Thaya Valley National Park
Moreover, the National Park is situated near Hardegg, the smallest town in Austria. The landscape of the Thaya Valley is very impressive with its steep rocky faces and gentle meadows, unspoilt deciduous forests and fascinating fauna.
The Thayatal-Podyjí National Park along the border to the Czech Republic encompasses unspoiled countryside rich in fauna and flora just waiting to be discovered. The particularly large diversity of flora, fauna and natural habitats is concentrated in a relatively small area. The origins of this diversity to be found beside the meandering river lie in the different types of bedrock and in the slopes which differ in aspect. As this area was a prohibited zone during the time of the Iron Curtain, a large variety of animal and plant species was able to establish itself undisturbed.
In the summer black storks can be seen looking for food in the River Thaya and emerald lizards sun themselves on the rocks amongst the yellow irises. Evidence of wildcats has been recently rediscovered in the Thaya Valley. Numerous castles and ruins dot this spectacular countryside and fascinating tales and legends have left their mark on the national park.
Well marked walking trails with observation points and resting places invite the visitor to discover this trans-frontier national park on foot. However, if you want to get around faster, the Thaya Valley can also be explored by bike on one of the two cycle trails. During a guided tour of the national park, the visitor is provided with a wealth of hidden secrets and interesting information about the surrounding countryside and natural habitat.
The exhibition "NaturGeschichten - Thaya Tales" in the national park lodge provides interesting insight into the formation of the valley. The information point, shop and Thayatal café/restaurant complete the facilities available to the visitor.