SalzburgDecember 2, 2015 in Austria
Salzburg is the kind of place that fairytales are based in; with a wandering river, the Alps as a perfect backdrop and a sweet white building city nestled into the mountainside, there’s really nothing more picturesque in the world, which is why a trip here is a must for anyone who is camera happy and a lover of beautiful gardens, castles, and street-side cafes.
From wandering cobblestone streets and catching up on your history to enjoying some of the traditional delights—both edible and wearable—this is a 7-part bucketlist of things to knock off your must-sees before leaving Austria.
Wander in the footsteps of the Sound of Music.
While in Salzburg I spent an entire day taking the Sound of Music tour. Think I’m bluffing? Think again. Taking you from filming locations to filming location, with in-depth information about each place, the impact of the movie on the town, and what’s real and what’s Hollywood (with just a couple of show tunes along the way), this tour is fully immersive and a great way to see a lot of the town without having the pressure of trying to find your own way around. With a couple of different hop-on hop-off tour buses, you can easily navigate the beautiful stops with as much, or as little, time as you want to spend there before jumping on some wheels to check out the next location. From lakeside vacation homes to palace steps, there’s plenty to discover, uncover, and enjoy along a tour of Rodgers & Hammerstein's singing world.
Have a pint.
If you’ve got a sunny afternoon before you, grab a beer at Monkey’s Bar for a great viewpoint of Old Town, just remember to take your purse strings, it’s on the expensive side of town. For something exotic, head to Afro Cafe, a little cafe on Bürgerspitalplatz that rings with a funky African vibe and colorful interiors. There the cocktails may be better than a beer, but it’s definitely a great place to spend an evening with friends or mingling with other travelers. And for the winos out there, there’s something for you too: Sternlounge. Newly renovated with elegant and sumptuous furnishings, this is definitely a place to go to see and be seen and the chic interiors will make you feel both stylish and right at home.
Or if it fits better, try the dirndl. Whether you’re of Austrian and German descent or just an avid admirer of their vibrant culture, the traditional dress of the area is certainly a chic option for anyone and it’s not strange to see the locals sport modern updates to the lederhosen (knee-high shorts complete with embroidered suspenders) and dirndls (traditional womens dress) to concerts, church, or even dinner. The Getreidegasse, Salzburg’s most famous shopping street, is a long line of all sort of regional treasures, including many renditions of the traditional dress. From affordably versions for the kids to chic, high-end
Check out Mozart’s birthplace.
Definitely Salzburg’s most famous resident, past or present, you can visit lots of his haunts along your trip into bonafide Mozart territory, including his birthplace. From the house, which has tours year round, you can then move to the Mozart residence that was built across the river after the third floor flat where Wolfgang was born became to small for the family. Now the residence is a museum dedicated to Austria’s “Wunderkind.” After that, wander back to Old Town for a look at Mozartplatz, the square where a memorial to the composer is erected, and sit at one of the cafes for a coffee and a little people watching—it’s always a bustling area for tourists and locals alike!
Get a bird’s eye view.
For an unparalleled view of the sleepy valley town at the bottom of the mountains, and a perfect view of the German Alps rising over the skyline, head to the Fortress Hohensalzburg. Sometimes referred to as the Salzburg castle, this hulking monument perched above the city is one of the largest existing 11th century fortresses in Europe, and the fun to be found there harkens back the same yesteryear. You can take a walk among the courtyard under the Tulia trees or you can check out the darker secrets of the castle by taking a tour of the dungeons. Either way, make sure you’ve got your camera out because the panoramas from this place are unparalleled.
Eat sacher torte
How could you not? This dessert toppled the strudel for most sought after Austrian delicacy since it was created in the Hotel Sacher in Vienna back in 1832, and Salzburg Hotel Sacher (same family, same over-the-top luxurious hotel) is definitely the place to go and get it. Save a special evening (and a couple of precious euros) to dip your fork into the rich chocolate cake with a layer of apricot jam that has been the most famous cake in the world since it’s inception. Don’t take my word for it on this one, you definitely need to taste it for yourself to believe that it's real.
Walk the stumbling stones.
A sobering reminder of a terrible past, Salzburg commemorates the fallen Austrian Jews during World War II and before in a symbolic and traceable way that those eager to learn their history can follow through the cobblestone streets of the city. Known as the “stumbling stones,” there are 129 markers throughout the city to act as a reminder for the Salzburg Jewish community that lost their lives in the Holocaust. While there is no official Jewish tour available in Salzburg, it is possible to find the stones throughout the city on your own, or book a private tour.
Whether it’s your first time in Salzburg, or your fiftieth, there’s plenty of beauty, food, and history to discover on a trip around the town and with these destinations on your list it’s guaranteed to be a blast.Read more