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You wouldn't be here if you weren't curious.*

Hi! I'm Elena! Welcome to my travel blog Creativelena.com.
For me, it is all about “life-seeing instead of sightseeing”: Join me as I create, eat & live my way around the world. Curious?

*Check out my book, “The Creative Traveler’s Handbook”, for learning more about what we mean by creative travel. Travelling means the world to me, makes me fit for everday life and sometimes, I trust, also calmer on the inside. Read this blog with a smile, share what you love and remember to check back regularly: After all, when was the last time you did something for the first time?

Burgenland Travel Tales: Meet & Greet the (real) Burgenland!

Aloisia Bischof talks “Heanzisch” with us – a typical, local area dialect from Southern Burgenland. Travelling in the very east of Austria, you will not only be won over by its charming, undulating landscape and mild, Pannonia climate, but also by the charm of the local people. Throughout history, many different peoples have settled here: Magyars, Hungarians, Croatians, the Burgenland still home to their descendants – and their cultural traditions. One of those, “sweetly” enough, is the tradition of wedding bakery. “All my life, I have been baking cookies, sweets & cakes for typical Burgenland wedding parties”, Aloisia smiles while talking about her life & background. Aloisia, who is THE wedding baker of Burgenland known far across the borders of her tiny village in Badersdorf, who simply loves to look after each one of her guests personally, showing full attention and grandmotherly-care. We have visited here in her cute little home town and fallen in love with her sweet little secrets …

Tis’ the story about wonderful local hosts in Burgenland: Make sure you meet Aloisia Bischof and let yourself be enchanted by her sweet creations ...

Tis’ the story about wonderful local hosts in Burgenland: Make sure you meet Aloisia Bischof and let yourself be enchanted by her sweet creations …

 

... creations such as these delightful cookies that will melt in your mouth ...

… creations such as these delightful cookies that will melt in your mouth …

 

... Aloisia and her team are known all over Burgenland as THE wedding caterers for all things sweet.

… Aloisia and her team are known all over Burgenland as THE wedding caterers for all things sweet.

 

We visit Aloisia as part of an e-bike tour with our local country host and expert tour guide Martin Ochsenhofer.

We visit Aloisia as part of an e-bike tour with our local country host and expert tour guide Martin Ochsenhofer.

 

Thank God our fancy e-bikes make us lose at least a few calories again, picked up over nibbling off Aloisia’s cookies and during the ensuing wine tasting in the South Burgenland wine growing district ...!

Thank God our fancy e-bikes make us lose at least a few calories again, picked up over nibbling off Aloisia’s cookies and during the ensuing wine tasting in the South Burgenland wine growing district …!

 

“E-Bike Paradise Southern Burgenland”: Martin Ochsenhofer, of Foxtours, offers regular trips with e-bikes exploring the culture & nature of the Southern Burgenland.

The gently rolling hills of the Southern Burgenland, whose mild climate makes for growing the local “Isabella” grapes turned “Uhudler” wine (make sure you try this local speciality!), are also perfectly apt for any kind of bike trips. Some eight years ago, Martin has started organising those bike trips from his home town Oberwart, offering visitors the chance to explore hidden alley lanes, forest trails and wine-terraced hills that mark Southern Burgenland’s reputation as an acclaimed wine-growing district. Not far from our visit of one of the local area wine shops, we enjoy wonderful views and a delightful stop at a local “Kellerstöckel” wine hut set right inside the vineyards. Travelling with the locals simply continues to be the best form of new explorations, especially here in the Burgenland.

Martin just knows when & where to take us: To the perfect sunset moment over the vineyards of Southern Burgenland, for instance.

Martin just knows when & where to take us: To the perfect sunset moment over the vineyards of Southern Burgenland, for instance.

 

Travelling on our e-bikes in the Southern Burgenland district ...

Travelling on our e-bikes in the Southern Burgenland district …

 

.. we are tempted to stop by this cute little wine tavern right inside the vineyards ...

.. we are tempted to stop by this cute little wine tavern right inside the vineyards …

 

... the name being "beim Franz am Hochcsater", with our dear Martin offering one round of “Spritzer” for everybody – local wine mixed with mineral water, a typical refreshment for us biking the hills.

… the name being “beim Franz am Hochcsater”, with our dear Martin offering one round of “Spritzer” for everybody – local wine mixed with mineral water, a typical refreshment for us biking the hills.

 

Romantic little spots are dotted all over Southern Burgenland ...

Romantic little spots are dotted all over Southern Burgenland …

 

... with views such as this one stretching all the way across Southern Burgenland and over the Pannonia plains in Hungary to the East.

… with views such as this one stretching all the way across Southern Burgenland and over the Pannonia plains in Hungary to the East.

 

Towards the end of our bike trip, we stop at the “Vinothek am Eisenberg” wine shop for a happy tasting with the locals ...

Towards the end of our bike trip, we stop at the “Vinothek am Eisenberg” wine shop for a happy tasting with the locals …

 

.. learning more about the (red) wine treasures of the Southern Burgenland wine-growing district!

.. learning more about the (red) wine treasures of the Southern Burgenland wine-growing district!

 

Last but not least, dinnertime is best spent at KOI - Kulinarik am Teich restaurant ...

Last but not least, dinnertime is best spent at KOI – Kulinarik am Teich restaurant …

 

… as my recommendation and experience from my first visit here this summer shows: Do not miss a chance to wine & dine here!

as my recommendation and experience from my first visit here this summer shows: Do not miss a chance to wine & dine here!

 

Fancy an e-bike exploration of Southern Burgenland yourself? We have an e-bike tour for two to give away! All further details such as travel dates, services and ideas on what to expect are listed here. Just answer the following question until 31 October, 2014: Where is Creativelena travelling to next for the upcoming Digital Wine Communications Conference as a “winelover” traveller? Among all comments left here, we give away 1 x e-bike trip for two in Southern Burgenland. I look forward to hearing from you. 🙂

 

Take a creative-cultural look at Stadtschlaining: We meet local ceramic artist Petra Lindenbauer and check out the “peace library” at the former synagogue.

Those who travel looking behind the scenes usually take time for the people and their many fascinating stories. It is when minutes become hours and you really make connections that you will feel the essence of a place reaching out to you. Such is the story with “Werner”, whose “last name never really mattered”, introducing us to local ceramic artist Petra followed by a spontaneous invitation to visit her house & workshop. In all her modesty, she does not reveal that she has already been commissioned by the Who is Who of Austrian cooking & househould firms to make ceramics for tableware. Petra has moved here from Upper Austria after falling in love with Southern Burgenland. We meet the charming artist amidst her workshop, taking a closer look at her unique creations.

A warm welcome to Petra Lindenbauer ceramic atelier & workshop in Stadtschlaining!

A warm welcome to Petra Lindenbauer ceramic atelier & workshop in Stadtschlaining!

 

There are a lot of individual pieces available for sale here ...

There are a lot of individual pieces available for sale here …

 

... and some of them just being fashioned and assembled at the moment!

… and some of them just being fashioned and assembled at the moment!

 

Many magazines have already included pictures with fine tableware of the extraordinary ceramic artist; I too cannot help but fall for some of the pieces and would love to take them home with me.

Many magazines have already included pictures with fine tableware of the extraordinary ceramic artist; I too cannot help but fall for some of the pieces and would love to take them home with me.

 

Apart from Petra and her studio, make sure you visit the local “peace library” in town that is located in the former synagogue of the Jewish community of Stadtschlaining.

Apart from Petra and her studio, make sure you visit the local “peace library” in town that is located in the former synagogue of the Jewish community of Stadtschlaining.

 

If you really want to know just how the local people used to live in Southern Burgenland, make sure you visit the Open Air Village Museum in Gerersdorf.

Eveline Niederbacher-Kisser and her husband have long since started to “collect” and save old farm houses from being torn down, thus helping to preserve a unique heritage here in Southern Burgenland. Thanks to their relentless efforts and unfaltering enthusiasm, they have successfully established and opened up the open-air museum in Gerersdorf as the place to go to for an experience of past life in Burgenland. Only a stone’s throw away from the mighty Güssing Palace, the peasants once led quite a dour life in rather poor circumstances. Hard to believe how much the world has changed in only a few centuries, even decades – a reality check of a kind!

Checking for understanding: Angelika Mandler talking to Professor Kisser, who since the late 70s has started to “collect”, repair and rebuild old farmhouses from Southern Burgenland, exhibiting them here in Gerersdorf.

Checking for understanding: Angelika Mandler talking to Professor Kisser, who since the late 70s has started to “collect”, repair and rebuild old farmhouses from Southern Burgenland, exhibiting them here in Gerersdorf.

 

Walking across the premises of the open-air museum ...

Walking across the premises of the open-air museum …

 

... we are impressed by what we see ...

… we are impressed by what we see …

 

... especially this one particular, original farm house building!

… especially this one particular, original farm house building!

 

Or this old sleigh: Imagine a ride through the snow-covered landscape during winter time ... ?

Or this old sleigh: Imagine a ride through the snow-covered landscape during winter time … ?

 

At the open air museum in Gerersdorf ...

At the open air museum in Gerersdorf …

 

... creative workshops are offered introducing visitors to the crafts that were once practised here, such as forging, carpenting, felting, bread-baking and more!

… creative workshops are offered introducing visitors to the crafts that were once practised here, such as forging, carpenting, felting, bread-baking and more!

 

Of course, Eveline & her husband insist on treating us to local area delights, such as cookies and sweets (again!) as well as typical Uhudler juice & wine that is only to be found here in the Southern Burgenland. Thank you so much for all this hospitality here!

Of course, Eveline & her husband insist on treating us to local area delights, such as cookies and sweets (again!) as well as typical Uhudler juice & wine that is only to be found here in the Southern Burgenland. Thank you so much for all this hospitality here!

 

Next to introducing you to all these wonderful hosts from Southern Burgenland, check out my article about the area’s many palaces and fortresses here in BURGENland: Bernstein, Forchtenstein, Lockenhaus, Güssing & Schlaining. More photos can be seen here, too.

My dear friends & colleagues have also published the following stories and photographs about the Burgenland:

 

Disclaimer: We have been invited on this trip discovering the BURGENland. All opinions are my own.

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Written by Elena

Elena writes about creative destinations, shares her personal travel stories and brings inspiring photography & interesting news updates home to you. Her mission is: "Continue to be amazed at this world, one creative travel experience at a time."

Ready for learning even more about creative travel?

Elena has recently published "The Creative Traveler's Handbook". Chock full of inspiratinal stories, travel tips and advice, it offers everything you need for planning and managing your next creative escape, addressing beginners and experienced travelers alike. Here's how to get your hands on it now!
Burgenland Travel Tales: Colourful Castles throughout the course of history
#CreativElenaRTW: Planning & Living The Big Round The World Trip Adventure

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