Road Trip of a Lifetime at These Austrian Routes

  • Publish date: Sunday، 17 October 2021 Last update: Sunday، 24 October 2021
Road Trip of a Lifetime at These Austrian Routes

It’s the perfect season for a road trip! What we know for sure is that it doesn’t have to be in the same country we live in, sounds like a crazy idea, but travelling for a once in a lifetime road trip is something you must do. Austria would definitely be the IT destination.

The green country has so much for you to do and see. You’ll easily have access to the best routes and excursions for your Austrian road trip, through magnificent mountain passes, past spectacular lakes, and through beautiful old towns.

Grossglockner High Alpine Road - 48 km

Gaze out the window and inhale fresh air as you ride along the Hohe Tauern National Park, the Grossglockner High Alpine Road. The scenic route is the most well-known stretch of road in Austria and is the highest surfaced mountain pass road in the Alpes

Winding from Bruck in Salzburg to Heiligenblut in Carinthia, the highest point on the pass is the Hochtor at 2500 meters.

If you’re an adrenaline rush fan, the road is a dream for motorcyclists as well as cyclists who love a serious sporting challenge.

You’ll think you’re in another world the minute you reach Kaiser-Franz-Josefs-Höhe, the peaks have this majestic energy you will not forget.

Start your adventure in Heiligenblut, a small village with a picture-perfect Gothic pilgrimage church. As you wind your way up the long road, you find that with each bend, the views become more enticing.

Road Trip of a Lifetime at These Austrian Routes

Grossglockner High Alpine Road

© Grossglockner Hochalpenstrassen AG

Take an Instagram break at one of the multiple lookout of this unique world of blossoming alpine meadows, fragrant mountain forests, massive cliffs, and glaciers.

Make sure you don’t miss all vegetation zones, from cornfields in the valley to the eternal ice along the way

The foot of the Kaiser-Franz Josefs Höhe

At 2500 meters, you will have reached the foot of the Kaiser-Franz Josefs Höhe, from where you can explore various hiking routes.

Take a 30-minute walk directly to the massive Pasterze glacier on a safe, well-marked trail, or take part in one of the guided tours with a national park ranger.

Road Trip of a Lifetime at These Austrian Routes

Grossglockner High Alpine Road – View to the Glacier

© Grossglockner Hochalpenstrassen AG

Okay we all know the famous screaming marmot by now, you can actually spot one at Grossglockner High Alpine Road. The marmots here are legendary, the usually shy Alpine rodents have become so used to tourists that you’ll be almost guaranteed to get a glimpse of them.

The Grossglockner High Alpine Road is open from May to October and is closed at night.

Carinthian Lake Tour - 270 km

One of these surreal destinations you think you’ll only see on social media. The good news is that Carinthia is very easy to reach but full of by superb lakes and awe-inspiring mountains.

You’ll start The Carinthian Lake Tour in Klagenfurt, following the northern bank of the legendary Wörthersee to Pörtschach, a famous tourist resort.

Road Trip of a Lifetime at These Austrian Routes

Lake Woerthersee

© Karnten Werbung, Martin Steinthaler

Then you travel north on to the magnificent Ossiachersee lake. Continue northwards, taking in the crystal-clear waters of smaller local lakes before reaching the Millstättersee lake.

Road Trip of a Lifetime at These Austrian Routes

Lake Ossiachersee

© Region Villach Tourismus GmbH

Make sure you get some hot tea or coffee along the way as it will perfect to drink while gazing at the glistening waters.

Onwards, you will see Villach, followed by the shimmering waters of the Faakersee lake, before returning to the Wörthersee and the celebrated towns of Velden and Maria Wörth.

Road Trip of a Lifetime at These Austrian Routes

Maria Woerth at Lake Woerthersee

© OEW, Michael Stabentheiner

Along the Danube - 445 km

One of the most famous attractions in Austria is the Danube. It starts in Passau, a charming town on the border between Austria and Germany.

The first hotspot along the way is "Donauschlinge" near Schlögen. From here, you pass Linz, Austria’s third largest city and known for its unique mixture of baroque architecture and contemporary modern design a true treat to history lovers.

Here, the road leaves the Danube for a short diversion to St. Florian, through the ancient Roman town of Enns, and on towards Steyr, a small town with a historic city centre.

Road Trip of a Lifetime at These Austrian Routes

Steyr in Winter

© TVB Steyr

The route takes you to the start of the Wachau, filled with delicious fruits and greenery and replete with vineyards, apricot trees, and quaint little villages, and resplendent with monasteries.

Road Trip of a Lifetime at These Austrian Routes


© OEW, 1000things

From the Wachau you travel to Vienna, before following the Danube eastwards towards the edge of the Donau-Auen National Park. It's here that the river leaves Austrian territory once again and your Danube tour ends.

Road Trip of a Lifetime at These Austrian Routes

Nationalpark Donauauen

© NÖ Tourismus, Robert Herbst

Around and About the Wilder Kaiser - 90 km

Another worth-a-while journey is around the majestic Wilder Kaiser which begins in Kufstein, renowned for its enchanting historic centre.  

Road Trip of a Lifetime at These Austrian Routes

Kufstein Old Town

© TVB Kufsteinerland

From here you set out for Ebbs, but get ready for a magical experience as you visit the popular world centre of Haflinger breeding, a modern stud farm with 120 gorgeous Haflingers.

Road Trip of a Lifetime at These Austrian Routes

Haflinger Studs in Ebbs

© TVB Kufsteinerland, Loewenzahm

The route continues to St. Johann in Tirol, and onto Kitzbühel.

Kitzbuhel is perfect to for a glimpse of the more relaxed city life. Its a medieval town centre full of luxury stores and inviting cafés.

Nestled at the foot of the Wilder Kaiser are many delightful villages from which you can reach the Hintersteiner See, a charming lake at an altitude of 882 m. Passing through more picturesque villages, you once again return to Kufstein.

Main Image Credit:

Schloegener Schlinge

© OOE Tourismus GmbH