In the idyllic Bregenzerwald, where the name says it all, the special features of the forests can be explored in many different ways: From so-called forest bathing to informative forest trails to wood contemplations, here you will find a varied offer.
On the Bödele above Schwarzenberg, herbalist Katharina Moosbrugger, human energeticist Lilo Amman-Schwarz and nutrition trainer Eva Gowick offer nature experiences for more well-being. Every Tuesday, the nature-loving women accompany a herbal walk through the Fohramoos nature reserve. On the way, the participants identify herbs and collect some of them for the snack, which is prepared together at the end. Every Wednesday, "forest bathing" with meditation and mindfulness exercises is on the programme. The positive effects of spending time in the forest on body and soul have been scientifically proven many times.
What is the significance of forests and which tree species grow in the Bregenzerwald? The Rotenberg Forest Trail provides a good overview. It leads from Lingenau or Hittisau through a particularly species-rich mixed forest with silver firs, which are typical of the Bregenzerwald, as well as beech, spruce, ash, maple, elm and lime trees. You can learn interesting facts about the forest at twenty stations along the way. Among the stations are a forest room, a high moor and a nature arena made of Nagelfluh rock. The short loop takes about two hours, the long one three and a half hours.
Tip: The new "open-air museum" in Lingenau tells even more forest and nature stories. Starting from the church in Lingenau, you can learn at twelve stations what nail flue rock is all about, what tasks wild bees have and why a forest needs dead wood. Those who want to can also prove what they have just learned in a quiz.
A hike leads from Mellau to the wooded Gopf and along the Bregenzerache. On the way, the durability as well as the play of colours of wood are convincing. The wooden shingles on the houses are preferably made of unprocessed wood. Depending on the sunlight, they take on different shades of brown and grey over time. The historic wooden bridge over which the path leads is grey-brown. Some original benches, on the other hand, are very colourful. The 8.5-kilometre hike takes four hours and covers 700 metres in altitude both uphill and downhill.
The "Alpgang Trail" in Au-Schoppernau provides insights into the Bregenzerwald alpine economy, for which the forest and wood play an important role. The short Alpgang circuit leads from the church in Au-Rehmen mostly through wooded areas to hay huts and Vorsäß huts where farmers and cows spend the early summer and autumn. Along the way, information boards provide information about alpine farming and special features along the way. The short loop takes two hours, with 405 metres of ascent and descent. Those who opt for a longer hike will find their route with the long round lasting six hours.
The Werkraumhaus in Andelsbuch is the best place to marvel at the many ways wood can be processed and the types of wood typical of the Bregenzerwald. In the modern building, planned by the Swiss architect Peter Zumthor, the innovative Bregenzerwald Werkraum craftsmen present their pieces. The house has a small shop and a restaurant.
In the heart of the Bregenzerwald is the Romantik Hotel Das Schiff in Hittisau. Thanks to its fantastic location, the hotel is the ideal starting point for active days in the fresh air and allows you to discover the wonderful nature in an exclusive atmosphere. Since its foundation in 1840, the Romantik Hotel Das Schiff has been offering its guests an unforgettable stay in an elegant ambience. The hotel's own restaurant complements the offer with true moments of pleasure and successfully combines traditional with modern and international with regional cuisine. In addition, the Romantik Wellnesshotel Bregenzerwald with its sauna and beautiful outdoor pool is perfect for relaxing days for two.