Leoben is located on the river Mur in the central Styrian region of Austria. Sometimes known as the gateway to the Styrian Iron Road, the town has had much involvement in the mining industry and located in Leoben today is the Montanuniversitat which is a specialist mining university; furthermore Leoben hosts a miner’s parade and the Gosser Kirtag street fair which draw thousands of visitors.
Lets explore the best things to do in Leoben:
1. Goesser Braumuseum
The Goesser beer in Leoben is world renowned and part of the Heineken Company and one of Austria’s favourite beers.
The Braumuseum provides you with a wonderful insight into the world of beer brewing and the craft that goes into its production.
You will find a host of interesting facts and over a thousand years of brewing history condensed into a spectacular tour, and of course be treated to a few well deserved samples at the end.
If you are a beer lover, or just appreciate the history of how something is made and has evolved over time, the Goesser museum is a must see place in Leoben.
The Massenburg is the ruins of the old dimensions castle which is situated on top of a hill just a short walk from Leoben town centre.
The castle dates back to the 13th century and was originally built as a wooden hillfort but then transformed into a stone castle in later centuries.
As the castle fell into decline and disrepair, the ruins became overgrown but were unearthed again in the year 2000 and now are fully visible.
You can enjoy the short walk up the hillside and admire the castle ruins; furthermore the hill gives you fantastic views of the surrounding countryside and of Leoben.
The Schwammerlturm is a medieval tower that has stood for countless years and is one of the most famous buildings in Leoben.
The tower is located in the town centre, but near the river Mur and spans the Homanngasse road that leads onto the Hauptplatz.
The decoration of this ornate tower is brilliant with white walls and red corner bricks plus a large emblem of Austrian and Leoben, and a dome shaped top tower that stands out.
There is an elevator inside the tower that allows you to ascend to the top and provides fantastic views of the old town centre – A must do when in Leoben.
4. Lavanttal Alps
This stunning mountain range is part of the Central Eastern Alps that span both Austria and Slovenia and lie between the river Mur and Drava.
The mountains lie around 1 hour 45 minutes from Leoben so a car is needed, however the drive in itself will be well worthwhile as you will pass through some wonderful scenery.
At 2000m on their highest point, the Lavanttal Alps are impressive and there is an extensive network of hiking and climbing trails spread throughout the range.
The tracks create a large area of hiking opportunities that envelop Leoben, Graz and Klagenfurt.
5. Pestsaule Leoben
This stunning monument is located in the main town square and stands as a wonderful tribute to citizens who survived the plague during the Middle Ages.
The intricate design of the monument is fantastic and it contains six sculptured figures of various fame all with immense lifelike detail.
Several of the sculptures have gold accessories such as Sebastian’s arrows and the wonderful gold cross on the top of the column – These provide a great contrast to the greys of the monument.
At both daytime and night the Pestsaule monument looks impressive and should be viewed when travelling through the Hauptplatz.
6. Enjoy Styrian delights at the Arkadenhof restaurant
This self-styled brewery restaurant is located on the same side of the Hauptplatz as the Steinscherer café but mainly concentrates on dining and beer as opposed to coffee and cake.
The restaurant offers wine-tasting sessions, buffet lunches and a great variety of local and international drinks.
The food menu includes Austrian favourites like Schnitzel, Baurenbratl and Boiled Beef all served with a variety of potatoes and vegetables.
There is also a late night show periodically where you can enjoy some entertainment and tuck in to snacks like toasties and goulash soup.
7. Leoben City Park
This open public space is located in Leoben town centre so is easy to access on foot when walking around this wonderful town.
The park offers a great place to relax or if you are the sporty type, enjoy a ball game or even take a jog in the fine Austrian weather.
With plenty of beautiful trees and paths to walk along, the atmosphere in the city park is quiet, peaceful and relaxed.
8. Cafe Konditorei Steinscherer
The exterior of this café is unbelievable, and if that is not enough to draw you inside, then the delicious cake and coffee that is served will surely win you over.
Located on the Hauptplatz the Steinscherer café has a bright red façade that is highly decorated with many stone sculptures and reliefs creating a design that can be quite overwhelming.
Inside there is a homely décor and a menu that features cakes, pastries and also breakfasts for the early birds.
With reasonable prices and great homemade delicacies, the Steinscherer is an unmissable establishment in Leoben.
Most Austrian towns will have a central square either called the Hauptplatz, Stadtplatz or Martktplatz and this square will be the main centre and gathering point often where markets will be held.
The Hauptplatz in Leoben is a large rectangular pedestrian area lined with colourful buildings of historical design.
Various shops and cafes line the square and the criss-cross paving makes the square feel that little extra special.
Market stalls are open here regularly and there is also the striking Pestsaule Monument and a couple of ornate fountains to admire too.
This interesting museum sits just to the right of the Hauptplatz towards the river Mur and can be reached on foot from the town centre.
The museum itself has been constructed with modern architecture that creates a contrast to the old style buildings and contains some of Austria’s finest exhibitions outside of Vienna.
The exhibitions centre mainly on the history and development of Leoben and the various industries that have been undertaken over the years.
There are also other temporary exhibitions that regularly change – For full information it is advised to check the official website before you travel.
11. Leoben Asia Spa
Another of Austria’s fine Asian themed spa’s, the Leoben Spa boasts high quality and a myriad of relaxation activities where you can unwind and rejuvenate.
The complex is designed with a beautiful Asian style and is reminiscent of the pagodas that you can find in Japan.
You can enjoy wonderful massages, or relax in the thermal pools or even a blast in one of the many saunas.
There is also a sports pool perfect for lane swimming, a children’s adventure playground and a diving tower for the more adventurous.
Whatever you fancy, the Leoben Asia Spa will deliver in style and with unparalleled professionalism.
12. Hiking in the southern forests of Leoben
To the southern part of Leoben near Waltenbach across the S6 road, there is a large area of forest that is waiting to be explored.
You could literally spend hours and hours strolling through the outdoors and taking in the gorgeous scenery and spectacular forests.
This is the perfect spot for the intrepid outdoorsman’s in the warmer months.
13. Dance the night away at Club Passion
While there are not a huge amount of clubs in Leoben, Club Passion is one of the best and is easily accessible, being located just off of the Hauptplatz.
If you are looking for a fun night out and a venue to party the night way, Club Passion is the perfect place.
It has a fantastic atmosphere and interior décor and serves a brilliant range of cocktails and drinks.
With a personal service and lively music, this is a superb place to enjoy a drink and a dance.
14. Goss Abbey
This abbey was formerly both a Benedictine nunnery and a cathedral and also stood as the seat for the short-lived Bishop of Leoben.
The original nunnery was established in the 11th century and then under the rule of Henry IV was turned into a Benedictine place of worship.
Now used as a parish church, the style is late Gothic but includes elements of Romanesque architecture and contains several beautiful frescoes.
The complex is full of wonderful architecture, striking towers and ornate religious decoration and is a lovely historical place to visit.
15. Maria Himmelfahrt Wassen Church
Another pleasant church in Leoben, the Maria Himmelfahrt is located to the west of the town over the river Mur on Wassenstrabe street.
Set in picturesque grounds and surrounded by trees and quaint buildings, the church stands out against the smaller buildings of the area.
The church has retained much of its original features including its 15th century stained glass windows that depict various apostles and saints and scenes from the life of Christ.