A young architect who is currently interning in Germany, Priya Tadinada is making the most of her time abroad by travelling at least three days each month. “Some people find solace in meditation; travel is my meditation,” Priya says. “I feel the need to keep my mind constantly active and travelling helps me do this. It refreshes my mind and helps me think better, visually and creatively.” This time around, she visited Austria on a three-day trip with four of her friends. The typical city girl never thought of herself as one to like the mountains. But she found herself awestruck when she woke up at 6 am while on the night bus from Berlin to Innsbruck. She was greeted by the magnificent Alps towering over her – a pure delight to behold.
The group hired a car and drove around the Austrian Alps for two days. They decided to setup their base in Innsbruck, the capital of Austria’s western state of Tyrol, known for its architecture and winter sports. “Nordkette, a range of mountains just north of the city of Innsbruck, is most certainly one of the places everyone must visit. It is known as the Jewel of the Austrian Alps, and the view from the top will simply take your breath away!” Priya gushes, adding, “You can see the whole town of Innsbruck like a miniature Lego set, surrounded by the humongous mountains. It really puts things in perspective.”
The group of friends were set on trying out the famed skiing on Stubai Glacier, with its multitude of trails, terrain parks, dramatic views and even mountainside dining. However, as they were on their way to the ski glacier, they mistakenly took the wrong exit off the highway and ended up in a little Austrian village. “At first, we were all upset about the fact that we were getting delayed. But gradually, we gave up the grumpy spirit and ended up enjoying the village,” Priya reminisces. “The drive through the smallest of streets and glimpses of the village folk, as well as the 30-second conversations with strangers that we would never meet again, and the crisp mountain air – all this was the real essence of Austria. And it was indescribably beautiful!”
Priya and her friends did eventually manage to get to the Stubai Glacier and even visited the Bergisel Ski Jump, designed by Zaha Hadid. It consists of a ski ramp, sports facilities and public spaces including a tower-top café and viewing terrace that rises to a height of 50 metres. “For all crystal lovers, there’s a spectacular Swarovski Crystal World in Tyrol,” Priya tells us.
Innsbruck is a really cute and serene place, she tells us. “The best thing to do is head to the old town, grab some good coffee, have a breakfast at any tiny place, and explore the little streets. It’s a welcoming city, filled with love at every corner,” she says. “I would, however, most strongly recommend one to spend as much time as possible outside, just enjoying the mountains. They are beautiful beyond words, and have turned me into a mountain person,” Priya concludes. - as told to Tanya