The market town of Halbenrain lies in south-eastern Styria surrounded by green forests, close to Bad Radkersburg and the vineyards from Klöch and Tieschen. The Parktherme spa is not far away from Halbenrain.
Almost discernible as a hill, the "Murterrasse" that extends throughout the local area was likely populated with small hamlets in pre-Christian times. The first documented human residence was a timbered castle on a projecting section of the Murterrasse that consists mainly of clay and drops off steeply for several metres – the castrum Haldenrain.
Since the Mur river used to flow along the edge of the terrace, it may have claimed the entire plain all the way to Radkersburg (proven to have been built on a Mur island) as its riverbed and flood area in those days due to the high, uncontrolled water levels. This also explains why St. Nicholas is the patron saint of the parish church.
The first documented mention of Halbenrain dates back to the April 26th, 1244 when Frederick II, the Quarrelsome, granted castrum Halbenrain to his civic recorder Witigo and his brother Rüdiger as a fiefdom. While the precise historic origins of the name "Haldenrain" and the later name "Halbenrain" are not known, they are likely derived from the old high German word "hald" (slope, sloped) and "Rain" (boundary, elevation). Various noble families with feudal tenure of Haldenrain Castle followed.
On April 1st, 1724, Georg Christoph Count Stürgkh bought the Halbenrain lordship from Count Halthann. It was owned by the Counts of Stürgkh until 1980 when most of the properties were sold. Halbenrain Castle, which is surrounded by a magnificent park and constitutes a jewel of the region with its three storeys and an arcade court, was acquired by the state of Styria and is now home to a vocational school for rural home economics. The adjacent, virtually enchanting herb garden in the midst of nature is a highly recommended destination for all herb lovers.
The mild climate, the forests and largely undisturbed natural Mur river floodplains are downright ideal for hiking and offer a unique experience for cyclists with varied bicycle tours.
The Hortus Niger International Summer Academy for Visual Arts is held at Halbenrain Castle. Hortus Niger – a garden for art with fertile black soil – has made many things thrive and blossom since it was founded in 1996. An excellent programme awaits you.
Large pumpkin and corn fields define the landscape of the Halbenrain region in the summer and autumn months. Halbenrain is one of Austria’s largest runner bean growing communities. The hospitality of Halbenrain natives, the rural gastronomy and the wine bars exude that cosiness which is so loved by guests.
For years the "Gemma Strawanz'n" event series has been a high point of the summer. You can enjoy regional delicacies every Thursday. A colourful programme is offered for children – fun is assured with face painting and a bouncy castle made of straw