Bewitched storytelling starts right then and there: Deeply shrouded in legend, Hohe Salve Mountain was considered to be bewitched and the inhabitants of this spot of land were greatly feared, but also worshipped. There were robbers, toads and witches… Today, this prominent mountain, which can be seen from afar, continues to enchant: Hexenwasser, the “Magical Witches’ Water”, is just the place to come and play when it comes to splashing & wet fun in the sun. This amazing nature-themed water play park consists of rivulets and ponds where kids of all ages can cool off and splash with a rich variety of water play features all day long. This wonderful mountain adventure casts a spell on everyone: The spell of Exploration!
The Water Play Park
It is all laid out with remarkable love for the detail and dedication, so you can easily fall in love with the “Magical Witches’ Water” on Hohe Salve Mountain… It is spectacular right from the start: Riding up in the gondolas carrying witches’ broomsticks and viewing down on witches carved of wood. Having arrived at the top, we are greeted by a huge witches’ cauldron and my boys first want to make their way to the witches’ raft to cool down from the summer heat. (A high-pressure system called Finchen has brought us shiny, lovely and hot summer days and cooling down sounds just fine to me – as right next door to the raft is Gasthaus Hochsöll, a nice on-mountain eatery where I can sip a coffee and watch the fun and frolics my kids have from my outdoor seat.) When they are finally soaked to the skin, we are ready to move on – for about one hundred meters… There is Gründlalm Alpine Pasture Hut, where a slide, a trampoline, a magical fountain and more cast a spell on my little ones. (Again, that is just fine to me. The sun is gracing us with some intense heat. And as we all know: This heat is tiring… :-) .
Next, we explore the cherry garden and the fascinating world of bees. Equipped with delicious, self-made ice cream we wander on – along the refreshingly cold barefoot trail and past sound stones and Simon’s Alpine Pasture Hut, into the forest… where the heat is more bearable! On our way through the “Hexenwasser” experience stops, we discover enchanting water games called mud pool, stone oil pool, witches’ bath and a stone grinding area. I could have stayed here in the shady forest much longer, my kids, however, want to move on – to Stöcklalm Alpine Pasture Hut. While I am enjoying my third coffee of the day, cooling off my feet in the creek that runs under my table (!), my big boy plays Tarzan in the jungle swinging over the creek in the lianas and my little one has fun in the mud.
The Wondrous World of Water
Next, we are off for a delightful walk through the Hexenwald, the Witches’ Forest, a splish-splash play area of witches’ baths with water wheels to turn. Reaching the witches’ umbrellas, our route merges onto the main trail again, where water starts dancing under the mere touch of our hands…– a beautiful experience and a true highlight! The next – and newest – highlight is a series of small paddling pools called The Blue Wonder. And if this is not magic I don’t know what it is! At several experience stops, experienced and trained staff introduces us to the wondrous world of water. (Or did you know that water has a memory? It remembers where it has been!)
Knowing so much now, we ride the gondola to the top, where we enjoy mouth-watering nettle and spinach dumplings swayed in butter. The summit of Hohe Salve Mountain has one of the most stunning views you’ll find in Tirol. While I take in this gorgeous vista of mountains and valleys, my boys are having a great time romping about a giant climbing structure :-)
At the very end, we get to take tons of refreshing and exciting impressions from “Hexenwasser Hochsöll” home with us – what a day!
The Bottom Line
I recommend everybody to come here and check Hexenwasser Hochsöll out, it is truly unique in terms of mountain summer experience in Tirol. The experience stops are designed to entertain kids but are equally enchanting to grown-ups. As most stops revolve around the theme of water, this is a great place to cool off from the summer heat. The only downside is that the expansive play areas mostly have no shade and thus it can, in fact, become quite hot on a summer’s day. Anyway, you can let your kids expend some energy, as walking is made fun here and there will be no “how much farther” fuss J.
Moreover, most of the experience stops at Hexenwasser are stroller accessible (except Hexenwald, literally Witches’ Forest, there are a few stairs to manage; and the trail leading from Simons Alm to Högalm – that’s a rooty route across the woods).
A visit to Hohe Salve Summit Restaurant at the top of the mountain, with its revolving observation deck, is strongly recommended! Bring swimwear and additional clothes as your little ones may get wet splashing around. When it comes to food, I suggest visiting one of the many on-mountain eateries (they are definitely worth the money!).
Tirol Werbung/Julia König