Visiting the danish Vestjylland UNESCO Global Geopark

From 17.11.2023 - 22.11.2023 Horst Ibetsberger visited the Vestjylland UNESCO Global Geopark in Denmark. Together with Geopark and Nature Park Manager Karen-Louise Smidth, he visited the Geopark Visitor Center, the Nature Park Center and other presentations. In the area, they stopped at the terminal moraine of the LMG of the Scandinavian inland glaciation, which crosses the Geopark from east to west and plunges into the North Sea at Bovbjerg. It is the Geopark's unique selling point. We also visited Thorsminde, Nissum Fjord, Lemvig and the exhibition in Oddesundtarnet, a bunker from the Second World War.

Picture on the left © Vestjylland UGGp, Picture on the right © Horst Ibetsberger

General Assembly of the Ore of the Alps Association

The annual general meeting of the Ore of the Alps Association took place on November 21, 2023. This is the supporting association of the Ore of the Alps UNESCO Global Geopark. The meeting looked back on a successful year in the Geopark with many innovations and the plans for the coming years were also presented. It was an exciting evening for the association members and interested parties.

Picture © Sandra Hörmann

Relaunch of the Ore Trail

At the end of 2023, the Ore Trail of the Ore of the Alps UNESCO Global Geopark will be relaunched. This includes over 100 new display boards (Geosites) on the topics of geology and landscape, mining and history, and legends and myths. These will be set up along the approx. 54 km long Ore Trail, which runs through the Geopark communities of Hüttau, Bischofshofen, Mühlbach am Hochkönig and St. Veit im Pongau. All information can also be accessed digitally. There are QR codes on all the diagrams, which can be scanned with cell phones and tablets. These can be used to call up additional information and images of the individual stations on site. The official presentation and opening of the Erzweweg will take place at the start of the 2024 season.

Picture © Gert Furtmüller

Geoparkstammtische 2023

From October 16 to 19, the Geopark Stammtische (regulars' tables) took place in the four Geopark municipalities of Hüttau, Bischofshofen, Mühlbach am Hochkönig and St. Veit im Pongau on the topic of "Climate change - facts and causes and what lies ahead". Following the presentations by Dr. Gert Furtmüller, there was the opportunity to ask questions and to lead an open discussion. The interest of the visitors was great and so the Geopark regulars' tables were well attended in all locations. Many thanks to the tourism associations and mining and museum societies (St. Veit, Mühlbach, Hüttau) for co-organizing the events.

Pictures © Sandra Hörmann

Austrian Academy of the Sciences

On October 5, 2023, the 15th meeting of the Austrian National Committee for Geo/Hydro Sciences (representing the agendas of the IGCP, IHP and GdE) was held in the visitor center of the Ore of the Alps UNESCO Global Geopark. On October 6, 2023, an excursion was organized as part of Geodiversity Day, which visited various geotopes in the Geopark and the new altar stone of the Buchberg Church, made from an ice-age erratic block.

Picture © Horst Ibetsberger

500 years celebration of the Fadlstoa Kapelle

The wonderful 500th anniversary celebration of the Fadlstoa Chapel (Pfarriachstein Chapel) in St. Veit im Pongau took place on the weekend. The chapel was built in 1523 by miners who mined copper in the area. In 1732, the last church service was celebrated at this chapel by the Protestant population of Pongau before they were expelled from their homeland. The path led past this chapel and offered a last glimpse of their beloved homeland. The Kameradschaftsbund St. Veit renovated the chapel in 2003 and a new roof truss with larch shingles was laid.

Picture © Michael Rettenwender

10th international Conference of the UNESCO Global Geoparks

From 4 - 11 September 2023, the 10th International Conference of UNESCO Global Geoparks was held in Marrakech / Morocco. During the conference, the Austrian delegation presented the current ÖAW project On the final day, Horst Ibetsberger accepted the certificate and award for the positive revalidation 2022 with the extension of the UNESCO Global Geopark predicate until 2026.

Picture on the left © Horst Ibetsberger, Picture on the right © Urosh Grabner

Ore of the Alps UNESCO Global Geopark as part of the STEM holiday program

On 22.8.2023, Horst Ibetsberger introduced 11 young people aged 12-14 to the importance of the UNESCO Global Geopark at HAK St. Johann. The program included reading topographical and geological maps, talking about rocks, recognizing fossils, distinguishing different grain fractions, modeling the formation of the Alps and viewing aerial photographs and terrestrial photos using a stereoscope for a three-dimensional view.

Pictures © Johanna Grießer

Report in Salzburg Heute about the Ore of the Alps UNESCO Global Geopark 

On 22.06.2023, Salzburg Heute on ORF2 reported on the Ore of the Alps UNESCO Global Geopark. The scientific director Dr. Horst Ibetsberger gives insights into the Geopark and describes the ongoing project "Erzweg". The Erzweg is a hiking trail that connects the four communities of Bischofshofen, Hüttau, Mühlbach am Hochkönig and St. Veit im Pongau.

You can read the report here

Picture © Sandra Hörmann

Geoparkwochen 2023 – 10 Jahre Geopark Erz der Alpen und Partnerschaft mit den Geoparks Porphyrland und Inselsberg-Drei Gleichen 

There were two occasions to celebrate on June 1st 2023: the 10th anniversary of the Ore of the Alps UNESCO Global Geopark and the 10th anniversary of the partnership with the Geoparks from Thuringia (Inselsberg-Drei Gleichen UNESCO Global Geopark) and Saxony (Porphyrland National Geopark).

The ceremony was part of an extensive, professional 2-day program with talks, discussions, exchange of experiences and considerations for the future. This also included excursions to special points along the Erzweweg. Representatives from UNESCO Austria, the Austrian Geoparks and the University of Salzburg (representing the Austrian Academy of Science) and the Austrian Geopark Forum came to Bischofshofen. 

Pictures © Sandra Hörmann

„Gletscher und Glaube“ book presentation by Dr. Franz Jäger

On May 30, 2023, Dr. Franz Jäger presented his book entitled "Glaciers and Faith - Coping with Disasters in the Ötztal Alps then and now" at the visitor center in Bischofshofen. 

Picture © Sandra Hörmann

Season Opening of the Visitor Center 2023 

The opening took place on 27 April 2023 with a lecture by Dr. Kurt Stüwe on "The geology of the Alps from the air" at the visitor center in Bischofshofen.

Picture © Sandra Hörmann

ORF III – Landleben „Rund um den Hochkönig“ 

A few days ago, the documentary & report on ORF III about rural life around the Hochkönig was shown. The documentary offers particularly exciting insights into the history of copper mining in Mühlbach am Hochkönig and rural life in the region (March 2023). 

Here you can find the film

© Film and picture by Staudach Film

Start of the Project Movemont

Kickoff meeting for the project from November 10-11, 2022, which deals with mass movements in 
the three UNESCO Global Geoparks in Austria.

You can read more about this project here:

Geopark Ore of the Alps gets the Erdreich-Preis

The Ore of the Alps UNESCO Global Geopark wins the "Erdreich Preis" for its diverse activities in soil protection and education. The prize was presented on 13.09.2022 by Federal Minister Leonore Gewessler, BA. 


The 2nd revalidation of the Ore of the Alps UNESCO Global Geoparks by representatives of EGN / GGN / UNESCO from
17.6.2022 until 21.06.2022.

Cooperation with Basecamp Research

The Ore of the Alps UNESCO Global Geopark is working with Bascamp Research (UK) to study the biodiversity of different soils in the Geopark. The project runs from July 2021 to spring 2022.

Article on the Geopark in the Magazine "Bergauf"

Article on the Geopark in the magazine "Bergauf" in June 2021 about
„Geologisches Welterbe in Österreich – UNESCO Global Geoparks“, Seite 72ff
Bergauf_3_21_ebook.pdf (

Nebra Sky Disc

Latest research results on the Nebra Sky Disk, May 2021. The copper of the Bronze Age cult object comes from the Ore of the Alps UNESCO Global Geopark.

You can read more about it here

Contribution to the special Exhibition

A report of the Magazine "Bergauf" May 2021about the special exhibition about the "Der 15te Achtausender“ in the Visitor Center of the Ore of the Alps UGG, pp 20
Bergauf_2_21_ebook (

Article in the European Geoparks Magazine

Article in the "European Geoparks Magazine" April 2021, „Mythogeography – Storytelling with a realistic background“, Seite 31
EGN-MAG_18. (

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