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Around Austria By Car - Part 5: Many Beautiful Lakes and One Huge Disappointment...

ksenia  ·  Dec 12, 2011  ·  No Comments

The plans for this day comprise mainly going to Salzkammergut – the land of the lakes… We need to drive about 185 miles across the Alps – so we presume the trip will take almost a whole day. Also we plan to visit the Hochosterwitz Castle – in fact, we have seen it a day before in Minimundus. :) When approaching the castle, we see that it looks exactly like its Minimundus copy. Having carefully viewed the castle in Minimundus, we now know that it is impossible to get to it by car, so we are prepared to climb the mountain.And then we happily discover that there is a lift to the top of the mountain. But… we turn out to be the only ones to take the lift – all the rest of the tourists, mostly the Austrians, prefer going by feet, even the aged people. Oh, by the way, it is also worth mentioning that in the south of Austria, there are very few tourists, and few people speak English – mostly German is in use.

The view from Hochosterwitz, as pretty much everywhere in Austria, was really amazing. Although, I would say, Landskron is prettier. And the Hochosterwitz Castle is not particularly interesting. So we went around it, had a look, listened to some Austrian songs that somebody sung inside the castle, and went further on.

After passing by some small and pretty lakes, we again start ascending to the Alps. Kärnten is the area of Austria that is totally surrounded by the Alps, so it is impossible to go into or go outside this area without crossing the mountains. The road here is not as high as in Grossglockner – the maximum we had to go up was 6250 feet high – and the views are not so impressive. By the way, if you choose to ride the paid autobahn, getting to the necessary place will be faster but the views are not nearly as nice.

We have lunch and make our way to the Blue Dome World of Water – a thematic leisure park devoted to water. According to the promotional materials, this park is equally enjoyed by grown-ups and kids, and it has some water show, etc., etc. This park is named after the blue lake near which it is located. From the descriptions, we understood that the park area was quite huge – so we expected to find something really impressive. However, this turned out to be the biggest surprise for us in Austria – the only thing we found was a small unsighty house, and next to it – a pile of stones and a crowd of people. So we come closer and see something that remotely resembles the picture of the Blue Dome. At the picture the place looks much, much prettier though… We actually start thinking that this Blue Dome is made from something that resembles a stall!

Anyway, since we have already come here, we decide we would have a look at the Blue Dome World of Water anyway. It consists of both outdoor and indoor areas. The stones at the entrance inside the park look like a pair of giant hands – such a view promises something interesting inside. The water is falling through these hands, and from distance it seems as we have to walk under the pouring water to get into the... well, stall. The impressions were not particularly profound or exciting – we see demonstrations of some physical effects of water, of the water’s role in shaping the caves and mountains of the area, participate in a ‘superb flight around the lake’… and so we are not really happy about it. Anyway, we leave the park and go further on.

Since we don’t have plans for this day, we decide to go to Saint Wolfgang – a stunningly beautiful town at the Worfgangsee lake. We take a walk around the lake and enjoy the view a lot, but when the rain starts we have to hide in some coffee shop.

Since the rain has not finished yet, we go back to our hotel. So that is how the fifth day of our Austrian adventure is over!

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