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Hohe Tauern National Park, East Tyrol, Austria Photo
Hohe Tauern National Park, East Tyrol
SOURCE: Osterreich Werbung/Werbung, Popp G., courtesy of Austrian National Tourist Office, used with permission.

Hohe Tauern National Park is a nature reserve with sweeping, primeval Alpine landscapes, such as glaciers, rock faces and turf, as well as mountain pasture landscapes which have been carefully and painstakingly cultivated for centuries.

It was established in 1981 and is therefore Austria's first National Park. During the following decades the National Park, which covers parts of the three provinces of Carinthia, Salzburg and Tyrol, developed into the largest nature reserve in Central Europe, with an area of over 1,834 square kilometers.

The Hohe Tauern region is the roof of Austria. With the country's highest mountain - Grossglockner, which reaches to 3,798 m above sea level, more than 300 other peaks tower over 3,000 m into the sky. Almost 180 square kilometers of the National Park - almost 10 % of its area - are still covered by glacial ice today.

One third of all plant species found in Austria and about 10,000 species of animal live in Hohe Tauern National Park, where eight months of the year are dominated by deep winter, while spring and autumn hardly occur. Many high mountain animals and plants have developed very special adaptations in their physical structure, physiology and behaviour. They are therefore able to survive only here. It is not possible for them to switch to other habitats.

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This page was last modified 25-JAN-09
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