Salzburg is a picturesque town in central Austria, renowned for its impeccably-preserved city centres. It was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997, allowing the town to look a lot like it did when Mozart lived here 250 years ago.
Salzburg is also the location where the classic film The Sound of Music was shot in the 60’s – it really does make you want to run through the hills and count do-re-mi on front steps.
How to get there
Salzburg train line is well connected to all other major cities in Austria and surrounding countries. There are regular direct transfers from Vienna, Munich and Zurich. All trains arrive at Salzburg Hauptbahnhof, which is around a 20 minute walk from the Old Town.
Alternatively, Flix Bus has several routes connecting Germany, Romania, Italy, Slovenia and Switzerland with Salzburg.
The Mozart airport is also a 20-minute bus ride from the centre, with regular connections all over Europe. Catch the number 2 bus from the airport to the train station. The No. 10 bus runs Monday to Sunday and departs every 10 minutes from the airport to the city centre.
How to get around
Walking is the best way to see Salzburg – stroll through the quiet and clean streets, over many of the bridges into the old town. Local buses also run almost every 15 minutes to major sights in the town – you can see schedules here.
Where to eat
Be sure to stop by the daily Grünmarkt. This food market is a great place to buy cheese, meat, vegetables, bread, and plenty of other fresh local produce. Head for the stalls selling fish soup, deep fried chicken or sausages for a tasty lunch. Oh, and definitely get some cake.
If you’re searching for some typical Austrian food, look no further than this deli. Along with cheese and meats, you’ll find some of the most delicious sandwiches and pretzels the size of your head.
Where to stay
Yoho is a beautiful hostel to stay while in Salzburg. With cosy rooms and a tasty breakfast on offer (for a small fee) this hostel is very close to the train station and walking distance to all main sights. There is only a microwave and tea/coffee facilities, so if you’re wanting to make something at the hostel, stick to microwavable meals. They also play The Sound of Music every night.
Example daily budget
€52 per day
– Hostel: €18 per night
– Breakfast at Hostel: €3
– Deli sandwich for lunch: €8
– Entry to Castle: €12
– Coffee at cafe: €3
– Hostel-cooked dinner: €8
How long to spend in Salzburg
3 nights makes for a beautiful stay in Salzburg.
What to see and do
Sound of Music
Salzburg is the glorious location where the timeless film The Sound of Music was shot in 1965. Check out a DIY walking tour here where you can stroll through iconic scenes and walk in the footsteps of the Trapp family.
Wander through the gardens outside the Schloss Mirabell palace, where the grass always seems freshly cut and impossibly green and surrounded by an array of colourful flowers which change every season. This gorgeous palace was built by Prince Arbishop Wolf Dietrich in 1606 for his mistress, Salome Alt, and her children.
From the gardens it is just a short stroll over one of the many pedestrian bridges to make your way into the Old Town of Salzburg – a UNESCO World Heritage listed area. Key sights inside the Old Town include The Salzburg Dom Cathedral, St. Peter’s Monastery, Mozart’s Birthplace on Getreidegasse, and the many charming shops lining the quaint cobblestone lanes.
Hohensalzburg Castle sits atop the Festungsberg, a small hill overlooking the old town. Dating back to 1077 A.D. and thanks to its impressive plan and position, this fortress was never conquered keeping it as one of the largest fully preserved castle complexes in Europe. Included in your entry ticket is an audio tour of the castle, taking you through many rooms and hidden . Be sure to have your camera ready when you reach the top look out – the view back over the town and the surrounding Alps is stunning.
Entry at the gate costs around €15, or you can buy your ticket online for €13. Alternatively, an Early Bird ticket for entry before 10am is €12!
Schloss Hellbrunn AND Zoo
Just a short bus ride from the centre of town you’ll find the gorgeously landscaped gardens of Schloss Hellbrunn palace. Small ponds, rose bushes and fountains are dotted through the 60 hectares, surrounding the well preserved renaissance palace, dating back to 1613. If you wander towards the small hill to the south of the palace, you’ll come across a little path – this will take you up to a nice spot above the gardens with a view out over the surrounding alps. Gorgeous!
Day Trip to Hallstatt
If you’re in Salzburg, you have to take a day trip to the enchanting town of Hallstatt. Located around 2 hours away by train, Hallstatt is nestled on the edge of Hallstätter See Lake and beneath the towering Dachstein mountain. It is said to be the oldest and most photographed in Austria - read more about how to get to there and what to do.