After an epic drive from Budapest (it took 8 hours) we arrived in Hallstatt, a small town and huge lake in the Salzkammergut region of the Alps. We got the funicular train up to the viewing platform where you have a 360degree view of the lake.
Up here you can also visit the salt mine which is what the area is famous for.
Back down we had dinner at a restaurant and had a wander through the town.
In a much better mood after the horrific drive it took us only an hour to get to Salzburg. Our hotel was a 25minute walk from the city centre but was on the river so not a bad walk.
Day 1: Salzburg is a much smaller city than Vienna and has a more rustic feel so it is really nice to walk around. After an ‘authentic’ breakfast of some meringuey, too-sweet, pastry thing we went on the Sound of Music Tour!
Any fan knows the film was set in Salzburg. The tour is only 40euros and the bus takes you to sites within the city like the Mirabell Gardens, Hellbrunn Palace (the gazebo Liesl dances round) and Leopoldskron Palace (the lake at the back of the Captain’s house).
Then you are driven out of the city to tour the lakes and finally end up in Monsee where the church is that Maria and the Captain get married. The tour guide is hilarious and whilst in the bus they play songs from the film- I have never been in an enclosed space with so many men crying at Edelweiss.
Amazing tour, highly enjoyable and I’m not even a fan of the film (I actually hadn’t seen it at this time, but don’t let the others on the tour know this or you’ll be extradited)
When we got back, we had a quick pizza and then attended a Mozart concert in the Mirror Room of the Mirabell Castle (Mozart actually performed here). An hour and a half of classical music and we had balanced out are cultural needs.
Day 2: Before leaving today we wandered around the Mirabell Gardens and went to the other side of the river where the castle sits.
At 11am we waited for the Glockenspiel in the square to play. For the record I would not recommend prioritising any tourist attraction that claims it is a clock in anyway. They have all been an anti-climax and a waste of time.
On to the castle which has an ok audio tour but has a great 360 view of the city and countryside.
So Salzburg is a beautiful little town with lots of history- much calmer than other big cities which was what we needed by then. Would definitely go back if I find myself that way.
Ciao for now,