Exercise fanatics and leisure-seekers get their money’s worth on the Danube.
© WienTourismus/Peter Rigaud
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Vienna is located at 16˚ east longitude and 48˚ north latitude, at the transition between two climate zones: the moderate, Central European transitional climate and the dryer, Pannonian climate. The Vienna Woods Biosphere Reserve in Vienna covers an impressive 9,900 hectares. Specifically, it encompasses the seven Viennese districts of Hietzing, Penzing, Ottakring, Hernals, Währing, Döbling and Liesing. The aim is to protect nature, where living space and species require this protection, but simultaneously to develop the region further through responsible management.
In an area spanning 1350 km ² , the Wienerwald provides a habitat for 2,000 plant species, 150 bird species and many other endangered animals. T This is why the extinct Ural Owl was reintroduced here. Just three years after reintroduction, a sensation occurred: For the first time in Austria in 50 years, two Ural Owls reproduced in the wild - in the Biosphere Reserve Wienerwald in 2011! The endangered green lizard has also found a home here. There are numerous different tours to familiarize you with the diversity (of species) of the Wienerwald.Especially exciting and informative is the "Day of the Species", held annually in a different part of the biosphere park, which invites visitors to explore different habitats, always offers a colorful family program and pampers with regional culinary delicacies. 15 nature reserves and 4 national parks constitute these unique natural landscapes - as do meadows, pastures, fields and vineyards.
For the most part, the vineyard locations have maintained their village character and extend an invitation to while away carefree hours drinking, eating and listening to Viennese music at cozy 'Heurige' taverns and outdoor dining areas. By the way, Vienna is the only city to have vineyard operations within its city limits!
The Vienna Woods contain a network of marked walking and hiking paths and are therefore an ideal local recreational area, which can be easily reached using Vienna's public transport system. With the recreational route planner, you can choose from 39 mountain bike routes (10 of which start in Vienna) and 12 hiking routes (4 of which start in Vienna) and find the most suitable one for you.
The true local mountains for the Viennese in the ridge of the Vienna Woods are the Leopoldsberg and the Kahlenberg, on which the Stefaniewarte look-out (named after Crown Princess Stephanie) invites you to pay a visit. From here, a view across the city and the Vienna Woods can be enjoyed. On clear days, one can see as far as the Schneeberg and Rax mountains, the last foothills of the Alps, from where the city sources its excellent drinking water.
Info points can be found at heavily frequented points of the Biosphere Reserve. In addition to information about the landscape with its specific flora and fauna, these info points offer tips for recreational and leisure activities in the area as well as products from the region.