That was the name of the 2016 World Rowing Tour which inspired this trip. It is both an evocative and an accurate name. The lakes are stunningly beautiful, the water ranging in hues of blues and greens. Surrounded by rock walls, high mountains or wooded hills, each lake has a distinctive character, as do the towns which dot the shores. Rowing is the perfect way to experience the Salzkammergut, the Austrian Lake District. You will drop your oars into six different lakes, all readily accessible from our base in the spa town, Bad Ischl. And while the water may be cool, the warmth of the welcome is anything but. Austrian culture, history, hospitality, food, wine and beer are all as spectacular as the rowing.
This special region in western Austria has attracted tourists since the mid-19th century, when aristocrats from Vienna and other cities discovered the mountains and the lakes, and the healing power not only of the beautiful landscapes and out-door pursuits, but also of salt baths. The Emperor established a summer home in Bad Ischl, and the city retains a regal air. All that fresh air generates a good appetite. Native char and whitefish are fished, cooked and served to your plate. Mountain pastures produce cow, goat and sheep cheeses. Home-made sausages and smoked meats from local farmers are perfect with the hearty breads baked in wood ovens. Oh, and then there are the deserts. The tradition of cake and coffee arrived with the aristocrats and has happily remained.
For 2020, the timing of this tour has been set to follow the World Rowing Masters Regatta in Linz. Come to Austria for both racing and touring! Once the pressure of the regatta has lifted, extend your stay in this lovely country with more rowing. This trip is perfect for fit rowers, since we row six consecutive days, weather permitting. There will of course be options to take a day off. The format of this trip is to row at a different club on each lake, giving you further insights into Austrian rowing culture. On a few occasions we will trailer boats to extend our rowing experiences.
|Single Supplement||$45||$55||35 €|
Note that the single supplement applies to a smaller room with a single bed. If you would like your own double bed room, please contact us for pricing.
Non-rowing companions welcomed. Please contact us for the details – we are happy to answer your questions.
|Daily Distances||Boats||Group Size|
|15 – 35 km per day.||Coxed touring quads.||Maximum 18 rowers.|
8 days/7 nights with up to six days of rowing
Note that is itinerary is subject to change. Many variables will affect the rowing, especially water conditions and weather.
Arrival in Bad Ischl. Welcome dinner.
On our first day of rowing, you get to see three different lakes, although only one is rowable. The morning row is on Grundlsee. The colour of this lake is emerald green edging into blue. One of the smaller lakes, we will explore all of the shores before walking forest paths to lunch at a fish restaurant at Toplizsee. To round out the day we will circumnavigate the Altausee on foot, before returning to Bad Ischl.
Row Wolfgansee with its crystal clear water. It is so pure, that the water is of drinking water quality. This is considered one of the most beautiful lakes and we will row past two resort towns, St. Wolfgang and St. Gilgen. Visit St. Gilgen, and weather permitting to top of Mount Schafberg via cog railway.
Row Hallstättersee. This is perhaps one of the most famous and most photographed lakes in Austria, if not Europe. UNESCO has designated the region of Hallstatt a World Heritage region. Perhaps it is in part due to the beautiful wooden boat houses, best seen from the water. Lunch and visit in Hallstatt, including to a re-markable salt mine.
Row Attersee, the largest lake in the Salzkammergut. The colour of this lake is distinctively turquoise. The beauty of the lake attracted many artists, notably Gustav Klimt, who spent summers here and created multiple landscapes. You will understand why when you see the lake. Free afternoon in Bad Ischl for shopping, spa time, walking, relaxing. Dinner on your own.
Row Mondsee. Is this our favourite lake? Hard to say since they are all so beautiful, but we will get an extra warm welcome at the club here. The water is also the warmest in upper Austria. Farmhouse lunch and a visit to a local heritage museum rounds out the day.
Our last day of rowing is, as expected, spectacular, as we row Traunsee. If you substitute a “m” for the “n”, it means “dream lake” and what could be more apt. The surrounding landscape is diverse, ranging from Alpine mountains to soft hills of the Alpenvorland. We will row past the best known emblem of the lake, the “Seeschloss Ort”, now a ruined jumble of stones built on ancient Roman foundations and set on a small island a few metres offshore from Gmundens town centre. Tonight is our farewell dinner.
Sadly, all good things come to an end. After a final breakfast, head home or on to your next adventure.