lake surrounded by mountains

7 Reasons Why Hiking in Austria Is So Popular

Hiking in Austria is an incredibly popular activity among all the best trails in hiking in europe, and it’s not hard to see why. From breathtaking mountain views and unspoiled nature to quaint towns and villages, the country has something for everyone. In this blog post, we’ll dive into why hiking in Austria is so popular and discuss the top seven reasons why you should plan a trip there. So grab your hiking boots and let’s get started!


The Alps

When it comes to hiking in Austria, the Alps are arguably the most iconic and renowned region to explore. With a rugged, mountainous terrain full of sprawling peaks, lush valleys, and glacier-fed lakes, the Alps provide an unbeatable backdrop for adventure seekers. From traversing high-altitude trails with breathtaking views to exploring the lowlands of Austria’s Tyrol region, the possibilities for alpine exploration are seemingly endless.

scenic photo of snow capped mountains during daytime - why hiking in austria
Photo by Szabolcs Toth on

Whether you’re looking for a short day hike or a multi-day trek, the Alps have something for everyone. Enjoy a leisurely stroll along one of the many well-maintained trails while taking in spectacular views of the rocky mountainside or challenge yourself with a rigorous summit attempt. The Alps of Austria have something to offer everyone, no matter your level of fitness or experience.


For those just getting started, there are plenty of flat, easy trails that traverse meadows and forests. Even these hikes come with impressive views; try discovering quaint villages in valleys as you journey through the mountain range. For more experienced hikers, take on the stunning peak climbs that lead to panoramic viewpoints that overlook entire regions make hiking in Austria so popular.

The Danube River

white and black house located at riverside - The Danube River
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The Danube offers some of the best views of Austrian countryside, with its spectacular mountains, rivers, forests and vineyards. Along the way, you will find quaint villages, churches, and ancient ruins that have stood for centuries. You can also take time to explore the river’s many islands, which are home to diverse wildlife.

The Danube is a perfect place for swimming, kayaking and other outdoor activities. Hikers can choose from a range of paths that suit their interests and fitness level. Whether you are looking for an easy hike or a more challenging one, the Danube has something for everyone.


Hiking along the Danube is an unforgettable experience. With its breathtaking beauty and rich culture, this river is an ideal destination for those looking to explore Austria’s great outdoors. For more experienced hikers, the Hohe Tauern National Park is well worth a visit. Covering an area of 1,800 square miles, it’s the largest park in the Alps and a popular choice for hiking enthusiasts. It’s home to dramatic mountain landscapes, stunning alpine lakes and vast meadows full of wildflowers. There are plenty of trails to explore here including a long distance path stretching over 250 miles. Those looking for a challenge may opt for routes up the 2,300-metre Grossglockner summit – Austria’s highest peak – or the nearby Dreiherrenspitze mountain.

The Lakes

austria beach dawn dusk - why hiking in austria
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One of the main attractions of hiking in Austria are the beautiful lakes that can be found throughout the country. Austria is home to over 300 lakes, all of which offer stunning views and plenty of recreational opportunities. In the summer months, the crystal-clear water provides a refreshing escape from the hot weather. Swimming and other watersports are popular activities, while fishing is also a common activity. Many of the lakes are surrounded by lush, green forests and scenic views, making them ideal for a peaceful hike or simply a day spent relaxing in nature.


Be sure to check out the Zeller See, the Mondsee, and Lake Achensee for some of the most stunning lake views in Austria. All three of these picturesque locations provide great opportunities for swimming, fishing, boating, kayaking and more! You’ll also find well-marked trails surrounding each lake if you’re looking for a great place to hike. There are even boat trips available on both Lake Achensee and the Zeller See, allowing you to get up close with the beauty of the mountains and alpine landscapes.

The forests

waterfall near trees - hiking in austria
Photo by Roni Alfasi on

Austria is blessed with breathtaking forests, some of which are prime examples of an intact and diverse natural landscape. The Carinthian Alps, for example, are home to the Großglockner-Pasterze Biosphere Reserve, an area that’s been protected since 1991 and is part of the Natura 2000 network. This impressive forested area is home to numerous species of flora and fauna and is a great spot to explore while on a hiking trip in Austria.


The Hohe Tauern National Park also boasts some of Austria’s most incredible forests. This park covers the entire central eastern mountain range, the tallest in the country, and is filled with over 1,800 species of plants and animals. It’s no wonder why so many nature enthusiasts flock to this area to take in its beauty.

The Bohemian Forest is another popular destination for hikers looking to take in the sights of Austria’s forests. This area is located on the border between Germany and Austria and is filled with lush greenery. Here you can find everything from dense evergreen forests to open meadows, making it a great place to wander and explore.

The caves

tree under watergrasspaont - why hiking in austria
Photo by Tsvetoslav Hristov on

Austria is home to some of the most amazing and unique caves in Europe. Many of these caves were formed by the underground rivers that run through the mountains, creating a fascinating and mysterious environment for adventurers. Hikers will find a wide variety of caves to explore, from dark and wet caverns to limestone karst formations.


In addition to these natural formations, there are also a number of human-made caves, such as the Schilcherloch, a salt mine that dates back to the 12th century. Exploring these ancient caves can be a thrilling experience, allowing hikers to discover secrets hidden in the depths of the earth.

Other popular cave hikes in Austria include the famous Ice Cave near Salzburg, and the Hoher Golling near Vienna, both of which offer breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape. Whether you are looking for adventure or just a peaceful escape, exploring Austria’s caves is sure to be an unforgettable experience.

The meadows

green grass field near mountain under gray and white sky at day
Photo by G on

Austrian meadows are some of the most breathtaking natural scenes you can experience. Nestled among lush, rolling hills and surrounded by alpine peaks, these vast expanses of open land stretch for miles. This rural paradise is the perfect place to explore nature and escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life.


From April to June, Austrian meadows burst into life as they fill with colorful wildflowers and mountain herbs. Whether you’re a seasoned botanist or an amateur admirer, there’s no better way to take in all that nature has to offer than exploring Austria’s countryside. A short hike can yield hundreds of different flowers, plants, and trees that can be enjoyed at leisure. You’ll even find wild animals like deer, foxes, and rabbits playing amongst the landscape!

As the weather starts to warm up in the summer months, many people flock to Austrian meadows for picnics or just to enjoy the outdoors. With gorgeous views and clear blue skies overhead, it’s easy to forget all your worries when you relax in these idyllic settings. It’s not uncommon to see people strolling along while listening to traditional folk music being played in the background.

The fall brings beautiful foliage which offers some truly amazing photo opportunities; although no two seasons look exactly alike here! For instance, autumn’s bright oranges contrast with spring’s vivid greens or summer’s deep blues depending on where you are. It’s important to note that this also means some meadows close off due to cold temperatures during certain months of winter – so make sure you plan ahead if you’re looking for year-round access.


Whether you’re visiting from nearby Vienna or from across Europe itself – don’t miss out on experiencing Austria’s incredible meadows! There are countless stunning views waiting around every corner that will take your breath away and make your stay truly unforgettable.

The flowers

Austria is a land of immense natural beauty, boasting an array of vibrant flowers. From the meadows and pastures in the Alpine region to the lakes and forests of Salzkammergut, Austrian wildflowers create breathtakingly beautiful displays. Here are some of Austria’s most stunning flowers:

1. Alpenrose (Rhododendron ferrugineum):

close up photo of pink rhododendron flowers
Photo by Marina Leonova on

A pink flower with clusters of five to twenty rose-like blooms, it can be found growing on rocky mountain slopes at elevations between 2000 and 3000 meters above sea level.

2. Cowslip (Primula veris):

a yellow flowers in full blooom
Photo by Gutjahr Aleksandr on

Also known as “Lady’s smock”, this delightful wildflower grows in sunny, open places such as grasslands and forest clearings. It has deep yellow flowers that bloom in early summer.

3. Austrian Columbine (Aquilegia vulgaris):

blossoming aquilegia flower
Photo by Skyler Ewing on

An attractive native flower that typically has blue-purple petals surrounding bright yellow stamens, this columbine prefers shady woodland locations but can also be found on dry calcareous soils.

4. Primrose (Primula elatior):

green grass at daytime
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A small flower with pale yellow blossoms that have an orange center, this plant can often be seen in moist areas near streams or other wetland habitats from May through July.

5. Gentian (Gentiana acaulis):

nature field flowers bloom
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One of Austria’s rarest plants, it has a cluster of bell-shaped violet-blue or white flowers at the end of each stem and thrives in alpine meadows around 2000 meters above sea level.

6. Carpathian harebell (Campanula carpatica):

close up of campanula rotundifolia flowers
Photo by Игорь Шабалин on

Also known as “Alpine Bellflower”, this charming purple-blue blossom is often found in rock crevices at high altitudes, typically between 2000 and 2500 meters above sea level.

7. Globeflower (Trollius europaeus):

close up photo of yellow flowers
Photo by Francesco Ungaro on

An unmistakable sight with its orange petals surrounding a yellow eye-like center, globeflowers usually appear in springtime on mountain pastures around 1700–2500 meters above sea level

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