No other glacier-fed river in the Alps has retained its unique character and beauty as much as the Isel.
We have something extra special for our Osttirol friends, fans, and guests: the memory-function on our website.
Anyone who thinks that in East Tyrol the thundering wild waters become tame, gurgling rivulets in the summer, is mistaken. Water sports enthusiasts can ride the wild waves on a kayak or in a raft right into the autumn. And how! There are more than 1000 summits, for the most part topped with gleaming glaciers, which provide an uninterrupted supply of water in East Tyrol. The Isel, probably the most impressive glacial river in Europe, emanates from the glacier massifs in the Hohe Tauern.
It channels its route - mostly tumultuously – through the Umbaltal and Virgental out to Matrei, crossing a natural landscape which probably doesn’t occur anywhere else in Europe. On the Isel’s route to the Drau, it joins the Tauernbach from the Venediger group and the Kalserbach, which is fed from the Großglockner massif. There is also the Schwarzach from Defereggental. In Lienz the Isel opens up into the Drau, which draws its water from the southern sections of East Tyrol’s mountain groups.
The Isel in particular provides an especially charming wild water area for kayak and rafting fans. All difficulty levels are available, from a romantic river hike through to the ultimate rafting kick, or waterfall jumps in a kayak. It is fed from the main glaciers in the Hohe Tauern National Park, whereby even in the summer months of July and August an optimum water level is guaranteed. The Isel, which is of drinking water quality, has rafting routes of a variety of difficulty levels between Matrei and Lienz.
The season starts on 15th May and ends on 30th September every year. Rafting takes place almost whatever the weather and therefore provides an interesting alternative even during bad weather. All East Tyrol’s rivers and streams are of drinking water quality. In contrast to other regions, the majority provide plenty of water, even in the height of summer.