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Schladming-Dachstein © Tourismusverband Schladming Dachstein, Mathaeus Gartner

Austria Uncovered: Schladming-Dachstein
Written by Daniel Neilson with John Summerton
Produced in Partnership with Visit Austria

Discover summer in Schladming-Dachstein, where mountains and valleys provide an impressive backdrop to outdoor adventures, hikes, and relaxing moments in nature.

In the Schladming-Dachstein region in Styria, the green heart of Austria, summer offers a multitude of incredible views, from imposing mountain peaks to fresh Alpine air and green valleys. Here, every moment promises true relaxation – whether you want to recharge your batteries in nature, discover culinary delights, or experience precious family moments.

© Tourismusverband Schladming Dachstein, Gerhard Pilz

Where the locals play: John Summerton, Sidetracked Creative Director

‘The first time I returned to Schladming-Dachstein in summer, it was a revelation. The Alps take on a completely different aspect in the summer. They are gentle, calming, relaxing. Gone are the lively apres-ski parties and the rush of speed down snow, instead replaced with clinking cattle, meadows of wildflowers, dark green forests against pale grasses. But rising above it all, those sharp mountains.

‘Schladming-Dachstein is a place to relax, to enjoy all manner of activities, but slowly, at my own pace, except when I’m hurtling down the Reiteralm Trails.

‘The days I spent in Schladming-Dachstein usually included trail running, carrying minimal equipment on my back and spending a night or two in the huts scattered along the trails. Sections of the Schladminger Tauern Höhenweg were my favourite. The trails, like much of Schladming-Dachstein, are characterised by mountain tarns in some of the most spectacular locations I’ve seen. Sometimes we’d drop our toes in, and sometimes our whole bodies. And then we’d wait to dry and be off again at a gentle pace. Note that not all lakes allow bathing – check regulations before you go.

‘Another day, we hired mountain bikes and hit up the same mountains I’d ski in a very different season. The Planai and Reiteralm were wildly fun, flowing, carving singletrail from the mountain station right back into the valley.

‘And it would be a mistake to miss the via ferrata routes that are so abundant in Schladming-Dachstein. Of the 33 routes, 22 are in Ramsau am Dachstein, apparently including the oldest in the Eastern Alps. With a guide, we went up the Dachstein West Ridge, and returned across the glacier. It was a true mountain day out: technical, exposed, but always feeling safe.

‘But Schladming-Dachstein, for me, will always be the people. The mountain guides, the innkeepers, the bar staff. We returned again and again to Mountain Egg, an appealing name for a breakfast joint if ever there was one. The jam is home made, the sausage from a local butcher, eggs and butter from a nearby farm. In the evening, Platzhirsch-Alm offered good beer and good times. And for food, we sought out some of the 14 huts that serve food designed by Austrian TV chef Richard Rauch.

‘For me, to visit Schladming-Dachstein is to let go for a few days, immerse yourself in the mountains, to set the mind free. I found it rejuvenating, meditative almost.’

© Tourismusverband Schladming Dachstein, Peter Burgstaller

Experience Lebensgefühl in Schladming-Dachstein

Let the local tourist board be your guide to experiencing that Lebensgefühl feeling in Schladming-Dachstein.

‘Schladming-Dachstein’s inhabitants are characterised by hospitality and authenticity, qualities that are not found everywhere. The diversity of the region and its inhabitants is also reflected in the leisure activities offered by Schladming-Dachstein. An extensive network of hiking trails, cycle routes, and mountain-bike routes leads to the scenic highlights.
‘Numerous huts and restaurants invite you to linger and enjoy the unique Styrian cuisine – many with views dominated by majestic mountain formations such as the Dachstein south faces, the Schladminger Tauern, and the Grimming.

‘The Schladming-Dachstein Sommercard complements all this by offering access to numerous other leisure activities, helping to make your summer holiday in Schladming-Dachstein a memorable one.’

Facts about Schladming-Dachstein

1,000km of hiking trails
The mountains of Schladming-Dachstein are characterised by sheer limestone walls in the glaciated Dachstein, countless peaks, and more than 300 mountain tarns. A dedicated hiking bus helps you reach your starting point.

Four long-distance hiking trails
The long-distance routes that pass through the area are Schladminger Tauern Höhenweg, Panoramaweg 100, the Dachstein Rundwanderweg, and the first stages of the invitingly named ‘From Glacier to Wine’ route.

780km of cycle paths
Low-traffic mountain roads and valleys, including the well-known Stoderzinken Scenic Road, the Dachstein Road, and Sölk Pass, are just waiting to be cycled. There are also plenty of mountain-bike trails – including the Reiteralm trails.

Eight mountain railways
Eight of the lifts are open in the summer, including the Dachstein cable car, which leads to attractions like the Dachstein Ice Palace – as well as vertigo-inducing attractions suspended high above the mountains such as the Stairway to Nothingness, Dachstein Skywalk, and Suspension Bridge.

33 via ferratas
Along the Dachstein south face, more than 33 via ferrata routes and mountaineering tours are available, including two designed for children and three for teenagers.

© Tourismusverband Schladming Dachstein, Christoph Huber

Mountain Experiences

Hiking along the water
Schladming-Dachstein, with 300 mountain lakes, 100 waterfalls, and numerous springs, is one of the most water-rich regions in Austria. No wonder it is known as the ‘Valley of a Thousand Springs’. The best way to experience the abundance of water is by hiking – from leisurely walks along rushing streams to exploring wild gorges and hiking to mountain lakes and waterfalls.

The Dachstein
The Dachstein, at 2,996m, is the highest mountain in Styria, with views as far as the Czech Republic and Slovenia. It is home to attractions including the Dachstein Suspension Bridge, the Skywalk, the Ice Palace, and the Stairway to Nothingness.

The Riesneralm, reachable by a chairlift, is home to a gallery, mountain cinema, adventure playground, a playground on a lake, and the gorgeous 60 m² Riesneralm Infinity Pool – probably the most scenic dip in the world.

After taking the 10-seater cable car to the Hochwurzen, you can embark on a series of hiking trails between four and 13.5km long, ride mountain go-karts, and experience fine food in mountain huts.

Stoderzinken is a mountain near Gröbming, at an altitude of 2,048m. The Friedenskircherl chapel on the Stoderzinken has been voted the most beautiful place in Austria. From the top, there are hikes, via ferratas, and ziplines (including the biggest of its kind in Europe) to enjoy.

Hauser Kaibling

The Hauser Kaibling, at 2,015m, is where to head with children. At the bottom station of the cable car, you’ll find a kids’ park, while on the mountain, there are family-friendly cycling routes, plus three convivial huts, each with a playground.


Mountain Huts

The Sondl-Alm is a rustic and cosy Alpine hut full of tradition. You’ll find hearty dishes from the wood-burning stove, home-made cakes, and Spagatkrapfen – a local, deep-fried sweet speciality.

The Breitlahnhütte is located at 1,104m in the Nature Park Sölktäler. There are incredible views from the terrace, and it makes a great starting point for an easy hike – suitable for children and families – to Schwarzensee, a tranquil mountain lake.

The Preintalerhütte is often sought out by hikers out on a day trip., On the way there, you’ll pass the longest waterfall in Styria and climb the Alpine path, the ‘Höll’, to the high lake of the Riesachsee. The Schladminger Tauern Höhenweg is also accessible from here.

The Kaiblingalm is at 1,778m above sea level and benefits from incredible views over forests, clear streams and fresh air. Cows, sheep and horses enjoy the rich Alpine meadows around the hut.

The Giglachseehütte is located beside the Giglachsee lake surrounded by the mountain world of the Schladminger Tauern. The speciality of the hut is beef from its own stock. The Giglachseehütte can be reached by paths from several directions.

© TVB Schladming Dachstein, Christoph Oberschneider

Hiking Routes

Hauser Kaibling to Moaralmsee
This 7.85km trail takes in the Hauser Kaibling ski area, which offers expansive views over the Ennstal Alps, as well as Moaralmsee, one of the most beautiful mountain lakes in the Schladminger Tauern.

Schwarzensee Kleinsölk
Schwarzensee is an idyllic lake in the middle of the Sölktäler Nature Park, and offers views over the Kliensölktal valley. It is an easy walk from the Breitlahnhütte, making it a great walk for families with kids, including for strollers.

From the 2,112m summit of the Pleschnitzzinken, you gain 360º views across the mountain ranges of Ennstal, Stoderzinken, and Dachstein. This half-day hike leads from the Bottinghaus, through ancient high forests, and along a grassy ridgeline to the summit cross.

Alpine trail through ‘Höll’ gorge
This 4km walk winds its way to the imposing Riesach Waterfall, the highest in Styria. It’s a memorable walk with viewing platforms and a 50m cable footbridge to cross. Stop at the Kaltenbachalm for a bite to eat.

Hochwurzen to Guschen
This 9.1km hike between the summits of Hochwurzen and Guschen is reasonably easy-going, with panoramic views to the Dachstein massif and the Schladminger Tauern mountain range.

Cycling Routes

No matter your level of ability, mountain bikers will find a wide range of options across Schladming-Dachstein. Numerous routes through magnificent natural landscapes at all altitudes make a cyclist’s heart beat faster. From tours through dreamy forests and secluded Alpine meadows to mountain lakes of astonishing clarity at 2,000m above sea level, there’s something for everyone.
Bikers can test their stamina on the region’s crisp uphill and downhill stages. A variety of bucolic Alpine huts along the trails offer local delicacies to round off an unforgettable mountain-bike tour.

Ramsau Round
This 36km mountain-biking tour is a highlight of the Schladming-Dachstein region. It offers wonderful views from different vantage points throughout the route, as well as fast downhills paired with selective mountain stages.

Aich Tour
This 32km tour has long slow climbs and flowing descents, often through the Alpine pastures of the Styrian Bodensee. Stopping points include Haus-Aich and Gössenberg.

Viehberg Tour
This 64km classic among the bike tours of Schladming-Dachstein leads over a strenuous ascent to high-level Alpine pastures. This tour passes through expansive landscapes and offers mountain panoramas over the Dachstein Glacier, Grimming, and the Salza Reservoir.

Stoderzinken Tour
A stunning 37km tour with panoramic views of the Schladminger Tauern. After a leisurely cycle in from Gröbming to Assach, the mountain stage begins via the Assacher Scharte up to the Stoderzinken.

Schladming-Dachstein events for 2024

Mid EUROPE – International Wind Music Festival 2024 (July 9th–13th, 2024)
Mid EUROPE wind-music festival celebrates wind music with its many facets and genres, musical highlights and marching shows, open-air and church concerts, as well as music from around the globe.

Schutzengel Kirchtag (September 1st, 2024)
Held in the Nature Park Sölktäler, the Schutzengel Kirchtag features the traditional driving of cattle down from the Alpine pastures from the Tuchmoaralm.

Tauern Circle (June 29th, 2024)
This year will be the third edition of the trail-running obstacle course across Schladming town centre and beyond. Around 900 expected participants have to overcome a circular route of around 8km, with 300m in altitude, and featuring 18 spectacular obstacles.

For more information, visit and follow @schladmingdachstein
Produced in Partnership with Visit Austria // @visitaustria



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