WAB - Regional Route J: Payerbach - Waldburgangerhütte - Knofeleben

Hiking route from Payerbach railway station to Naturfreundehaus Knofeleben

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Elevation profile

10,73 km length

Tour dates
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • Route: 10,73 km
  • Ascent: 917 egm
  • Descent: 147 egm
  • Duration: 4:00 h
  • Lowest point: 487 m
  • Highest point:1.257 m
  • Nice views
  • With refreshment stops

Details for: WAB - Regional Route J: Payerbach - Waldburgangerhütte - Knofeleben

Brief description

Regional Route J is from Payerbach and the Jubiläumsaussicht (Jubilee Panorama View) and expansive meadows all the way to Naturfreundehaus Knofeleben. The Regional Routes are part of the network of paths making up the Viennese Alps (WAB) route. Hikes along these routes lead you to unique views and also insights. The Regional Routes are linked to the network of paths making up the Viennese Alps route. This results in circular hikes in conjunction with the long-distance path.


The hike continues along forest and meadow paths from the railway station in the historic summer resort of Payerbach to Knofeleben via the Waldburgangerhütte cabin. The Jubilee Panorama View provides an unexpected but phenomenal view of the Semmering Railway World Heritage Site with the prominent viaduct in Payerbach. The Waldburgangerhütte is an ideal spot to stop for a while before going over the Bodenwiese. This path heads through a wonderful alpine pasture landscape in a gently sloping basin, a splendid example of idyllic alpine meadows in perfect harmony! After a short stretch in the forest, the route finishes at the brightest cabin in the Alps at Knofeleben. Furthermore, Naturfreundehaus Knofeleben took first prize amongst cabins in the 2014 Hüttenwahl survey of cabins.

Starting point of the tour

Payerbach railway station

Destination point of the tour

Naturfreundehaus Knofeleben

Route description WAB - Regional Route J: Payerbach - Waldburgangerhütte - Knofeleben

Regional Route J features a very gentle start at Payerbach-Reichenau railway station in this summer holiday area. The old advertisements at the station are interesting as a record of how Payerbach and Reichenau were sold to the masses as a place to spend summer holidays.


We cross over the large car park and follow a narrow paved path westwards. The route goes downhill for a short spell. Then we turn right through the underpass and follow the road uphill. After two hairpins, a hiking route that is marked in blue heads into the forest. We ascend this then keep to the right. We cross over a road, follow the hiking route, and then meet that road once again. We go past Hof Hochberger on the right-hand side then switch over to the route marked in blue. This route is a steep ascent in parts, and a short section is secured with a chain. The strenuous effort of the ascent is instantly forgotten upon taking in the Jubilee Panorama View, which is not quite on the hiking route but can be reached via a short detour. Signs make hikers aware of this in good time. After returning to the path, we ascend the trail, cross a forest road, and continue to climb via a path marked out in blue. The path runs into a forest road. We keep to the right-hand side and turn left towards the Waldburgangerhütte after a short distance, which is reached after a short climb. This cabin is renowned for its Schöberl (dumplings added to soup) and is open on Saturdays, Sundays, and public holidays from May to October. After a brief stop at the cabin, we head off on a gravel road to the Bodenwiese, a wonderful alpine pasture landscape. We then have the option of seeing Gabi, the owner, and continuing on our way after some food and drink. However, the hiking route branches away on the gravel track to a meadow path somewhat before the owner’s cabin. After climbing a pasture fence, we reach a gravel track once again, onto which we turn left and head into the forest. About 15 minutes later, we turn right at a crossroads towards Lackabodenhütte cabin and then veer left upon reaching the next fork. Around five minutes later, we turn left again at Lackabodenhütte, seeing the rear of the cabin and then veer left around it. The path goes slightly downhill to a forest road, at which we turn right. This forest road leads us directly to Naturfreundehaus Knofeleben. The “brightest cabin in the Alps” took first place amongst all cabins in the Alps and is an inviting place to rest and stay the night. Regional Route J ends at this hut.






Either enjoy a cosy evening here, or continue to hike along the Viennese Alps, subsequent locations on the long distance path are Krummbachstein and Schneeberg. Alternatively, the Viennese Alps trail can be followed downhill After Kaiserbrunn into the Höllental valley and even along the route for water pipelines to Payerbach. This path is also part of the Viennese Alps long-distance route.


If you are travelling from Vienna take the A2 to Seebenstein junction, then continue on the S6 as far as the Gloggnitz exit. Follow the B27 as far as Payersbach.


Take the S35 from Graz, then turn onto the S6 until the Gloggnitz exit. Continue to Gloggnitz via the B27.


Car parking is available at Payerbach railway station.

Trains regularly run from Wiener Neustadt railway station to Payerbach-Reichenau.



Regional trains are available from Mürzzuschlag to Payerbach-Reichenau railway station.


More information at www.oebb.at

More info/links

You may like to hike the adjoining routes:


WAB - Regional Route I: Kirchberg/Wechsel - Maria Schutz


WAB - Regional Route K: Gloggnitz Castle - Prigglitz - Payerbach tourism office


Viennese Alps in Lower Austria, www.wieneralpen.at, +43 / 2622 / 78960


Always bring suitable maps. Always wear appropriate, sturdy footwear, bring sun and rain protection and water, as well as a little something to eat. Bring your mobile phone with you and save the mountain rescue emergency number: 140

Safety information

Your hiking experience in the Vienna Alps should be a thoroughly enjoyable and safe one. Therefore, please bear the following in mind:


When choosing a route, make sure it corresponds to your mountain experience and physical fitness level. Check the weather forecast before you set off. The weather can change surprisingly quickly in the mountains. Always take appropriate equipment with you (e.g. rain protection).

Check whether the cabins and snack stations you intend to visit along the way are open. Inform someone before you set off of your chosen route and when you plan to return.

Map recommendations

Freytag & Berndt WK 022

Author's tip

Combine your hike with a stay in the Payerbacherhof.

It is recommended at weekends that you ring in advance to enquire if beds are available for overnight stays at Naturfreundehaus Knofeleben (closed Mondays). Please note that the Waldburgangerhütte cabin is only open on Saturdays, Sundays, and public holidays.

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