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ST07 AAT: Mallnitz - Obervellach

· 12 reviews · Long-Distance Hiking · Nationalpark Hohe Tauern
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  • Naturjuwel Stappitzer See
    Naturjuwel Stappitzer See
    Photo: Roland Oberdorfer, Alpe-Adria-Trail
m 1400 1200 1000 800 600 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 km Stappitzersee im Seebachtal Groppensteinschlucht Pension Jägerhof Dorfplatz Mallnitz Rabischschlucht Obervellach
Two spectacular gorges and a historic village centre dating from the times of gold mining: enjoy the compelling natural and cultural landscape on this varied stage from Mallnitz to Obervellach.
Distance 17.6 km
6:00 h
155 m
659 m
1,191 m
682 m

Thousands of years ago, a big rockslide from the Auernig dammed up the Mallnitzbach stream and formed a lake in the area of the present-day village of Mallnitz, which silted up gradually. In the course of the millennia the Mallnitzbach stream cut a deep bed in the rocky mass of the rockslide and so formed the Rabischschlucht gorge, through which the first part of this stage leads. Several viewing platforms directly above the torrent guarantee spectacular views!

The adjacent Groppensteinschlucht gorge is one of the most stunning gorges in all Carinthia. The Zechnerfall waterfall at the upper end of the gorge, the mighty Groppensteinfall waterfall and the unique potholes (circular-shaped rock pools sculpted over time by the water) at the entrance to the gorge are the highlights of this gorge, named after Groppenstein Castle.

The municipality of Obervellach was the centre of gold mining operations in the Hohe Tauern mountains, and from 1509 until 1778 the seat of the “Oberstbergmeister”, the monarchy’s highest mining official for “inner Austria” (Styria, Carinthia, Kranj, Gorizia, Trieste and the Austrian estates in Istria and Friuli). Today the former office of the “Oberstbergmeister”, a magnificent Renaissance building, houses a café and guest apartments. The whole main square with splendid buildings dating from mining times and the mighty parish church of St. Martin are cultural highlights along the route and are well worth visiting. 

Author’s recommendation

Visit the BIOS National Park Centre in Mallnitz or the National Park exhibition, as well as the parish church of St. Martin in Obervellach, or relax at the Obervellach outdoor pools!

Profile picture of Hohe Tauern - die Nationalpark-Region in Kärnten
Hohe Tauern - die Nationalpark-Region in Kärnten
Update: May 30, 2022
Highest point
Mallnitz, 1,191 m
Lowest point
Obervellach, 682 m
Best time of year

Track types

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Rest stops

Gasthof Alpenrose

Safety information

The Groppenstein Gorge and Rabisch Gorge can only be walked in daylight! In case of bad weather (rain, thunderstorm) or outside the opening times, the gorges are closed for safety reasons, diversions are given!

Tips and hints


Mallnitz (1,186 m)
46.989498, 13.169520
46°59'22.2"N 13°10'10.3"E
33T 360810 5205623



Turn-by-turn directions

From the centre of Mallnitz we follow the signs for the “Talrunde Dosental” along the so-called Wine Route, a side path near the rail tracks. The entrance to the Rabischschlucht gorge is near the Hotel Alpengarten.

The path through the gorge always follows the left bank, and there are several viewing platforms over this foaming mountain torrent.

At the end of the gorge, we keep going straight on on the road until just before the main road to Mallnitz. Here we take a small track to the right, which leads us under a large viaduct to the “Zur Guten Quelle” inn. Right at the inn we cross the Mallnitzbach stream, and take a relatively flat path, “The path to the Gold”. We leave this path after about 30 minutes towards the left to enter the Groppensteinschlucht gorge. An entrence fee is charged at the end of the Groppensteinschlucht gorge! For more details and opening hours please see The Zechnerfall waterfall is one of the highlights, and is to be found right at the start, at the upper end of the gorge. A spectacular walkway leads us past the mighty Groppensteinfall waterfall to the picturesque gorge entrance and the marvellous potholes left in the rock by the water. Finally we reach the village of Räuflach. After just a few metres we leave the main road and turn left along a footpath, passing the Buschenschänke Walter (great place for a stop-off!) and an asphalted road before arriving in Obervellach.


all notes on protected areas

Public transport

Mallnitz train station is an international express train station. Also, several times a day scheduled post buses run from Obervellach to Mallnitz.

Scheduled post buses run to Obervellach several times a day on the line Spittal-Winklern-Heiligenblut:

Getting there

To Mallnitz:

From the south: The Mallnitz-Bundesstrasse (B105) branches off the Mölltal-Bundesstrasse (B106) at Obervellach and leads directly into the village centre (9 km from Obervellach).
From the north: With the OeBB-Tauernschleuse (motorail train) from the Gastein Valley.

From Spittal/Drau or Winklern on the Mölltal-Bundesstrasse (B106).



Mallnitz: parking areas in the village centre and park-and-ride car park directly by the train station

Obervellach: several car parks in the village


46.989498, 13.169520
46°59'22.2"N 13°10'10.3"E
33T 360810 5205623
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

Questions and answers

Question from Mo Fiedler · September 22, 2022 · Community
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Answered by Kurt Schmalzmayer · September 22, 2022 · Community


Christine Kellermann
July 26, 2022 · Community
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Jeff Miller
July 01, 2022 · Community
The Gorges were magnificent...especially the second one...the Groppensteinschlucht. Don't miss it.
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Julia H. 
June 22, 2022 · Community
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When did you do this route? June 22, 2022
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+ 14

17.6 km
6:00 h
155 m
659 m
Highest point
1,191 m
Lowest point
682 m
Multi-stage route Refreshment stops available Family-friendly Cultural/historical interest


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