Advent Holzkrippe Bad Gleichenberg Steiermark | © Steiermark Tourismus, Gery Wolf

Advent in Styria

Advent in Styria’s thermal spa and volcanic region

The Styrian volcanic and thermal spa region, which lies 65 kilometres to the south east of Graz, offers refreshing alternatives to the frantic hustle and bustle in the run up to Christmas. Come here during the most wonderful time of the year to luxuriate in the warmth of thermal spa water and visit romantic Advent markets. There’s nowhere better to get into the spirit of the season.


Time for Some Real Christmas Magic

With more than 50 different stalls, Füstenfeld Christmas Market is the largest in Styria’s thermal spa and volcanic region, and easily accessible from Bad Waltersdorf, Bad Blumau and Loipersdorf. Guests can buy handicrafts, Christmas tree decorations and traditional Christmas delicacies here. In the magnificent 19th-century Bad Gleichenberg Kurpark, the focus is on Advents of "past times". Artificial lights and alcohol are not to be found here; instead, there are larger-than-life hand-carved nativity scenes and high-quality craftsmanship. A trip with the Sternderlzug train from Feldbach to the Christmas market is highly recommended. There’s also so much to experience at the weekends in the Advent Village situated on Bad Radkerburg’s main square. Admire the fire pits and Advent carriages, listen to the music groups, sample and enjoy the tastes of the season.

Advent_gruen_Licht_Stille_Kirchenberg_Straden | © Marktgemeinde Straden

A Peaceful Advent – the Green Light

The culture of excess creates more problems than it solves. Our work and personal lives are characterised by hecticness in the run-up to the Christmas just as they throughout are the rest of the year. Let’s set an example of peace, quiet and reflection.

You may have already noticed that green lights can be seen throughout the south-east of Styria in the pre-Christmas season. A carefully selected sign of Christian faith such as a church, cross or chapel, which is widely visible and shrouded in green light, serves as a symbol for peaceful Advent in the community , as furthered by the “Association for the Promotion of Styria’s Volcanic Region”. The green widely visible light is a symbol of peace and reflection during a period that for a long time hasn’t stood for silence and retraction, but rather acceleration and consumption.

Peace and quiet spreads across the region. The time for contemplation and reflection has arrived. It’s satisfying to look back on a full and eventful year, and spiritual people fulfil their desire to withdraw into themselves. The same cycle that has been the principal driving force behind the very nature that has formed Styria’s Thermal Spa and Volcanic Region over the course of billions of years also drives people. To oppose it causes discomfort. To succumb to it lays down the foundations for satisfaction. Whether knowingly or unknowingly, we live our lives according to the rhythms of the seasons. Nature retreats. The trees shed their leaves, laying the fertile foundations for the future. This also serves as a metaphor for life. Peace and quiet lay down the foundations for new beginnings. The green light during Advent is symbolic of this return and of the birth of Jesus Christ.

Laternen Vulkanland Advent Licht | © TVB Bad Gleichenberg, Werner Krug

Lanterns During a Peaceful Advent

Just as communities set out a green light to demonstrate they are members of the “Peaceful Advent” scheme, members of the general public display a lantern at their homes. The numerous lanterns that can be seen in south-east Styria with their natural flickering and modest lights are a heart-warming sight and expressions of moderation, representing the anticipation of Christmas.
thermalwasser_dampf_blumau_therme_winter | © Steiermark Tourismus, ikarus.cc

Dive in With the Whole Family – Or Go It Alone

Enjoy the peace and relaxation of Styria’s thermal spa and volcanic region. This is the place to go as soon as winter hits, where you can breathe in clear crisp air whilst basking in the warmth of the thermal springs. The six thermal springs in Bad Radkersburg, Bad Gleichenberg, Loipersdorf, Bad Blumau, Bad Waltersdorf were instrumental in establishing the "wellness movement" in Austria. On account of each of their different mineral properties, each of the spas are ideal for treating a variety of different health and wellbeing afflictions. Bad Waltersdorf Remedial Spa is renowned for its treatments based on "traditional Styrian medicine". Bad Gleichenberg is home to one of the area’s most recent and beautiful spa houses. The modern health and spa areas sprawl out over 3,000 m2, and are bathed in light. This is the perfect resort for visitors with respiratory, skin, skeletal and musculoskeletal complaints. You can also delight in the 36˚C warmth in the thermal spring pools of the Parktherme Bad Radkersburg Thermal Spa, feeling the soothing relaxing effects working wonders on your back and limbs. During the winter season the extended sauna village is invaluable to anybody who wants to prepare their airways for the colder weather.

A visit with the whole family during Advent to the H20 Hotel-Therma is a must. It boasts mega-wide water slide, fabulous wave pool, water balls, H20 play world and child-free sauna facilities. The Loipersdorf Thermal Spa offers three different thermal baths in an area which stretches out over 36,000 square metres. Families are catered for by the "Lebenstherme" water park and the "Schaffelbad" wellness oasis is an intimate and peaceful adults-only spa. Here the emphasis is on a balanced life consisting of mental strength, physical activity and sensible nutrition. The Rogner Bad Blumau Thermal Spa reveals the fairy-tale world of Friedensreich Hundertwasser and reflects his dream of living in harmony with nature. It also boasts a wealth of corresponding rituals to promote a sense of wellbeing.