When we stayed at Kempinski Das Tirol (Jochberg) in 2020, we decided to make a day trip to the Großglockner. Take a day out for this day trip, it is worth it.
A 48-kilometer route leads through the Hohe Tauern National Park. The route has unique views and there is (eternal) snow in certain places. Glacier Pasterze and the Großglockner are at the end of the route.
We drove via Zell am See towards the Großglockner, a road that is already very beautiful. At one point there is a toll house where entrance to the national park has to be paid. For the car this cost EUR 37. Then the road went up steeply. There are many parking places to stop and enjoy the views (weather dependent).
When we drove near Zell am See it started to pour and it became dark, we were afraid that we would not have a view from the mountains, but once we drove into the national park the weather cleared, the sky turned blue, there were a few clouds; the enjoyment could begin.
We stopped at various places to enjoy the view. We walked through the snow and also had a lovely lunch in the sun. There is ample parking at the most important viewpoints or attractions such as waterfalls.
The highest point is Edelweiss Spitze at 2,571 meters. Here is a restaurant with breathtaking views. The end point is Kaiser-Franz-Josefs-Höhe at 2,369 meters, here are parking spaces and a parking garage (free). At this end point there is a view to the Großglockner (3,798 meters) and a view of the Glacier Pasterze. Unfortunately, due to global warming, the glacier has melted quite a bit, there was very little snow in the glacier. There are many pictures of what the glacier looked like in 1921 and 1936 and what it looks like in 2010 and today. You see immense differences.
The glacier express (train) was not running on the day we were there (Wednesday).
When we had seen enough we drove back a bit and took the exit to Heiligenblut am Grossglockner, we then drove back to Kitzbühel via Heiligenblut and Lienz. Along the way you come across very beautiful waterfalls.
One of the waterfalls is Water-Wonder-Weg Jungfernsprung. The legend about this waterfall is that a very beautiful girl was seduced by the devil, she realized that it was the devil who seduced her. She ran away from him and eventually came to a cliff. The devil came closer and closer, leaving her with no other way than to jump. She survived the fall of 130 meters wonderfully and the water has started flowing here ever since. A beautiful legend at a very beautiful powerful waterfall.
Allow a full day for the day trip and drive the entire round. It is breathtakingly beautiful and the drive is more than worth it.