Heinfels with its 1,000 inhabitants is located in idyllic position at the outlet of the Villgratental valley.
Altitude: 1,078 m asl
The name of the village of Heinfels derives from the castle enthroning the village. Panzendorf, Tessenberg, both once independent municipalities, Obere Aue, Schlossmühle, Heinfelsberg, Hinterheinfels, Blumaue, Rabland, Gschwendt as well as Kolechen form the municipal territory. The black pinnacles on the emblem of the municipality symbolise the castle, while the golden lion refers to the counts of Gorizia, who have ruled this area in former centuries. By the way: Heinfels is also location of a factory of the biscuit and waffle producer Loacker!
Heinfels Castle, symbol and name giver of the village, has once upon a time been called “Hunnenfels”, as its construction is attributable to the Huns. However, probably the Avars had this castle built. Out of the name “Hunnenfels” the name of the castle developed in the course of time. The original part, located at the top of the castle hill, is accessible via a circular staircase. The western part was added in 1500 AD and is located slightly underneath. The village has also got some more sights to offer, such as the Punbrugge bridge, one of the most beautiful canopied wood bridges, dating back to the 18th century. And also the three churches are worth to be visited…
There is also a legend on Heinfels Castle and the village: below the castle there is the Salcherhaus building, in which today the tavern Heinfels is located. This building boasts a subterranean corridor taking to the castle and this is exactly where the treasure of the castle is believed, hidden behind iron gates. If someone sets foot in this corridor at midnight in a fullmoon night, two dogs with fiery eyes bring the keys for the gates. The legend tells that two inhabitants of Panzendorf chanced their luck and the dogs appeared with the keys. However, they disappeared as they saw two men, as only one can acquire the treasure. Located in the south of the central Alpine devide, Heinfels is also a perfect starting point for excursions to Lienz and to South Tyrol/Italy, as well as hiking tours in the surroundings of Heinfels, characterised by a beautiful mountain landscape. In winter the skiing area Hochpustertaler Bergbahnen attracts skiers and snowboarders from near and far. With 55 km of ski slopes, the “Bobo Kinderland” and the Yellowsnow snowpark-funpark it offers something for everyone.
Our recommendation: there is even a rose called “Heinfels”, which is a climbing rose with red blossoms. It has been cultivated by the rose grower Karl Hetzel and named after the village in 1995!