Glorious views along Austria’s hiking trails

For lovers of natural beauty, there is little to beat taking a gondola up into the mountains, going for an alpine walk then stopping for lunch on the sunny terrace of a mountain hut.

That’s just one of the many hiking options in Austria. There are waymarked routes that cover everything from gentle lakeside strolls to breath-taking high-mountain challenges. You can wander along a pine-scented valley, walk across pastures to the sound of cowbells and birdsong, or take a zig-zag path down through mountainside wildflowers.

Carinthia’s Alpe-Adria-Trail is a superb choice. This 43-stage, long-distance trail connects existing paths, leading from the foot of Austria’s highest mountain, Grossglockner, through the most picturesque alpine and lake regions in Carinthia.

It takes in the point where Austria, Italy and Slovenia intersect at the Dreiländereck (‘three country corner’), then continues on towards the Adriatic. Each stage is about 13 miles long – six hours of leisurely walking – and few stages are regarded as difficult.

The Tirol region is world renowned for alpine hiking and the Adlerweg is a comprehensive network of hiking paths where the routes are designed to resemble the wings of an eagle.

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