Autumn is one of the best seasons to admire the magic of falling foliage and to enjoy the peace just over two and a half hours from Trieste.
Today I’ll take you to the shores of Lake Faaker See in Carinthia. This time I’m a guest at Karnerhof’s, a facility that has renovated its wellness area last May and welcomes its guests amidst the blue waters of the lake and the colors of the forest that are slowly turning to red. It’s a wonder for the eyes (and the heart).
At Karnerhof’s you will also find an indoor pool, an outdoor pool, and a ninety-degree Finnish sauna housed in a boathouse on the Faaker See: you can also dive in the cool waters of the lake for post-water-jet cooling. Also, a beautiful indoor panoramic sauna that on certain days hosts an Aufgussmeister, for twelve minutes of the purest relax.
What you also can’t miss are the Turkish bath, the bio-sauna and spacious relax areas where you can recharge your batteries in a bucolic setting.
The facility offers a rich program of activities for their more active customers, including spinal gymnastics, facial training, flow yoga, aqua fitness, pool swimming classes, Nordic walking, and many other themed events during your stay.
You can also easily rent a bike… even an electric one, for the less athletic people, like yours truly!
I couldn’t give that up and so I rode safely along bike paths and almost deserted roads, passing through the woods in a soft shower of colorful leaves, and reached a breathtaking view of the lake.
It was just me, myself and I… I’m not kidding, it was truly a wonderful, if not magical experience. The wind in my hair, the chirping of the birds and the warm colors of the vegetation. You’ll suddenly feel better, trust me.
It didn’t end there. There’s even the chance to rent a canoe and float on the calm waters that reflect the mountains. Close your eyes and try to imagine it.
Then, while crossing the lake, the curtain will open on the reedbed: a path winds sinuously inside it, like some kind of labyrinth that can be passed through in about fifteen minutes, without ever crossing anyone. Nature remains the unchallenged actor.
In the morning, Faaker See hides in a low fog that thins out in a few hours, leaving your eyes free to wander and admire this changing view over the hours. Clear in the morning, glowing red at sunset. It’s an incredible show.
Hold on. Let’s not forget to walk! Hiking enthusiasts like me will indeed be spoiled for choice. I was lucky enough to drop in here upon the ten-year celebration day of the Alpe-Adria-Trail in these parts. A twenty-four-hour event dedicated to cooperation between Austria, Slovenia and Italy.
The meeting is located at the start of the Arnoldstein chairlift, which had been activated for the occasion… but laziness will not take hold of me, so I decided to walk: together with a good-sized group of Austrians, I set out for the summit of Mount Forno (1,500 meters).
After two hours, here I am, arriving at the summit where I find two other groups of people: an Italian one, who started from Tarvisio and a Slovenian one. Three countries, three groups, three different departures to arrive at a single point, on the border among three wonderful countries.
Cultures, traditions, and history interlock at the top of Mount Forno, where a feast awaits us with (guess who?) three chefs from Italy, Slovenia and Austria. All was topped off with beer and good music.
It’s a free event that becomes a truly unique opportunity to feel part of one community. I must say that the two-hour walk was well worth it…but I can assure you that even just the view is worth it all!
With this dizzying finale, my short but intense tale of a quick escape from the city comes to an end. It’s a little trip that I feel like recommending to all of you, especially during the fall.
Try it to believe.