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Around Austria By Car - Part 3: Waterfalls and High Alpine Road

ksenia  ·  Nov 29, 2011  ·  No Comments

Let us continue our Austrian adventure! For our third day in Austria, we planned to visit the Krimml Waterfalls (Krimmler Wasserfälle), see Austrian’s most famous panoramic road – Grossglockner Hohalpenstrasse, and go to the country’s southern part.

There is still raining, and there does not seem to be an end to it.

On our way there we stop by a small water mill – the last one of the kind, and it is situated in German territory, not Austrian.

It took us all in all five hours to get to the Krimml Waterfalls, including a lunch break. All the time there is still raining, however in some places the fog becomes thinner, and the view is quite nice. In several places we stop so that to see the scenic viewpoints. For driving on all autobahns in Austria, you have to pay. However the difference in time spent for the travelling by autobahn or ordinary road is not very huge. So it is totally up to you whether you pay for a faster ride or not.

Finally we arrive to the place… park our car and follow the arrows showing the path towards the waterfall. The Krimml Waterfalls are truly very impressive! First of all, we heard the roaring of water while we were still walking on the path. Secondly, when we find ourselves in the nearest closeness to the water, we are enchanted by its majestic beauty… The water is thundering, and the view is really majestic… There is a small brook and a mini-waterfall close to the place. It is also possible to go up the mountain so that to have a look at the view from there.

After we leave the waterfalls, we continue driving so that to get to the High Alpine Road that lays through the mountains. The ascent of the alpine road is more than 2 kilometres (!!!), and the highway serpentinous road is interesting in itself of course. The whole road is more than 48 kilometres long, and the driving experience there is truly unique. Yet sometimes scary. The bends are quite many and very abrupt (180° turns are at approximately each 200 metres of the road!), and there is snow everywhere.

From time to time, we see the parking places on the road which are specifically designed for you to take some rest, read about the flora and fauna of the place, take pictures and so on. On our way we drive through the cloud, and can hardly see anything – so it’s a bit scary… Especially scary, as it turned out, was descending – even the 40km/h speed seems cosmic on this kind of road, especially when as you drive nearer the 180° turns. Oh, and do not forget that to the right hand side there is a downfall… With the temperature of the air 3.5 degrees and 1900 metres height, we feel as if we are onboard of a plane!
We skipped the observation peak with the height of 3000 meters because the snow seemed extremely thick there – so we decided we better not take such a risk. However, we got nearly to the same height at the highest point of the road – 2500 meters.

The views that we observed from the windows of our car were amazing… alpine meadows, mountain cliffs, forests, cows, lake and even a brook… these all are truly beautiful! The air is so clean. But of course it was a bit scary driving all the way there, with these turns and everything…

At the end of the day we arrived to the small town named Spital. The journey continues! Tomorrow – new impressions and new sights...

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Categories: Adventures abroad · Austria · Destinations · So there we were... · Travel photos · Uncategorized
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