Herberstein Castle from above in winter | © TV Oststeiermark | Bernhard Bergmann Herberstein Castle from above in winter | © TV Oststeiermark | Bernhard Bergmann
Witness to an eventful history

Castles & Palaces

Austria’s garden was shaped by a long history. A belt of castles was constructed for defence at the end of the 12th century. Today’s “Castle Road” follows this belt of castles, connecting many of the castles and palaces in the Eastern Styria. Every building conceals a secret behind its walls that is just waiting to be discovered.

From wedding palaces to locales for contemporary art, the Eastern Styria’s castles and palaces range from romantic to bulky, but are always as colourful as the country itself. They truly come into their own as venues for major exhibitions. Since anticipation is the greatest joy, we look forward to 2023.

They shine at their best when they become the stage for important exhibitions, so let's take a look back at the year 2023 so far. From April 2023, the Herberstein animal world became the main venue. Under the title "The Diversity of Life", the provincial exhibition in the "House of Biodiversity" and with themed islands in the Herberstein Animal World and the adjacent Feistritzklamm nature reserve focused on the fascination, importance and threats to biodiversity in nature. In this way, a very important topic was addressed and attention drawn to it: the importance and thus the necessity of preserving biodiversity using the example of Styria.

A variety of experiences take you back to bygone times

Immerse yourself in the history of the Eastern Styria

Let us start with a picnic outing at the baroque Schielleiten Castle, escorted by the castle coachman. A tour of Vorau Abbey leads you into the baroque world of colourful frescoes. The fresco of hell by the Steiermark’s most famous painter gets under your skin. Pöllau Castle features the impressive “Styria’s St. Peter’s Cathedral”, which you can explore during a church tour. At Aichberg Castle, the castle lord invites you to enjoy breakfast and art. The permanent exhibition “The castle & its residents” provides insights into the history of the estate and region. You won’t want to miss the tour through the garden paradise around Herberstein Castle, from the herb garden to the rose garden. The well preserved town walls at Hartberg Castle take you back to the eerie medieval times. Secrets are told during a tour with the night watchman. In the course of a church and chapel tour at Festenburg Castle, the resident pastor tells numerous anecdotes of eventful times. At Neuhaus Castle, Vorau Abbey, Aichberg Castle and Schielleiten Castle, you can spend the night within the historic walls.

Pöllau Castle with pilgrimage church Pöllauberg in Eastern Styria | © TV Oststeiermark | Helmut Schweighofer

The Castle Road

Marvel at contemporary witnesses of a special kind along the Castle Road in the Eastern Styria region. The historic castles and palaces, constructed to protect the borders or as stately homes, are for the most part very well preserved and wont to impress visitors.

To the scenic route

Hiking tours

Hike the adventure region of Eastern Styria along mystical castles and romantic palaces in the Garden of Culture.


Bike tours

Discover the churches, castles, palaces and monuments on a bike. The bike tours in the adventure region of Eastern Styria connect the historic buildings and invite you to visit, but also to stop in the garden of Austria.