29 May The Best Cities & Sights in Austria
Austria is a unique and fascinating European country. If you’re planning a trip to this lovely destination, read our guide tot he best cities and sights to see, including Salzburg, Innsbruck, Vienna and Hallstatt.
With about 12 centuries of history behind it, Salzburg has had plenty of time to grow into the beauty that it is now. The well-preserved Old Town is on the UNESCO World Heritage list, and for lovers of baroque architecture, there’s no better place to come. There’s more, though – Salzburg was the birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and it was also where the Sound of Music was filmed in 1965. Check out the best sites to see in one of our favorite cities in Austria below.
1. Hohensalzburg Castle
Hohensalzburg Castle, also known as the Salzburg Fotress, is located at the top of Festungsberg Hill. You can take the Funicular Cable Car from the bottom of the hill for easy access to this famous site. Not only will you find a great view from the top, but you can also explore the many wings containing various artifacts and traditional decor.
2. Salzburg Old Town
Also known as “Altstadt”, you’ll find many of Salzburg’s main sights. This includes historical buildings, beautiful designed squares and quaint little streets leading off the beaten path. This is a great starting point for a visit to the city and you could easily spend a full day exploring the streets, relaxing at one of the many coffee shops and shopping.
3. Mozart’s Residence
As mentioned above, Salzburg was the birthplace of Wolfang Amadeus Mozart. Wherever you go in the city, the influence of Mozart surrounds you. The original building was reconsructed as closely as possible to its original design after being destroyed during World War II. It is now open as a museum.
Innsbruck, Austria is located high in the Alps. This provides amazing views as well as great opportunities for winter sports. In fact, Innsbruck hosted the 1964 and 1976 Winter Olympics. Read on for some of the best sights to see in this Austrian town.
1. Alstadt von Innsbruck (Old Town)
In Innsbruck’s famed Old Town, you’ll find buildings dating back 500 years. In addition, history and great medieval details surround the area at every turn. You’ll find great restaurants, coffee shops, and stunning architectural marvels.
2. Ambras Castle
Ambras Castle is located in the south of Innsbruck and reachable by tram or bus from city center. You’ll find the famous Spanish Hall inside the castle. This intricately decorated hall now hosts classical musical concerts year round. You’ll also find displays of arms, armory and artwork, plus a beautiful courtyard to relax in and explore.
Located near the Hofburg Palace (which is another must-see in Innsbruck), you’ll find the gardens of Innsbruck, also known as Hofgarten. The park has several gardens and flower displays, picturesque ponds, parks for children and restaurants. Plus, its surrounded by stunning giant trees. You’ll find concerts held here in the summer months.
Vienna is the Capital of Austria and its most popular city. It has many nicknames, including the City of Music and the City of Dreams. This metropolitan city is home to 1/3 of the country’s citizens. It hosts the United Nations and is a major center of Austria’s culture, economy and politics. Don’t miss out on these famous sights below.
1. Schönbrunn Palace & Gardens
The grounds of the Schonbrunn Palace Complex encompasses gardens that extend almost a mile from the palace itself. Walk through the Parterre and admire the flower beds, get lost in the beautiful hedge maze, and take in some of the famed artwork housed here. Don’t miss Neptune’s fountain and the artificial Roman Ruin. You’ll also want to seek out the Gloriette which stands opposite the palace and features a pool.
2. St. Stephen’s Cathedral
St. Stephen’s Cathedral has been the most important church in Austria since its construction. It’s huge tower dominates the Vienna skyline and stands as the tallest church tower in Austria. The exterior features Romanesque and Gothic design, an dominating pointed tower, and an intricate main roof with hundreds of colored tiles. The inside of the church houses 18 altars, several small chapels, and some tombs and catacombs of famous Austrians.
The Rauthaus is the Town Hall center of Vienna. It was originally constructed to accommodate the offices of the mayor in the 1800’s. The palatial Rathaus has five towers. The middle and largest tower is famously topped by the iconic Rauthausman statue.
Hallstatt’s location directly on the Hallstatter lake makes it a favorite destination for visitors. It is so beautiful, in fact, that China created a full-scale replica of it. Check out the best sites to see in Hallstatt below.
1. The Hallstätter See
The Hallstätter See encompasses the mountain and lake in Hallstatt. Here you can fish, dive, boat, or rent an electric or pedal boat for the day (motor boats are not allowed here).
2. Ascension of our Lady Church
Also known as the Church of the Assumption, this sight is worth the short climb to see. At the top you’ll enjoy a great view of the entire town and lake. Inside the church, you’ll find beautiful artwork, lavish altars, and the famous Late Gothic frescoes.
3. Old Town & Market Square
Hallstatt’s old town is idyllically located on the shores of the Hallstätter See. Shops and cafes line the square. In addition, the square is home to the elegant Holy Trinity statue. In the center of the town is the Evangelical Church of Hallstatt, a landmark of Austria.
Ready to experience Austria for yourself? Call us today at 402-390-9291 to speak to one of our European travel specialists. You can also get started here.