10 Things to do in Salzburg
Salzburg is well known as the birthplace of Mozart and the city where many of the outdoor scenes of The Sound of Music was filmed. In fact, you can even take a 4-hour tour to go see all the film locations in Salzburg. Side note I’m a die-hard The Sound of Music fan, my brother in law even bought me the DVD. But, there’s more to do and see than Sound of Music related activities. Salzburg has many museums and historic buildings and the mountains and river which divides the city in half all adds to Salzburg’s allure. My list of things to do will feature a few highlights.
The square features the baroque style horse fountain. The water shimmers and streams out of the sculpted horses’ mouths. The fountain is a popular photo spot and is a beautiful piece of art which links the past with the present. 50 Medieval buildings were torn down to build this square. It’s large, and the view of the mountain cliffs all adds to the square’s beauty. The square is used to screen football matches, it hosts concerts and New Years Eve celebrations to. Plus, in The Sound of Music scene where Maria and the Von Trapp Children are riding in the horse driven carriage they pass through the square and pass by the fountain.
2. Go see Hohensalzburg castle and the museum exhibits
It was scorching hot on the day I visited Salzburg so I skipped the hike up to the castle and decided to pay extra for the funicular. The hike isn’t strenuous though so you could skip the funicular save the cash and buy a beer at the brewery located at Residenzplatz. Hohensalzburg castle overlooks Salzburg You can see all the dome spires, buildings and the ever-flowing Salzch River. The view from the castle is worth visiting it. The exhibits inside the castle are also very interesting. There are various objects inside weapons, plates and even a chastity belt. There’s so much to see and so much to learn so don’t miss out on checking out the castle. Hohensalzburg castle is situated on top of Festungsberg Mountain, its summit is 542 meters high and forms part of the Old Town district of Salzburg. The castle was built to serve as a fortress and building started in 1077. The Castle was only ever under siege in 1592 during the German Peasants war. A few Miners, farmers and townsfolk sought to oust Prince Archbishop Matthaus Lang, but they failed to do so. During WW1 the castle was used to imprison Italian troops. Nazi activists were also held captive at Hohensalzburg castle before the 1930 Anschluss with Germany.
3.See Getreidegasse (Grain Lane)
The street may possibly be the busiest street in Salzburg. This is because Mozart was born at No. 9 Getreidegasse street.The house is brightly painted and now houses a museum dedicated to the virtuoso. The street also forms part of Salzburg’s Old Town which is a World UNESCO Heritage Site. It houses many shops this includes, restaurants, international fashion shops, inns and souvenir stores etc. There are also through houses which can be found on the street. These houses have a front and back which leads out onto different streets. The street also features charming metal guild signs which are very visible from the front of the stores. I took a stroll down the street and purchased a Salzburg shot glass.
4.Check out Mozart’s house
Mozart was born on the 27th of January 1756, on the 3rd floor of the house. The house is a museum which features Mozart’s early life, his first instruments, friends and his interest in the opera is exhibited. The house also provides insight as to how people lived in Salzburg.
5. Visit the Slazch river
There is a memorial at the bridge connecting the two parts of the city. It commemorates the work of the prisoners of war and forced labourers who built the bridge between 1941 and 1945. There are locks also along the bridge. And grassy banks where you can sit and watch the boats go by, whilst having a picnic. There’s also a boat trip which you can take, and Hotel Sacher is located along the bank of the Slazch river. You could go there to grab a slice of Sachertorte since the hotel chain is iconic for serving this cake.
6.Go visit Mozart’s house
The house was where Mozart lived from 1773 to 1787. It stands in Markartplatz. In 1944 during WW2 it was air bombed. The part of the house which remained was purchased by the Mozart Foundation in 1955. It was rebuilt by using the original house plans and now houses a museum. I only got to see the outside. I took a walking tour for about an hour, and my tour group didn’t have a chance to see the inside of the building.
7.Mirabell Palace and Gardens
In 1606 Mirabell Palace was built. It was built by Prince Archbishop Wolf Dietrich for the women he loved Salome. The Marble Hall inside of the castle was the banquet hall, and today it is used as a wedding reception hall, conference and award ceremony venue.
The Palace Garden is characterized by its lush green lawns, colourful flowers, intricate sculptures and distinctive fountains. The sculptures and fountains are based on various mythological characters. In the Sound and Music Maria and the Von Trapp children dance and sing around the Pegasus Fountain in front of Mirabell Palace and sing the song Do Re Me, the song Maria uses to teach the children how to sing. There is a Sound of Music puppet show which is held close to where the garden is, so if you are a big fan why not go see the show.
Try something authentically Austrian. Like chicken or veal schnitzel with a side of potatoes. If you have a sweet tooth like me try the Sacher torte like I did. I had it in Vienna and again at the Golden Kugel in Salzburg. The city also has a long history of beer brewing so if you are a beer lover why not grab a Salzburg brewed beer. Eating and drinking local food adds to the travelling experience and helps you connect with the local culture.