St. Jakob in the Defereggen Valley – in keeping with nature

St. Jakob is the main village of the 35 kilometer long Defereggen valley located in the north-west of East Tyrol. Among its most important attractions we have to mention on the one hand the idyllic natural landscape all around. On the other hand there are waiting several interesting sights, which can be combined with a leisurely walk or hike.

Apart from St. Veit and Hopfgarten St. Jakob is the third and at the same time largest municipality in the Defereggen Valley in East Tyrol. The village is located almost at the head of the valley, right before the rise towards the mountain pass Staller Sattel. It is one of the most extensive, but also most sparsely populated areas of the region. Only about 1,000 inhabitants live in the village, in several scattered hamlets and single farms in the environs.

Nature lovers especially like that two thirds of the municipal terrain belong to the National Park Hohe Tauern. So it is obvious, that you can start exploring the green or snow-white nature right on your doorstep.

The impressive mountains, alpine meadows and forests in the surroundings of St. Jakob in the Defereggen Valley are very attractive - and people here have long known this. So it is hardly surprising that tourism - particularly in winter - has always played a significant role, similar to the nearby Matrei in East Tyrol.

Nevertheless or just because of this St. Jakob manages the balancing act between attractive offers for guests and protection and maintenance of the mountain world. Sustainable tourism became more and more important in particular after the foundation of the National Park Hohe Tauern.

The historical sights of St. Jakob in the Defereggen Valley are well looked after, too. Undoubtedly the most famous place is the Jagdhaus mountain pasture. This ancient pasture settlement is called also "Little Tibet" because of its special appearance. It is located at the beginning of the Arven Valley and comprises several stone houses and a chapel. In summer the pasture is still used by farmers from neighboring South Tyrol. Last but not least culture lovers can also visit two places of worship in St. Jakob, as well as a historical trading company of the local miners.

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