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Villach – Alpine lakes experience

The area around Villach, with its perfectly accessible location, is one of the most attractive destinations in the wider region. Villach is an open minded city, especially well known for it’s festivals and parties. It is blessed with romantic and picturesque lakes, trekking, endless bike tracks and golf. In the winter time it continues to reach out with snow-topped mountains for skiing, outdoor programmes, wine and an excellent food offer.

Given its important geographic location, Villach has always been an attractive regional shopping centre and it continues to be so with the new ATRIO centre located at the crossroads of Carinthia, Slovenia and Friuli, which acts as a completely new type of thematic shopping centre where it is also possible to organise events. With its thematic standpoint uniting three countries, languages and cultures, it is an ultra-modern incarnation of the regional spirit bringing together three cultural circles.

A city by the river Drava
Carinthia’s main river is the Drava, which enters the wide valley at Villach. In the city it is joined by the river Zilja and making its way through the centre of Villach to Baško Lake, it then runs alongside many natural beauties. You can really get to feel the essence of the river by catching a boat that stops just beneath the Congress Centre Villach, gliding past the new symbol of the city and under the most beautiful bridge in Carinthia.

Land of lakes
Carinthian lakes are known for crystal clear water, which is pleasantly warm because of the almost Mediterranean climate. For over 40 years the closest city lake, Osojsko, has hosted a series of concerts and events. Wide waterfront areas radiate liveliness and invite you to take a promenade. Other nearby lakes with an interesting tourist and congress offer are the Faaker See, Silbersee, Vassacher See, Magdalensee and St. Leonhard See. In a relatively small area there are a number of diverse and different lakes.

Back to nature – Weissensee
A very special Carinthian lake, Weissensee (white lake) is the highest glacial lake in Europe. In winter it turns into Europe’s biggest natural ice area, which makes it an even more appealing tourist attraction. On an icy surface of 6.5 km2 you will find ice-skaters from all over the globe, competing or just ice-skating for personal pleasure. The lake lies in the middle of the Alps, in a deep, narrow valley. It is a perfect example of a green destination.

DID YOU KNOW?:
Villach Conference on Global Warming
The conference was held from 9 to 15 of October 1985. It was the first time that the world really started noticing the issues of global warming and the ozone hole. The conference was supported by the Austrian goverment, whilst a small team of expert scientists laid the path to permanent solutions in the future.

Villach – The Thermal Spa resort of Carinthia
In 2012 came the long awaited ‘The Thermal Spa Resort of Warmbad Villach’, which was the icing on the cake for the whole Carinthian tourist offer. The most modern water park, alongside Hotel Karawankenhof (which is conected to the older, prestige Warmbaderhof hotel) can take pride in its good results and excellent visitor levels.

Local events worth a visit – Advent time fair in Villach
One of the prettiest (and also nearest) advent fairs has to be the one in Villach, which delights visitors from the 22nd of November. The Villach Traditional Advent, the traditional part of the fair, takes place on wooden stands around the city parish church. On the Hauptplatz, the main square, a Villach Culinary Advent takes place. A cultural part of the December offer also takes place in the Parkhotel.

Active outdoor programmes – Nassfeld: the best Carnithian Ski Resort
Thanks to its location and microclimate the Ski Resort Nassfeld is not only the place with the highest guaranteed snow in the Alps, but also the place with the most sunshine hours (850 per season). It falls into the top ten ski resorts in Austria and offers the biggest sunshine terrace in the Alps. It is also rich in incentive programmes, which are attractive in the winter as well as in the summer.

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