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Car park parish church
car park parish church
The second part of the Oberperfuss chapel hike also starts from the parish church. Free parking is available in the car park below the church. The circular route leads from the village centre to the edge of the forest and the Burkter chapels, and along the idyllic Karl-Trautner-Weg trail to Oberperfuss Berg. A very scenic circuit with wonderful wide open views.
Set off from Oberperfuss Parish Church and walk a short distance to the north until you reach the next junction, where you should turn right onto Silbergasse road. The Ruepen Chapel is located on the left-hand side of the road and is adorned with a statue of Our Lady of Lourdes. A beautiful old statue of the Virgin Mary from around 1,500 originally stood in the chapel but is now kept in the baptistery of the parish church for security reasons.
Continue to walk along Silbergasse road until you come to the Schneiderhof and then turn right onto a path that takes you across the fields and into the forest. There you will discover the oldest chapel in the area, the Burkter Chapel. The chapel is situated near the source of the Burkter stream. It was built by the “Johannesbruderschaft” religious society in honour of Saint John of Nepomuk, the patron saint of streams and springs. The statue of the saint dates back to the 18th century and was restored in 1850 and 1852.
Next to the Burkter Chapel you will find the Our Lady of Lourdes Chapel, which contains a plaster cast of the Virgin Mary, Our Lady of Lourdes (who was given the name after the Marian apparition in Lourdes in 1858).
From there, continue along the idyllic Karl-Trautner-Weg trail no. 5, a gently inclining path through the forest. After covering a good half of the trail, you will see another path branching off to the right towards the hamlet of Brandstatt. This leads to the "Marienkapelle" (St. Mary's Chapel) at the home of the Hofer family, Brandstatt 7a. This pretty chapel was built in 2002 and is lovingly maintained.
Follow the path back to Karl-Trautner-Weg and continue uphill until you reach the Kammerland district, home to the Antonius Chapel, which is located at the "Bauernhaus Simon" farmhouse and features a bell. Construction of the Antonius Chapel (1920) stems from a promise made by twelve families from Kammerland, who declared that they would build a chapel after returning home from the First World War.
From there, follow the road towards Oberperfuss Berg until you reach the "Muchnhof" riding stables. Turn left and follow the signs that lead left to Au, another district in Oberperfuss. The Chapel in the Au was a wooden chapel that was left to deteriorate. In 1986, the Schlögl family built a new chapel in its place, which now contains a figure of Saint John and two reliefs from the old wooden chapel.
Halfway along the route to Au, a hiking trail branches off to the Wildgruben Chapel, a frequently visited forest chapel containing a statue of the Virgin Mary and a so-called “Gelöbniskapelle”, a chapel of vows. The chapel was built in 1919 to thank God for the safe return of soldiers from the First World War. It has since been lovingly restored. The old wayside cross dating back to 1857 used to hang from a tree at the side of the road.
The hike continues through the forest and into the Wildgrube district, past beautiful houses to the village of Aigling, the home of the Church of St Joseph. The Church of St Joseph was built based on plans by Franz Haider at great financial sacrifice to the local residents of Oberperfuss Berg and consecrated in 1974. Mass is still celebrated at the church on a regular basis.
Continue uphill along the road for a short distance until you reach the bus turning circle and then take the path leading to the picturesquely situated district of Birkhof. The clearly visible Birkhof Chapel is located in the middle of the meadow at the side of the road, where it has stood since the 17th century. Before the construction of the Church of St Joseph, mass was celebrated at the chapel every Wednesday. A wooden extension was once added to the chapel but was torn down to make way for the widening of the road after the construction of the Church of St Joseph. The chapel’s bell, which was melted down during the Second World War, was replaced by a new bell in 1948. The current painting of the Virgin Mary is a copy of the former image painted by the religious sister Bernadette from Zams. The comfortable bench in front of the chapel is the perfect place to sit down and enjoy a short rest.
The Tiefental Chapel is located in the district of Hinterburg, an approximately 45-minute walk away from Birkhof. We recommend that you visit this chapel on a separate hike, during which you can also follow the “Besinnungsweg” (Path of Reflection) in Sellrain to the Church of St Quirinus.
A wooden chapel used to stand in the location of the current Tiefental Chapel until 1958. When the previous chapel fell into a state of disrepair, the residents of Hinterburg decided to build the current chapel featuring a bell tower. A large painting on wood depicting Christ at the Column hangs above the altar and was previously used as the doors of the old chapel. Until the construction of the new chapel, the carved figure of Saint John of Nepomuk used to stand outdoors to protect the area from the often unruly waters of the local stream. It was finally moved into the building in 1959.
The hike continues from Birkhof back to the main road, which you should follow downhill past the Church of St Joseph until you see the pretty Berchtesgadner Chapel on the slope on the left. This chapel was consecrated in 1993 and built based on plans by Franz Haider. Its size and appearance mirror that of the former Tummeler Chapel, which stood on the farm of the Tummeler family until it collapsed in 1991. The old chapel was a protected monument, above all due to its wooden vaults, a work of art by local carpenters that was a rare treasure in Tyrol. The ceiling painting and the panels depicting the Fourteen Holy Helpers in the new chapel were created by the painter Dagmar Ballogh. The statue of the Virgin Mary was donated to the church by the Ursuline Convent in Innsbruck. A new bell that was donated to the chapel was consecrated together with the building.
Continue down the road to the Berchtesgaden district, turning left after the bus stop and heading down a narrow lane leading to house number 91b. There you will find the small Sacred Heart Chapel, another chapel of vows.
Return to the main road, walk downhill into Kammerland and then turn left onto hiking trail no. 5. Enjoy the wonderful views as you follow the trail (via Bichl) down to Peter-Anich-Weg (Elektro Hörtnagl electrical shop). Finally, follow the road back to the church in the village centre.
Sources and literature: “Gemeindebuch Oberperfuss” (Oberperfuss Parish Chronicle)
Places to stop for food and drink in Oberperfuss Berg: Gasthof Bergheim (closed on Mondays), Cafe Restaurant Grünfelder (closed on Mondays), Vormittagscafe Kleißl (closed on Mondays), Baguette Cafe Bistro Bäckerei Oberperfuss, Hotel Krone – m1 (closed on Thursdays) and Cafe-Konditorei Kirchmair (closed on Tuesdays).
Arrival, public transport
Postbus route 4165 Oberperfuss, www.vvt.at
In the surrounding area