Chiemgau is an area in Southern Bavaria with numerous hiking routes in the Chiemgau Alps. The Chiemgau Alps are mainly in the south of Germany. Still, a small part of this mountain chain belongs to the Austrian regions of Salzburg and Tyrol. As you’ll see once you discover the beautiful south of Bavaria, there are only little differences between Salzburg / Tyrol (Austria) and Bavaria (Germany) from the outside. Even though people will not appreciate being mixed up and always highlighting their differences, culture is very similar in the big picture.
Located in the border area to Austria, with some villages just a few minutes from Austria, Lake Chiemsee is the biggest lake in Bavaria. Tourists stay both in mountain villages and lakeside towns. Its highest mountain is the Sonntagshorn.
The height of the mountains in Chiemgau ranges from around 1,300 metres up to almost 2,000 metres. Especially in summer, it is a pleasure to have local food and Bavarian beer in the various mountain huts. Ski mountaineering and snowshoe hiking are popular in winter and some hikes are still doable in winter (depending on the conditions with additional equipment like gaiters and light crampons). There is also a ski resort in Reit im Winkl, the Winklmoos-Steinplatte ski area which connects Bavaria (Germany) and Austria.
The area of the mountains in Chiemgau belongs to both the districts of Rosenheim and Traunstein. Most hikes in Chiemgau have moderate difficulty and are also well-suited for occasional hikers. There is a great infrastructure with some well-known mountain huts of the German Alpine Association. Spitzsteinhaus, Priener Hütte and Hochrieshütte are among the most popular ones. Even though there are many easy hikes, it does not imply that ambitious hikers won’t find enough challenges here. For hiker’s coming from Munich, Chiemgau is pretty close. The valleys of Samerberg and Prien-Valley (Priental with Aschau and Sachrang) are only one hour from Munich by car. Achen-Valley (Achental) with Reit im Winkl and Miesenbach Valley (Miesenbacher Tal) with Ruhpolding are a bit further away from Munich since they are on the Eastern end of Chiemgau, bordering the Berchtesgaden Alps.
If you’re going to the Chiemgau area, you have a wide ranger of places to go to. First, decide whether you\’d like to stay in a lakeside accommodation or closer to the mountains. If you’d enjoy a walk on the Chiemsee (lake) in the evening, having an ice cream after some great pizza, you better stay in Prien. In contrast, if you prefer to feel the fresh air of the mountains of Chiemgauer Alpen, places like Aschau or Ruhpolding might be your best choice. They both offer all essentials like restaurants or stores and come with great mountain scenery. If you prefer to stay in a small mountain village, Sachrang in the Prien valley, right on the Austrian border, might be one good choice. Similarly to other mountain villages like Scharnitz in Karwendel, you can start hikes from the door of your accomodation.

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