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Austria Compensating Landlockedness

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Austria, one of the few landlocked countries in Europe and in the world in general, gained on the beautiful mountains but lost in seaside. The country may not have access to a sea, but it compensates landlockedness with the beautiful lakes and magnificent river Danube.

Did you know that there are 1045 lakes in Austria? I don’t think many did and those are some magnificent lakes. The vast majority of Austrian lakes have drinking water quality, all others, with very few exceptions usually only at certain times, at least bathing water quality. Therefore they are much visited and loved by locals and tourists as well.


The lakes of Austria, predominantly natural and bathing lakes are embedded in beautiful natural landscapes. Many lakes offer water sports such as sailing, surfing, fishing or diving. Often around the lakes you can find accommodations mostly in the form of pensions, hotels and campsites. In particular, mountain lakes are popular because they offer crystal clear water and magnificent panoramas. However, swimming is recommended only on warm days, as the mountain lakes are usually very cold, but for hikers they are ideal for excursions in a unique natural landscape.

The country is bordered by two totally different lakes Neusiedler See and the Lake Constance (Bodensee in German), which illustrates the diversity of its landscape.

Neusiedler See

In the furthest east of Austria on Hungarian border we can find Neusiedler See a typical steppe lake, reminiscence of ancient Pannonian sea. With the 315 square kilometres, of which 240 square kilometres in Austria, it is the biggest water surface in country. The deepest point of Neusiedler See is only 2 meters, the average water depth is only 1 meter, meaning you can stand in many parts of the lake in the water. Neusiedler See warms up quickly. In August, the water temperature even reaches 30 degrees Celsius making it perfect for bathing.


Lake Constance (Bodensee)

In the west on the border with Germany and Switzerland we can find Lake Constance (Bodensee in German). The lake is located at the northern foot of the Alps and only small part of this huge Alpine lake is located in Austria. Out of 537 square kilometres only 63 kilometres between Ludwigshafen and Vorarlberg state capital Bregenz belong to this Alpine state. Lake Constance is one of the most famous and popular lakes in Europe.

©iStock/Carsten Ortlieb
©iStock/Carsten Ortlieb

In between these two lakes, at over 600 km across Austria, you may find all sorts of lakes: up in the mountains, low in the plains, with green, black or blue water. They are compensating lack of the seaside for Austrians and are magnet for tourists from all over the world.

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The author

Ogi Savic

Ogi Savic

I am Ogi. A journalist and economist, I live in Vienna and I am passionate about skiing, traveling, good food and drinks. I write about all these aspects (and more) of beautiful Austria.

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