Skiing in Germany: 8 best ski resorts
Summer might be a popular time of year for a vacation, but nothing can beat winter sports on the snowy German mountains, followed by a nice cup of hot chocolate in front of a warm fire. The colder weather means it’s the perfect time to have a winter holiday at a ski resort in Germany!
When to go skiing in Germany
To get the best experience, the ideal time to go skiing in Germany is between December and March. When the ski season in Germany starts depends on snow conditions but can begin as early as October and continue until as late as May, especially if a ski resort has snow machines.
Remember to check the opening dates of the ski resort that you plan to visit to a avoid disappointment.
Map of ski resorts in Germany
Wondering which German ski resorts are closest to you for a convenient winter holiday location? Here’s a map showing where the best ski resorts in Germany can be found:
Best ski resorts in Germany
With so many German ski resorts to choose from, it can be difficult to decide which one would be the best for your preferred winter sport. From cosy chalets to some of the greatest slopes, here are some of the best spots for skiing in Germany.
Planning a winter holiday with the family? The Garmisch Partenkirchen ski resort has the best of both worlds with loads of fun for you and the kids in the Garmisch-Classic ski area combined with the legendary height of Zugspitze.
The Kandahar Downhill in the Garmisch-Classic ski area is an impressive feature of this German ski resort. This extreme challenge trail in Bavaria has been used in past skiing championships and the 1936 Winter Olympics, and allows expert ski hobbyists to try it out themselves. A children’s area means that the kids can practise their turns and become little winter sports enthusiasts while seasoned skiers in the family enjoy the steeper slopes.
A visit to Garmen Partenkirchen takes you to the top of Germany with the country’s highest mountain at 2.962 metres tall: the Zugspitze. Along with cable cars, a cogwheel train and 20 kilometres of amazing ski runs, there is also an ice village, some top-class restaurants and a photo stop at the summit of Zugspitze. It is easy to see why the Garmisch-Partenkirchen is one of the best ski resorts in Europe.
If you don’t want to travel too far for your ski holiday, Winterberg is a great option. Located a little over two hours away from major German cities such as Frankfurt, Cologne and Düsseldorf, the convenient destination in North Rhine-Westphalia means an easy start to your getaway.
Winterberg spans eight ski areas with 81 runs for beginner and expert skiers to explore. With most of the slopes being family-friendly, as well as the presence of many tobogganing runs, this ski resort in Germany will be a snowy and white adventure for the whole family.
Video: YouTube / Weerchris
After you’ve been at this cross-border ski resort, you can say you’ve skied in both Germany and Austria! The Oberstdorf-Kleinwalsertal ski resort provides a unique winter sports experience spanning seven mountains.
With over 130 kilometres of pistes, there are endless opportunities for skiing and snowboarding. That’s not the end of the icy fun, though: there is also winter hiking, tobogganing, snowtubing, snowbiking and horse-drawn sleigh rides. Basically, anything you could imagine doing in the snow, you can enjoy at this ski resort. Plus, if you don’t want to leave this winter wonderland, there’s a solution for that, too: an igloo lodge!
From the beginner’s slope to the FIS World Cup route, there are runs suitable for every level of skier at the Feldberg ski resort. Set within the Black Forest in Baden-Württemberg, this German ski resort located close to Switzerland gives families not only the chance to partake in winter sports but also to relax in the beauty of nature.
Other than alpine skiing and snowboarding, you can also enjoy winter hiking, snowshoeing and snowkiting. There are also various restaurants where you can fuel yourself for all your winter activities with some traditional German food.
Video: YouTube / deinskigebiet
As the largest and one of the most popular ski resorts for families in the Bavarian Forest, you can guarantee that everyone, young and old, will be entertained throughout a ski vacation at Arber. Skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing and more - it’s a winter paradise!
A dedicated children’s area with its very own mascot, ArBear, and a family cross-park area will keep budding winter sports enthusiasts busy learning how to ski and snowboard on soft waves and hills. Nestled in the mountain forest are various gastronomy huts offering delicious regional specialities where you can grab a bite between ski runs.
Looking for a winter resort where you can take it slow and relax one day and then grab some action and excitement the next? This is one of the best ski resorts to combine restoration with adventure. Located in the Allgäu Alps, the Alpsee-Grünten ski resort has 97 ski slopes, 91 winter hiking trails and various toboggan runs and cross-country ski trails to explore.
After you get your dose of winter sports, you can warm up and re-energise in the sauna and wellness area nearby with a marvellous view of the snow-covered mountains.
Reit im Winkl
Another Bavarian ski resort that borders Austria, Reit im Winkl consists of three ski areas and is just a day’s hike away from the beautiful German lake, Chiemsee. The Winklmoos-Alm and Benzeck ski areas have easier slopes that make it a safe and exciting spot for families with children or novice skiers.
Do you have skiers among you with more experience, who want to whizz down slopes on their skis or snowboards? They can use the gondola to cross over into the Steinplatte ski area in Austria, which is conveniently connected to the German ski areas. If skiing isn’t your cup of tea, you can also go snowshoeing, snowtubing, tobogganing, winter trail running, or even take a lovely winter hike to Lake Chiemsee.
Oberjoch Bad Hindelang
The Oberjoch ski resort is a popular winter resort in Germany for a family ski trip where you know the kids will be safe but still have a fantastic time. One of the main highlights of this ski resort is the 20.000 square metre children’s area where the kids can playfully learn how to ski and snowboard.
Your winter fantasy doesn’t end there, as the resort is blessed with 32 kilometres of ski runs, endless cross-country ski trails and a natural ice rink nearby to twirl around on while ice skating. With so much to do, you’ll wish winter could last longer.
Video: YouTube / BERGSCHÖN
Where to go snowboarding in Germany
If you prefer snowboarding over skiing, don't fear. There are some winter resorts which are especially popular for snowboarding in Germany. Some of the best ski resorts for snowboarding include Arber, Alpsee-Grünten and the best ski resort in the country, Garmisch Partenkirchen.
Head to a ski resort in Germany this winter
Grab your ski gear and head into the mountains for your winter vacation. German ski resorts offer some of the best skiing spots in Europe and are perfect for family and friends to gather and have some snow-filled fun! Do you have a favourite ski resort? Tell us about it in the comments below.