Start Routes WAB - Stage 12: Habsburghaus - Reichenau/Payerbach
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WAB - Stage 12: Habsburghaus - Reichenau/Payerbach

Hiking trail · Hochsteiermark
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  • Preinerwandkreuz auf der Rax
    / Preinerwandkreuz auf der Rax
    Photo: Wiener Alpen in Niederösterreich, ©Wiener Alpen, Foto:
  • / Wandern auf der Rax
    Photo: Wiener Alpen in Niederösterreich Tourismus GmbH, ©NÖW, Foto: Robert Herbst
  • /
    Photo: Wiener Alpen in Niederösterreich Tourismus GmbH, Wiener Alpen in Niederösterreich
  • / Rax, Ottohaus
    Photo: Wiener Alpen in Niederösterreich Tourismus GmbH, ©Wiener Alpen, Foto: Franz Zwickl
  • / Ottohaus auf der Rax
    Photo: Wiener Alpen in Niederösterreich Tourismus GmbH, ©Wiener Alpen, Foto: Janos Kalmar
  • / Habsburghaus (Copyright: Habsburghaus, Foto Gerhard Wagner)
    Photo: Wiener Alpen in Niederösterreich
  • / Kaisersteig Habsburghaus
    Photo: Sophie Weinberger, Wiener Alpen in Niederösterreich
  • / Preinerwand, Seehütte
    Photo: Sophie Weinberger, Wiener Alpen in Niederösterreich
  • / Schloss Rothschild Reichenau
    Photo: Sophie Weinberger, Wiener Alpen in Niederösterreich
m 1500 1000 500 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 km
The 12th stage of the Viennese Alps Way (WAB) is accompanied by alpine grasslands, mountain pines, and rugged but safe terrain. This is a wonderful plateau hike with moderate ascents and descents. The path into the valley can be shortened with the Rax cable car.  
Distance 15.6 km
5:15 h
298 m
1,589 m
1,891 m
484 m
Starting from the Habsburghaus, this stage mainly covers natural hiking routes, paths, and ascents via the Trinksteinsattel, the Hohe Kanzel, the Jakobskogel. It then continues steeply downhill from the Otto-Haus but becomes more gradual on the way to Hirschwang, Reichenau, and Payerbach. Glorious views appear along the whole stretch, and when descending there are great views of villas and the gardens of Castle Wartholz.



Once at the Ottohaus, there is an option to use the Rax cable car and to use the cable car to tackle the descent instead of going down on foot. When arriving at the bottom, follow the Wasserleitungsweg route to Reichenau.

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Wiener Alpen in Niederösterreich Tourismus GmbH
Update: October 08, 2021
Quality route according to "Österreichisches Wandergütesiegel"
Highest point
1,891 m
Lowest point
484 m
Best time of year

Safety information

Your hiking experience in the Vienna Alps should be a thoroughly enjoyable and safe one. Therefore, please bear the following in mind:



When choosing a route, make sure it corresponds to your experience and physical fitness level. Check the weather forecast before you set off. The weather can change surprisingly quickly in the mountains. Always take appropriate equipment with you (e.g. rain protection).

Check whether the cabins and snack stations you intend to visit along the way are open. Inform someone before you set off of your chosen route and when you plan to return.

Tips and hints

You may like to hike the adjoining routes:

WAB - Stage 11: Prein - Habsburghaus

WAB - Stage 13: Reichenau - Knofeleben

WAB - Regional Route J: Payerbach - Waldburgangerhütte - Knofeleben

WAB - Regional Route N: Preintal - Habsburghaus


Viennese Alps in Lower Austria,, +43 / 2622 / 78960


Habsburghaus (1,775 m)
47.713259, 15.698792
47°42'47.7"N 15°41'55.7"E
33T 552414 5284667


Reichenau an der Rax/Payerbach, railway station

Turn-by-turn directions

We start the stage over the Rax plateau at the Habsburgshaus, starting on path 44 heading towards Seehütte cabin and the Rax Aerial Ropeway. We then cross the Jahnkreuz and hike on paths through pine woods to the Trinksteinsattel close to the Bergrettungshütte rescue cabin. It is possible to stay in the hut in the case of an emergency. We descend 200 metres to the Neuen Seehütte cabin and the vantage point. At this point we start ascending with grand views of the Kammweg route and the Preinerwandkreuz. The Kammweg to Otto-Schutzhaus, marked out in blue, offers better views but is narrower in places whilst not being exposed. The Seeweg route, marked in red, is also an alternative route to the Otto-Schutzhaus. We cross the terrace at Otto-Schutzhaus and head into an extended right-hand bend where the Törl becomes visible and start the descent on the Törlweg path. The Törlweg, which offers plenty of grand views and is not exposed, leads us downhill through several hairpin bends. We continue somewhat further than the signposts on the way to Hirschwang and Edlach and hike past the Lammelbründl. We descend towards Knappenhof and go past it on the left onto a meadow path whilst descending further. After a few minutes we come to a crossroads. We turn left towards Hirschwang, then after a few metres we turn right onto a hiking path, marked in red, in the direction of Hirschwang-Erlangerkreuz.



The forest path turns into a paved road which leads us to a residential area. We turn right into Trautenbergstraße then when on the Bundesstraße turn right in the direction of Reichenau. We reach the centre of Reichenau after approximately half-an-hour.



If continuing to Payerbach:



Turn right into a car park shortly after passing the Kurtheater Reichenau. We cross the car park and turn left onto Promenadenweg alongside the Schwarza river. At the viaduct we come back onto a road and carry on along this towards the village centre. After going past the open-air pool and the pavilion, we turn left over the Schwarza bridge and cross over the Bundesstraße. The last stage involves walking uphill along the Bahnhofweg to Payerbach-Reichenau railway station.


all notes on protected areas

Public transport

The Habsburghaus is in alpine surroundings and cannot be reached directly with public transport. It is recommended to combine this hike either with the previous Prein-Habsburghaus route or the subsequent Reichenau- Knofeleben route. Take the train via Wiener Neustadt to Payerbach-Reichenau railway station. Continue with either the 1746 or 1748 regional bus to the Rax Aerial Ropeway, then use that to reach the Rax.

More information can be found at www.ö and

Getting there

The Habsburghaus is in alpine surroundings and can only be reached directly on foot. If possible, use the previous stage between Prein - Habsburghaus to reach this area.


Car parking is available at the Raxalpenhof in Prein and at the valley station of the Rax Aerial Ropeway.


47.713259, 15.698792
47°42'47.7"N 15°41'55.7"E
33T 552414 5284667
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

Author’s map recommendations

Freytag & Berndt WK 022

Book recommendations for this region:

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Always bring suitable maps. Always wear appropriate, sturdy footwear, bring sun and rain protection and water, as well as a little something to eat. Bring your mobile phone with you and save the mountain rescue emergency number: 140

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15.6 km
5:15 h
298 m
1,589 m
Highest point
1,891 m
Lowest point
484 m
Refreshment stops available Linear route


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