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Three beautiful off the beaten track Christmas destinations in Austria

Amanda Previdelli
Amanda Previdelli - [email protected]
Three beautiful off the beaten track Christmas destinations in Austria
Austria has many beautiful places for winter vacations (Copyright: SkiWelt Wilder Kaiser - Brixental Marketing GmbH, Photographer: Mathäus Gartner)

Austria is a beautiful country with a lot to offer, especially during its magical winter season. Here are three unusual and fun trips you can make with friends or family.


Austria is, of course, a great and famous winter destination. Its Alpine slopes attract skiers and snowboarders from all over the world, while the Viennese Christmas markets are a highlight of the country's east.

While the traditional tours and destinations are certainly worth a visit, other lesser-known paths are just as beautiful and fun. Also, probably less packed than the famous Austrian winter towns.


READ ALSO: Where are the best places to go skiing in Austria?

Here are three off-the-beaten-track and unique Christmas and winter destinations in Austria.

Austria's Klosterneuburg Abbey (Foto: Michael Zechany)

Candlelight Advent at Klosterneuburg Abbey

Firstly, a very Christmas destination: the advent market at Klosterneuburg Abbey. It's far enough from Vienna that you might skip the Christmas crowds entirely, but it's also reachable in less than an hour's drive or train ride. 

In Lower Austria, the famous Klosterneuburg Abbey is hosting an Advent market for the first time. It has a special look, with a garden of lights and many weekend events. The market with culinary delicacies and handicraft products just by the (otherwise inaccessible) monastery courtyard is open until December 18th.

READ ALSO: IN PICTURES: A guide to the main Christmas Markets in Austria

However, the Lichteradvent, with light points and installations, lasts until January 8th. You can visit the Garden of Lights from Wednesday to Sunday between 4 pm and 9 pm.

Additionally, on the eve of December 23rd, there will be a baroque concert with the musicians of the Bach Consort Wien at the Augustinus Saal in the monastery.

You can click here for more information.

Snowshoeing in Austria's Salzkammergut area. (Foto Salzkammergut / Katrin Kerschbaumer)

Snowshoeing in Dachstein

To be fair, the Dachstein region is undoubtedly a famous one in Austria. However, there is a not-so-crowded activity that will let you enjoy the beautiful Salzkammergut views without the countless tourists: snowshoeing.

The park has added new routes for snowshoe hikers, expanding its winter 2022/23 offer. There are even options suitable for beginners and families, such as the 3.4-kilometre Rossmoos tour. 


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Several outdoor experts offer guided tours. Free rental snowshoes are available at the Gosau tourist office. In addition, some sports shops provide rental equipment.

You can click here for more information.

There are many ways to get to see the Begrenz scenery. (Photo: Bregenzewald Tourismus / Emanuel Sutterlütty)

Admire the beauty of Bregenzerwald in a horse carriage ride

If you prefer activities that are not so physical but still want to be able to see Austrian mountains during the snowy season, you can go to Bregenzerwald in Vorarlberg, where 16 horse owners offer winter trips with carriages and sledges.

Horses have always played an essential role for farmers and foresters in the region, especially by helping transport heavy loads such as wood from the forest, but also for transport with a carriage or sleigh. 

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You can choose from many rides with different lengths on quiet paths through the winter landscape and admire the wooden-shingled houses and the beautiful scenery, all warm and cosy.

You can click here for more information.


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