With only 1 week in Austria, we spent the last few days in Graz Austria (which means “Little Castle”). We took the train from Vienna down to Graz, again this town was picked because it looked to be on the path as we head south towards Italy. Graz was a great city to sit back and enjoy life in, we greatly enjoyed the landscape Graz offered with the mountains surrounding the city. This is also where we found out teddy bear Graz, which we packed around with us for the remained of this trip.
One of the highlights of visiting Graz it the mountain that has the Clock Tower located on top. To reach the top you can walk up the the very neat stairwell path that’s located on the outside of the mountains and leads up to the top. This path was really cool to walk up, as it also had walk through arches and bridges to cross over, and benches to sit on and enjoy the view over the city. If the hiking up the stairwell isn’t your thing, there is an elevator from inside the mountain that will take you up as well. The Clock Tower is one of the oldest buildings in Graz today.
At the top of the mountain you will find more then just a Clock Tower, but also The Kasematten Stage which is unique to look down on, and is still used today for concerts. The Cannon Hut which includes 4 cannons that would warn the city of enemies back in the late 1700’s, the newer Chinese Pavilion, and the Bishops Throne. And to complement all of these sights to see, you will find a restaurant which includes some cold beer (and other items) to enjoy the view of the city with.
Other then the hike up and what’s located on the top of the mountain, a must see is what is inside the mountain! If you adventure inside the tunnels you will find the elevator which will take you directly to the top. But these tunnels are part of The Schloßberg Gallery which was built in the 1940’s and consisted of 5 km+ of tunnels which would provide shelter to 50,000 people if the city was ever bombed in WWII. Inside the tunnels is also a small museum tour which is not in english, but we had still enjoyed looking at the artifacts of the history. At the end of the small museum is a free wine tasting, and a must try! We did pick up some local wine, and packed it for a later date (Lake Bled, Slovenia).
The ultimate highlight of our visit to Graz was our hiking adventure we took to Mixnitz. A must read blog with pictures and a great story HERE!