Thredbo, NSW, travel guide and things to do: Nine highlights


It's impossible to miss the European alpine atmosphere around Thredbo, a legacy of the Czech and Austrian migrants who brought their love of skiing to the Snowy Mountains back in the 1950s. For a little slice of that European life, call in for a meal at Black Bear Inn, one of the Thredbo classics. Though the menu does include a few dishes that the resort's pioneers would find unrecognisable – Szechuan-spiced squid on soba noodle salad, for instance – you could just as easily order a Czech beer on tap and a trio of schnitzels with German potato salad and have yourself a hearty Euro extravaganza. See


Thredbo gondola
Opened in 2020, images supplied for Traveller from Thredbo ALpine Resort


Australia has its first gondola, the still shiny, high-speed, eight-person Merritts Gondola, which runs from Thredbo Village to the base of the Cruiser area and opened in June 2020. This is good news not just for skiers and snowboarders, but for those sightseers who would like to take in a bit more of the mountain without having to careen down it. It also allows the opportunity for a nice long lunch at Merritts Mountain House before a relaxed descent back to the village. This is a $15 million project, the first completely new lift at Thredbo since 1994, and it's an attraction in its own right. See


If you want to get into Kareela Hutte for a meal this ski season, we have one piece of advice: book now. This place is incredibly popular, and for good reason. It's the best venue on the mountain; in fact, it might just be the best venue on any Australian mountain. Kareela Hutte is a Euro-influenced, ski-in ski-out cabin, a cosy, wood-panelled venue where the views are awesome, the food is gourmet, and the champagne is always flowing. This is the place for a lash-out lunch, for chucking down your credit card and just going for it with high-end alpine cuisine and plentiful drinks. There's a party every day at Kareela Hutte. The main challenge is getting back down the mountain at the end of it (though fortunately, there are snowcats for emergencies). See


The Thredbo Alpine Hotel has long been a fixture here, a classic property with plenty of wood-panelled walls and softly carpeted floors, spacious social areas reliably filled with knitwear-sporting ski bums, and comfortable rooms just a snowball's throw from the chairlifts. This is the place to stay in Thredbo, and if you cast your eye around at the onsite Local Pub you're likely to spot a few famous faces among those sporting fresh goggle tans. There's a sauna at the hotel, plus a laundry, a ski room and plenty of parking, and there's always some sort of event, show or festival taking place. See


​Good coffee isn't always easy to find in a ski town. Overpriced coffee? Definitely. But good coffee is trickier. Fortunately, in Thredbo at least, Central Road 2625 has you covered. This is a friendly village venue that does a roaring trade in the winter, churning out standard Australian-style café fare for breakfast, and a host of hefty pan-Asian dishes – including ramen, pho and laksa – for lunch. What you're really here for though, particularly in the mornings before hitting the ski slopes, is a great coffee. See


If the weather isn't playing the game or you just fancy a little rest for aching knees, be sure to call past the charming Thredbo Alpine Museum. Tucked away in a small space in the centre of the village, the museum was set up by the Thredbo Historical Society to display items of interest, including skis, boots and clothing dating back to the ski resort's pioneering days, plus various trophies and medals won by Thredbo alumni, and plenty of photos, documents and newspaper clippings capturing the resort's progression. See


There's only one place you want to be when the chairlifts shut down and the sun begins to set at Thredbo: the alfresco bar at the Thredbo Alpine Hotel, a sprawling space with big wooden benches crowding warming fires, where it always feels like Friday night as skiers and snowboarders celebrate another successful day on the slopes. There are bands playing here sometimes, DJs on the decks at others, and sometimes there's nothing but a bunch of people looking to relax post-ski and tell wildly exaggerated stories of their on-snow heroics. Many a quick drink at the Alpine Bar has turned into a long, long evening. See


During summer Thredbo is a haven for hikers keen to bag a few Snowy Mountain peaks, and even in winter, when the bulk of those trails are inaccessible, there are options for those wanting a stroll. The best of these trails is probably the Riverside Walk, a gentle four-kilometre track that hugs the Thredbo River, winding through beautiful snow gum forest. There's sometimes snow on the track here, though often there isn't, and on a blue-sky day the surrounding alpine scenery is stunning. See



Just a 20-minute drive from Thredbo, back up Alpine Way towards Jindabyne, you will find Wild Brumby Distillery, a producer of fine schnapps, vodka and gin. Visitors here can do a tasting at the distillery door, before having a stroll through the sculpture gardens and then grabbing a meal at the onsite café. The perfect off-snow excursion. See

Ben Groundwater travelled as a guest of Thredbo Alpine Resort