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Villach

Trip Planner Europe  /  Austria  /  Austrian Alps  /  Carinthia  /  Villach
(3.9/5 based on 1,100+ reviews for top 10 attractions)
Things to do: historic sites, scenic drive, shopping
Villach is the seventh-largest city in Austria and the second-largest in the federal state of Carinthia. It represents an important traffic junction for southern Austria and the whole Alpe-Adria region. As of December 2006, the population is 58,480.Together with other Alpine towns Villach engages in the Alpine Town of the Year Association for the implementation of the Alpine Convention to achieve sustainable development in the Alpine Arc. In 1997, Villach was the first town to be awarded Alpine Town of the Year.GeographyVillach, a statutory city, is located on the Drava (Drau) River near the confluence with the Gail tributary. Situated at the western rim of the Klagenfurt basin, the municipal area stretches from the slopes of the Gailtal Alps (Mt. Dobratsch) down to Lake Ossiach in the northeast. The Villach city limits comprise the following districts and villages:In 1905 a part of the municipal area St. Martin was incorporated. In 1973 the city area was further enlarged through the incorporation of Landskron, Maria Gail and Fellach.HistoryThe oldest human traces found in Villach date back to the Neolithic. Many Roman artifacts have been discovered in the city, as it was near an important Roman road (today called Römerweg) from Italy into the Noricum province established in 15 BC. A mansio named Sanctium was probably located at the hot spring in Warmbad south of the city centre. After the Slavic settlement of the Eastern Alps about 600, the area was part of the Carantania principality, and under Bavarian overlordship from about 740.
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