Natur Eis Palast

Natur Eis Palast im Hintertuxer Gletscher


Useful Information

Location: Hintertuxer Gletscher, Bergstation.
A12 Exit 39 Wiesing/Achensee/Zillertal, 169 south, turn right in Mayerhofen into Tuxer Tal. From Hintertux at the end of the road take the Hintertuxer Gletscherbahn to the Ferner Gletscherhaus.
(47.061781, 11.679787)
Open: All year daily 10:30, 11:30, 12:30, 13:30, 14:30.
[2022]
Fee: Cable Car morning: Adults EUR 42.50, Children (10-15) EUR 26.50.
Cable Car afternoon: Adults EUR 35.50, Children (10-15) EUR 21.
Glacier Cave: Adults EUR 26, Children (6-11) EUR 13.
[2022]
Classification: SpeleologyGlacier Cave
Light: helmet and headlamp provided
Dimension: A=3.250 m asl, T=0 °C.
Guided tours: D=60 min, MinAge=6.
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Bibliography:  
Address: Natur Eis Palast im Hintertuxer Gletscher, Lanersbach 367, A-6293 Tux, Tel: +43-5287-87287, Hotline: +43-6763-070000, Fax: +43-5287-87238. E-mail:
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.

History

2007 glacier cave discovered by Roman Erler.
03-NOV-2008 opened to the public.
2010 glass staircase installed.

Description

The Natur Eis Palast (Nature's Ice Palace) is located in the galcier below the summit of the Olperer mountain, close to the upper station of the cable car. The Hintertuxer Gletscher (Hintertux glacier) is a very popular all year ski area, in winter its possible to ski down to the valley, in summer only the lift on the glacier operate. There a about a dozen glacier grottoes in the Alps, many are rather young and were created to draw tourists to the mountains. As the glacier moves they are typically re-dug every year. However, this is not a glacier grotto, this is actually a glacier cave, which means it was formed naturally. And fortunately it is located at the upper rim of the glacier, where the ice does not move very much. So this is one of the most exceptional show caves in Europe, to see a natural glacier cave you have to go to Iceland or Alaska otherwise.

As this is natural cave, and the ide was to preserve as much as possible, there are actually no comfortable trails. You are walking on the floor of the cave, which is made of glacier ice, and there are drops where you have to climnb up or down an ice wall on an aluminium ladder. There is no electric light, visitors are equipped with helmet and headlamp. It's actually a bit like a cave trekking tour, though it does not require any skills except climbing a ladder. The passages are mostly narrow and high cracks, created by divergent movement of the ice. They contain various and continually changing icicles. Highlight is the Eispalast (Ice Palace), 25 m below the surface, with 15 m high ceiling and multiple ice formations.

A part of the passages is water filled, the water has a temperature of more or less 0 °C. It's possible to book boat tours, kajak tours, stand up paddling, and even ice water swimming. The site was also used by apnoea diver Christian Redl from Lower Austria to set a world record. He was the first person to dive 23 m deep into an ice shaft in a glacier at 3,200 m asl. There are basic tours which include a boat ride, scientific tours guided by Roman Erler, photo tours, and Jochen Schweizer tours.