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Austrian Alps Travel Guide

The vast majority of tourists visiting Austria head straight for one of its cosy alpine villages in the Tirol region. Among the wooded mountains is some of the world's best skiing. Unlike many French and Swiss resorts, most resorts in Austria are real, friendly villages on the valley floor and despite expanding enormously over the last 20 years the development has generally been in good taste, with traditional-looking chalets perched among the ancient, domed churches. Austrian resorts are also more fun and welcoming than many in the Alps; the Austrians know how to enjoy themselves and don't find it demeaning to speak their guest's language. However many Austrian resorts lie fairly low and experience unreliable snowfall. To ensure guaranteed good skiing it is best to head for the western edges of the Tirol, to St Anton, Lech or Zürs, which all have extensive skiing and more reliable snowfall. The ski season runs from December to April but the villages remain bustling in the summer, when the valleys are filled with climbers and walkers who come to enjoy some of the breathtaking scenery.

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