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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?

Farm Holidays with the family at Ofnerhof in Southern Lower Austria.


Austria, Travel With Locals, Europe, Family Travel, Travel Blog , 0

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“Dear Elena, we have read about your many trips involving farm stays in Lower Austria back in 2017… would you like to come and visit our farm, too?” This is Birgit Gruber reaching out to me earlier this year, Birgit who with her family runs Ofnerhof farm, a member of the Austrian Farm Holidays association. Like a hotel, she has been awarded “four flowers” as in a distinct quality label for Austrian farms welcoming visitors. Sure enough, I am all ears! What is more, Ofnerhof farm is located only an hour’s drive south of Vienna, our home town, and likely right now among the most prominent villages across Austria: The town is indeed named Sankt Corona am Wechsel!

 

“Hard to imagine what the media hype around this town must have been”, I think whilst driving my little family towards Birgit’s farm. It is also our very first holiday break since the worldwide Corona pandemic! The “Wechselland” region at the foothills of the Eastern Alps lies at 840 metres above sea level, providing for much treasured fresh air as we arrive. It does already feel like coming home, as I tuck Liam under my arm and walk through the farm house’s front door, where Birgit already waits to welcome us with a smile.

Hallo, neues Zuhause auf Zeit!

Hello, new home for the weekend! Liam, our little #BabyTraveller, takes to feeling happy here immediately.

 

Birgit nimmt sich sehr gerne die Zeit, um mit uns Haus und Hof zu erkunden ...

Birgit loves to take time to introduce Georg, Liam and me to her house and farm estate …

 

... für die spätere Wanderung in den umliegenden Wäldern borgt sie uns gar eine praktische Trage-Kraxe für unseren kleinen Liam ...

… later on, she even offers to lend us this personal baby carrier for a little hiking trip up the mountain …

 

... überhaupt erwarten uns sehr viele liebevolle Details, duftende Pfingstrosen, ein herrlicher Rotwein auf dem Zimmer ...

… and we just love the welcome, including fresh fragrant flowers and a really nice bottle of red wine at our room …

 

... oder besser gesagt, Ferienwohnung, denn selbige ist perfekt ausgestattet (auch für den Besuch mit kleinen Kindern) ...

… the apartment we stay in is quite large and well-equipped, also for families travelling with young children …

 

... kuschelig eingerichtet ...

… love the comfort here …

 

... und auch die Aussicht vom Balkon über die sanft geschwungenen Hügel des uns umgebenden "Wechsellandes" genießen wir sehr.

… as well as the views from our balcony across the surrounding area.

 

Things to see & do: The local “family arena” offers mountain activities for kids and adults of virtually all age groups.

Birgit and her husband Manfred have been renting out guest rooms and holiday apartments in addition to their agricultural business for many decades. For 25 years they have been part of the Austrian Farm Holidays association called “Urlaub am Bauernhof”. The so-called family arena, which they have built up from scratch together with other local business partners, includes the so-called “Corona Coaster” (a summer toboggan run), a spacious mountain bike park, the little “Wexltrails” (a kind of mini-bike park with safe routes for even the smallest of the little ones!), a themed forest trail about ants, and much more. The local owners’ own forests and meadows have provided the land for building much of these amenities. Birgit is passionately committed to promoting regional development in the area and tells us: “The combination of agriculture and tourism offers a multitude of possibilities. In this context, we can achieve greater understanding among our guests for all aspects of local food production: Cheese, meat, juices, etc. And even smaller farms are able to provide full-time employment through this combination of income.”

Let’s take a closer look at the result of these developments, then!

Los geht's: Die Fahrt mit dem "Corona-Coaster" begeistert uns! Leider ist Liam noch etwas zu klein um auch schon mitfahren zu können, in ein paar Jahren müssen wir also wiederkehren.

Let’s go: We just love chasing down the mountain with the “Corona-Coaster”! Liam, of course, is still too young to go: We have to come back and take him there again (kids are allowed to go with their parents aged 3 and above, at 8, they can go on their own).

 

Auf dem "Ameisen-Lehrpfad" ist es auch eher noch der starke Papa, der sich an den Erlebnis-Stationen im Wald versucht ...

Along the forest trail, it is also mostly daddy who is up for game with the local sports facilities …

 

... "wenn ich groß bin, möchte ich auch hier den Berg runterfetzen!" Kleine Mountainbike-Laufräder gibt es schon für Kleinkinder!

… and it seems as if Liam was saying, “Daddy, take me back for a trip up the adventure fun park when I’m a little more grown up!”

 

In der näheren Umgebung, nämlich Krumbach am Wechsel, bietet sich auch der Besuch der EisGreisslerei mit riesigem Erlebnis-Spielplatz an ...

Close to where we are staying, there is a huge playground suitable for Liam also, it is part of a local ice cream manufacturer …

 

... die Eissorten sind so vielfältig wie köstlich: Lavendel-Orange, Schoko-Whisky, Kokos-Pfirsich, und vieles mehr ..!

… do make sure to come out here, too: The “EisGreissler” creates all kinds of different ice cream varieties using mostly local, organic produce (fresh farm milk from their own cows, as well as fresh fruit, tasty herbs, organic chocolate, etc.). Their ice cream parlour in downtown Vienna is one of my favourite addresses for great ice cream in town!

 

More on Birgit’s farm, as we discover the farm animals and playground facilities!

Finally, it’s all about “me”! At the Ofnerhof farm, children are welcome everywhere. There is a large family room with tons of toys and games (Liam loves watching and chasing after the elder kids), a “children’s barn” with climbing and other sports facilities, several different outdoor (and indoor) playgrounds, and you can even walk right into the stables meeting all the animals there are: Chicken, rabbits, cats, cows and goats.

Im Spielzimmer bin ICH König ...

I just love tossing around toys in the big family room …

 

... daneben wartet eine gemütliche Lese-Ecke und Bibliothek auf Leseratten wie mich ...

… right next to it, a small library corner welcomes book worms like myself …

 

... draußen gebe auch weiterhin ICH Gas: Am Zaun begrüße ich Lotte die kleine Ziegentochter ...

… while Liam is happy to meet Lotte, the goat’s daughter just as playful as he is …

 

... und weil sie so schnell ausbüxen, legt Birgit sie gerne auch mal an die Leine ...!

… so playful (and chasing the fresh sprouts of the apple tree) that Birgit has to put her on a leash, even …!

 

Der Spielplatz hinter dem Hof ist echt schön angelegt.

The playground right behind the farm is really nice and inviting …

 

... und bietet in der Verlängerung einen sogenannten "Spielstadl" (umgebauter Heuschober).

… and here is the very large indoor playground, again for slightly older children that Liam will love when we visit again.

 

Darunter "wohnen" die Kühe ...

Hello, cows …

 

... daneben die Hasen, wie Liam sich genauestens überzeugt ...

… and rabbits! WOW, mummy! I have never seen anything like that before.

 

... und die Eier der glücklichen Hühner ...

Every day, Birgit collects fresh eggs off her chicken for breakfast …

 

... lassen wir uns jeden Tag zum Frühstück schmecken. Sooo gut!

… and don’t they just appear to be straight from heaven?! They are, if you count all the fresh flavours of a typical farm’s meal here.

 

Da komm' ich wieder, ganz sicher!!

Mum, dad, let’s come back soon!!

 

Check out all our family pictures from this little trip to the Ofnerhof farm:

 

Disclaimer: We have been invited by Birgit Gruber and her family to come and stay at their farm. 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."

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