Located in the state of Tyrol, surrounded by giant mountains, with a population of less than 8000 this charming little town is truly a hidden treasure in Western Austria.
Hotel Goldener Adler
When you plan your accommodation in Wattens do not look any further. The Hotel Goldener Adler conveniently located in the center of the town is a perfect choice for those who want to spend their night in a cozy and relaxing environment. Featuring spaces equipped with the highest quality natural elements, and anti-allergy rooms the building is a modern interpretation of the typical Tyrolean architecture. Breakfast in the hotel including a selection of local cheese, delicious meat, sweet jams and the freshest bakery delicacies will guarantee a decent start of the day.
Deluxe double room at Hotel Goldener Adler
Wattens is most known for being home to the world’s leading producer of precision-cut crystal, the Swarovski company, which is also the main employer of the town. The sparkling Swarovski Kristallwelten museum (Kristallweltenstraße 1), designed in the shape of a Giant, introducing its visitors to the history of crystal manufacturing showcasing fascinating art installations through 14 underground chambers. My absolute favorite was the Mechanical Theatre by Jim Whiting which gets you deep dive into the world of fantasy revealing a surreal fashion show right in front of you. Entering each one of the chambers a new surprise awaits to explore. If you want to hear how music sounds in the Giant, schedule your visit between 5th and 11th May 2014 to be able to experience it yourself during the ‘Music in the Giant’ program.
The Giant in winter
Jim Whiting’s Mechanical Theatre by Alexander Proefrock at the Swarovski Kristallwelten
Fancy tasting traditional Tyrolean meal with a twist? Then the perfect choice for lunchtime is Gasthof zum Schwan and luckily it is just a few minutes drive from the Swarovski Kristallwelten. Their regional specialties made of fresh ingredients and seasoned with delicious herbs won’t let you down. If you are craving something more simple then just pop into one of the small bakeries in town.
At 14:00 from Tuesday to Saturday the one and only Typewriter Museum (Andrä-Angerer-Gasse) in Austria opens up its doors to the curious ones to gain insight to the pre-computer writing culture, the development of the typewriter. Private collector, Jörg Thien has been expanding his collection for decades and now he has over 450 fully functioning typewriters showcased in his small side street museum. Look for the oldest typewriter, made of wood from 1864, a very unique piece of the selection. If you speak German and want to know more about typewriter history ask the collector himself, who can always be found at the spot.
The oldest typewriter made of wood from 1864
Either it’s winter or summer the sparkle of Wattens never fades. Take an afternoon walk through the small streets of the town and enjoy the picturesque view of the surrounding mountains, the all-time neat and clean roads, the traditional houses and the small hidden shops along your tour until the sun goes down.
Wattens by night (source: from Wikimedia Commons)
Is it wintertime and the cold out there got in your bones? If so, you will definitely enjoy a sauna session at the end of the day in the Goldener Adler. And when dinnertime comes you don’t even have to leave the building. The hotel features a great restaurant offering fresh farm food, seasonal dishes and friendly service, which make it very popular amongst the locals. Order a bottle of fine local wine and get ready for a journey around Austrian culinary. Start your meal with Kräftige Rindsuppe (beef broth), which you can order with sliced pancakes being adventurous or liver dumplings being a meat lover. For the main course go for the gekochtes Rindfleisch auf Blattspinat, mit Röstkartoffel, Schnittlauchsauce und Kren (boiled beef with spinach, potatoes, chive sauce and horseradish) and finish your tour with the delightful strudel served with bourbon vanilla sauce.
That’s how I made the most out of my 24-hour stay in this small town in the Lower Inn Valley.
Are you traveling around Austria? Don’t miss out on
- the crystal clear lake of Hallstatt
- an unusual morning in Vienna
- an afternoon off the beaten track in Vienna
- a silent night in the hidden village of Hinterthiersee
- a classy weekend getaway in a secret boutique wellness hotel