“Heidi … Heidi … Deine Welt sind die Berge … Dunkle Tannen … grüne Wiesen im Sonnenschein …”
Words from a song every child in Austria knows: Famous Heidi and her happy life in the mountains! Since our son Liam has been born, we have started to dig up and revive our own childhood memories – including, of course, Heidi and her life in the mountains. Imagine our excitement when we found out that besides the original “Heidi-Alm” in Switzerland, we discovered a “Heidi-Hotel” right here in Austria! Next to being specialised as a “Kinderhotel”, it also carries the quality labels “Best Hiking Hotel” as well as the “Austrian Eco Label“, hinting at its excellence in environmental protection.
Lukas Köfer, who warmly welcomes us there, tells us more about the hotel’s organic heating system at almost 2,000 metres above sea level: “We use only wood pellets for heating here, which are delivered at close range. We make every effort to find regional suppliers and products. When we work together with a partner, we ask ourselves: What services and products can we obtain together, in order to avoid long travel distances?”
In view of the serpentine road and the challenging history of development at the Falkertsee lake, striving to unify both economic and ecological considerations does make sense: It’s Mother Nature who has the final word up here anyway. A very beautiful word at that. Check this out.
So where exactly in Carinthia, Southern Austria, is the Heidi Hotel located? And what can you do out here?
Check out the location of the Falkertsee lake as well as its surroundings mountains on my world travel map (near Bad Kleinkirchheim, Turracher Höhe, Nockalmstraße as well as the biosphere reserve Nockberge).
Had Georg and I been more flexible, i.e. had we travelled without a baby, we would have made more day trips around the area. Instead, we enjoyed indulging in a week of just chilling out with our baby son. In our case, this meant exploring the many hiking trails around the lake and its alpine pastures, enjoying the mealtimes (three times a day plus cake in the afternoon!) as well as many other family-friendly amenities the hotel provided. Tip: If you want to find out more about our trip here with a very small baby (Liam was barely two months old at the time of the trip), you can read more in my previous post “10 reasons for travelling with a (very young) baby: How and where we travelled with Liam.”
So what about Heidi and her songs?
It turns out that the owners of the hotel, besides all the environmental care, have also created a small park for children and adults alike, retelling the mountain tales of Heidi and her friends through wooden sculptures, boards and houses. My personal highlight is the marmot enclosure: As guests of the hotel, you may even assist in feeding them!
Check out my photographs and InstaStories of our trip here, too: https://www.instagram.com/creativelena.
Do check out my short travel video too which covers our entire stay:
Disclaimer: We have been supported on this trip by the Heidi-Hotel as well as the Austrian Eco Label. All opinions are my own.