From Retz to Drosendorf

Wine tastings, atmospheric cultural experiences and an extensive network of cycle paths make it easy to get to know and love this region. The Reblaus Express passes right through the region’s scenic and cultural variety and also provides delights for culinary and wine enthusiasts. Whether your pleasure is nature, culture or sport, there is something for everyone on the Reblaus Express route.

1. Retz

Surrounded by vineyards, at the start of the route there is a wonderful view of the famous wine town and its landmark windmill, one of the last two working windmills in Austria. On particularly clear days you can see the Little Carpathians to the east and the Schneeberg to the south-west. The first four kilometres lead through vineyards, then mainly through dreamy deciduous woodland.

2. Hofern

Time seems to stand still in Hofern. There are no schools, no nursery schools and no shops. The inhabitants have created a place of peace and quiet of their own. Hofern is a popular departure point for excursions to the Retz windmill or across the panoramic Gollitsch mountain to Retz.

3. Niederfladnitz (Hardegg)

Until 2007 the train mainly stopped here to load timber. Today Hardegg is the perfect departure point for one of the loveliest hiking trails in the Thayatal National Park ‒ the Thayatal Trail.
From here the route descends further, leads along forest edges and fields and finally reaches the hollow of Waschbach brook.

4. Pleißing-Waschbach

Here you will find the perfect starting point for hiking or cycle tours in the Thayatal National Park (Hardegg). The train route begins to rise again. The train travels through arable land on which alternative crops, cereals, potatoes, maize and sugar beets are cultivated.

5. Weitersfeld

There are many wine-growers in Weitersfeld but there is not a single vine, for the grapes ripen on the Manhartsberg mountain, which is right next to Weitersfeld.
From here on the railway line drops down to the valley of the Fugnitz and continues dreamily for kilometres away from roads and settlements through beautiful forest and meadows. The train passes the former railway halt of Ober-Höflein. This is about 1 km from the village and because of lack of demand it has not been served by scheduled services since 2008. There follows a short, straight climb past fields and fish ponds.

6. Hessendorf Angler's Paradise

Hessendorf Angler's Paradise truly lives up to its name. Nestling idyllically in a small hollow in the valley and surrounded on three sides by high forest, far from roads, there is a system of ponds with four large fish ponds, a canteen and a large natural playground with simple play equipment and a small zoo with pets. The mountain hut is managed during the fishing season and invites guests to relax in a pleasant atmosphere. The train travels on, climbing through dense forest and past the abandoned halt of Hessendorf, along the rows of farm buildings.

7. Langau

At the level of the entry signal you can still make out fragments of the abandoned coal-handling system (1949-1963). This pleasant market town is completely devoted to leisure activities and even has its own museum.

8. Geras-Kottaun

After a brief view of Geras with its Premonstratensian monastery, founded in 1153, and the large fish pond the train again travels through forest. The route leads past the Johannesthal halt, abandoned since 1994, onto a high bridge over the Thumeritzbach and through an avenue of Scots pine, climbing steeply once more and then leads again through fields.

9. Zissersdorf

If you alight here, there is the possibility of making a pilgrimage on foot to the little church of Maria Schnee and hiking through forest and along streams to the old town of Drosendorf. Passing fish ponds, through arable land, forests and meadows the Reblaus Express finally reaches its destination.

10. Drosendorf

Last stop ‒ Drosendorf. As the train arrives in the station there is a brief view on the right-hand side over the Old Town and its lovely parish church on a hill in the valley of the Thaya. This historic small town, surrounded by a city wall and situated on the bank of a loop in the river, is particularly recommended for summer visitors.