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Brand & Burserberg

Two old-school villages (Brand the larger and livelier, Bürserberg a gloriously tranquil tiddler); one sunny, stupidly pretty ski area. If skiing with your nearest and dearest, the Brandnertal valley’s all about quality time together, and good old fashioned fun on the snow.

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At a glance: • Family orientated • Beginner-friendly skiing • Small ski villages

Great for: • Families • Quiet holidays • Non-ski activities

Two old-school villages (Brand the larger and livelier, Bürserberg a gloriously tranquil tiddler); one sunny, stupidly pretty ski area. If skiing with your nearest and dearest, the Brandnertal valley’s all about quality time together, and good old fashioned fun on the snow.

Brand & Burserberg Resort

Back in the day, Brand and Bürserberg were all the rage with tour ops, but more recently they've taken more of a back seat in the ski world – which is brilliant if you like your resorts traditional, quiet and authentically Austrian.

You'll find both villages in southern Vorarlberg, Austria's westernmost province. The transfer takes a couple of hours from Innsbruck airport – and it's a seriously scenic one: the alpine road snakes through thick pine forests, creeping towards the towering Scesaplana peak at 2964m as you enter Brandner Valley. Unlike all singing, all dancing big-time ski towns, they tilt towards a family friendly, high quality experience – and they've got it down to a T.

First stop's Bürserberg (890m), which is the quieter and more traditional of the two - continue for 4km or so and you'll reach Brand (1000m) before the road winds back down to Burs and Bludenz where the famous Milka factory is. Brand's a mix of modern and old school Austrian, with white and wood panelled buildings housing bars and hotels on either side of the long winding high street, Muhledorfle. A postcard ready parish church completes the scene, with the Dorfbahn gondola or Palud chairlift whisking you up the mountain.

Though Brand's by far the livelier option, don't knock Bürserberg just yet - there's no denying that the resort works in the favour of those who want easy access to the lifts and a quiet base in the evenings.

Wherever you end up, you'll be skiing the same beautiful Brandnertal ski area - 55km of slopes shared between both resorts. Once only connected by road, you can now flit between the two with ease: 2007 saw the addition of the Panoramabahn (accessed from Brand by the Dorfbahn, or for Bürserberg via a blue from Loisckoph) and a blue run trails between Faregg and Parpfienz for access on skis.

Stats & FAQ

Location: Austria, Vorarlberg

Established:

Open: December - April

Downhill: 55km

View our detailed Brand & Burserberg snow forecast or snow report and see all live webcams, piste maps, road and travel maps and lift pass prices. For a picture of historic snow conditions see the snow depths month by month with our Brand & Burserberg snow history.

Nearest Airport & Transfer Time:
Innsbruck (INN)140km, 1h 40
Zurich (ZRH)160km, 2 h
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced
  • 22km 40%

  • 30km 55%

  • 3km 5%

Top Altitude:2,000m
Bottom Altitude:890m
Resort Altitude:Brand 1,037m Bürserberg 890m
Longest run:5km
Slope Orientation:SE, SW
Vertical Drop:963m
Skiable Vertical:963m
Night Skiing:No
Glacier:No

Snow Report

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  • Base
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  • Forecast
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Web Cam

Brand & Burserberg web cams
Downhill Runs:55km
Beginner slopes:40%
Intermediate:55%
Advanced slopes:5%
Lift Pass Price: €179 (adult 6 day peak)
Nearby resorts: Lech, Zurs, Stuben, St Anton

Skiing/BoardingSkiing in Brand & Burserberg

Children are in excellent hands in Brand's Kinderland (next to Sporthotel Beck) - a colourful snow playground with bright characters, piste poles and arches to guide them through their learning. Beginners can practice on nursery slopes in Brand village and up on the Tschengla above Bürserberg - both aided by magic carpets for those first wobbly turns. As soon as confidence grows, ski the gently meandering blue #1 off the Niggenhopfbahn or #24 from the Tschengla lift. The latter's a lot shorter but it's beautifully wide for snowploughing.

We love how uncrowded the slopes are for intermediates. Ski off the cobwebs on blue #26 from the Panoramabahn, then roam the network of reds above both resorts, skiing from the very top all the way home on gorgeous tree-lined trails.

Though most of the piste map's painted in blue and red, that's not to say Brandnertal isn't without its challenges. A case in point: The 5km black from Loishkopf has a vertical drop close to 1000m for those looking to crank up the speed. There are also a few off-piste options like black route #16 and red route #15 - starting above the trees at 2000m and snaking down to the Glattijochbahn. You'll find plenty of opportunities to ski between the pistes, through the trees and below chairlifts too. For serious adrenaline junkies, the Freeride Festival has taken place here in previous seasons, where riders hike up Windecker Spitze above the Palüdalpe.

If you prefer skinnier skis, you cannot miss the Tschengla XC trail. The spectacular 15km loop is found above Bürserberg and has a cracking view of the five Vorarlberg valleys - the Rhine, Bregenzerwarld, Kleinwalsertal, Walgau and Montafon.

Freestylers can pass the time over above Brand where the newly built Backyards park lies below the Glattjochbahn chair lift. It's divided into three areas: Trashyard comes first - 150m long with cool obstacles like oil drums and tyres. Whizzing through to Woodyard, the features include tree trunks and wood walls. Boneyard's the last and longest of the three at 350m – with a kicker-table, rolls, jiblines and most importantly… a big old chill out zone with a view of the entire area.

Brand & Burserberg Apres Ski

With thirty-something options across the two villages, the après here is quintessentially Austrian. A sterling example – in Brand, ask Margret at the Berghof Melkboden for her delicious Käsespätzle. The waitresses usually bring it over in traditional Austrian dress and lederhosen-clad accordion players complete the scene.

The choice of bars is pretty decent considering the villages are on the smaller side. Heuboda is easily Brand's most sought after watering hole - a rustic tavern that quickly fills to the rafters with music, cocktails and an infectiously jolly vibe (the extensive wine list's definitely worth a peek). Muhlebach's another known for its cocktails and live music, with the added bonus of big screens if you can't bear to miss the big games. Not forgetting Bürserberg - Rufana Alp - run by the lovely Plaickner family is open every Thursday until 8pm up at Tschengla (the short but dark ski down after an evening of drinking is always an interesting experience…).

The non-ski activities aren't to be sniffed at - Brand's Lake Alvier freezes over to form a natural ice rink and two nights a week you can skate under floodlights to funky music. Kids will adore the Animal Adventure Trail, which gives them a chance to get up close to some native animals - rabbits, chickens, goats and cows can all be seen along the walk that takes about an hour and a half, finishing up at the fish pond - wrap up warm! If you fancy getting even closer to some local animals, find Anton Kuttner. Known locally as ‘Husky Toni', his super cute dogs (if we could take Siri home with us, we would!) lead sledges, carriages and snowshoe hikes across the Tschengla plateau. See if he's still running his kid's dogsled driving school if you have sprogs in tow for a seriously cool experience on the snow. Throw in two terrific toboggan runs and you've got good old fashioned winter fun in every shape and form.

Best time to go

Best time to ski Brand & Burserberg

When is the best time to ski Brand & Burserberg?

Snow is historically good in Brandnertal with the season usually running from December through to April and slopes facing all directions letting you follow the sun and avoid any slush. If the natural cover's lacking, 23 snow canons cover 80% of the mountains trails to provide a man-made top up.

While the area doesn't have the claims of Solden when it comes to spring skiing, efforts are made to keep the days as snow filled as possible. In previous years, the lift company have opened up 45 minutes earlier than usual on the last few weeks, so you can get out first thing and make the most of the white stuff before the sun comes along.

Peak Dates

Christmas markets in nearby villages, singing choirs in Bürserberg and fairy-tale plays put on for the children are traditional features of Christmas in Burs and Bürserberg, where husky sleigh rides and evening ice-skating complete a festive week on the snow.

Celebrate New Year in Burs and Bürserberg where recent years have featured a New Year's Eve party in Rufana Alp, night sledding and fireworks.

With a wonderfully child friendly atmosphere, Half Term in Burs and Bürserberg is all about quality family time.

Earlier lift opening hours towards the end of the season means you'll have extra time to avoid any slush during Easter in Burs and Bürserberg.

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Families in Brand & Burserberg

It's a bit like Brand and Bürserberg were created just for families: the villages are cosy, quiet and traditional, the climate is mild and sunny and the ski area's gentle and unintimidating but with enough runs for a whole week of snowy fun.

The tourist board usually hosts a weekly program for young ‘uns throughout the winter, where activities range from Punch and Judy shows at the Brand community centre to horseback riding and archery. If yours are aged 5-12: for a totally special treat, see if Husky Toni is still running his dog sledding academy, where they can learn how to steer, break and pedal with a sled before completing two 300m rounds with their own team of huskies. Brand has a fabulous Animal Adventure Trail to walk along together, as well as a natural ice rink to zoom around. There's also a world of chocolatey goodness half an hour away in the form of the Milka Factory in Bludenz – almost too much to squeeze into one week.

It gets better – in recent years, the ticket office have let under 8's ski for free, with hefty discounts for under 18's. The ski area that links the villages is painted with blue and red runs, with the occasional black piste for more experienced family members. Children's ski areas are conveniently placed in the middle of Brand near the mountain station of the Dorfbahn as well as the Einhorn II lift in Bürserberg aided with magic carpets.

GroupsGroup Holidays Brand & Burserberg

Brand and Bürserberg suit groups who want a quiet, authentically Austrian getaway down to a T – especially if most skiers are beginners and intermediates. We love the close proximity of red and blue runs to both villages and with uncrowded slopes you won't be losing anyone to the masses! Beginners can head to one of the brilliant ski schools - Raitkon or Snowports Ski School Brandnertal - for private or group lessons. Gather afterwards in Restaurant Goona at the Palüdbahn mountain station to share stories of the day over incredible wood-fired pizza.

Activities like ice skating, husky rides and snow-shoeing are great for a laugh after a day on the slopes. You'll find a whopping four toboggan runs in the Brandnertal- Eggen, Locher, Schattenlagant and Schass - with their speedy turns and sharp descents easily accessible from both villages. Schass is the easiest run amongst a fantastic winter landscape and Locher is the newest ending in Bürserberg village. If you're looking for a wild week of après, Brand and Bürserberg probably aren't what you're looking for - still, the choice of bars is pretty decent considering the size of the villages. Heuboda is easily Brand's most sought after watering hole with an extensive wine list that's definitely worth a study…

Hotels are the main form of accommodation here, which works wonderfully for groups: extra rooms can often be booked later if any friends or family want to come along, and everyone gets to gather together in the lounge and dining areas, with their own space to retire to at night.

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