Like every summer, I am trying to work as many hours as possible outside of my Vienna office while visiting my favourite spots and lovely friends all over Austria. In my opinion, nothing compares to the crystal clear water of the Austrian lakes, the fresh mountain breeze and kind hosts. In this part of the blog series, I am taking you to green Styria, sunny Carinthia and the most wonderful places in Burgenland.

This state especially suits all active travellers, as there will be an ideal route for everyone across the mountains of national park Gesäuse, Hochschwab region or the Schladminger Tauern. The best picture spot is the Spiegelsee by far. You should get up early and start with a hike at sunset and finish your tour with a refreshing break at the lake. For accommodation, I highly recommend Thaler’s Mariandl in Rohrmoos, which is owned by fear friends of mine and will certainly make you feel particularly welcome as well.

Further south, the capital city Graz offers excellent breakfast at the design hotel Kai36, delicious sandwiches at Delicatessen Frankowitsch, traditional Austrian dinner treats at Laufke and phenomenal cocktails (and even more incredible decor) at Hofsaison. A half an hour ride from the city you can experience the romantic Kesselfall. Offering many bridges to adventurously cross along the waterfall, it makes for the perfect day trip.

In the east, the chocolate factory Zotter impresses the whole family not only with its zoo and delicious samples, but also with its extensive range of finest organic and fair chocolates to take home with you. This is in my opinion a must-see and taste for everyone with a sweet tooth.

My personal highlight: the southern Styria wine road with its delicate, domestic wines, hearty charcuterie served on wooden plates and roasted chestnuts in late summer. If you are on the hunt for outstanding white wine, you should pay a visit to the Goedwinemakers and their excellent Morillon and Sauvignon Blanc. For champagne, I recommend the vinery Harkamp. For a traditional Styrian food experience and to soak up all the previously consumed wine, the best place is Weingut Kölbl with its homemade delicacies.

The sunniest state shines with its beautiful lakes and excellent accommodation, such as the calm lake Millstadt with the Villas Postilion and Verdin or the glamourous lake Wörth with the phenomenal Villa Bulfon and its even more incredible garden and cosy Restaurant Rosé. If you prefer car free and sustainable tourism, you should visit the Weissensee. I suggest checking into the eco-friendly Biohotel Gralhof or the Hotel Forelle for a calm and relaxing holiday. Another tip for the idyllic Gailtal: the Biohotel der daberer with its focus on hospitality, nature, quality and captivating atmosphere.

Close to the Italian border, the carnic high route offers a hiking experience par excellence combining dolce vita with Austrian hospitality alongside diverse landscapes.

The easternmost state is particularly known for two things: lake Neusiedl and superb wine. Here, I’d like to recommend my friends Yvonne and Christian. These two are shooting stars concerning premium reds and I was blown away by the excellence of their winery Christian Kirnbauer. For a sweeter taste, I suggest visiting Illmitz and the winery Haider with its first-class sweet wine.

For all sporting aces, I recommend exploring lake Neusiedl by bike and stopping in the small villages along the bank to experience all the delicacies of the region. If you find yourself stopping in Gols and generally enjoy premium wine, the winery Rommer is the best address for you. A short bicycle ride away, you can visit the Gut Purbach under Max Stiegl. The chef combines traditional and contemporary cuisine to an outstanding experience with a focus on excellent prepared innards.

In the middle of the state awaits the boutique hotel zum Oberjäger in the middle of divine castle grounds. The hotel masterfully combines heritage with modernity and offers an extensive breakfast as well as a glimpse at the life of famous Austrian aristocrat Esterhazy.

Short from the border to Hungary, you can spend relaxing days at the „Weinlofts“. In these renovated wine cellars, you can live amidst vineyards with every luxury imaginable, from Jacuzzis to infrared saunas and fabulous sun decks.

Where do you prefer to go to in summer? Share your thoughts and tips with me! I’d highly appreciate it.