivals and theatre performances at the castle all combine to prove that Zell am See was around long before winter sports were thought of, and still has a life beyond them.

 Notable Ski Runs

The most difficult run is the 'Trass'.

Skiing in Zell am See

Zell am See's 80km (50 miles) of trails are largely located on the Schmittenhöhe mountain behind the town. There are various access points to the area, but most people staying in central Zell will take the gondola, the base of which is a few minutes walk above the town centre. Alternative access is via the neighbouring village of Schüttdorf or via a choice of two cable cars that leave from a base above Zell; all are linked by a ski bus, which is free to lift pass holders.

Beginners normally start up by the aforementioned Sonnenalm cable cars and will find the easier blue runs up on top of the mountain, with the option of taking the lift back down if the long run back is too daunting in the early days. Intermediates will enjoy Zell am See's skiing the most with more than 50km (32 miles) of red and blue runs to whizz around on, including an 6.5km (4 mile) trail, the Schutt, descending the full 1200 metre vertical back down to the resort.

Advanced skiers have several long medium-steep blacks descending through the forest to enjoy, some usually mogulled, and Zell has a reputation for good off-piste powder when conditions are right. Zell am See's sunny slopes do have good snow-making cover on nearly two-thirds of the piste, however most skiers will wish to visit Kaprun's glacier skiing on the Kitzsteinhorn Glacier during their stay. This is accessed by a ski bus which runs every 20 minutes in high season, and once an hour during other periods, journey time is around 30 minutes and the service is free to lift pass holders. Lift queues at the glacier, that resulted in the past when skiers from neighbouring low level resorts arrived in droves when conditions were poor, have been eased by the installation of a new six seater chair.

Cross country skiers have up to 200km (125 miles) of trails around the valley including a 10km (6 mile) track on frozen Lake Zell, a three kilometre (two mile) illuminated track at Schüttdorf and a two kilometre high altitude trail on the Schmittenhohe at 1,500 metres.

There are a variety of pistes to suit all levels of skier ability, from Beginner to Expert.

Snowboarding in Zell am See

Zell am See is a top destination for snowboarders with the Europa Sport Region. Local to Zell am See there's a Fun Park with half pipe at Glocknerwiese on the Schmittenhöhe with one of Austria's original two Boarder Cross courses with jumps, ramps and bumps and there's plenty of surfing and cruising terrain all around the Region. The nightlife model also fits most 'boarders requirements.

Location and Map

Where is Zell am See?

Zell am See is in the Austrian Alps in Salzburg, Austria.

Map of Zell am See

Tap Show Map in Full Screen for Full-Screen, or see J2Ski's Map of Zell am See.

How to get to Zell am See

 By Air

The nearest airports to Zell am See are Salzburg, Innsbruck Airport and Munich. There are six airports within three hours drive.


Ski Lift Capacity

The 28 ski lifts of Zell am See are able to uplift 40,000 skiers and snowboarders every hour.

Snow Making

Zell am See is able to make snow, on 68km42 miles of ski runs, with 60 snow cannons.

Zell am See Season Dates

When is Zell am See open?

We don't currently have confirmed season dates for Zell am See.

Usual opening is late November, and usual closing is Late April.

NOTE:- Lift and Piste openings are always subject to Snow Conditions in Zell am See.

Zell am See Piste Map

Zell am See Piste Map
Zell am See

COVID-19 / Coronavirus

We don't yet have specific details of the COVID-19 precautions being taken in Zell am See, but they may include any or all of the following :-

  • Face masks required on lifts, and in shops.
  • Social distancing in public areas.
  • Reduced lift capacity.

Visit the Zell am See Tourist Office for the latest.

Talking about Zell am See

Mentions in recent J2Ski News Items and Snow Reports from our users...

Zell am See Webcams

The Webcams in Zell am See are not always up-to-date. Please check the date on the image to ensure you are seeing current snow conditions.

Mountain Biking in Zell am See

There is downhill mountain biking available and you can rent Mountain Bikes in Zell am See.

Zell am See Aprés Ski

The 22 bars, pubs and discothèques in the region give Zell am See a lively night life for those who want it, with quiet sophisticated night spots for those who don't. In the former category the Schnapps Hans Ice Bar at the top of the cable car is a good place to start (especially if the weather is good). Then back in Zell the Villa Crazy Daisy is normally one of the busiest spots in town, along with the popular Diele. Honorary mentions also for Greens, Resi Bar, Viva and Membar. But there is so much more to do than party in Zell - bowling, toboggan run, night skiing, cinema, swimming, skating and a host of other opportunities.

Zell am See