The first star park in Austria
Haven't you always wanted to reach for the stars, to sink in wonder into the endless expanse of the Milky Way and become one with the twinkling stars in the firmament?
This is guaranteed in the Sternenpark Attersee-Traunsee! The Sternenpark is a light and landscape protection area, where the nocturnal darkness is protected from light pollution ("light smog").
A star park is a dark sky place ("DSP") and a landscape protection area, in which nocturnal darkness is considered a protected good and which is already protected from very slight light pollution ("light smog").
The first star park in Austria is located in the Attersee-Traunsee Nature Park in the municipal areas of Altmünster, Aurach am Hongar, Schörfling, Weyregg am Attersee and Steinbach. It was officially recognized as a star park by the International Dark Sky Association in 2021.
In Europe, a natural-light night sky has already become a rarity. In the larger cities it is so bright that a new moon night is almost indistinguishable from a full moon night.
The naturally dark night sky must be declared a cultural asset worthy of protection. The efficient and intelligent use of artificial light is therefore the order of the day. In the Sternenpark Attersee-Traunsee, you can see up to more than 10 stars on a clear night than in Vienna.
Here you can find all the facts about the star park
The following municipalities are involved: Altmünster, Aurach am Hongar, Schörfling, Weyregg am Attersee and Steinbach as light protection municipality with the entire municipal area.
The area of the Sternenpark Attersee-Traunsee is 106 m².
There are approximately 460 light points in the Star Park area (this includes light points from public/commercial outdoor lighting). At the time of application, approximately 75% are in compliance with the light management plans. In order to achieve a conversion rate of 100%, the remaining light points must be converted in the next 5 to 10 years (after certification has been achieved).
A Sky Quality Meter (SQM-L) , a ferret for the objective measurement of brightness, is used to measure the darkness of the night sky. In the astronomical unit magnitude/square arc seconds it measures the luminance of the sky. Measurements were made by the Institute of Astrophysics at the University of Vienna during two nighttime mappings in 2019 (on the nights of March 30-31 and August 30-31, 2019, respectively). On a star-park worthy, night sky the minimum requirement (21.2/ mag,/arcsec²) was reached in the studied area.
Furthermore, 'Allsky images', fisheye images of the entire sky, were taken, which, by means of special software, allow analyses of the night sky quality and the influence of artificial light at night.
Sternderl schau'n - places ...
... let your soul dangle and take a seat under the starry sky
Your bucket list for "stargazing
- Snacks and something to drink
- Binoculars to see the stars better
- Blanket and pillow
- Flashlight (for wayfinding only)
- Check the weather forecast in advance
- Cell phone on flight mode
- Put on warm clothes
- Sternderl look place without additional light beams
- A rotating star chart or a starry sky app is recommended for you
Did you already know that?
Attersee-Traunsee Nature Park is "Nature Park of the Year 2022".
The Association of Nature Parks of Austria (VNÖ) annually selects one of currently 48 nature parks as "Nature Park of the Year". The Attersee-Traunsee Nature Park won the 2022 title, which shines with comprehensive developments of its unique selling points Waldkammergut, Zwetschkenreich and Austria's first night landscape conservation area, the Attersee-Traunsee Star Park. Projects, offers and activities were judged in the categories: Protection of the cultural landscape, education, recreation, regional development and marketing - the Attersee-Traunsee Nature Park achieved excellent results in all areas.
An independent jury of experts on the 4 pillars - represented were the Federal Environmental Agency, the organization "Alpine Pearls", the Environmental Education Center, the University of Vienna, as well as the ORF - selected the Upper Austrian representative, the Nature Park Attersee-Traunsee, from 7 applications from 5 provinces as the winner.