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Austria in winter promises an active as well as a romantic vacation. A few truly luxurious places combine these two. One of them is the picturesque village of Hallstatt.

Austrian Hallstatt is So Unique that China Built its Perfect Replica

Eva Ledecká
25.Jan 2018
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1 minute

930 citizens who live by the side of the Hallstatt Lake can enjoy the breath-taking view every day. Can they still appreciate the beauty of the calm lake with impressive background of the high slopes of the Dachstein mountain range? 

Hallstatt definitely deserves its place on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, where it is entered together with the Dachstein mountain range and Salzkammergut. The town houses are located directly by the lake between high mountains and some of them are built partially on poles in the lake. One main road winds through the whole luxurious town.

Town at the edge of the world: without a road until 1890

Hallstatt is almost completely separated from civilization: by the end of the 19th century, the town could only be reached by a boat or by a mountain trek on foot. If you wanted to visit a neighbor only a few houses away, you had to use a boat or walk like a mountain goat on the small path in the mountains above the houses. A road was built only in 1890 and part of the rocks had to be blown away to make room for it.

Funkcionalistická vila na prodej, Praha-západ
Funkcionalistická vila na prodej, Praha-západ, Okolí Prahy

However, the isolation and unique mountain environment are not the only reasons why this town is famous. Hallstatt is located in Salzkammergut (“salt chamber”) and was known all over the world because of its trade with salt already several centuries B.C.

Painted skulls and magical sailing on the lake

Even though the town is mall, there are still many places to visit. One of the main attractions is the charnel house from the 16th century at the local cemetery with several hundreds of skulls. The skulls are marked with a name and date of death, are painted with flower and animal motives and sorted by family relations. You can take the cable car to reach the burial grounds, as well as mining tunnels with a high tower where a stylish restaurant is now located.

Another luxurious experience is sailing on the lake and visiting the huge cave systems – Giant and Mammoth Caves.

The uniqueness of this place is further demonstrated by the fact that in 2012 China built an exact replica of this Austrian town in the Guangdong Province. It is intended for rich Chinese and its construction cost 940 million USD. 

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