Austria's 9 Federal Provinces
Die neun Bundesländer der Republik Österreich
Also see: Österreich heute - Austria Today
Austria is a federal republic (official name: die Republik Österreich) with nine Bundesländer (provinces, states). Below you'll find the nine Austrian federal provinces (Burgenland, Kärnten, Niederösterreich, Oberösterreich, Salzburg, Steiermark, Tirol/Ost-Tirol, Vorarlberg, Wien) listed alphabetically in German (with English names if different from the German) with their capital cities (Landeshauptstädte) and a brief summary. - Also see our Austrian Map.
Hauptstadt: Eisenstadt. This Austrian province was home to the Esterházy dynasty and the birthplace of the composer Joseph Haydn (1732-1809). The Esterházy Palace is still a focal point of Eisenstadt, Burgenland's provincial capital, and is the venue for the annual Haydn Festival in September. Burgenland lies along Austria's border with Hungary and was in fact part of Hungary before it became an Austrian province in 1921. Burgenland's chief geographic feature is the 22-mile-long Neusiedler See (Lake Neusiedl), central Europe's only steppe lake and a nature preserve for birds and other wildlife that make their home in the lake's reeds. The Neusiedl region is also noted for its wines. Einwohner: (population) 270 000.
Hauptstadt: Klagenfurt. Austrian's southernmost province is home to the famous Wörthersee and many other lakes, as well as Austria's tallest peak, the Großglockner (12,458 ft/3,797 m), located in the Hohe Tauern National Park. Carinthia has a long history going back to the Celts and Romans. The province became part of the Habsburg empire in 1335. Einwohner: 560 000.
Niederösterreich (Lower Austria)
Hauptstadt: Sankt Pölten. Lower Austria is the province that surrounds Vienna. The Danube (die Donau) flows through the middle of Austria's largest province, but Lower Austria is also the home of Europe's first major mountain railway, a scenic rail route over the Semmering Pass. Einwohner: 1 484 000.
Oberösterreich (Upper Austria)
Hauptstadt: Linz. Upper Austria is one of Austria's most scenic provinces, offering the variety of lakes, mountains, and the Danube River (die Donau). The best known scenic region is the Salzkammergut, but the rocky peaks of the Dachstein massif are also an attraction for visitors year-round. The capital city of Linz is Austria's third largest city (pop. 190,000) situated on the Danube just south of the Czech border. Einwohner: 1 380 000.
Hauptstadt: Salzburg. The province takes its name from its most famous city, the birthplace of Mozart and the historical power base for the bishops of Salzburg. But the province also shares the beautiful Salzkammergut region with Upper Austria, and features many other scenic attractions in the countryside beyond the "Sound of Music" city of Salzburg. Einwohner: 502 000.
Hauptstadt: Graz. Known for its lush green landscapes and forests, die grüne Steiermark borders on Hungary and Slovenia to the south. Graz, the provincial capital, is Austria's second largest city, with a population of 240,000. Arnold Schwarzenegger was born in nearby Thal bei Graz. Einwohner: 1 202 000.
Hauptstadt: Innsbruck. Tyrol, the Austrian province most associated with skiing and winter sports, has twice hosted the Winter Olympics (Innsbruck, 1964 and 1976). Located in the heart of the Alps, Tyrol has a history of rugged independence. In 1809 Andreas Hofer led a rebellion against the ruling Bavarians and French, but it was 1815 before Tyrol was once again part of Austria. South Tyrol (Südtirol) became part of Italy after the First World War. (German is still the main language in that part of northern Italy.) South Tyrol's loss left East Tyrol (Ost-Tirol) as an isolated part of Tyrol to the south of the province of Salzburg. Einwohner: 658 000.
Hauptstadt: Bregenz. Vorarlberg means the land beyond the Arlberg. Austria's westernmost province has 10,000-foot mountains in the east (the Arlberg) and Lake Constance (der Bodensee) in the west. Three German-speaking countries (Austria, Germany, Switzerland) border on Europe's second largest Alpine lake. Bregenz, Vorarlberg's picturesque provincial capital (pop. 27,200), lies on the eastern shore of Lake Constance. Einwohner: 348 000.
Hauptstadt: Wien. Austria's famed capital city is also one of the country's nine provinces. Once a Roman outpost known as Vindobona, Vienna became the residence of the Habsburg dynasty in 1276 and reached its artistic and cultural heights in the 18th and 19th centuries. Vienna became a Bundesland in 1922. Today Vienna is host to many international organizations, including OPEC and the United Nations Office at Vienna. Einwohner: 1 600 000.
NEXT > Austrian Map - The 9 Bundesländer.
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