We want to keep you busy and entertained, even in times of lockdown! Therefore, we went on a discovery journey throughout all nine states of Austria to look for so-called ‘’microadventures’’ you could go on to spice up your weekend or time off. Today, we’ll start with Styria. Did you know that it is also called “the Green Heart of Austria” due to its extensive and diverse nature? Starting from the glaciers at Dachstein in the north to the South Styrian Wine Route (Styria is not only famous for its wine but also its specialty pumpkin seed oil!), the state has something for everyone. So, let’s set off on our first microadventure, and let yourself get inspired!
Brr! Have you ever tried ice swimming? Although it doesn’t sound like the most comfortable and cozy option at first glance, there are numerous health benefits associated with it such as boosting your immune system, improving circulation, burning calories (if you swim for 10 minutes in ice-cold water, you burn approximately as many calories as swimming in 20 degree water for 90 minutes) and even possibly increasing your libido. There are ice swimming communities throughout Austria, and Styria some great spots for ice swimming if you have the feeling you need to cool down. If you are especially courageous, you can try swimming in Altausseer lake in Upper Styria. In winter, the temperatures of this lake dip below 5 degrees Celsius. You can also expect similarly low temperatures in winter in Styria’s largest river, the Mur. Ice swimming enthusiasts meet for instance at the Murauen in Gössendorf close to Graz, and even in the city center at Augartenbucht. If you want to find out more about ice swimming in Styria, check out the eponymous Facebook group for further tips and cool spots.
Who doesn’t love alpacas? I think we can all agree that alpacas are one of the cutest animals ever. But have you ever been on an alpaca hike? In Styria, you can book your alpaca experience at Schöcklblick Alpacas! More than 100 alpacas live here, making it the largest alpaca farm in Austria. Schöcklblick Alpacas offers a huge variety of activities – you can not only go on an alpaca hike, but also participate in an actual play alongside alpacas (rehearsals are 4x times a month), try out the alpaca agility parkour course, and many more! Yes, you’ve heard right. You can try to guide your alpaca through an obstacle course, and if you manage to do so successfully, you get your own alpaca pass. So what are you waiting for? Go visit those sweet alpacas and make some new furry friends!
Pumpkin Seed Oil hike
We mentioned before that Styria is, among others, famous for its pumpkin seed oil. Now you know you can hike with alpacas, but did you also know that you can follow the scent of pumpkin seed oil as well? In the center of Bad Gams, you can start the “Kürbis-Spazierrundweg”. On this short trail with a total of 3,63 km (also suitable for families with kids), you’ll find numerous information boards with facts and figures about pumpkins and pumpkin seed oil and come across a herb garden. The highlight of the route is a farm with an oil mill, where you can see how the famous oil is actually produced. Our tip: If you’re currently not able to travel to Styria, see if you can find pumpkin seed oil at your local supermarket. With a delicious salad, you can bring the taste of Styria straight to your dining room!
We know it’s not summer yet, but we still don’t want to deprive you of this tip. If you are near Hochwurzen after May 21st, you should definitely try out Mountain GoKart! What could be possibly more fun than flying downhill in a GoKart? The Mountain GoKart is a newly developed sports device that promises an incredible experience. Its wide tires and solid disc brakes provide a feeling of safety from the first meters, even at high speeds. The spectacular ride leads you down the Hochwurzenstraße through a beautiful natural landscape, and it’s a guaranteed hit for families, clubs, and also for corporate events. First, you float comfortably to the summit in the Hochwurzen cable car to the start at 1850m elevation. Once at the top, an indescribable panorama awaits you before your Mountain GoKart adventure begins. The ride, which goes along a route of 7km and lasts between 20-30 minutes, is definitely a new alpine experience you won’t soon forget!
The Green Lake
If you want to relax after your various adventures, we highly recommend visiting the Grüner See, or ‘’green lake’,’ in Tragöß. Admittedly, this spot has gotten rather popular over the last couple of years and is not a secret tip anymore, but we are still amazed by its unique beauty every time we visit. What makes the Green Lake so special is that with the onset of the snowmelt in the mountains, it fills with crystal clear spring water. The height of the water level depends on the amount of snow during the previous winter and the spring precipitation. The water level slowly decreases throughout the year until it almost disappears entirely in winter. This cycle can only take place annually because nature and the environment are still in order in Styria. Aw! We simply love the green heart of Austria!
We hope we could give you some inspiration for your next trip to Styria! If you try out any of our recommendations, feel free to send us a message on our Facebook or Instagram channels and let us know how it was. Stay tuned for more microadventures, as we are going to introduce you to exciting activities in each Austrian state in the near future!