On the Hemma Pilgrimage Trail you can expect to find renewed power, inspiration, and unity with yourself. Following the Admont Route, you walk through the spectacular mountains of Styria and Carinthia in southern Austria. The hike honours Saint Hemma, who was born as the Countess of Friesach-Zeltschach around 980 AD. She became well-known and much-loved for her charity and patronage and her centuries-old legacy is still alive in Carinthia, Styria, and Slovenia. The path connects the Benedictine monasteries of Stift Admont and Stift St. Gurk, which were both founded by Saint Hemma.
The hike starts at Admont Monastery in Styria and finishes in Gurk in Carinthia, where St. Hemma is buried in the cathedral crypt. The pilgrimage route is divided into seven stages, which you can also hike individually. When planning your trip, take into account that there are many sights along the way so give yourself plenty of time.
The first stop is Admont Monastery which is home to a wonderful library, considered to be the largest monastery library in the world. You then cross the beautiful Lower Tauern mountain range, hike over the Glattjoch peak, and arrive in Oberwölz, the smallest town in Styria. You can easily whittle away a few hours in the town’s historic centre which is encased by an impressive town wall. The Donnersbachwald forest, Auerlingsee lake, and many small streams en route will also tempt you to take a break, breath deeply, and immerse yourself in nature and silence. There are numerous pilgrimage sites and monasteries which invite you to reflect.
The individual stages in this Collection are up to 35 kilometres (21 miles) long so you should have a good level of stamina. You have to climb up to 1,200 metres (3,940 feet) in one day too.
You can easily travel to and from the route by train. After Admont, you can take the train via Liezen. Or, you can take the bus from Gurk to St. Veith/Glan and travel by train to Munich via Villach and Salzburg from there. You can always find accommodation in the small, historic villages en route.
Side note: a pilgrimage is a journey requiring movement, and often meditation. Hiking the Hemma Pilgrim Path, whether you walk one day or all seven, is the perfect way to rest your mind and slow down. When your thoughts are peaceful, you can connect to your deepest inner being. En route, you learn lots of interesting facts about the region’s culture and ecclesiastical history. So immerse yourself in a spiritual exploration of your inner world!
Spiritual highlights and lots of culture: Your first stage on the Hemma Pilgrimage Route starts with one highlight - Admont Abbey with the largest monastery library in the world. The establishment of the Benedictine monastery Admont goes back to a foundation of Saint Hemma von Gurk and took place in…
Stage 2 will also lead you to spiritual highlights again. After a hearty breakfast you start in Lassing. From here you hike under the patronage of Saint Hemma to Treschmitz and from there on hiking trail number six - the Schattenberg hiking trail - via the villages of Wieden, Schattenberg, Ödstein and…
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The third stage today is high up into alpine climes - you are sure to have spectacular views. The absolute highlight of your tour is the Glattjoch at 1,998 meters. The Glattjoch Chapel is the highest sacral building in Styria. The dry stone structure, which is unique in Central Europe, is probably more…
Churches, peaks and a beautiful town: Stage 4 also has nice surprises in store for you. Marching through the picturesque Hintereggertor, you leave Oberwölz and go to the Winklern pilgrimage church.
The church is a replica of the famous Altötting pilgrimage church in Bavaria and thus the only place of…
Spirituality as far as the eye can see - this is what stage 5 of the Hemma pilgrimage route promises. And today you cover the shortest stage with 16 kilometers. This gives you time to sightsee and relax. You leave Murau and walk in the direction of Laßnitzbach. Then it goes first up to the Taler Eck…
The sixth stage is all about nature and faith. Starting from St. Lambrecht you hike across borders today: From the market square in St. Lambrecht it goes uphill towards Auerlingsee, which is at 1,318 meters above sea level. There you also get to the Carinthian border.
When you arrive at the Wandaler Kreuz…
For the last time she is your protector and patron on your pilgrimage, the Holy Hemma. Past the Nepomuk Cross you will reach the Vellachgraben and on to the pilgrimage church of St. Wolfgang. If you want to visit the church, you will receive the key for the church in the rectory of Grades. Via the Kirchsteig…
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