Since we were a hop, skip, and a jump from Austria, we thought it would be fun to dip a toe into Salzburg. We took a train from Munich and arrived in Salzburg 1.5 hours later. It’s just over the border from Germany with views of the eastern Alps. The city is divided by the Salzach River with Altstadt (old city) on one side and Neustadt (new city) on the other. Two thousand years ago, Romans used the river to barge salt (salz) through here. Salzburg is the birthplace of Mozart, and full of medieval and baroque buildings. The baroque style or period dates back to the 17th and 18th centuries and influenced architecture, art, and music throughout the world (think lots of flourish and curlicues). Salzburg is also home of the story of the von Trapp family and the film The Sound of Music.
Salzburg is definitely a tourist town and there are people here from all over the world, but off season we had no trouble with lines or walking around sites. We walked around and through the Hohensalzburg fortress and lunched outside at one of their restaurants with stunning Alp views. Seriously, you can’t help but picture Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music, running carefree through the green meadows, bursting over the hills as she swirls herself around and begins, “The hills are alive, with the sound of music, ahhhh...” I held back my do, re, mi’s but can’t promise I will next time through here. If you are a lover of The Sound of Music and enjoy seeing movie sites, then this is the place. There are entire tours devoted to all things related to it.
We walked through Mirabell Gardens, the Getreidegasse (an old shopping lane with wonderful wrought iron signs), and we visited the beautiful Salzburg Cathedral with its five organs, clean white walls, and light shining though the clear glass windows. I found myself smiling the whole time we were there. We also walked through St. Peter’s Church and cemetery. We have found many European cemeteries to be rather interesting with well-kept gardens in front of massive headstones. We understand families pay an annual fee and keep them up themselves. There was also a prayer building to leave your troubles at and find comfort.
This was our only stop in Austria this time around but we were glad we dipped a toe as the surrounding Alps were breathtaking, and we can’t wait to have more time to do some wanderwegging (hiking) here. We are already discussing plans for Europe next summer and fall and we look forward to possibly spending more time here in Austria.
Thanks for joining us on our journey.