Visitor reviews for Gerlos Ski Resort
January 06, 2010
Iancu from Romania
I like Gerlos resort and its slopes because they have a very "laid back", relaxed atmosphere to them. Many of the slopes are sunny throughout the day, the views are great, so you can cruise on the slopes, then sit back, sunbathe and enjoy the view, then ride some more. Gerlos is a very nice place to take a relaxing "break" after riding some more demanding Zillertal slopes, like Hintertux.
Overall: 4.0. Based on 1 vote and 3 reviews. Vote
(1) At least one overnight stop, (2) requires a whole day, (3) requires more than half a day – you may have time for a few turns (4) arrive by lunchtime and ski all afternoon, (5) there is a main airport within an hour of Gerlos.
Public Transport: 2.0
(1) There are no buses or taxis to Gerlos, (3) there are slow or infrequent buses / trains available, (5) getting to the resort is easy with frequent bus / train connections.
(1) An ugly resort in a bland setting, (3) average mountain views and resort, (5) a spectacular setting and a beautiful / historic resort town.
(1) No places to stay in/near Gerlos, (3) a few places to stay in the resort, (5) a wide variety of accommodation suitable to suit all budgets.
Cheap Rooms: 3.0
(1) No budget accommodation available, (3) just one or two hostels so book ahead, (5) several cheap hostels and pensions available.
Luxury Hotels: 5.0
(1) No luxury accommodation available, (3) just one or two luxury hotels so book ahead, (5) several up-market hotels in Gerlos.
Ski in/Ski out: 5.0
(1) The ski area is located far from any accommodation, (3) a free ski bus takes you to the ski area in a short trip, (5) Ski-in ski-out accommodation is available.
(1) There are no child care facilities at Gerlos, (5) the resort has excellent child-care facilities including at least one reasonably priced creche.
(1) Occasionally gets enough snow for skiing, (2) is often closed due to a lack of snow, (3) occasionally suffers from a lack of snow, (4) rarely suffers from a lack of snow, (5) Gerlos is snowsure even in the poorest seasons.
(1) Gerlos relies entirely on natural snow, (3) there are just a few snow cannons, (5) there are snowmaking facilities on all pistes.
Snow Grooming: 5.0
(1) There are no snow groomers at Gerlos, (3) occasionally some pistes are left ungroomed and in a poor state, (5) all the runs at Gerlos are groomed daily.
(1) there is nowhere to ski when it is windy or visibility is bad and lifts often shut, (3) there are some trees for poor visibility but main lifts sometimes close, (5) Gerlos is mostly in forest where you can ski in flat-light and windy days, lifts rarely close.
Nearby options: 5.0
(1) If snow conditions are poor at Gerlos, it will be poor everywhere nearby, (3) there are good alternatives within an hours drive, (5) other locations on the same lift pass provide a rich variety of snowsure ski conditions.
Regional rating: 3.0
(1) Gerlos usually has poor snow conditions compared to other resorts in region, (3) has average conditions for the region, (5) usually has the best snow conditions in the region.
Lift Staff: 3.0
(1) The staff at Gerlos are rude or unhelpful, (5) lift staff at Gerlos are pleasant, cheerful and eager to help.
(1) the resort is always busy and there are usually long lift queues, (3) it is quiet apart from occasional weekends and school holidays, (5) it is uncrowded and lift queues are very rare.
Ski Schools: 5.0
(1) No ski schools available, (2) one or two ski schools but local language only, (3) a few ski schools but book early for multi-lingual instructors, (4) plenty of ski schools and multi-lingual instructors available, (5) excellent ski schools with friendly multi-lingual ski instructors.
Hire and Repairs: 5.0
(1) Nothing can be sourced, not even ski-wax or ptex. (3) there are some ski shops but rentals need to be booked in advance, (5) good quality ski equipment can be purchased or hired and overnight repairs are possible.
Variety of pistes: 4.0
(1) The ski runs are featureless and unvaried, (3) the ski runs are varied but not extensive enough for a week, (5) Gerlos has diverse and interesting pistes including forests and high alpine terrain.
(1) Beginners can only watch others ski and snowboard, (3) a few gentle slopes but beginners will get bored in less than a week, (3) Vast areas of gentle terrain.
(1) No intermediate terrain at Gerlos, (3) intermediate skiers will get bored after a few days, (5) vast areas of cruising runs.
(1) Nothing for advanced skiers and snowboarders, (3) enough steep terrain for a few days with some good offpiste, (5) Enough steep terrain and offpiste areas to entertain advanced skiers for at least a week.
Snow Park: 5.0
(1) Not even a kicker at Gerlos, (3) average sized park quite well looked after, (5) huge park area and expertly crafted pipes, jumps and boardercross trails.
(1) No off-piste worth mentioning, (2) off piste is out-of-bounds, (3) some varied offpiste that stays fresh for one or two days, (5) a vast array of off-piste routes that can stay untracked for several days.
(1) There is nowhere to go for cross-country skiing around Gerlos, (3) there are some cross country trails available, (5) the area features many spectacular and well maintained cross-country trails.
(1) No designated luge or toboggan runs, (3) there are toboggan runs that open quite often, (5) Gerlos has long and well maintained luge / toboggan facilities suitable for all ages.
Mountain Dining: 5.0
(1) Nowhere to buy food by the pistes, (3) some places to eat up on the mountain but they are often busy and expensive, (5) there is a variety of excellent mountain eateries right next to the slopes to suit all budgets.
(1) Bring your own food, there isn't even a shop. (5) A wide variety of places to eat and drink in the resort, from fast food to fancy restaurants.
(1) Nothing to do, not even a bar, (3) there are a few bars in the resort but nothing special, (5) clubs and bars stay open until very late and have a friendly atmosphere.
Other Sports: 3.0
(1) No sports facilities at all apart from ski lifts, (3) resort has just a small public swimming pool, (5) resort has all kinds of sports facilities, including a full-size swimming pool.
(1) Besides the snow and walking there is nothing to do here, (3) the non-skier will find things to do for few days but may become bored after a week, (5) the resort area is a fascinating place to visit, regardless of winter sports.
Winter Walks: 3.0
(1) Very limited walking and no snowshoe trails, (3) a couple of designated scenic walking/snowshoe trails, (5) extensive and diverse winter walking trails for all abilities.
Ski Pass Value: 4.0
(1) A 1 week ski pass is overpriced compared to the number of lifts available, (3) the ski pass is averagely priced and covers a reasonable number of lifts, (5) ski passes are excellent value for money and cover a lot of lifts spanning a big area.
Value (National): 3.0
(1) Overall, Gerlos is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the country and not worth the money, (3) overall represents average value for money, (5) overall offers the best value resort in the country.
Value (Global): 4.0
(1) Overall, Gerlos is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the world, (3) overall it offers pretty average value for money compared to resorts from other countries, (5) internationally the resort offers excellent value for money.
January 03, 2010
Phil Allen from United Kingdom
My wife and I visited Gerlos from the 26.12.2009 to 02.01.2010. We had never been there before and had never skied in any of the other resorts in the Zillertal. Our previous experience of Austrian skiing has been in the Arlberg, mainly St Anton, so this is what we naturally found ourselves comparing it to.
We were pleasantly surprised by what we found in Gerlos and the Zillertal Arena and I will try and sum up our experience by listing the positives and negatives. To give it some context, we are in our early thirties and are advanced skiers.
Firstly, the positives:
+ Gerlos sits at the centre of the largest linked ski area in the Zillertal. From Gerlos, you can access about 150km of pistes in Gerlos, Zell and Koenigsleiten. This would satisfy most skiers for a week, although I did find myself wanting new challenges by day 5 or 6.
+ There is a mixed terrain, with plenty of reds for the intermediate skier to enjoy.
+ Gerlos is at relatively high altitude by Austrian standards (1250m) so the snow is pretty much assured and you can ski back to the town, so no downloading is necessary at the end of the day.
+ There are many restaurants and bars on the mountains and because of that they never get too busy. Only on the very cold days when everyone wants to sit indoors were there any problems finding a seat.
+ Prices in the restaurants and bars, on the mountain and off it, were very reasonable. A large beer will cost just 3.50 Euro, which compared to the 5 or 6 Euro for the same in St Anton is a huge difference. A wurst and bread is about 3 or 4 Euros, so eating and drinking is quite cheap.
+ A free ski bus runs through the town and others go beyond it, so no matter where you are staying there is a stop near you that the bus will pick you up from and take you to the Isskoegelbahn at the start of the day. They will also take you home at the end of the day as they run until 5.30pm.
+ Gerlos is easily accessible by public transport. From the main Ziller valley, which is serviced by train from Innsbruck, you can get a bus up the Gerlos valley for about 4.50 Euros per person. A taxi will be about 50 Euro from Zell am Ziller.
+ Gerlos seems very child friendly, with many kinder ski school and nice little events for them at the end of the day, with the ski instructors taking on the role of the Butlins yellow coats!
+ There is plenty of accommodation in the town, from expensive 4- and 5-star hotels, so guesthouses and B&B’s. There is something to suit most budgets here.
+ The town is very attractive. The new buildings have been built in the traditional style and mix very well with the original buildings. It feels charming and very clean and tidy.
+ The locals are very gracious and friendly. Make sure you practice your German language before you go, though, as they don’t speak much English (which I think is a good thing)
Now for the negatives:
- There is only one lift from the Gerlos valley up to the ski area (the Isskoegelbahn), so queues are large at the start of the day, especially at ski school time. We had to queue for over 20-minutes on one day, which is pretty poor.
- Lifts on the Gerlos side of the Zillertal Arena are quite slow. This means that they cannot transport the amount of people wishing to use them and there are often longish queues on the middle and upper lifts. The lifts on the Zell side are much better, though.
- There is a lack of advanced terrain, with only one or two black runs.
- There are no evening buses as the shuttle service stops after 5.30pm, so if you stay in town for a drink and a bit of food after the last run of the day, you could find yourself with a long walk in ski boots, carrying skis and poles. Not good.
- There is only one run back into Gerlos, so it becomes crowded at the end of the day.
- The only bars were either swanky hotel bars or very rowdy music bars. There was only one place we found (the Milchbar) that was a happy medium, but even then I didn’t feel that my ski boots were particularly welcome footwear.
- There is a complete lack of Austrian après ski (see below) and Austrian atmosphere.
- The town is almost exclusively Dutch. This is no bad thing as the Dutch are lovely people, but 95% of the visitors are from Holland. This means that the culture is very Dutch-centric. For example, the most lively après ski bar, Cin-Cin, has Dutch bar staff, a Dutch DJ who MC’s in Dutch and only plays music popular in Holland (techno). It also has Dutch memorabilia all over the walls. This leaves the non-Dutch amongst us feeling very much like an outsider! This was the same at other après ski bars such as Little London and Luigi’s Turbo Bar. This is much less inclusive than I have experienced in more nationally mixed towns. The heavy Dutch presence also meant that, at times, the town took on the guise of a Dutch holiday camp that could be a little insensitive to the other visitors. For example, after 7pm the restaurants often became busy with groups of drunken Dutch people (from Cin Cin!) who would then proceed to get rowdy and shout across the restaurant to other groups of Dutch people, singing songs and presumably playing on friendly local rivalries. It was pretty harmless, but it still didn’t make it very comfortable for the couples or families who had gone for a quiet and enjoyable meal. If I had to sum it up, I would say the Dutch in Gerlos are aware of their vast majority and conduct themselves with a bit of an arrogant swagger.
- The main road runs through the centre of town. Many of the Dutch and German visitors would not use the free bus service, but would prefer to load up their cars at their hotel and then drive the 800m up to the free car park at Isskoegelbahn and get ready there. This resulted in the town centre becoming a bit gridlocked in the morning and at last lift. Why they didn’t just jump on they free ski bus is beyond me.
In conclusion, I would go back to Gerlos as it has good skiing and is good value, but I think I would go in low season and outside of Dutch national holidays!
February 14, 2007
Schumi from Netherlands
One word: great! The skiing accomodations are great. They have everything from slopes above tree level, looking at huge masses of snow and mountains, to slopes based on roads, going through the trees downhill. It's also pretty big and nearly everything is connected, so you never have to take a bus to go from that village or slope to this village or slope and back. The lifts (elevators?) are fast and comfortable. I have been going there for 10 years and a lot has changed. There are much better lifts now. Unfortunately we had to say goodbye to the sweet romantic two seater, to make place for a huge gondola, although it does make waiting times a lot shorter.
Although it can be busy at high seasons (with Dutch people especially), that's something I can live with. The après-ski is also very great. There are a lot of bars in town. Also a lot of cosy restaurants with performing artists. There are a lot of hotels and shops. All in one tiny village! It is also a blessing for Dutch kids: most of the teacher are from Holland, so there is no problem with lessons in Dutch!