Holidays at Austria's southernmost bathing lake.
The Karnerhof with its 10-hectare lakeside grounds is situated on one of the most attractive bathing lakes in Carinthia. Lake Faaker See is famous for its water, which takes on all shades of the colour turquoise - from a bright, almost Caribbean-looking turquoise blue on a bright July afternoon to a mysterious dark blue-green on a clear October morning.
Nestled in the mountain landscape of the southern limestone Alps, the Karawank mountains with their snow-capped peaks, and in the green of Austrian mountain forests, the unique hue of the lake water gives Carinthia's fifth largest lake an almost mystical atmosphere - especially in the twilight hours around sunrise and sunset. Incidentally, the colouring of the lake water is caused by the sun's reflection on tiny particles of lime that enter the lake from the glacier via the Worounitza, its most important tributary. It's no coincidence that Lake Faaker See is also known as the Caribbean of Carinthia.
As one of the warmest bathing lakes in Austria, it reaches up to 26 degrees in summer on its surface of just 2.2 km². At the same time, Lake Faaker See is the southernmost bathing lake in Austria and, with its drinking water quality, one of the cleanest. The island in Lake Faaker See runs from west to east, rising 12 metres above the surface of the water. In July and August it serves as the starting point for our weekly 1,100-metre escorted lake crossing back to Karnerhof. Alpine whitefish, catfish, lake trout and pike cavort beneath the surface, while duck, great crested grebe and swan can be seen gliding over the Alpine lake waters.
Those looking for a quiet, idyllic spot in the warm season will find their hideaway at the Karnerhof's private lakeside bathing area. A short pathway leads from the hotel down to the lake. A large sunbathing lawn, a fire pit, a Lakeside Bistro and a children's playground with carousel, swings and climbing tower are all here, right on the lakeshore. Next to the beach is the boathouse, a very special place. Or the romantic sauna, the massage area. The sun sends golden rays through the cracks in the boarded walls, dust particles dance in the light. It's warm. At your feet, two rowboats float leisurely on the soft waves. Water laps against the wooden posts. Outside, the sound of voices and laughter. Here, you're at the epicentre of LAKE-SOUL.
Just a few kilometres from the Slovenian border, Lake Faaker See enchants not only with its qualities as a bathing lake but also with the surrounding mountain peaks that encourage hiking, biking and climbing. Around the lake in just under an hour or a few stages of the 366-kilometre Drau Cycle Path that leads from South Tyrol to Slovenia: from Lake Faaker See; it's all possible here. Cycle paths in the Villach - Faaker See - Ossiacher See region are constantly being improved and extended. Marked routes and hiking paths offer the chance to explore the mountain world effortlessly and enjoy the landscape to the full on foot. Flowing trails and tracks also give bikers the necessary buzz for an exciting day in the saddle. But it's not only the breathtaking natural surroundings that attract visitors to the shores of Carinthia's southernmost bathing lake: the cultural offerings in the city of Villach and a wide range of leisure and sports activities around the lake add to the impressive variety.
The Karnerhof's own private bathing beach, reserved exclusively for hotel guests, is an ideal starting point for a variety of water sports activities: leisurely swims, boat trips and paddling adventures with kayaks and canoes. The fact that no motorboats are allowed on Lake Faaker See makes it attractive for sailing and surfing beginners.
Whatever the weather, between April and October, a morning swim is the only real start to the day for me. At 7 o'clock in the morning, when the day awakens, Lake Faaker See shows itself from its mysterious side.
An elegant highlight with which you can leisurely slice through our Alpine lake waters is our electric boat "Seerose", which is moored at the Karnerhof beach. The "Seerose" is a stylish and almost silent way to explore Lake Faaker See. A boat trip or a detour to the island in the middle of the lake is possible in mild temperatures which can last until the end of October.
A boat for lovers and other romantics. On the "Seerose" you can enjoy the moment surrounded by sun, beach and more. Listen to the gentle lapping of the waves. Enjoy the unique view of the Mittagskogel and the Karawank mountain range. The physical well-being is also taken care of: for example, with a bottle of Uhudler Frizzante with strawberries or a salmon brunch.