ST08 AAT: Obervellach...
long-distance walking trail
- Brief description
The oldest place of worship in Carinthia, a fairytale castle and the spectacular Tauernbahn Railway: this stage will teach you a lot about the cultural history of the region!
- Starting point
- Best season
Falkenstein Castle, nestled above the village of Gratschach (municipality of Obervellach) looks like a beautiful relic from an age long past. But in fact it is not – it has only existed in its present form since the early 20th century, and as such, is no older than the Tauernbahn Railway which runs past it and was opened in 1909 by none less than Emperor Franz Josef himself. The original line, with its numerous tunnels and viaducts, has been straightened, but much of it can still be seen along the way.
Today’s destination and highlight is the cone-shaped Danielsberg. This unique mountain in the middle of the M ö ll Valley is one of the oldest places of worship in all Carinthia. Thanks to the hardness of its rock, this mountain was not eroded by ice-age glaciers, and has had a cultural significance spanning over 6,000 years. The oldest human relic is the Celtic-era “Schalenstein” (bowl stone). In Roman times, the mount housed a temple dedicated to Hercules, whose foundations are still visible in the walls of St. George’s catholic church on the peak.
We start the stage in the main square of Obervellach, surrounded by the magnificent buildings of the gold-mining era. After a few minutes we turn left up a road for a short time. We take another left off this road up through forest towards the “ Mölltalblick” viewpoint . Above the railway line, we head along an undulating road to the Unterhofer farm, where we branch off to the right and continue shortly downhill towards Niederfalkenstein Castle, a favourite spot for photographers. Here we take a left downhill to just before Gratschach, where we leave the road to the left and follow a path along dry stone walls over ancient pastureland until we reach the R8 Glockner cycle path. This leads us to the village of Gappen. Once again we take a left and follow a footpath along a large dry stone wall until we again meet the Glockner cycle path and follow it to Penk. Here we reach the foot of the Danielsberg mountain. We stay in Penk until we take a right at a steep S bend, and continue on the flat at first, then a little steeper along the “Jagdlehrpfad”, the themed hunting path. Don’t miss the fork at the Kroos farm, however tempting it may seem to continue straight on along the path. This themed hunting path will take you straight to the top of the Danielsberg, although quite steeply at times. Just under the highest point you will find the Herkuleshof inn. We keep a few metres to the left of the meadow and the day’s destination is in the bag!
- Highest point
- 1,115 m
- Additional information
From Spittal/Drau or Winklern on the Mölltal-Bundesstrasse (B106).
From Penk or Kolbnitz in the Möll Valley on municipal roads to the broad dip to the north of the Danielsberg, here in a few turns (asphalted but narrow) as far as Herkuleshof inn.
- Public transportation
Several parking areas in Obervellach; parking spaces near the Herkuleshof inn on the Danielsberg
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