The nature park promotes the sustainable regional development. The tasks span from preserving the regional biological diversity all the way to maintaining the local cultural landscape. The special scenic beauty and rich cultural heritage of the region form the basis for recreation and experiencing nature. The nature park preserves and creates infrastructures, which benefit the recreation of locals and guests. The quality in the field of environmental education and visitor information in the region is to be upgraded in conjunction with further partners. This aims to create awareness for the appreciation of the homeland and its heritage also in future generations. In doing so, the nature park work is based on the five equally important pillars: preservation of nature & landscape, tourism/recreation, education/environmental education, research, regional development.


The following principles are incorporated when implementing the target strategies:

  • Principle of sustainability: i.e. measures are planned and implemented in such a way that future generations have the same opportunities for development.
  • Principle of participation by the population: is to be allowed for as far as possible in all measures.
  • Using public relations, awareness is raised for the measures/initiatives.


1. Preservation of nature & landscape

The natural space is to be protected in its diversity and beauty and the cultural landscape be preserved by means of sustainable use.


Implementation through:

  • Visitor management
  • Natural history information
  • Gentle mobility
  • Protected area management
  • Research projects
  • Contractual nature conservation
  • Winkelbergsee 
  • Hike Hohe Mut
[Translate to en:] Winkelbergsee ©Ötztal Tourismus - E. Holzknecht
[Translate to en:] Wanderung Hohe Mut ©Archiv Naturpark Ötztal - A. Hofer

2. Tourism / Recreation

The landscape designated as a nature park shall offer attractive and well-maintained recreational facilities


Implementation through:

  • Hiking trails
  • Cycle paths
  • Rest areas and resting spots
  • Adventure playgrounds using natural features
  • Family- and disabled-friendly 3rd education (s. str. environmental education)
  • Through interactive forms of experiencing and understanding nature as well as educational opportunities, nature, culture and their interrelationships are made to come alive

Education (s. str. environmental education)

Using interactive forms of experiencing and understanding nature as well as educational opportunities, nature, culture and their interrelationships are made to come alive.

  • Visitor centres Guided nature tours
  • School programmes
  • Nature park schools
  • Theme trails
  • Seminars, courses, exhibitions
  • Guided nature tour 4
[Translate to en:] Naturführung 4 ©Archiv Naturpark Ötztal - W. Schwarz

4. Research

This pillar is an important one especially in Ötztal, seeing that the University Centre Obergurgl has been conducting intense natural history research for more than 50 years. This applied research is supported by ÖTZTAL NATURE PARK. The results of the scientific studies serve as a basis for the cross-disciplinary projects and embed the nature park research into a scientific network over the long term.

5. Regional development

The nature park aims to provide stimulus for regional creation of value and developments by means of projects/initiatives.

Implementation through:

  • Direct marketing
  • Public relations
  • Cooperation nature conservation, agriculture, tourism, trade and culture
  • Jobs through nature park
  • Socially and environmentally sustainable tourism
  • Nature park products according to defined criteria
[Translate to en:] ©Shutterstock - Catalin Petolea


Management of ÖTZTAL NATURE PARK resides with the association of the same name with registered office in Längenfeld.

ÖTZTAL NATURE PARK is a registered association and counts 12 full members. The managing board of ÖTZTAL NATURE PARK consists of the mayors of the municipalities of Sölden and Oetz, a representative of the Austrian state-owned woods, the chairpersons of the local sections of Ötztal Tourism (ÖT) from Sölden and Obergurgl, the Austrian Alpine Association as well as two representatives from the state of Tirol/environmental department. Currently, a full-time managing director as well as seven part-time staff with various areas of responsibility work for the association. The association ÖTZTAL NATURE PARK was founded already in the year 2003 - the caretakership of the protected area ÖTZTAL NATURE PARK is active since 2005.