Drachenloch - Mixnitzer Kogellucken - Dragons Cave

Useful Information

Location: Near Mixnitz, southeast of Bruck a. d. Mur. A9 north of Graz, exit Leoben, towards Bruck along Mur valley. In Bruck turn south onto 335/S35 16km to exit Mixnitz.
Open: some weekends in the summer. Call for exact dates.
Fee: free, donations accepted.
Classification: SpeleologyKarst cave
Light: no light.
Dimension: A=950m asl, L=4,495m.
Guided tours: L=542m, D=4h.
Bibliography: Fritz Ebner, K. Ehrenberg (1972): Die Drachenhöhle bei Mixnitz. Exk.-Führer Tagung Paläont. Ges., 1972:229-237, Graz.
Volker Weißensteiner (2000): Adam Lebenwald und die Drachenknochen aus der Drachenhöhle bei Mixnitz in der Steiermark. Die Höhle, Zeitschrift für Karst und Höhlenkunde, 51. Jahrgang, Heft 2.
Address: Fremdenverkehrsverein Pernegg-Mixnitz-Bärenschützklamm, Gemeinde Pernegg an der Mur, A-8132 Kirchdorf 16, Tel: +43-3867-8044-0, +43-3867-8079 or +43-3867-8163, Fax: +43-3867-8044-11, E-mail: contact
Fuchswirt, Jürgen Rossol
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1387 first known exploration.
1904 Jean Striemer trapped in the cave for three days.
1919 in the hard times after World War I, the cave sediments were mined to produce fertilizer.
1973 start of the exploration by the Steirischer Landesverein.
1978 a cave club from Langenwang took over.
1983 exploration by the Verein f. Höhlenkunde St.Lorenzen/Mürztal.


The Drachenhöhle (dragons cave) was named for multiple remains of cave bears (Ursus spelaeusExplain). Long ago those bones were thought to be the remains of Dragons, as cave bears were extinct and unknown to the people.

In some parts of the cave some 12 m of sediments, containing a high amount of phosphates, existed. After World War I, the cave sediments were mined to produce fertilizer. All in all 3.000 tons of phosphates were removed, using a cable car to transport it down to the valley floor, 500 m below.

In this sediment a huge amount af remains were found, the bones of cave bears and human remains like ancient fire places and flint tools. Those are, among the oldest human remains found in Austria, 65.000 to 31.000 years old.

The number of found bears may have been more than 30.000 individuals. Some of the cave bear bones can now be visited in the Landesmuseum Joanneum, Raubergasse 10, 8010 Graz, Austria, Tel: +43-316-8017-9716, Fax: +43-316-8017-9846.

The cave is entered through a huge portal, 12 m high and 20 m wide. The cave is not developed, and several rock piles must be climbed. The end of the tour is in the Höhlendom (cave dome) after 500m. Here is the Wappenstein (heraldic rock), a remain of the first known exploration in 1387.

In 1904 an accident happened, when the cave tourist Jean Striemer visited the cave alone with a torch. After he hit the ceiling and dropped the torch it went off and he was trapped without a light. Without light he could not find the exit. Two women from Mixnitz, who knew that he went into this cave, searched for him and found him finally after three days without food or water.