The Nockalmstrasse is a panoramic route through the Nockberge nature reserve in Carinthia with the village of Innerkrems at one end and Ebene Reichenau at the other.
The 34-kilometre toll road with its 52 bends rises to a height of 2042 metres in altitude and is open from May to October.
The “Nocken” which give their name to the peaks are rounded mountain tops covered with grass and are a characteristic of the landscape in the Nockberge Biosphere Reserve.
The Nockalmstrasse was built in the 1970s mostly following in the tracks of the old meadow trails that farmers used to get up to the high pastures and was opened in 1981.
There had originally been a plan for two large hotel complexes and a ski resort once the road was completed but a referendum decisively rejected the plans and the Nockberge region became, along with the neighbouring Lungau region of Salzburg, part of a recognised UNESCO Biosphere Reserve – one of only a few in Austria.
Nockalmstrasse Video Overview
This Youtube video offers an overview of some of the locations and experiences on the panoramic route:
Nockalmstrasse – Points of Interest
The Nockalmstrasse has been managed by the owners of the Großglocknerstrasse (the route up to the highest mountain in Austria) since the 1990s.
They have expanded the points of interest along the way for the quarter of a million visitors who experience the Nockberge each year.
The Zechneralm Museum
The unique alpine farming museum in the Zechneralm is the place to discover more about the way of working and living of the people who lived and live in the area. A farmers’ market offers regional products while children may enjoy the adventure playground “Murmeltierbau”.
The Nockalmhof is only three kilometres from Innerkrems at one end of the Nockalmstrasse. It is a good starting point for various hikes in the nature reserve and has an exhibition about the rocks and history of iron mining in Innerkrems and the surrounding area.
Grundalm – Silva Magica
The ‘Silva Magica’ (‘enchanted forest’) at the Grundalm is a display where visitors can unwind and learn more about the regional geology and flora. A large rock dome visible from the road invites visitors to pass between ancient stone blocks and enter its mysterious spaces. A circular hiking trail leads into the world of “nature spirits” (water, air, earth and fire).
More information: www.nockalmstrasse.at