Moorwald: The Most Entertaining 4km I’ve Ever Walked

I hike.  A LOT, but I can easily say the Moorwald (Bog Forest) in Bad Leonfelden, Austria was the most entertaining 4km (3.6 km) to be exact that I’ve ever walked.

bog forest (Moorwald) in Bad Leonfelden, Austria My husband, J.P. and I choose the Moorwald since it promised a short beautiful healing hike – the healing being the Kneipp arm and foot baths (the brain child of Bavarian monk Sebastian Kneipp who founded the Kneipp Cure, a type of hydrotherapy) and bog treatment – apparently bathing in a bog also has healing properties, including treating gout.  Fortunately neither of us has gout, but curiosity got the best of us.  Plus the Moorwald path fit in well with our stay at the Falkensteiner Hotel & Spa Bad Leonfelden a wellness hotel, which even offers a unique Kneipp Pure Living program.

In addition to being a healing hike, the Moorwald path is also family friendly.  We don’t have kids, but we sure behaved liked them on what has been the most interactive hike I’ve ever done!

entrance to the bog forest (Moorwald) in Bad Leonfelden, Austria
Conquering dragons in the bog forest (Moorwald) in Bad Leonfelden, AustriaWe slayed huge dragons!
play structure in the bog forest (Moorwald) in Bad Leonfelden, AustriaClimbed on huge play structures constructed entirely from trees.
 Kneipp foot bath in the bog forest (Moorwald) in Bad Leonfelden, AustriaContemplated trying the Kneipp arm and foot bath which among other things helps to improve circulation.  J.P. thought this was the perfect solution for my cold feet.  The 5C crisp temperatures on the other hand convinced me that I’ll just wear extra warm socks.
making music in the bog forest (Moorwald) in Bad Leonfelden, AustriaI did try my hand at making music though.  Watch for my Sounds of Nature CD being released just in time for Christmas!  I kid!
Bog forest (Moorwald) in Bad Leonfelden, AustriaI also took photos of the gorgeous bog forest, but despite the healing powers of the bog, it’s protected, since it’s  a highly sensitive space so I stuck to the boardwalk as indicated by the signs.
bog treatment in the bog forest (Moorwald) in Bad Leonfelden, AustriaI contemplated the alternative – a bog foot-bath  but soaking my feet in cold mud on a cold day just didn’t appeal to me that much if I’m honest, but I told myself the REAL reason was that I didn’t have a towel with me.
 jump test in the bog forest (Moorwald) in Bad Leonfelden, AustriaNext up was the jump test where my fierce competitors ranged from a field mouse to a deer and everything in between.  The good news is that I didn’t come in dead last – the field mouse had that honor, but I  came in behind the deer and don’t even mention the squirrel to me.  He holds the record with a whopping 4.5 meter jump!
sculpture in the bog forest (Moorwald) in Bad Leonfelden, AustriaYou just never know who you were going to meet in the bog forest, like this impressive guy!
 balance test in the bog forest (Moorwald) in Bad Leonfelden, AustriaNext up came the impossible, a labyrinth!  You had to move the ball through the maze only by shifting your balance on your feet.  I could barely stand for more than 2 seconds, let alone shift my balance to move some ball around.  I deemed it impossible, which naturally meant that J.P. had to try it.  I smirked, he would soon see what I meant.  Except that it turns out it wasn’t impossible.  Less than 3 minutes later he had moved the ball through the entire maze without losing his balance.
 strength test in the bog forest (Moorwald) in Bad Leonfelden, AustriaThen, out to really impressed me, he showed off his strength by climbing up a wall!  Not bad!  Glad I married him!

So I didn’t pass ALL the tests the Moorwald (blog forest) presented to me – damn squirrel and balancing labyrinth!  But I had have a blast and felt like a kid again!  That’s more than reason enough for me to love the Moorwald!

Know Before You Go to the Moorwald in Bad Leonfelden, Austria

  • The path is only 3.6km long, with a 1.5km longer option to climb rocks, but allow a couple of hours at least.  We didn’t even have kids (although we behaved like them) and it took us about 2 hours to work our way through the circuit.
  • Unbelievably, entrance is free!
  • Bring a towel if you’re planning to do the Kneipp bath or bog treatment.
  • You can download a map (in German only) of the Moorwald Weg
  • The Moorwald path also includes a small barefoot path.  Find out more about barefoot parks. I love them!
  • I recommend staying at the Falkensteiner Hotel and Spa Bad Leonfelden.  It’s a wellness hotel that will leave you feeling both energized and relaxed at the same time.

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Laurel Robbins is the founder of Monkeys and Mountains, an adventure travel blog and company that helps people plan their active holidays in a sustainable way. Although Canadian, she lives in Germany. You can find her in the mountains on most weekends.



  1. Zhu November 19, 2012 at 11:39 pm - Reply

    Free entrance? Wow, that’s a bonus! Looks fun, and 4 k isn’t too bad, most people can do it.

    • Laurel November 20, 2012 at 9:40 am - Reply

      @Zhu – Agreed and it’s suitable for people of all ages but I think kids especially would love it.

  2. D.J. - The World of Deej November 20, 2012 at 2:53 am - Reply

    Looks like a good, but fun workout:)

    • Laurel November 20, 2012 at 9:40 am - Reply

      @D.J. – It definitely put me through the test – but in a fun way, so that it didn’t seem like exercise.

  3. Jennifer November 20, 2012 at 7:26 am - Reply

    Now this is my kind of hike! It looks like so much fun. Except the foot bath. I did one of those in Switzerland and it felt like knives on my feet.

    • Laurel November 20, 2012 at 9:39 am - Reply

      @Jennifer – Your comment made me very happy that I passed on the footbath 🙂

  4. Italian Notes November 20, 2012 at 9:36 am - Reply

    Sounds like great fun. Wish there were more places like that around.

    • Laurel November 20, 2012 at 9:38 am - Reply

      @Italian Notes – Me too, it’s great for people of all ages and best of all, it’s free.

  5. Linda November 20, 2012 at 12:18 pm - Reply

    The title intrigued me…and now I understand! That is absolutely marvelous. I’ve walked a forest in the English Lake District where they have carved animals at various points but nothing like this! To be honest Austria has never appealed to me all that much (but it’s years since I was there, and only to ski) but I think I need to rethink!…..this is just what is so great about travel blogs – finding quirky stuff like this which you’d otherwise miss!

    • Laurel November 20, 2012 at 3:55 pm - Reply

      @Linda – That also sounds cool. I think there’s a lot to see and do in Austria, but you really have to look for it. Bad Leonfelden is 3 hours from Munich, but I had never heard of it before.

  6. Leigh November 20, 2012 at 2:51 pm - Reply

    Sounds like great fun. This is the sort of hike my husband would love. There was one section on the Tour du Mont Blanc through Switzerland where there were the most intricate wood carvings in the forest over a distance of perhaps 3 kms. Not interactive but definitely unusual.

    • Laurel November 20, 2012 at 3:55 pm - Reply

      @Leigh – That sounds lovely too. It’s not very often that you find such an interactive hike like this one.

  7. Christy November 21, 2012 at 8:02 pm - Reply

    I love places that make me feel like a kid AND I love hiking. This sounds like a match made in heaven.

  8. Cheryl November 22, 2012 at 10:46 am - Reply

    This looks like a lot of fun! Great post Laurel. 🙂

    • Laurel November 22, 2012 at 5:38 pm - Reply

      @Cheryl – Thanks, I loved it!

  9. Christina November 22, 2012 at 10:22 pm - Reply

    Entertaining for sure! What a quirky walk. Those Kneipp baths are mean. There’s a fab thermal spa in Staffelstein (Upper Franconia), they have the best hot pools, and when it gets too hot, you just run through the Kneipp pool… it’s great when you have a hot pool to go back to!

  10. Turtle December 9, 2012 at 11:52 pm - Reply

    I can’t believe you didn’t stick your feet into the freezing dirty bog water! 🙂

    • Laurel December 11, 2012 at 9:53 am - Reply

      @Turtle – I know, I’m a wimp….next time 🙂

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