Lake Wörthersee sits just west of Klagenfurt in southern Austria, stretching 16.5 km at its longest, with a maximum depth of 85 m. It’s the perfect holiday destination for those seeking a picturesque setting to relax. The beauty isn’t all Wörthersee is renowned for, however. Each year, Wörthersee Treffen takes place around the lake, an event billed as the largest Volkswagen festival in Europe, perhaps even in the world.
In VW circles, the Wörthersee Treffen is something of a pilgrimage – 150,000 visitors coming from around the globe to see the very latest builds and projects from all across Europe. This year, Air Lift Performance made the trip and joined the party too.
The stunning scenery acts as the perfect backdrop for a parade of the finest European Volkswagens, though, in recent years, Wöthersee Treffen has grown to encompass all marques that have been modified, with a clean look. Now you can spot all manners of European vehicles, and even a few Japanese vehicles.
Wörthersee did not officially start until the 4th of May, but many hardcore enthusiasts turned up much earlier in the week, searching for their own spot in the limelight. In the weeks leading up to the event, you will see waves of event attendees, each group bringing a different flavor to the lake. Speak to any of these hardcore early birds and they will tell you that the spiritual “heart of the show” is the ENI fuel station at Mischkulnig. Here people fill the forecourt and surrounding area for a chance to show off their build.
Each town around the lake presents a different backdrop, style of car, and display. Enthusiasts create themed meets throughout the event, so you will never really know what could greet you around the next bend. It’s an ever-changing and very much a moving show. With such a volume of vehicles in attendance, it’s truly a feast for the senses.
A prime location for parking is the Falkensteiner Hotel in Velden, where we met up with some familiar faces from the UK, some of whom traveled 2,000+ miles in order to reach the event (but more on those cars in subsequent blog stories).
Reifnitz has perhaps one of the best views of the lake and allows people to park along the high street, in order to best enjoy the surroundings. It’s also where VW choose to build their famous show stand, which becomes the focus of the event during the official show dates. It’s also home to the famous stone MK2 Golf, making it an essential stop on any Wörthersee tour.
The Wörthersee show is now in full swing, as the official dates commence May 4-6, 2016. To keep up the Wörthersee spirit, we will bring you spotlights of some of our favorite builds that we encountered during our trip! Stay tuned!