Bernstein Trail – wine and hiking

3. Sep. 2021

Wine. Four letters that awaken longings. Of course, also because of the exquisite taste of good wines and cozy evenings with friends or family. From the point of view of the hiker, however, for a completely different reason!

The new Bernstein Trail combines pleasure and active recreation like hardly any other trail and is intended to position Burgenland as a new hiking destination ©Burgenland Tourismus

When thinking of wine landscapes, the pleasure hiker always thinks of sunny and very pleasant climate. Of pretty wine-growing villages with vinotheques, wine cellars and wine taverns, as well as of harmonious wine-growing landscapes, through whose hilly vineyards one can hike wonderfully. And in the evening, in wine cellars and wine taverns, you can comfortably taste the wines of the winegrowers through whose vineyards you hiked just a few hours ago. Pure pleasure! It is no longer a secret that Burgenland stands for fine wines. The region in southeastern Austria – located between the Alps and the Pannonian Plain – has long since made a name for itself worldwide as a producer of exquisite wines. Even the Romans grew wine in this region, which is known as the cradle of Austrian wine. You can find out more about Burgenland’s winegrowers and winegrowing regions, as well as the exciting topic of “wine & architecture”, for example, here: https://www.burgenland.info/de/aktivitaeten/wein-kulinarik/winzer-weinbau.html

Panoramaweg Südalpen Panorama am Hochplateau
Wine culture has shaped the architecture of Burgenland for centuries. On the Bernstein Trail you hike through many cellar quarters worth seeing, like here in Heiligenbrunn. © Burgenland Tourism GmbH

Pleasure Hiking. The region between Lake Neusiedl and the wine and fruit-growing areas of the lovely southern Burgenland is not yet so well known as a hiking region. Since this year, however, the brand-new “Bernstein Trail” is preparing to change this circumstance as quickly as possible. The 13-stage long distance hiking trail leads you from Petronell-Carnuntum over Lake Neusiedl and its National Park Neusiedler See – Seewinkel, picturesque towns like Rust, Sopron, Köszeg and Güssing as well as the three nature parks Geschriebenstein, Weinidylle and Raab to the lovely southern Burgenland. Once along the Burgenland even, with two varied detours through Hungary.

Panoramaweg Südalpen Panorama am Hochplateau
Celebrating a successful day of hiking on the Bernstein Trail, like here at the Buschenschank Schandl in Rust. © Burgenland Tourismus GmbH (photographer Birgit Machtinger)

Hiking and wine: inseparable in Burgenland. With our offer “Hiking and Wine on the Bernstein Trail” you can enjoy the connection of these two worlds even more intensively: While you hike through the pretty romantic wine-growing landscapes from north to south through Burgenland during the day, you can participate in wine tastings by prominent winemakers in the evening. We have put quite a bit of effort into this and have been able to win over excellent wineries for our idea:

  • The Sektkellerei Szigeti from Gols produces the best Austrian sparkling wine and Frizzante according to the “Méthode Traditionnelle”, the classic bottle fermentation – which ensures in the cellar that the first-class base wines can then mature into exceptional sparkling wine specialties.
  • The Winery Salzl Seewinkelhof is located in Illmitz, amidst the picturesque lakes and plains of the Neusiedlersee – Seewinkel National Park. Three generations work hand in hand in this family winery to produce wines known for their softness and warmth.
  • The winemaker Heidi Schröck from Rust on Lake Neusiedl, which was named winemaker of the year by Falstaff in 2003, offers wide range of wines. Among them are also specialties such as the Furmint and the “Ruster Ausbruch”.
  • The Winery Peter Schandl has been family-owned for 276 years. This tradition obliges and is innovatively fused with viticultural knowledge from South Africa, New Zealand and California. All this you can also enjoy in the directly adjacent Buschenschank Schandl in Rust.
  • The small but fine Bioweingut Moritz in Horitschon deliberately goes the way to grow exclusively the varieties Blaufränkisch and Blauer Zweigelt. (Not only) by this specialization arise quite excellent wines.
  • Weinbau Familie Hans Rohrer is one of the traditional wineries of the red wine community of Lutzmannsburg in central Burgenland Blaufränkisch land. The wines of the family business thrive under the favorable conditions on the high plateau of the Lutzmannsburg wine mountains.
  • The Winery Dr. Weiss in Rechnitz is a small family business, where manual labor is in the foreground. The reward is simple, straightforward wines in the most positive sense of the words.
  • “Sustainable Austria” has awarded the Winery Koch – as the first winery in southern Burgenland – the seal of approval for sustainably produced wines. The Koch family winery builds on the knowledge of three generations and produces mainly Welschriesling, but also Sauvignon Blanc, Rivaner and the Burgenland specialty Uhudler.
  • The Uhudlerei Mirth in Eltendorf is dedicated – as the name suggests – primarily to Uhudler, this unique fox tone of the 4 American direct vines Ripatella, Delaware, Concord, Elvira, which thrive naturally organic. A fantastic Burgenland specialty!
Panoramaweg Südalpen Panorama am Hochplateau
Idyllic vineyards not only create wonderful wines, but also great atmospheres while hiking along the Bernstein Trail through the Schröck Winery with a view of Rust. © Schröck Winery (photographer Sabine Jackson)

And let’s be honest: if you know where the wine comes from and have wandered through the vineyards whose products you can enjoy in the evening, then even the best wine tastes a little better. Because the love and passion with which the winemakers produce and present their wines is truly contagious – also for the taste buds of your palate. Regionality at its best!

Of course, the “Hiking and Wine on the Amber Trail” offer comes with all the services that the official Trail Info and Booking Center has to offer. In addition to the wine tastings and the overnight stays, this also includes luggage service, shuttle and return transfers as well as the Angel’s Service (trail hotline and extended travel documents). So that your hike on the Bernstein Trail becomes pure enjoyment!

Author

Stefan
Lieb-Lind

Born in Bavaria, the environmental systems scientist and state-certified mountain and ski guide ideally combines expertise and passion for his great love, the mountains. Recognized mountain book author and first ascent of bold routes in rock and ice.

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