Surrounding the city of Salzburg is the SalzburgerLand (State of Salzburg) which is one of Austria’s most beautiful. It was the location for many of the scenes from “The Sound of Music” and has incredible Alpine scenery, picturesque small towns and villages, beautiful castles, lakes and many great attractions.
The spectacular natural experience of SalzburgerLand makes it ideal for walking and hiking. Due to the wide variety of hiking opportunities, everyone is certain to discover their own perfect pathway: Whether walkers in search of pure peace & quiet, nature-loving families or ambitious alpinists, during Alpine Summer the clearly marked hiking trails, such as the 350 kilometers-long Salzburger Almenweg, are guaranteed to appeal to every taste. Hike to the certified “Alpine Summer Huts”, where you experience authentic Austrian alpine culture.
SalzburgerLand entices you with 7,000 kilometers of perfectly signposted cycling and mountain-biking routes across every region. For less-demanding bike rides, the popular Tauern Bike Path and the 350 mile-long Mozart Bike Tour will offer you the adventure you seek. The SalzburgerLand-Salzkammergut Region is also famous as an Eldorado for road cyclists. Likewise, the Salzburger Sportwelt and Hohe Tauern National Park regions promise unforgettable biking experiences.
Experiences in the SalzburgerLand:
Grossglockner High- Alpine Road is 30 miles long with 36 switchbacks taking you up to Austria’s tallest mountain, the Grossglockner. If you are renting a car, this is a must-see, with incredible Alpine views waiting to be photographed. On your way up to the top, you will pass through an imposing mountain world. Green meadows, imposing grey rock faces and dense forests convey lasting impressions of Austria's unique countryside. (1 hour 40 min south of Salzburg)
Hohe Tauern National Park, entered via the Grossglockner High-Alpine Road, is Austria’s largest and most scenic. Enjoy the natural beauty and serenity.
The Salt Mine Salzburgwerk Dürrnberg, near Hallein, is an educational experience as well as great fun. A mini-train takes you into the mountain, you slide down 2 long slides to get into the heart of the mountain, a boat takes you across a subterranean lake and you learn about the important role mining played in Salzburg. You even get to walk into Germany!(25 min from Salzburg by car)
In the Salzburg village of Werfen, the very first “The Sound of Music Trail” is being created. The goal of this special journey back in time is the Gschwandtanger, where one of the most famous scenes in movie history was filmed. Here, Julie Andrews in the role of Maria von Trapp takes the children on a picnic and teaches them the beloved song “DO-RE-MI”. Magnificent Hohenwerfen Castle stands in the background-an ideal spot for selfies! (a little over an hour from Salzburg by car)
Werfen’s Giant Ice Caves are the largest in the world. Located near the town of Werfen, high up in the Tennengebirge Mountains, you will be amazed by the incredible ice formations. (another 10 min drive away from Hohenwerfen Castle)
For over 900 years, mighty Hohenwerfen Castle has sat enthroned atop a precipitous crag high above the Salzach Valley. In addition to incredible views, a guided tour will take you through the medieval edifice and its weapons collection. Make sure to stay for the bird-of-prey show hosted by the historic State Falconer. (about an hour south of Salzburg)
The Krimml Waterfalls, at 1,010 feet high, is Central Europe’s tallest and most spectacular. The falls are broken up into 3 tiers with impressive drops. Paths and footbridges lead to the various levels. (about 2 hours southwest of Salzburg by car)
The trade route across the Alps once led right through Mauterndorf Castle. This significant toll station was built in the 13th century and lent this town its name. At playfully designed information stations, you are able to truly immerse yourself in the life and times of the Middle Ages. (2 hrs south of Salzburg)
In the Salzburger Saalachtal, the village of Lofer and the surrounding area have numerous sightseeing attractions in store for visitors. Follow in the footsteps of the woodcutters of old - along an old logging path from "Devil's Gorge" in the direction of Unken. Or explore the ruins of a fortress atop Pass Strub. The church of Maria Kirchental in St. Martin has been a destination for pilgrims since the 17th century. You will also find history and tradition at Kniepass fortress and at the Kalchofengut in Unken. Or learn all about local history from the plaques on the houses located in the center of the market town of Lofer. (approx. 1 hr southwest of Salzburg)
The VIA CULINARIA was especially created so that visitors can experience the food culture of the SalzburgerLand. It leads you out on 8 different culinary pathways to the most delicious products the Salzburg region has to offer: The Culinary Pathway for Gourmets is home to exquisite award-winning restaurants that deliver true culinary enjoyment, all set in spectacular alpine surroundings. The Culinary Pathway for Fish Fans, introduces you to wonderful fish specialties, caught in local streams and lakes. Devotees of fine spirits and exceptional brews should follow the Culinary Pathway for Beer and Schnapps Aficionados. Tender carnivorous indulgences from the region are making their grand entrance along the Culinary Pathway for Meat Eaters. Delicate cheese specialties can be enjoyed on the Culinary Pathway for Cheese Freaks. Last, but not least your sweet cravings will be satisfied at the Culinary Pathway for Sweet Tooths. If you are looking for the special hut atmosphere we suggest to explore the Culinary Pathway for Hut Lovers.
For years now, the SalzburgerLand boasts the highest concentration of internationally acclaimed restaurants in Austria, giving it the nickname "top chef country." The culinary pathway for gourmets brings together the province's very best cuisine, from country inns with deep regional roots, to cosmopolitan inner-city eateries, all rated highly by leading reviewer Gault Millau.
Restaurants at Schloss Fuschl
Schloss Strasse 19
5322 Hof bei Salzburg
Nestled in a fairytale castle along Lake Fuschl, just 20 minutes from Salzburg, Schloss Restaurant at Schloss Fuschl is a gourmet destination in its own right. Try freshly caught fish from the on-site castle fishery and savor a wide selection of Austrian wines from the castle's wine cellar. The experience is best enjoyed al fresco on the legendary lake terrace.
5440 Golling an der Salzach
The Döllerer in Golling, about 30 minutes by car from of Salzburg, is where Chef Andreas Döllerer takes you on a culinary journey through the region with his ‘Cuisine Alpine.’ He serves up sensational dishes with local and organic Pinzgau beef, Tauern lamb, or Bluntau char.
Hotel Johanna Maier (Hubertus)
Am Dorfplatz 1
The celebrated hotel-restaurant in the village of Filzmoos is just located 30 min. south of Salzburg and offers locally sourced and seasonal cuisine paired with international influences, by celebrated chef Johanna Maier.
This first-class restaurant is located in Salzburg's countryside, just 35 km outside of Salzburg, and is well worth a visit. Brothers Karl and Rudi Obauer have been awarded 4 chef hats by “Gault Millau”, 5 crowns by the gourmet guide “A la Carte”, as well as 2 stars by “The Michelin Guide”. The Obauers have been operating their trend-setting restaurant in Werfen since 1979 and their cuisine is characterized by regional products, artisan principles, and harmonizing flavors from around the world.
5300 Hallwang bei Salzburg
Nestled amid the green countryside just outside Salzburg, Iris and Jürgen Vigné run this beautiful place since 2010, which represents a young approach to epicurean enjoyment: top quality, paired with a relaxed and personal atmosphere.
The quintessential Europe experience.
Geographically, politically, artistically and culinarily, all roads have led to Vienna for centuries. The results speak for themselves. Imperial grandeur. Cutting-edge culture. Stunning natural beauty. Austria doesn't just embody the great European traditions -- it's the essence of Europe itself.
Most Popular Ski Regions
Austria's mountain resorts offer activities for the skier and non-skier alike. Regions like the Arlberg, Kitzbuehel, Innsbruck & Stubai Glacier & the Montafon ski region offer not only great outdoor activities but also great culinary delights
The Arlberg region
Lech, Zuers, St. Anton. The Arlberg region is not only the birthplace of modern Alpine skiing, but also a most popular playground for Europe's Royal families. Located 4,278 – 9,223 feet above sea level the Arlberg is serviced by 88 ski lifts, 189 miles of downhill terrain, 124 miles of deep snow and glacier skiing. It has all the right ingredients for winter fun in the Austrian Alps punctuated by variety, historic charm and world class amenities.
Enjoy the many Apr?s-Ski bars, tennis and squash, ice-skating, alpine curling, tobogganing and horse-drawn sleigh rides. The cuisine is as dazzling and varied as the terrain, be it on a rustic alpine hut or in one of the many restaurants throughout the region.
The nearest airports: Innsbruck: 62 miles; Zurich: 124 miles; Munich: 130 miles. Scheduled bus service between Zurich airport and the Arlberg is available on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
A picture-perfect Tyrolean town set in the magnificent Alps. It also hosts the worlds’ most famous ski race "Hahnenkammrennen”. This jewel of a town has a decades-long tradition and an international reputation that has helped define winter sports and the entire ski industry. There is probably no winter sport which cannot be practiced in Kitzbühel. The Kitzbühel-Reith-Aurach ski area is a skiers’ delight with 116 miles (188 kilometers) of manicured slopes, 57 ski lifts, a top-notch fun park for snowboarders, deep-snow slopes, and mountains perfect for ski tours. The town is famous not only for sports but also for its hospitality. Enjoy Kitzbühel's excellent hotels, culinary delights, après-ski excitement, and its nightlife!
Innsbruck & the Stubai Glacier
Innsbruck has earned the reputation of being THE winter sports capital. The city works hard to maintain and improve its twin character as a top-class ski area as well as a sophisticated urban center. Innsbruck, with its striking location at the foot of the Alps offers guests a tempting choice of great skiing and snowboarding in six different areas.
Longing for the ultimate winter sports destination? The Stubai Glacier is your answer. Enjoy more than 43 miles (69 kilometers) of ski runs for intensive downhill skiing, carving and boarding or test your endurance on 2.8 miles of cross-country tracks. Have fun exploring the Stubai Glacier located at an altitude from 5,741 to 10,500 ft. above sea level.
The Montafon valley is about 25 miles long and includes 11 villages located at altitudes of 1,969-4,757 ft. and ringed by majestic peaks of 3,312 meters, or over 10,000 ft.
There are villages with a casual, sporty atmosphere and a varied program of leisure activities, cozy localities suitable for families, as well as quiet Alpine villages perfect for relaxing.
Schruns, Gaschurn, Gargellen in the Vorarlberg provice are most easily reached via Zuerich as they are closest to our Swiss neighbors. Winter turns this Alpine valley into one big skiing paradise. 66 mountain railways and ski lifts, around 122 miles of marked, manicured downhill runs, ski tours on the sparkling white Silvretta glaciers, 62 miles of cross-country trails, 119 miles of winter hiking trails, artificial and natural toboggan runs and ten skiing schools.
From Ostarrichi to Austria
By the latter half of the second century AD, various German tribes were extending their territory, making devastating incursions into Roman territories. By the mid-500s, the Bavarians controlled the territory between the eastern Alps and the Wienerwald region. Around 800 Charlemagne, the king of Franks and eventually Holy Roman Emperor, established a territory in the Danube valley known as the Ostmark (Eastern March).
Between 976, when Leopold von Babenberg became the margrave of the Ostmark, and 1246, the Duchy of Austria was one of the extensive feudal possessions of the Babenberg family. In the 12th century Henry II moved his residence to Vienna which has remained the capital of the country ever since. Also in the 12th century the Cathedral of Saint Stephan was completed, which became a visible landmark of the city, showing its prominence.
Beginning of the Habsburg Rule
Some 100 years later Rudolf I emerged with the crown, beginning six centuries of Habsburg rule in Austria. The centerpiece of their realm was the Imperial Palace in Vienna, today accommodating several museums (Treasury, Sisi Museum) providing a good overview of the Habsburgs.
The Turkish threat, which included unsuccessful sieges of Vienna in 1529 and in 1683, prompted Poland, Venice, and Russia to join the Habsburg Empire in repelling the Turks. In the late 1690s, command of the imperial forces was entrusted to Prince Eugene of Savoy. Under his leadership, Habsburg forces won control of all but a small portion of Hungary by 1699.
With the end of the Turkish threat, the arts and culture experienced a surge. Splendid edifices such as Schloss Schönbrunn (World Cultural Heritage) or the Salzburger Dom were built; architects like Johann Fischer v. Erlach, Lukas v. Hildebrandt, Jakob Prandtauer, Daniel Gran, Paul Troger, Franz Anton Maulbertsch created exceptional monuments.
From Biedermeier to Jugendstil (Art Nouveau)
The French revolution in 1789 and the rise of Napoleon, who secured French possession of many Austrian territories, proved to be a major threat to the Habsburgs. During the Congress of Vienna (1814/15), held with the purpose of redrawing the continent's political map after Napolen’s defeat, Austrian Chancellor Metternich tried to reconsolidate Austrian power. In 1848 the French philosophy of middle-class revolution reached Austria, but the rebellion was promptly squashed, and Emperor Franz I and Metternich responded by cutting down civil liberties and introducing a strict censorship. The second part of the Biedermeier period was marked by a growing urbanization and industrialization that lead to a new urban middle class.
The 20th Century
Brimming with ethnic tensions and locked into a rigid system of alliances from the 19th century wars, the Austro-Hungarian monarchy was a catastrophe waiting to happen. The necessary spark was the assassination of the Austrian archduke and heir to the throne, Franz Ferdinand in June 1914 in Sarajevo. Austria’s declaration of war against Serbia marked the beginning of World War I. In 1933, the weak coalition government between the Christian-Social and the Social-Democratic parties gave way when Engelbert Dollfuss became Chancellor in 1932 as head of a right-wing coalition government, designed to tackle the problems caused by the Depression. In May 1934 Doffluss declared martial law in order to protect Austria from Hitler.
On March 12, 1938, German troops marched into Austria and the country was incorporated into the German Reich ruled by Adolf Hitler. After the end of World War II in 1945, Austria was restored to its 1937 frontiers and occupied by the victorious allies – the USA, the Soviet Union, the UK, and France – for a decade.
The 21st Century
On May 15, 1955, the Austrian State Treaty was ratified, with Austria declaring its permanent neutrality. Thanks to its location near the “Iron Curtain”, Austria soon developed into a nerve center between the West and the East. After the 1956 Hungarian Revolution and the 1968 Prague Spring Invasion, Austria granted asylum to the refugees. Austria is also the host country of many international organizations (UNO, OPEC) as well as host of many important conference and summit meetings. The Iron Curtain fell in 1989/90; in 1995 Austria becomes a member of the European Union.
Hiking & Cycling Pleasures
Situated in the heart of Europe and consequently criss-crossed by centuries-old trade routes from time immemorial, Austria is a natural wonderland.
In the SalzburgerLand, which is the province surrounding the city of Salzburg, you have many hiking and walking trails in breathtaking natural beauty.
The Sound of Music Trail
In the village of Werfen – set in the bucolic Austrian Alps just outside the gates of Salzburg, the very first “The Sound of Music Trail” was created. The trail features interactive stations and recollections from the world-famous musical, treats visitors to brand-new experiences as it allows them to retrace the von Trapp family story.
The life of the von Trapp family and the filming of the musical “The Sound of Music” are world famous and a pivotal moment in our own history. The 20th Century Fox studio’s most successful film ever, those moving musical experiences and, above all, the personal journey of the von Trapp family are absolutely unforgettable.
More than 50 years after it was originally filmed, Werfen is now home to the new “The Sound of Music Trail”, which recounts the very story which took place in the Salzburg countryside, amid the expanses and high peaks of Werfen’s alpine world.
Start the trail next to the local tourist office. The “Kaisersteg” hiking trail, which leads from Werfen up to an area known as the Gschwandtanger, is transformed into a fascinating, captivating, yet still utterly natural theme path. It is an easy walk in sturdy shoes for young and old alike, numerous scenic points along the way inviting you to stop, pause for thought and enjoy a pleasant break.
The goal of this special journey back in time is the Gschwandtanger, where one of the most famous scenes in movie history was filmed. Here, Julie Andrews in the role of Maria von Trapp takes the children on a picnic and teaches them the beloved song “DO-RE-MI”. Magnificent Hohenwerfen Castle stands in the background. A scene which has been viewed by over one billion people. And precisely at this location is one of the trail’s most delightful attractions: a specially designed photo opportunity, which allows you to take a picture with the playing children and Maria.
Playful interactive musical experiences are the focus of this trail. For example: Use the crank to play the notes from “DO-RE-MI” on a wooden musical player roll. A rotating magic cube – made meticulously from wood in an original design – allows you to build various phrases from the song. A tunnel leading to the trail, likewise made of wood, recalls scenes from the movie set in Mirabell Gardens in Salzburg City.
“The Sound of Music Trail” is a new opportunity to stroll back in history and, surrounded by glorious countryside, discover the wonders of SalzburgerLand’s mountains and alpine pastures, along with our rich history. The same applies, of course, to our culinary world. The local delicacies served locally – whether at inns, restaurants, the bakery or butcher’s, and even up at mountain huts – promise a true treat for the taste buds, while providing the perfect energy boost during your hike.
Vacations in the heart of SalzburgLand
Werfen is a picturesque town, located about 25 miles south of Salzburg, the provincial capital. The community offers numerous recreational opportunities for all ages and seasons. During your stay in Werfen, discover untamed natural beauty while hiking or biking, Ready for some culture: we recommend to visit Werfen’s most famous highlight: the Giant Ice Caves. These natural caves extend an impressive 26 miles deep into the mountain, the first 1.2 miles of which feature impressive ice formations open to the public. These are the most extensive ice caves discovered to-date, definitely a natural wonder not to be missed. Equally fascinating: a visit to Hohenwerfen Castle, with magical views of the valley.
Austria offers a wide selection of long-distance hiking trails linking various countries. One of the most fascinating of these is the Alpe-Adria-Trail, leading from the glaciers of National Park Hohe Tauern to the Adriatic coast. The trail is split into 43 stages of around 10.5 - 12.4 miles each, and every section is full of unforgettable impressions from thundering waterfalls to lush mountain pastures, weathered farm buildings, mysterious ravines and hospitable inns where the rambler can enjoy local culinary delicacies. The fact that this hike - as well as its individual sections - is also availableas a package, including a knowledgeable guide and reserved accommodation along the way, is an added incentive to lace up your hiking boots.
Cycling in the SalzburgerLand area
Music-loving visitors might prefer to retrace some of the journeys of Austria’s most famous composer on the Mozart Cycle Path, which links many of the historic places where the musical genius was active as well as passing through the spectacularly beautiful lake district of SalzburgerLand.
Even the shy beaver can be spotted occasionally, and a good way to see more of nature’s more reclusive inhabitants is to enlist the services of a nature guide. But whether one chooses a hiking trail, a cycling path or a waterway to explore Austria and its neighboring countries, an increasing number of visitors take pleasure in doing this using their own muscle power instead of an immense amount of horsepower.
Alpine Summer in Salzburg - Sustainable Recreation
Leave your daily routine behind and discover the bucolic alpine pastures and rustic mountain huts high up in a small piece of paradise in the Alps of the SalzburgerLand: over 1,800 separate grazing areas and 550 mountain huts, more than anywhere else in all of Austria. And 170 of those huts are also certified “Alpine Summer Huts”, a distinction that’s not easy to achieve. This coveted certificate is only awarded to authentic huts that employ traditional farming methods. There, your hosts spend the entire summer up in the mountains, where their cattle are able to graze on fresh alpine herbs and enjoy a bit of a summer vacation of their own.
Home-produce such as cheese, bacon and bread are served along with a hearty helping of sincere hospitality. Sitting on a sunny bench outside of the hut as you take in the breathtaking sight of the surrounding peaks, it’s no wonder that the food seems to taste twice as good. And fresh drinking water is never in short supply at these Alpine Summer Huts either. In this way, visitors can enjoy an authentic hut experience without having to forego any of the essentials, while their hosts do their bit to preserve the valuable heritage of the alpine hill-farming community. In the valley, too, over 100 certified Alpine Summer Partners – from hotels to inns and guest houses – make their own invaluable contribution to your personal experience of all that Alpine Summer has to offer.
Due to the wide variety of hiking opportunities, everyone is certain to discover their own perfect pathway: Whether walkers in search of pure peace & quiet, nature-loving families or ambitious alpinists, during Alpine Summer our clearly marked hiking trails, such as the 217-mile-long Salzburger Almenweg, are guaranteed to appeal to every taste. And for those of you who want to keep things as laid-back as possible, our summertime mountain lifts have an irresistible appeal all their own.
Health and Nature in SalzburgerLand
Vacationers with health complaints such as cardiovascular disease, allergies, asthma and chronic pain, find a perfect destination here in the “Alpine Health Region SalzburgerLand”. The clear alpine air, hot springs, natural spring-fed pools, modern clinics, specialized spa centers and exceptional hotels combine effectively to supply travelers with even more good health, both during your vacation and long after your return home. The effects of this unique constellation of health benefits have even been scientifically proven.
“Alpine Health Region SalzburgerLand” covers everything from wellness hotel to rehab center and a Healing Gallery, the close collaboration between experts opens up whole new treatment opportunities. And due to our optimal elevations, even taking a gentle stroll contributes to improved health, while asthma patients are able to breathe freely again in the clear alpine air. When the water from the tallest falls in Europe, Krimml Waterfalls, plunges to the depths below, the spray it kicks up creates a healthful aerosol effect. The finely-nebulized particles contained in the mist have long-lasting positive benefits for asthma problems and other complaints affecting the lungs.
Gastein Valley - A Paradise of Good Health
The Gastein Healing Gallery helps combat rheumatic and inflammatory diseases of the musculoskeletal system, respiratory passages and the skin. The noble gas radon, which is emitted deep within the surrounding mountains, also helps to reduce inflammation and reduce pain. The hot water vapor produced inside the Gastein Healing Gallery is famous far beyond Austria’s borders for its health benefits.
In Austria there is a predominantly Central European fauna: deer, stag, rabbit, pheasant, fox, badger, marten, and partridge. Native to the Alpine regions are the chamois, groundhog, eagle and mountain jackdaw. Characteristic of the Pannonian fauna is the vast bird population in the reed beds of Lake Neusiedl (heron, spoonbill, scooper, wild goose, and many more) in Austria's easternmost region, the Burgenland.
In recent years, Austria has become home again to a small bear population, which can mainly be found in the heavily wooded southern and central mountain regions.
The diversity of topographical and climatic conditions accounts for the country's species-rich flora. Austria is one of Europe's most heavily wooded countries.
Characteristic are the deciduous forest (oak, beech), the mixed forest (beech, fir) and in the higher altitude regions fir, larch and pine.
Especially diverse and colorful is the Alpine flora: edelweiss, gentian, Alpine carnation, arnica, Alpine rose, heather and much more.
The northern edge of the Alps is especially dominated by grassland; typical in the Pannonian region (Burgenland) are the scrub forest, mixed deciduous forest and the steppe moors. East of Lake Neusiedl one finds a unique salt steppe flora.
Austria's nature parks (about 3 percent of the country) document the diversity of the landscape with its unique natural landscapes, such as the rain and virgin forests.