© Photo: Oberösterreich Tourismus GmbH./Robert Maybach: Enjoy the view in Upper Austria
Enjoy the view in Upper Austria

Europaschutzgebiet Maltsch

Leopoldschlag, Oberösterreich, Österreich
  • All weather
  • Suitable for groups

Over a length of 26 kilometres, the Maltsch marks the border between Austria and the Czech Republic. It is a remarkable body of water in many respects. Its water flows northwards to the Elbe and further into the North Sea and not, as is the case with most rivers in Upper Austria, into the Danube and the Black Sea

The Maltsch, a river bordering the Czech Republic, has a number of special natural features. River pearl mussels and otters, the rare marsh grasshopper and several endangered butterfly and dragonfly species live here. The common snipe and corncrake breed in the wet meadows and floodplains. Black grouse, red-backed shrike, black woodpecker and other species listed in the Birds Directive also find a habitat here - on the Green Belt.

Above all, however, the section along the border is an originally preserved river landscape of Europe-wide importance. The "Iron Curtain", which was lowered here for more than four decades, prevented intensive human utilisation. This applies above all to the Czech side of the border, but there were also restrictions on the Upper Austrian side. The nature reserves along the former "Iron Curtain" that are worth protecting are known as the "European Green Belt", which also includes the Maltsch European nature reserve near Leopoldschlag. On water, on land and in the air, the border river has preserved a lush diversity of species that is rarely seen elsewhere. The river pearl mussel and the lamprey live in the water itself. On land, streamside copses of alder and ash, wet meadows and fallow land, and even sporadic forests of spruce and bilberry provide a refuge for plants and animals. Fire lilies still grow here, black grouse and hazel grouse roam, otters and wild boar make themselves at home. And in the air there is an incredible variety of birds, especially meadow breeders such as red-backed shrikes, whinchats and the extremely rare corncrake. They need little and late mown meadows as a habitat. For nature lovers who want to experience this paradise on the border, the Green Belt Centre in Windhaag near Freistadt is an ideal first port of call.

  • by arrangement
  • open to the public
  • Registration required

Closing day
  • Saturday
  • Sunday
  • holiday
Travelling by public transport
Route planner for independent travellers
  • Price on request
  • All weather
  • Suitable for groups
  • Suitable for schools
  • Spring
  • Summer
  • Autumn

Please get in touch for more information.


Europaschutzgebiet Maltsch
4262 Leopoldschlag

Phone +43 7949 20576
mobile +43 664 5143548
E-Mail nat.2000infozentrum@gmx.at
Web naturschutzbund-ooe.at

Contact person
Wolfgang Sollberger
Marktplatz 2
4262 Leopoldschlag

Phone +43 7949 20576
E-Mail nat.2000infozentrum@gmx.at
Web naturschutzbund-ooe.at/schulangebote/articles/expedition-im-natura-2000-europaschutzgebiet-maltsch.html

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