Whether for a varied holiday or just for a short stay in transit to Slovenia or Croatia, the area around Klagenfurt am Wörthersee has everything you need for a successful break. Exciting culture, picturesque nature, cozy accommodation and regional cuisine await you in Central Carinthia in southern Austria.
All the restaurants, farms and guest houses that I recommend to you below have been awarded the AMA GENUSS REGION certificate. It guarantees that only the best, freshest ingredients from the region are used, thus protecting the environment through short transport routes. I can assure you that you really taste this special freshness and passion for regionality! You can dive even deeper into Austrian cuisine here .
Klagenfurt am Wörthersee: Renaissance meets Mediterranean flair
It’s not just the location on the turquoise-green Lake Wörthersee that makes Klagenfurt a popular holiday destination. When the warm rays of sunshine and blue sky meet the old Renaissance facades, a stroll through the pretty old town almost feels like being in Italy.
The architecture of many buildings, squares and courtyards can be traced back to Italian master builders, and at the latest when you see the palm trees swaying in the wind around the plague column on the Old Square you seem to be on an Italian piazza.
The best place to start your tour of discovery through the capital of Carinthia is at the central “Neuer Platz”, where the imposing Lindwurm fountain draws attention from afar. The dragon-like sculpture is the symbol and heraldic animal of the city. According to legend, Klagenfurt was built on this spot after courageous men killed the lindworm that was raging in the local swamp. From here, it’s worth making a short detour to the Episcopal Church , which really impresses with its baroque pulpits, ceiling frescoes and imposing organ pipes in the windows. If you stroll along the pedestrian zone, you will soon discover the small Wörthersee-Mandl in Kramergasse, also a legendary figure made of bronze, which according to legend caused the formation of Lake Wörthersee.
Passing the House of the Golden Goose, we continue to the Landhaus, today’s seat of the Carinthian Parliament, where the Great Hall of Coats of Arms amazes with over 665 coats of arms of the former nobility and knights. If the parish tower is open, don’t miss the wonderful view over Klagenfurt from up there. Incidentally, up until the 1960s, a tower keeper and six children lived here in a very small space! In addition, I can only recommend that you just let yourself drift through the clearly arranged center and enjoy the relaxed flair of the city.
Tip: the Alpe-Adria pleasure mile in Klagenfurt am Wörthersee
Every year in September, the Alpe Adria Pleasure Mile takes place in Klagenfurt am Wörthersee. The historic city center is transformed into a gourmet paradise with regional delicacies from Austria, Italy and Slovenia. From olive oil and wine to wild herbs, coffee and sweet treats, everything is here. Be sure to bring your appetite so you can try the different stalls!
Klagenfurt am Wörthersee: idyllic overnight stay on a winery
Would you like to stay outside of Klagenfurt am Wörthersee and feel even more like in Italy? Then the largest winery in Carinthia in Taggenbrunn is the right place for you. Embedded in the picturesque Alpe-Adria landscape, the Tuscan flair definitely inspires here! Although Carinthia is not a classic wine country, excellent wines thrive here on around 45 hectares of mineral slate soil. Pruning, foliage work and grape harvest are carried out by hand and sustainability is also taken into account during further processing. In addition to Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Blanc and Traminer, red grape varieties such as Zweigelt and Syrah are also grown.
You can sleep wonderfully in the modern rooms of the adjacent 4-star boutique hotel Weingut Taggenbrunn, which are furnished with pine wood. Perhaps it is also due to the time goddess of the artist André Heller, who towers an impressive 12 meters at the entrance to the winery and protects Taggenbrunn Castle, the vineyards and their visitors. In the morning, the vintner’s breakfast in the Heurigen restaurant with local products strengthens body and soul – on the panoramic terrace when the weather is nice, otherwise in the historic stone vault.
A piece of Japan in Austria: Carinthian sushi at Landgasthof Neugebauer
Does the mere thought of sushi make your mouth water? Then the Landgasthof Neugebauer should be at the top of your must-visit list during a holiday around Klagenfurt am Wörthersee. If the almost three quarters of an hour drive is too much for you in the evening, you can spend the night in the adjacent country hotel and enjoy a fine breakfast with regional ingredients in the morning. But back to the star of the traditional inn’s menu, the delicious rice rolls.
From their love of Asia and various professional stays in Vietnam, Thailand and Singapore, Stefanie and Lothar came up with the idea of offering Asian dishes and eventually sushi in addition to traditional fried chicken and the like. The extremely likeable couple are the 5th generation to run this inn in Lölling, which has existed since 1900. By taking over the business, they brought a breath of fresh air to the menu of the long-established restaurant.
The sushi is prepared exclusively from local fish such as char or salmon trout, the rice comes from the Italian Piedmont and the soy sauce comes from the Mühlviertel, among other places.
Toppings such as homemade teriyaki sauce, sesame or chilli mayonnaise, peanuts, horseradish, baked pea crunch or various types of cress ensure a special taste experience. Simply a treat that I would definitely treat myself to as often as possible if I lived in the Klagenfurt am Wörthersee region! Every Thursday and Friday evening, the Carinthian sushi is offered on advance order.
Tip: Not far from Landgasthof Neugebauer, you can buy organic eggs from happy hens and homemade pasta from the egg hatch at the Rabingerhof . You will recognize the establishment immediately by the cute alpacas grazing behind the self-service hut. Each chicken has 10 m2 of exercise space in the yard and is allowed to go outside regularly. Meat from cows, pork and game as well as organic young cattle can also be purchased here.
Klagenfurt am Wörthersee: Excursion to the medieval castle town of Friesach
Walking in the footsteps of the Middle Ages is possible in many ways in the oldest town in Carinthia. In the city center, numerous houses with decorative facades are lined up around the Renaissance fountain. One of them houses the Craigher chocolate factory (not an AMA GENUSS REGION operation) on the main square, where handmade chocolate is made. With around 40 varieties, it’s difficult to choose, but you can taste your way through the Erlebnismanufaktur for 14.90 euros and learn a lot of interesting facts about the sinful treat.
A torture relic from the Middle Ages awaits you where the Bahnhofstrasse crosses the moat. Back then, bakers who had baked bread that was too small were punished with the so-called baker’s dive and immersed in the water of the city moat in a wooden, man-high cage. From here, walk along the impressively high city wall around the historic city center and, after the Friesach parish, climb the steps to Petersberg Castle. Up there you will be rewarded with a fantastic view of the city! Friesach is also known for its castle courtyard games, which take place here every year on the castle courtyard stage.
Friesach is a half-hour drive from Klagenfurt am Wörthersee.
Beer cuisine in the oldest brewery in Carinthia not far from Klagenfurt am Wörthersee
The Hirter brewery can look back on a long history. Beer has been brewed in Micheldorf, half an hour from Klagenfurt am Wörthersee, for a proud 750 years. One of the oldest private breweries in Austria focuses on regionality, the best raw materials, original craftsmanship and a large portion of passion for high-quality beer.
Hirter is an institution in the region. Here you can meet for a beer after work – or even earlier – and for fine regional dishes in the cozy brewery cellar or the beautiful beer garden. At the beer culinary delights, you can enjoy four courses, each accompanied by the perfectly matching beer. From home-smoked Faroe Islands salmon to creamy pumpkin soup to locally sourced game and a chocolate-themed dessert, the menu proves that beer goes really well with everything. Even if you – like me – are not a beer drinker, you will surely leave the bar with this surprising realization and maybe a new favorite drink. The beer cuisine with an experienced beer sommelier can be booked for 2 or more people.
A brewery tour offers an exciting look behind the scenes. With the spicy smell of hops, malt and yeast in your nose, you will learn everything you need to know about the art of brewing beer at Hirter. The tours take place every Sunday at 3 p.m. in summer, and only every second Saturday in spring, and cost 11.90 euros per person. The price includes a tasting of two 0.3 liter beers and the adjoining shop sells all beers and various other local products.
Regional fruit and vegetables from Carinthia Taufrisch
Have you ever wondered where your hotel or the restaurant you are dining at actually gets its fruit and vegetables from? In Carinthia that is in many cases from Carinthia dew fresh . A variety of salads, other vegetables, fruit and herbs thrive on 20 to 25 hectares of arable land at grower Rene Robitsch. In addition to old acquaintances, you can also discover exotic varieties such as Melodrias (mini cucumbers), wild cauliflower or mini fennel. A real paradise for (dew) freshness that you can taste on your plate!
“Give to nature and she will give you back three times over”
Rene Robitsch from Carinthia fresh as a dew
When I asked what is being done about snails, deer and other hungry animal mouths, Rene replies: “We simply grow so much that everyone is fed”. And so the colorful fields come together to form an enchanting landscape that you could gaze at for hours. The mushroom cultivation behind the gates of a hall in Brückl that is unspectacular from the outside is also interesting. Every three to four weeks, 4.5 to 5.5 tons of mushrooms, shiitake, oyster mushrooms, portobello and lime mushrooms can be harvested here, because mushrooms double in size every 24 hours.
In addition to supplying restaurants and hotels, you can also order individually filled boxes as a private individual, which are filled with fresh produce from the field every morning. In addition, Rene recently took over the 130-year-old traditional mustard brand Wenger-Senf, which you can find in various supermarkets such as Billa or Spar, in village shops or at gas stations, as a project close to his heart.
Restaurant tip: Idyllically located on Lake Längsee, you can enjoy delicious dishes with a focus on regional specialties at lunchtime and in the evening in the AMA GENUSS REGION restaurant of the St. Georgen Abbey. I really liked the lunch menu from the buffet for 25 euros, including cheese spaetzle, pike-perch or porcini mushroom ravioli. When the weather is nice, the sun terrace with a view of the lake invites you to linger and relax.
Klagenfurt am Wörthersee: slow food cuisine in the middle of the vineyard
The grapes from the Karnburg winery ripen on an idyllic, sunny slope north of Klagenfurt am Wörthersee, proving once again that Carinthia can keep up well with more well-known wine-growing regions. Having started out as a garage winegrower, Georg Lexer and Sem Kegley turned their hobby into a career in 2007. From Sauvignon Blanc to Pinot Gris and Zweigelt to Satin Noir or Muscaris, the wines are bottled here unfiltered and initially stored for around two years.
In addition to his passion for wine, Georg Lexer takes care of around 25 Duroc and Mangalizza pigs, which are allowed to lead a species-appropriate life in an outdoor enclosure next door. They are only fed every two to three days to encourage the animals to search for food themselves. They are only slaughtered and processed into meat and bacon after about two years, i.e. after three times as long as a fattening pig.
The Leiten restaurant , in a rustic wooden house with a view of the vineyards, offers a taste of its products. Regionality and seasonality is the motto under which head chef Leo creates new dishes every week. The open kitchen and the delivery notes posted in the restaurant show that there is nothing to hide here. For example, the tasty mini cucumbers from Kärnten Taufrisch, which I saw hanging in the greenhouse the day before, can now be found in the delicious starter. The restaurant is open Thursday and Friday from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday, Sunday and public holidays from 12 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Accommodation tip: sleep well in Reipersdorf
In the small but fine country inn Der Schumi in Reipersdorf, regionality is also the top priority and hearty inn classics such as Carinthian pasta or meat dishes, but also local fish and salads can be found on the menu. Whether in the cozy parlor or the light-flooded conservatory, you will immediately feel at home here, both among locals and travelers. The Schumi family is also proud of their fruit press. When you spend the night in one of the modern rooms, you can enjoy the delicious homemade apple juice at breakfast in the morning.
Art in the former mine: the exhibition “Domenig Dimensional” in issue
Secluded in a valley, the old blast furnaces of a former iron mine soar into the sky. What has developed into a lost place steeped in history was once the scene of a thriving industry. In 1995, the mine in Hüttenberg was awakened from its slumber by Günther Domenig as part of the state exhibition. At this location – one of four – the Carinthian architect Domenig set accents with the help of a tunnel flooded with light, among other things, without attacking the substance of the old walls.
In 2022, this fascinating place was made accessible to the public again free of charge. Students from selected art and architecture universities were allowed to exhibit their works in the building and visitors had the opportunity to feel the special atmosphere of this deserted place, partly reclaimed by nature.
With a little imagination you can see the workers sweating at the blast furnace and hear the squeaking of the heavy machinery.
It is still unclear what the future of this extraordinary place, which is also an exhibit, will look like. However, you can visit the former mine after registering in advance with the municipality of Hüttenberg or the Central Carinthia tourist office.
Klagenfurt am Wörthersee really has a lot to offer – both the city itself and its surroundings. And if culinary delights are important to you on holiday, you will definitely be able to enjoy fine culinary delights here, where you can taste the regional freshness. Have you ever been to this region of Carinthia? Then tell us your tips. We look forward to your comment here on our travel blog!
Even more inspiration for Austria
*This article about the most beautiful excursion destinations around Klagenfurt am Wörthersee was created as part of a paid cooperation with Österreich Werbung. However, I was completely free in the implementation of the journalistic content and my opinion is, as always, my own. There are promotional links in the post. If you book or buy something through them, we get a pro rata commission. This does not change the total amount for you. Thank you!