Salzburg is one of those cities where there is no bad time to visit. If you are planning a trip in the winter, there is charm to the city with fresh snow, Christmas markets serving warm nuts and glüwhein and pop-up ice skating rinks in the middle of the city squares. When spring comes and the trees and grass turn green again, Salzburg is the perfect place, with mild temperatures, to enjoy a bike ride through the cobble-stone city streets and out to the Schloss Leopoldskron and lake.
Views not to miss:
Take the “passion path” up to the monastery at Kapuzinerkloster park which starts from Linzer Gasse for a sweeping view of the city, Hohensalzburg Fortress and the mountains as a backdrop. This is a great place to watch the fireworks on New Years Eve, or just admiring the fresh snowfall from the previous night. The views along the passion path on the walk up are also worth taking some time to admire. Here you will be able to escape the tourist crowds, with only a few other people stopping by the admire the view while we were up there.
I suggest taking the Imbergstiege Path down from the monastery. Here you will get a completely different experience with a walk along what feels like a secret staircase leading from the monastery back down to the Old Town on Stein Gasse.
Museum der Moderne of Salzburg
The view from the Museum der Moderne is spectacular! From outside the front of the museum, you will get the view of the Old Town and the Hohensalzburg Fortress. This museum is located at the top of Monk’s Mountain which you can see from most places in the city. We enjoyed a walk up from around the back of the museum from Monchsberg street. There is also a lift that takes you straight up to the top located in the Museumplatz off of
Places to eat:
Augustiner Bräu Kloster Mülln, Lindhofstr. 7, 5020 Salzburg
The Augstiner is originally a Munich brewhouse so not original to Austria, but we were ok with that. Here we had a great meal for a reasonable price and even found a cozy spot upstairs near the bar where we could relax a little from our drive from Vienna. If you aren’t going to make it to Munich to enjoy the original Augustiner, this is a great runner up. I even dare to say I enjoyed this location better away from the crowds.
Le Coq en Pâte, Linzergasse 72, 5020 Salzburg
Being in Austria for the past 5 days, we were looking for a change in menu options. Located on Linzer Gasse, near our hotel, we decided to try out the quaint French restaurant. I would personally suggest the open lasagna, truffle carbonara, smoked bacon and egg yolk, which comes at a very reasonable price. In the spring and summer this would be beautiful spot to spend a few hours on their outdoor patio just watching the people go by.
Zum Zirkelwirt, Pfeifergasse 14, 5020 Salzburg
If this is your first day in Austria, and you are really itching for some authentic food, Zum Zirkelwirt if your place. The menu has a variety of salads, pastas, meats, dumplings and of course, Schnitzel. The popularity of this place can be seem by the packed tables, so definitely make a reservation if you plan to go during peak hours.
Things to do:
This is Salzburg’s main tourist attraction, but fortunately it is easy enough to walk up and buy tickets at the ticket office without reservation online. This is great if you aren’t really sure when you want to visit during your stay. There are three ways to get to the Castle on the top of the hill. First, you can take the funicular railway up from the Festungsgasse about every 10 minutes. Included in your admission to the castle is a one way ride on the funicular, so we took this route back down. Second, by walking the road from downtown to the castle, which is a steep 30 minute walk. The third route, which we very much enjoyed, was the pathway between the Museum der Moderne and the Hohensalzburg Castle. We had already climbed all the way up to the museum for a view and a beer, so we wanted to use our altitude to our advantage. This walk was very pleasant, not too steep at any point, and we were virtually by ourselves. This route also affords different views of the castle not many people see. Which ever way you choose, once you get to the castle, stop and take in the free view!
Mirabell Palace and Gardens
The Mirabell gardens are a famous location spot from the movie, The Sound of Music. The gardens are free to enjoy, as well as the Marble Hall and the Angel Staircase inside the palace. There is no time commitment here, so stay for 5 or 30 minutes. Also keep an our eye for a bride or two walking through the gardens. The Mirabel Palace hosts many weddings and receptions, especially in the warmer months.
Ice skating on Mozart Square
If you are visiting during the winter, this is a great afternoon or evening activity. Rent a pair of skates and skate around for as long as you want! Afterwards, you can grab a hot chocolate or a glühwein at the Treml lounge right next to the rink.
Lunch at Modern Museum of Salzburg
There is a great, cozy restaurant called M32 located inside the Museum der Moderne overlooking the same view from the front of the museum. We stopped in here for a beer to take in the view while resting before we continued our journey to the Hohensalzburg Castle. We sat in the bar area of the restaurant which was very laid back and casual. While we didn’t have lunch here, many around were enjoying meals and everything I snuck a peek at looked delicious.
The famous shopping street in Salzburg is Getreidegasse, which is different from other alleys in Salzburg due to its ornate store sign’s, previously ornate house numbers. This street is full of top-end stores and restaurants. I enjoy to window shop down this alley, and make my real purchases at the Christmas in Salzburg store which is open year round. The tradition of painting eggs by hand has been around Europe for hundreds of years. These specialized ornaments have many meanings and represent the end of winter, partnership, and new life, among others. Each egg at Christmas in Salzburg is gently blown out, cleaned and individually painted by hand in Austria. They are also nicely packaged in egg cartons for security when you continue on your trip. Christmas in Salzburg is located at Judengasse 11, Salzburg, A-5020, Salzburg.
Sound of Music Bike Tour
What is better than to combine a tour of Salzburg with the major movie spots from the Sound of Music. The tour only runs from April through October and will last about 3.5 hours in total. From my own personal experience, the tour goes rain or shine. This bike tour takes you to some places that you wouldn’t ordinarily walk by on foot, which is a great way to get some exercise and see the Frohnburg Palace, Leopoldskron Palace and Lake, the famous gazebo and the The Nonnberg Abbey. Reservations are needed in advance, book here.
Walk along the Salzach River
Take a walk along the Salzach River via Elisabethkai street on the same side of the river as the Mirabell Gardens for stunning views of the city and the Hohensalzburg castle perched on its hilltop. This is a great free activity for early morning before they city has fully woken up or before dinner at sunset to take in the beautiful views.
Day trip: Hallstatt, Austria