Austria Destinations

The (temporary) magic of the Emerald Lake

June 23, 2015
Emerald lake Austria hiking

I think I can say that I’ve traveled much and seen quite a few places. But of all places I’ve been to, one stole my heart – and what irony – it’s only a two hour drive away from home 🙂 Welcome to Tragöß, a sleepy village somewhere in the alps of Styria! This village hosts a treasure in the back country, which is simply called “Grüner See” (literally “green lake”). The name says it all. About two years ago, when I went there for the first time, not many people knew of it. There was no tourist buses, horse carriages or those amounts of scuba divers yet. This time I even met backpackers from overseas. Although a lot of things have changed, the magic is still there for several reasons: It’s the surreal blue, turquoise and green that changes with the weather and the time of the day. It’s the depth that changes throughout the year, from its highest level in early summer until it almost disappears in autumn (due to melt water, which is the only source of the lake). And it’s those breathtaking sceneries of steep mountain slopes, green forests and crystal-clear ponds – creating a peaceful harmony between all elements. And while all that is hard to describe in words, I’ll stop talking and hope you’re enjoying these photos. And nope, I didn’t use any filters or photoshop (I only corrected the exposure and did some minor adjustments here and there 😉 ) But basically this is all done by nature!

Do you have a “hidden” gem near you that’s worth seeing? I’d love to read your comments!

The closer you get, the more beautiful

Practical information and directions:

The lake starts to fill up in early spring and reaches its peak from late May to late June. The easiest way to get there is by car – driving from Vienna will take about two hours, from Graz only 1 hour 15 minutes. Parking is available for a small fee. Another way is by public transportation, but you’ll need more time and accurate planning: The nearest railway station is Bruck an der Mur which lies on the main railway line between Vienna and Graz. From Bruck an der Mur there are buses to Tragöß but they run infrequently (especially during weekends and holidays) and once you get off at the last stop Tragöß Oberort, you’ll have to walk another 45 minutes to get to the lake. Check timetables here for further planning.

Emerald Lake Austria hiking: This true jewel in the Austrian alps is a paradise for hikers and nature lovers! The water level changes with the season!

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  • Reply Drew June 23, 2015 at 6:14 pm

    Wow, such a beautiful place. You’re so lucky to live close by!

    • Reply sileas June 24, 2015 at 2:24 pm

      Oh yes, it’s a great escape from the city!

  • Reply shootingvienna June 23, 2015 at 9:00 pm

    I have heard of that place some years ago but sadly never had the chance to visit. It looks really beautiful, just as emerald as the lakes in Switzerland 🙂

    • Reply sileas June 24, 2015 at 2:16 pm

      Emerald lakes sounds promising too! You should check it out, you won’t be disappointed 😉

  • Reply Elisabeth June 23, 2015 at 10:24 pm

    Die Karibik der Alpen!!! Ein Traum!!!

    • Reply sileas June 24, 2015 at 2:15 pm

      Absolut. Kann mich gar nicht satt sehen 😀

  • Reply Paleica June 24, 2015 at 8:17 am

    der grüne see ist einfach sooo schön. ich hab vor 2 jahren ca. das erste mal davon gehört und seitdem will ich unbedingt mal hin. ich frag mich immer, warum ich noch nicht dort war?

    • Reply sileas June 24, 2015 at 2:18 pm

      Das frage ich mich auch 😉 Am besten nicht lang überlegen und einfach hinfahren 😉

      • Reply Paleica June 24, 2015 at 2:41 pm

        du sagst es! ich muss jetzt endlich mal die liste meiner “unbedingt to dos” schreiben. weil irgendwie denk ich immer unter der woche dran, wenn ich auf meinem bürosessel klebe.

  • Reply Nathalie von Nat Worldwild June 24, 2015 at 5:16 pm

    Wow, das sieht ja toll aus!! Auch deine Beschreibungen zu dem Ort, wecken fast schon die Sehnsucht dahin. Klasse! Leider fehlt mir noch ein “hidden gem”, welches in der Nähe meiner Heimat liegt. Schade eigentlich!

    • Reply sileas June 25, 2015 at 10:44 am

      Vielen Dank! Ich hab das bis vor zwei Jahren auch nicht gekannt! Deshalb bin ich mir sicher, dass es in deiner Nähe auch etwas Vergleichbares gibt und nur darauf wartet entdeckt zu werden 😉

  • Reply Linda June 25, 2015 at 2:28 am

    Absolutely beautiful!! 🙂

  • Reply The Tastemonials June 26, 2015 at 6:23 pm

    Mein Gott, Deine Bilder sind wunderschön! Und diese Grüntöne! Ich kann mich gar nicht sattsehen 🙂

  • Reply mytiturk July 7, 2015 at 1:29 pm

    Hi Sileas,

    Thanks for finding and liking my post: Vienna – May 15. I enjoyed my visit to your blog a lot. My wife and I travel out of North America once or twice a year now that we are retired. Like you, the travel bug bit me early on. At 20, in 1965, I went from my home town, Montréal, to the West Indies to teach for two years. I spent 2 months in South America before returning home to Montreal. When I was a teenager my father drove us to Vermont to a nice “green” lake in that famously green state every year.

    While we raised our own family we used to camp, canoe and hike every year in Ontario’s Killarney Provincial Park, once we fell in love with the turquoise colour of its many lakes where motor boats are not permitted. Now we take a couple of “over the sea” trips per year. I research them before and after, so I get many extra hours of pleasure from each trip.

    I enjoyed your post on Grûner See because it’s beauty reminded me of Vermont and, especially, Killarney P. P.

    I am very attached to my polarizing filter; there you have a confession that explains the deep blues and pure, popping white clouds in some of my shots.

    I have a small, SONY mirrorless SLR, that my wife bought me. She took misguided pity on my big camera bag. I will ultimately upgrade to one with a viewfinder.

    What camera do you use/want to get later on? I see your talent in composition and engaging writing style.

    Wien is amazing. Part of me longs to live there!

    • Reply sileas July 7, 2015 at 2:30 pm

      Hi, thanks for your kind words! I’m going to reply to you in a separate email 🙂

  • Reply phoebe July 7, 2015 at 10:10 pm

    wow! truly gorgeous!!!

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  • Reply throughcityandforest July 22, 2015 at 5:20 pm

    What a beautiful place!

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  • Reply The.Restless.Worker July 31, 2015 at 11:24 pm

    Beautiful pictures! Looks like a nature-lovers paradise 🙂

    • Reply sileas August 3, 2015 at 12:58 pm

      It truly is…

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