Villach is located 30 miles west of Klagenfurt; 87 miles south east of Salzburg. It is situated in the center of the Carinthian lake district in a broad basin along the Drau River. It is a gateway to the south and the location makes it easy to make day trips to Slovenia or Italy.
Villach is the second-largest city of Carinthia (and the 7th largest in Austria) and a railway gateway to most parts of Austria as well as the Italian border. It`s quite old, with roots back in Roman times (when the city was called Santicum). The city was heavily bombed in World War II, destroying many parts of the city.
By plane: Villach has no domestic or international airport. If you are travelling by plane you have to go to Klagenfurt (25 miles away) which has an airport.
By train: Villach is a railway gateway within Austria, so trains go from virtually every bigger city including Vienna, Graz, Klagenfurt, Salzburg, Linz, Innsbruck and Bregenz. There are also direct connections to Munich, Zurich, Venice, Ljubljana, Zagreb and Belgrade.
Optima Express runs a car-train between Villach and Edirne in western Turkey about twice a week April-November, taking 33 hours. Departure days vary. This train enables motorists to take their own cars to Turkey while avoiding the difficult roads through the Balkans; however it`s also open for passengers without cars. It`s also perhaps the cheapest way to retrace the old Orient Express in the modern day.
By car: If you are coming from north, take the A10 Tauernautobahn. If you are coming from east (Graz,Vienna) take the A2 Südautobahn. If you are planning to go from Slovenia, take the A11 Karawankenautobahn. If you are arriving from Italy also take the A2 Südautobahn. The motorway around Villach has two exits at Faakersee which takes you to the center of the city and Ossiachersee which takes you to the north of the city.
Villach is a small town, so it is easy to get around on foot. Taxis can be found near the railway station and in the center of the city near Hauptplatz. Federal buses go to the surrounding area from the local Busbahnhof (busterminal, a few minutes away from the railway station). Local busline no.10 (operated by a company called Kowatsch) goes around the historic city center.If I have a car, where can I park?
Getting around by car is not necessary and not recommended. Parking spaces are hard to come by during the week and traffic jams at business hours are very common. During weekdays parking fees are charged in most areas around the center of the city.
If you wish to park close to your destination you are advised to park in one of the multi-storey car parks in the center of town. On-street parking in Villach is available in the city center at a cost Monday - Friday from 8 am - 6 pm and Saturday from 8am - 10 am. The maximum stay is 3 hours and the parking rate is around €0.50/30 min. The first 20 minutes are free of charge.
For longer-term parking in the city center, the best option is the car parks. Parking rates start at around €1.20 to € 1.50 per hour.
The currency of Austria is the Euro, US dollars are not accepted.
Under the euro system, there are seven notes: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, and 500 euros. Notes are the same for all countries. There are eight coins: 1 and 2 euros, plus 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50 cents.
ATMs are common in major cities and larger towns and this is one of the easiest ways to get cash. Credit cards are accepted in most establishments. It is a good idea to inform your credit-card company before you travel, otherwise, the credit card might be put on hold due to unusual activity. We recommend you record all your credit card numbers, as well as the phone numbers to call if your cards are lost or stolen.
The best time to visit Villach is from May until September, when you will have pleasant temperatures and less chance of rainfall. The highest average temperature in Villach is 72°F in July and the lowest is around 32°F in January.
Villach is probably better known as a summer destination, although there is plenty of skiing nearby. It is located on the way to Klagenfurt among a series of southern Austrian lakes. Villach hosts numerous festivals and events in the summer months. Although, many visitors come in the winter months as it is an enjoyable place to go on a cold, snowy afternoon on the way south.
German is the official language spoken in Austria (and in Villach). You will find only a minority of locals that can answer questions in English. We suggest you get a good English-German guidebook and familiarize yourself with common phrases such as hello, goodbye, excuse me and numbers 1-10.What is the shopping like in Villach?
If you want to go shopping head to the Hauptplatz and the center area of the city. A bit outside of Villach (along Mariagailerstrasse) you will find an area with many shopping malls. These malls are far apart, so it`s better to go by car or bus there. Buses to Mariagailerstrasse go from the local Busbahnhof (a bus terminal ) which is located a few minutes away from the central railway station.What is the food like?
If you enjoy hearty meals and sweet dishes, you will love Carinthian food. Due to its sunny location and strong agricultural tradition, Carinthian cuisine is known for its fresh ingredients and quality. Just visit one of the farmer`s markets in Villach or hike to one of the region`s many Alpine huts to experience the flavors of Carinthia.
Flavors and cooking methods from Hungary, Germany, Italy, Bohemia and the Balkans can all be found in Austrian dishes. While many people associate Austrian cuisine with Viennese cuisine, there are many amazing foods from other Austrian regions including Carinthia. Carinthian food is influenced by the eating cultures of Slovenia and the Italian region of Friuli-Venezia Giulia. Warm noodles stuffed with cheese, cinnamon cakes, and plenty of fresh fish from its many lakes makes Carinthian cuisine all a must try.
Whether you are a party person or would prefer to enjoy a couple of drinks in a relaxed bar - Villach has something for you. During weekends, night owls make their rounds on the Lederergasse in the Villach city center while the young party crowd dances the night away at the clubs found in the city. With its small-town feeling in a moderately sized city, there are plenty of options for nightlife in Villach.
On weekends, the Lederergasse is the place to be. This street in the Villach City Center has plenty of bars to choose from with a variety of different options when it comes to atmosphere.
Villach, like most Austrian cities, is safe to wander around. There will be occasional drunk people during festivities, but police visibility is evident. It is advisable to take precautionary measures when traveling, similarly to traveling to other European cities.What should I do if I need medical assistance or need to go to the hospital?
Euro-emergency number - 122
Police Emergency Number - 133
Ambulance / Medical Emergency - 144
Fire Department - 122
Hospital: Landeskrankenhaus Villach - Address:Nikolaigasse 43 , Villach 9500 , Austria. Tel:+43 4242 2080.