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Nature Hotel Steinschalerhof
A-3203 Rabenstein, Warth 20

Nature Hotel Steinschaler Doerfl
A-3213 Frankenfels

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Steinschaler Nature Hotels and the region

The Valley of the “Dirndl”, the Cornelian Cherry

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Pielach Valley – the Valley of the Pielach

Land and people

The Pielach Valley is a typical example for why Lower Austria in the last years is becoming a more and more beloved location for holidays and excursions.

Our richly articulated cultural landscape has beauty and attractions all year around, matching almost everybody’s taste:

  • forests and lush meadows
  • romantic ruins at special places
  • picturesque landscapes with farm houses
  • old handicraft enterprises like sawmills
  • beautiful churches and chapels, from the Gothic to the Barock, and
  • last but not least, many romantic hiking routes with varied views.

Agriculture plays an important role in the Valley of the Dirndl - she preserves and cares for the enchanting cultural landscape. The most important regional products being milk, fresh cheese (both from cows and sheep), and healthy meat from animals fattened on pasture. Perries (pear wines made from various kinds of pears), regional juices, dried fruit, and brandies produced to the highest standards by Pielach Valley farmers complete the regional palette.

Image: Dirndl

The Dirndl – what is it?

While other pre-alpine valleys of the Mostviertel are dominated by west and east slopes, there are many slopes exposed to the south in the Pielach Valley. This natural warm tint of the valley promotes among others a very special plant, the cornelian cherry bush, also called European cornel (cornus mas).

The people of the Pielach Valley have a very special bond with this plant. She blossoms with bright yellow blossoms, sometimes already in February, and is as such the first of the plants signaling the arrival of spring. Her red fruits, full of vitamins and healthy ingredients, are refined into exquisite jams, juices, “olives”, velvety liqueurs, but also into excellent cornelian cherry brandies by the people of the Pielach Valley.

Because of the many cornelian cherry bushes in our Valley (numbering over 40.000!) and the intensive usage of this tasty wild fruit, the Pielach Valley is also named the Dirndl Valley (the Valley of the Cornelian Cherry) since 2004.

Bild: Dirndl

Holidays in the Dirndl Valley

Regardless of the season, you can enjoy a variety of sporting activities like hiking (the “Pielach Valley round hiking trail” spans a proud 107 km), biking and mountain biking (we are situated on the classic Alpentour), and even fishing. Visiting the natural beauties of the Dirndl Valley is something special in itself: there are for example three caves worth exploring around Frankenfels: the Nix cave, the “Dry Hole” (“Trockenes Loch”) and the “Wet Cave” (”Nasse Höhle”). And in close proximity you will find a further attraction of our valley: the “Wooden Church” (“Hölzerne Kirche”).

Bloomy meadows alternate rather leisurely with forests, long high ridges and narrow mountain brooks with streams that provide energy, and well marked hiking trails with nice walking paths – in short: an exciting place for gathering new energy!

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We look forward to your visit!
Annemarie and Johann Weiss

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