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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?

Travelling the Vienna Alps: Views like Paradise


Food Travel, Austria, Travel with Locals, Travel Blog , 0

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Sometimes, happiness can be found just around the corner. Those looking for a place to cool down & relax in the summer heat of a city like Vienna are best advised to head out into the gently rolling hills & mountains of the so-called “Bucklige Welt” in the Vienna Alps. High up at the Schneeberg mountain, the highest mountain in Lower Austria (2.076 metres above sea level), we enjoy easier temperatures than the sweltering 35°C of the intense summer heat down the valley. Less sweat, too, is needed to ride our mountain e-bikes in the hill country of the “Bucklige Welt”, enhanced by entertaining stories of our e-bike guides Heinz & Poldi. They just love to take us out to what they call the most beautiful spots in the local hills and valleys, including stops at the local pub restaurant Mallys which is unique: You can only eat here after prior arrangement and each menu is designed especially for you.

What we have experienced here in the travel destination of the Vienna Alps is really quite something. Come check it out here!

Activities on end & heaps of fun: Mountain e-bikes (which you have to try), kissing cows and wonderful mountain vistas in Lower Austria – We have caught it all with the Vienna Alpen Viewer.

The Vienna Alpen Viewer?! “What on Earth is this?”, my friends Lilli & Anne ask in disbelief as I first talk to them about our upcoming trip into the Vienna Alps. Well, I can tell you this: Somebody has really been creative here. “Trail to Paradise Views: 2 minutes“, a sign reads up at the mountain railway station of the cog railway up the Schneeberg mountain.

All ready to go with our Vienna Alpen Viewer, we start walking across the high plateau of the Schneeberg mountain, still to find out what this Alpen Viewer thing exactly is. And finally end up being so fascinated by the views up here, the fresh air and the clear mountain vistas that we almost miss our train going back down the hill. The “Schneeberg Krapfen” furthermore “weighs us down”, a sweet and heavy load we share among the four friends of us at the Alpengasthaus Damböck, followed by a chill-out session with lots of mountain summer sunshine … I am almost tempted to say we travel writers do nothing but … travel. eat. and enjoy! Well, perhaps we do. What do you think? 🙂

Wer solche Freu(n)de hat, braucht keine Feinde mehr ... oder wie war das? Kalorienzählen = obsolet angesichts der Köstlichkeit dieses einmaligen Schneeberger Krapfens auf dem Teller. Auch zu viert eine echte Herausforderung!

Can’t really be counting calories facing this beautiful “Schneeberg Krapfen” load …

Am Schneeberg ist mit allen gut Kirschen essen: Kühe wie Menschen sind hier sehr freundlich & entspannt. :D

High up at the Schneeberg, one is less affected by the summer heat. Even the cows stay calm and cheeky. 😀

Ausgestattet mit dem sogenannten "Wiener Alpen Viewer" legen wir los ...

Thanks to our Vienna Alpen Viewer, we check out the surroundings …

... das "Paradies der Blicke" zu erkunden: Den Wiener Alpen Viewer gibt es direkt bei der Destination Wiener Alpen zu bestellen.

… Views like paradise: The Alpen Viewer really allows us to the get the full panorama of the mountains around here and can be ordered from the Wiener Alpen Tourism Board.

Rundum g'schaut in den Wiener Alpen: William unser Fotograf hat sichtlich Spaß beim Entdecken.

Take a look around: William, our photographer, loves to discover the surroundings.

Vor der Handykamera macht sich das kleine Ding auch gut: Anne beim Testen für Instagram & Facebook-Fotografie!

Anne checks out the Alpen Viewer for taking snapshots with her cell phone: Unique pictures on Facebook & Instagram there!

Unterwegs auf den Schneeberg: Während der Zeit von April bis Oktober verkehrt die Schneebergbahn täglich mehrmals auf den höchsten Berg Niederösterreichs; eine Berg- und Talfahrt kostet zusammen € 35,- pro Person (Erwachsener).

Climbing the Schneeberg mountain: From April till October, the Schneeberg cog wheel train runs several times a day, return trips are € 35,- per person.

So sehen Gipfelstürmer aus: Unser Dream-Team beim Erklimmen des höchsten Punkt Niederösterreichs auf über 2.000 Meter!

Our team climbing the highest mountain of Lower Austria … nice & cool up here at 2.000 metres above sea level!

 

All quite relaxed, really. What really got our adrenaline going was Lilli and my ride with the “monster rollers” & the “mountain cart“. “Well, the brakes of the mountain cart work just like those of a bike … it’s only with the monster roller that you have to take care so you don’t fall down …” Falling down?? During our first go, and without the carelessness we had as children, Lilli and I are rather cautious as adults. The girls like to have a look first. Here in Mönichkirchen, it is the kids who overtake us and … soon, it is our own thrill, too. Whatever!, we think chasing downhill. So much for fun out here. Laughing like children having fun in the mountains!

My friend Lilli has this to say: “The mountain cart & roller ride – wow – so much fun. What I still remember? A prickling sense of adventure that captures your whole body, mind & sould: Our instructor first is patient with us, but then also likes to encourage our excitement and reminds us to take care …”

Wir haben so viel Spaß: Lilli legt mit ihrem Mountaincart so richtig los!

We are having so much fun: Lilli on her mountain cart!

Hmm ... die Handhabe des Monsterrollers sehe ich mir lieber noch mal an ...

Mmmh … not too sure about being able to handle that thing “monster roller” 😀

Wem alles zu bunt wird, der findet übrigens in der modernen und komfortablen SPA Relax-Anlage Therme Linsberg Asia seine Auszeit: Nur rund 40 Minuten von der Stadt Wien entfernt, eröffnen sich hier ganz neue Wellness-Dimensionen.

Those who don’t like either monster rollers or mountain carts can head out to some peace & quiet here at the local spa Linsberg Asia: A wonderful wellness area is awaiting us here.

Oder aber, man "getraut" sich diesen Herrschaften anzuschließen: Fahrten mit dem Ebike durch die Bucklige Welt machen Spaß und werden über die regionalen Betriebe für Gäste organisiert.

Or, you choose to go with these happy people: The locals of the “Bucklige Welt” like to take us out on a guided e-bike trip.

"Wer sein Rad liebt, schiebt" - beim Ebike eigentlich nicht notwendig. Wenn die Hitze nicht wäre, würde ich angekommen am höchsten Punkt der Buckligen Welt bestimmt noch relaxter aussehen mit meinem Mountain-Ebike ... !

I love my e-bike tour in the Bucklige Welt … really recommend you head out into the hills, despite the heat – after all, it is less demanding on a (mountain) e-bike and you get to enjoy the landscape more.

Lilli: “The Bucklige Welt hillsides are just gorgeous … Our tour takes us up and down the hill from Bad Schönau to Kirchschlag and back, thanks to our e-bikes we arrive everywhere in no time. You get a real push from these bikes, which is gorgeous! Our local guides, Heinz & Poldi, love to take us out and show us what the area has to offer including their very own local ‘hotspots’ such as the local pub Mally – cosy, authentic and really relaxed.”

Nach all der Anstrengung müssen wir erst mal was essen ...

After all the excitement, we have to grab a bite to eat …

... und werden dabei vom Alpengasthof Enzianwirt an der Bergstation der Rollerbahn in Mönichkirchen auf das Herzlichste begrüßt und verwöhnt, inklusive diesem köstlichen "Gruß aus der Küche" für uns als Gäste. Herrlich!

… being spoiled by the Alpengasthof Enzianwirt at the mountain station of the Mönichkirchen roller & mountain cart trail.

Und auch hier essen wir total gut: Im Wirtshauskultur-Betrieb Krumbacherhof im niederösterreichischen Krumbach inmitten der Buckligen Welt.

And here, too, we get spoiled: The Krumbacherhof is part of the Lower Austria Restaurant Association here in Krumbach south of Vienna.

Die niederösterreichische Wirtshauskultur hat es sich zum Ziel gemacht, nur das Beste der jeweiligen Region auf den Teller zu bringen. Das schmecken wir!

This restaurant association has been founded in order to promote the best Lower Austria has to offer in terms of regional products. Yes to that – the taste is just great!

Selbiges gilt für die "Genießerzimmer Niederösterreichs", Räume in Hotels, Pensionen, Gast- und Bauernhöfen die sich durch besondere Hingabe zur Region in Ausstattung und Service auszeichnen.

The same goes for the “Geniesserzimmer” rooms of Lower Austria: All of them are rooms that have been especially furnished and whose owners are especially knowledgeable about their local area in Lower Austria … let me tell you a little bit more about the concept behind.

 

Are you a gourmet “sybarite”? Staying in the Lower Austria “Geniesserzimmer” local accommodation and eating at the “Wirtshauskultur” local restaurant association, you really can’t go wrong.

The so-called “Geniesserzimmer” are really unique. Large, spacious rooms, modern furniture, a touch of personality, a warm personal welcome by the owners, local culinary delights such as homemade “Gugelhupf” cake for breakfast, recently picked raspberries, sheep cheese offered by the “local farmer down the valley” … If in addition our Hotel Schneeberghof spoils us to a beautiful wellness area whose panorama windows include a view over the Schneeberg mountain and the charming grand-parents of the Geniesserpension Dopler hotel in Bad Schönau treat us to fresh cake for breakfast, it is time  for a pure sense of holiday. After all, this is what we do being travel writers … ?

Lilli. Say something! 😉

We actually sleep like little angels at the Folke Tegethoff Geniesserzimmer at the house of the Dopler family in Bad Schönau. There is a library inside the room and a stork on our roof which we are able to observe from our large terrace in front of the living room. Breakfast is ‘poetry on the palate’ with fresh raspberries, sheep yoghurt, fresh sheep cheese and tomatoes. And the best about it all: Everything is offered from around the valley, all fresh & local! What can I say … I am in looove with the Vienna Alps mountain district!” 🙂

Alles Märchen im Genießerzimmer ... Was für ein süßer Gästeeintrag hier!

“All a fairy tale here at the Geniesserzimmer” … what a sweet comment left by one of the guests around here at the hotel Geniesserpension Dopler in Bad Schönau.

Zum Frühstück bekommen wir frischen Gugelhupf serviert ...

For breakfast, we are served fresh Guglhupf cake …

... der Schafkäse ist haus- bzw. "talgemacht", direkt aus der Region. Auch das schmeckt man: Einfach sagenhaft frisch!

… the sheep cheese is just delightful, being literally from around the corner: Food with a taste.

Und erst die Himbeeren in meinem Müsli ... Ich bekomme Hunger!!

I love raspberries … getting hungry again there !!

Im Hotel Schneeberghof entspannen wir in den großzügigen Genießerzimmer-Suiten mit viel Platz zum Seele-Baumeln-Lassen ...

At the Hotel Schneeberghof, we relax in our spacious & comfortable “Geniesserzimmer” suite …

... das Frühstück gibt's hier direkt im Hotelgarten mit Blick auf den Schneeberg!

… breakfast is served on the terrace in the garden with a view over the Schneeberg mountain!

Ein weiteres kulinarisches Highlight war unser Besuch beim Top-Wirt des Jahres 2013 Gasthaus Apfelbauer mit dieser sensationellen Alpenlachs-Forelle aus heimischen Gewässern. Einfach KÖSTLICH!

Another culinary highlight is a visit to Lower Austria’s Top Restaurant 2013 with this amazing starter dish: Home-grown Alpine salmon as a freshwater fish from around the Vienna Alps.

... auch als Hauptspeise ...

… I also get to enjoy the same fish as a main course …

Zu guter Letzt: Ein Eis bei ca. 38°C im Schatten ... am wohl heißesten Tag des Jahres. Hausgemacht von der "Eisgreisslerei" im Wirtshaus Kupferdachl in Katzelsdorf ... der Besuch lohnt sich. Schon alleine wegen des tollen Bauernhof-Eis hier!

And finally: Home-made organic ice cream from a local farmer being branded as “Eisgreisslerei” – simply delightful, even though it is hard to pronounce 😉 The best idea we had during this day with a sweltering 38°C in the shade … do come back here to Kupferdachl restaurant. They are worth it … and so is their ice cream. 😀

 

Disclaimer: We have been invited by the Wiener Alpen Vienna Alps & the Geniesserzimmer Niederösterreich in order to travel in the Vienna Alpine district. All opinions are my own.

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Written by Elena

Fluent in seven languages, I feel naturally at ease anywhere I go. As a writer, I am happy to share the world’s travel stories as far as creative travel, foodie travel and local, sustainable travel are concerned. Thanks to my young son Liam, I am currently discovering the world anew.

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!
Wonderful World Heritage: Emotions from my trip through Germany
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