There Are Lots of Great Things to Do in Salzburg!
Are you a fan of hilltop castles, beautiful gardens, and listening to a little Mozart? If so then Salzburg is definitely a place you should consider visiting! There are lots of great things to do and see in Salzburg – and whether you visit in February or July, you can have a great time exploring one of Austria’s most popular cities!
We explored Salzburg on a larger trip through Austria and Germany and it quickly became one of our favorite cities on that trip. We stayed for a few days and even with one day of rain we got to explore top attractions like the Fortress, Schloss Hellbrunn, and more.
So, from exploring the historic old town to biking along the Salzach River (you should do that), here’s a massive list of things to do in Salzburg, what we loved checking out, and what to know when visiting.
If you are heading for Salzburg – or exploring Austria, in general – here are a bunch of other useful guides to help you plan your trip!
- Where to Stay in Salzburg: Our Area and Accommodation Guide
- 16 Great Day Trips from Salzburg
- Discover Top Things to Do in Vienna
- Our Guide on Vienna Accommodations
- Exploring the Best Things to Do in Innsbruck
Also, if you want to see what the city looks like, you can even watch our Salzburg video on YouTube to see the places mentioned in this post!
Things To Know When Visiting Salzburg
If you are planning a trip to Salzburg, there are a number of things you should think about when planning your visit. These details include when to visit, how to get around, and where to stay – among other things! Salzburg is a popular city so planning in advance is important – especially in the summer. We dive into these sections below.
Best Time to Visit Salzburg
Salzburg is a city that is located close to the German border which makes getting to Munich pretty easy from here. Because of its location close to the Alps, the seasons can be quite different from one another and the city offers visitors something different in each one!
We visited Salzburg in September and it was still a very nice temperature to be out exploring. The flowers were still in bloom in the Mirabell Gardens, too. We just needed a light jacket! It was still pretty busy – and we can’t even imagine what the summer high tourist season might be like.
That said, people also visit Salzburg in the wintertime for the Christmas markets, festivities, and as an easy access point for skiing in the mountains surrounding the city. If you aren’t going for winter activities, we’d suggest the “shoulder seasons” of spring or fall for fair weather and fewer people.
>> If you are visiting Salzburg in the winter, be sure to attend a Christmas Concert at Mirabell Palace!
How to Get To/Around Salzburg
If you are coming to Salzburg from abroad, it’s easy to drive to the city from other places in Austria like Vienna or from neighbouring Germany. The highway system is pretty good – just be sure to account for potential weather and poorer driving conditions if you are travelling in the winter.
The airport – Salzburg Airport (SZG) is located just a short drive/taxi/bus from the centre so you can fly into Salzburg easily enough as well. More likely, you can take the train to Salzburg from Munich or from other places in Austria/Germany. The trains are great – fast, reliable, and affordable. You can check the Austrian train website (OBB) for tickets and times here. You can also check the DB website for the German train system.
Once you arrive in Salzburg, the train station is located at the northern end of the city and about a 10-minute bus ride from the heart of the Old Town. This is what we did: we hopped on the bus from the central station to get to the river (which splits the city centre). That said, we actually walked once from the Old Town to the station in about 25 minutes so it’s also doable.
Interesting Fact: Public transit in Salzburg is eco-friendly because it’s made up of electric trolleys and buses! You can learn more about taking public transit here. If you plan on visiting lots of attractions in the city and using public transit, you should check out the Salzburg Card. It might be a great fit for you!
Once you are in the Old Town, the city is very walkable around the river – but there are also places that you can visit which are located up on the hills. Usually, attractions that are up on a hill have an elevator or mountain train option (more on that below for getting up to the Salzburg Fortress).
Where To Stay In Salzburg
There are lots of great places to stay in Salzburg. We’d recommend booking well in advance especially if you visit in the summer or Christmas season since places fill up and accommodation can be a little more expensive.
We actually have a whole detailed Salzburg accommodation guide where you can read up on the areas to stay and specific accommodation options. To sum it up for you: the city has a mix of hotels, apartments, and lots of guesthouses (basically bed and breakfasts) that you can choose from.
When we visited, we actually did book a little last minute but still found a great guesthouse called Boutique-Gasthof Überfuhr. The place was on the river, about 20 minutes walking from the city centre. It was a quiet peaceful area with free bike rentals and a nice breakfast each morning. We’d recommend for sure – and we paid for the stay ourselves so this is a legitimate review.
If you want to stay in a hotel closer to the city centre/Old Town, you can check here for hotels in Salzburg. Specifically, have a look at Hotel Elefant for a charming hotel right in the Old Town and The Mozart Hotel for a trendy boutique stay also in the city centre. You’ll come to see that Mozart is a BIG deal here in Salzburg!
Things To Do In Salzburg, Austria
Alright, now that you’ve got a few trip planning details to think about, we’ll dive into the things to do in the city. We actually get pretty detailed here – there are more than 23 things and you’ll see that we’ve added more attractions or places to check out in some of the sections!
A noticeable absence from this list is the Salzburg Zoo. It’s located over at Schloss Hellbrunn and might be a good stop if you are travelling to Salzburg with kids. While we did go to Schloss Hellbrunn (see below) we didn’t go to the Zoo – and usually don’t recommend zoos in our articles since it’s always so difficult to tell from a distance how well the animals are treated.
The Historic City Centre of Salzburg
While we will dive into specific attractions and points of interest in Salzburg below, this is a great time to mention that the historic city centre of Salzburg is actually a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This makes it a great place to just wander about because there are many sights and sounds to take in.
One of the reasons for this designation is because in the past the city served as a significant meeting point of Italian and German culture and influence – due to its unique location. Along with this reason for designation, the city centre is still very authentic. It’s been well-preserved and is filled with history and Baroque architecture.
After a quick wander around the city centre, you’ll realize that you could spend a day just reading dates on buildings and wandering side alleys. There is a lot to see and learn about so if you want to dive deep into this history, you might consider a guided walking tour of just the Salzburg Old Town!
Of course, sitting above that historic city centre is a very popular thing to explore when you visit the city. In fact, some might argue that Fortress Hohensalzburg – or the Salzburg Castle – is THE reason why they head for the city in the first place!
Originally built back in the 11th century, the castle has been added to many, many times over the centuries – resulting in the shape and size you see today. We visited the inside of the castle and learned all about the detailed history of the castle itself through an audio tour that includes admission to the Observation Tower (which we would highly recommend).
Generally speaking, basic admission to the castle gets you inside the vast inner courtyard and access to a number of wings that hold different museums, exhibits, and other historical areas to see. It also gets you a ride up and down on the FestungsBahn (more below).
Of note, you can explore the grounds, a chapel, bastions, courtyards, the Observation Tower, Castle Museum, Regiment Museum, Puppet Museum, and a few other things. This is what we paid for. You could spend hours just walking around and visiting these exhibits in detail. Another ticket gets you all that and access to the Prince’s Chambers if that interests you!
We ended up actually visiting the Castle Museum (which includes a number of smaller rooms) and did the audio tour at the Observation Tower (again, we would highly recommend it for the history and the views!). There are also places to eat, cafes to sit at with views of the city below, and places to buy souvenirs if you are interested.
As for getting up to the castle, this is where it gets interesting. When we first visited, we walked up to the castle to the entrance you see above. That is a gate with a manned ticket booth. The walk from the old town was doable but definitely uphill the whole way. Once you’re in that gate (shown above), it’s another steep walk uphill until the final inner courtyard.
Luckily, you don’t HAVE to walk up into the castle. Regardless of which admission ticket you buy (there are two options), you can ride the FestungsBahn (cable car/train) up into the base of the castle courtyard.
We rode the train down for the experience and to save our legs. It’s easy to get on (just use your ticket at the gate) and they go up and down frequently. You can get your Salzburg Castle Admission ticket here.
Overall, we would definitely recommend a visit to the castle. It’s very well done, not too touristy, and a way to truly appreciate the city below you. For a more magical experience, you might even consider having a dinner with views and live concert up at the Castle when you visit!
Address: Mönchsberg 34, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
Salzburg Cathedral (Dom)
Once you come down from the castle (using the FestungsBahn), you will be in the heart of Salzburg’s historic Old Town. One of the places you should visit next (this is what we did because it’s right in front of you) is the Dom zu Salzburg or Salzburg Cathedral, in English.
Built back in the 17th century, the cathedral is a beautiful example inside and out of the city’s Baroque architecture. It was badly damaged in World War II but has since been restored and it receives quite a few visitors each year. We wandered inside (it’s free) and the detail on the domed ceilings is beautiful.
Your visit might include attending a service or visiting the Cathedral Museum (part of the DomQuartier mentioned right below) or the Crypt, among other things. You can also visit the website to learn more about hours and exhibits.
Just outside the main entrance, you will find yourself in Domplatz (Cathedral Square). This is one of the squares where the city holds the famous Salzburger Christkindlmarkt (Christmas Market) if you visit in the weeks before Christmas. We haven’t been but want to come back in December for this exact reason!
Fun Fact: There’s more to see around this area, too. The Franciscan Church is located through a passage close by and is one of the oldest churches in the city. Also, there’s a large golden ball called Sphaera located in Kapitelplatz which is just outside the Cathedral. It’s a modern piece of art, apparently.
Address: Domplatz 1a, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
DomQuartier & Residenzplatz
Once you are done at the Cathedral, you will find much more to see in this significant area of the city. This cluster of buildings and squares is actually called “DomQuartier” which is one historical entity you can wander around.
The DomQuartier includes buildings like the Cathedral, the Residenz, and St. Peter’s Abbey and spaces like Domplatz and the famous Residenzplatz (shown above). This massive square was busy with people and features a large fountain that is perfect for photos.
There are also a number of interconnected museums that you can visit like the Cathedral Museum, St. Peter’s Museum, Residenz Gallery, rooms in the Alte Residenz, among others. You can visit the official website to get the most out of visiting this complex historical area!
The cool thing about this collection of buildings and museums is that a Salzburg DomQuartier admission ticket actually gets you entrance into all five museums listed. You even get an English audio guide to take with you!
Of course, if you are reading this post in order and hanging out close to Residenzplatz, you will have to make a quick stop by Mozartplatz. This small square – complete with a bronze statue of the famous classical composer – is a nice place to have a rest and also learn a bit about the life and times of Mozart.
In fact, the square is located where it is because of the significance of the small houses around it. One of these houses (No. 8) was where his wife once lived and you can read a plaque mentioning this!
In this post, we will cover more places where you can learn all about Salzburg’s own Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. So, stay tuned for how to see and visit his birth house, residence and more!
>> If you are a huge fan of Mozart (or classical music, in general), you might be interested in attending a live Mozart concert up in the Castle!
Address: Residenzpl. 4, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
Right beside Mozartplatz and basically facing Residenzplatz, you will notice a large white clock and bell tower connected to a large beautiful building. This is the home of the Salzburg Carillon – a massive mechanical machine that plays music each day. The restored machine is linked to 35 bells atop the tower which do the actual music-making.
What is really cool about the Carillon Tower is that you can visit and climb it on a guided tour during the warmer summer months. You can learn more about visiting here.
Address: Residenzplatz 9, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
At the base of the same tower and around the corner on Mozartplatz, you get the chance to learn all about the history of the city in the Salzburg Museum (located in the Neue Residenz).
Inside this museum, there is an extensive collection of art and cultural pieces that walk you through the history of the city and the greater region of Austria. It also prides itself on not being boring so head there if you want to learn more about Salzburg! You can learn more at the website here.
Address: Mozartplatz 1, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
Fun Fact: This same building is also the home of the Panorama Museum. This museum features a massively long painting depicting what the city was like in the year 1829! You can go and see it today – learn more here.
Mirabell Palace & Gardens
If you cross the Salzach River from the section of the Old Town mentioned above, you simply cannot head to Salzburg without walking through one of the most famous places: Mirabell Palace and its Gardens. Known as Schloss Mirabell in German, this beautiful palace dates back to 1606!
Today, the Palace itself is used as municipal offices but the lovely baroque Marble Hall is used for concerts, award ceremonies, and is considered one of the most beautiful wedding halls in the whole world – which is quite the title! If you want to experience the Palace in all its glory, you might consider attending a concert in Mirabell Palace when you visit Salzburg!
Besides the Palace, the other area to wander through is the expansive gardens on the grounds. There are a number of smaller garden areas, fountains, and buildings – each with their own history – including a rose garden, the Pegasus Fountain, and the Hedge Theatre.
We had an extended wander through the gardens and they really are beautiful. There was loads of space to spread visitors out so we honestly got to enjoy the gardens without feeling like we were just among a pack of visitors. You have to wander through, it’s definitely worth it!
>> If you visit Salzburg in the winter near Christmas time, consider enjoying a Christmas concert at Mirabell Palace!
Address: Mirabellplatz, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
If you walk about the Old Town (on the same side as the Castle), there is a really, really good chance you will accidentally stumble upon one of the city’s most famous streets – Getreidegasse. This old street that cuts through the old town along the Salzach River is known for its historical houses and many shops (both local and international brands).
The street is known for its metal gilded signs that hang above the shops adding to the charm and elegance of the street. Because of these elements, the street can get very busy in the summer season so be sure to watch your pockets. There are also places to eat or grab a snack along the street but watch the prices since things might be marked up a tad.
If you walk the whole length from near the DomQuartier you will pass the Altes Rathaus overlooking the river. At the very end of the street, you can see a lovely little church – St. Blasius Church. This is also close to the Toy Museum (mentioned down below). There are a number of passageways that lead from the street – often home to little art galleries you can visit.
Speaking of shopping, there’s one more street to shop on in Salzburg. If you cross to the other side of the river (cross the Staatsbrücke at the Altes Rathaus), you’ll find Linzer Gasse Platzl (a public square) and the beginning of Linzer Gasse. This very long pedestrian street is also lined with many shops, restaurants, and hotels.
For the Mozart lovers wandering down Getreidegasse, there is a very good chance you noticed the yellow building known as Mozart’s Geburtshaus. This is the exact house where – in 1756 – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born! Because of the historical significance, it’s a very popular attraction to visit when in Salzburg.
Today, you can wander about the three floors of the museum and learn all about the life of Mozart – from his early childhood to how he developed his passion for music. If you want to learn more and/or book a guided tour, you can check the official website here.
If you wanted to add a little more Mozart to your time in Salzburg, you could attend an elegant dinner and Mozart concert in St. Peter – known as Europe’s oldest restaurant which is nearby.
Another place where you can dive into the life and times of Mozart in Salzburg is the so-called Mozart Residence. This is the house where the Mozart family lived from 1773 to 1787. The building was badly damaged in World War II but has since been restored and opened as a museum.
These days, you can find paintings and original documents as well as a detailed history of the building itself, the family, Mozart’s later years while in Salzburg, and more like some of Mozart’s original instruments! You can learn more about visiting the Mozart Residence on the official website.
Unrelated to the Residence by related to Mozart, if you want to hear live music you can also check out the “Kleines Festspielhaus” or House of Mozart Concert Hall to hear his famous music brought to life once again.
Address: Getreidegasse 9, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
St. Peter’s Monastery & Cemetery
Speaking of St. Peter – the famous old restaurant in Salzburg – we should probably mention where you can find it: the grounds at St Peter’s Monastery.
Known as Stift St. Peter, this very old religious site – founded in the 7th century – is home to the church, abbey, cemetery, and catacombs. In fact, part of this complex is part of the DomQuartier (mentioned above).
Today, you can visit the abbey and wander the cemetery – St. Peter’s (Petersfriedhof) – which is actually quite beautiful given the 12th-century history and architecture.
Movie lovers know the cemetery from “The Sound of Music” as the place where the Trapp family ended up hiding. We will mention the Sound of Music later in this post if that’s a key reason you are visiting Salzburg. For now, you can learn more about visiting on the official website for the monastery (in German only, sorry!)
Address: Sankt-Peter-Bezirk 1, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
If you are tired of walking about and want to experience the city from a different perspective, consider a cruise of the Salzach River. To get on a boat, you can look for the Makartsteg (a walking bridge covered in love locks) as it crosses the river just west of the Staatsbrücke.
The river used to transport salt back in the day and this is how the river – Salz is German for salt – got its name. These days, shallow bottom boats cruise the river taking people for a scenic ride. There are a number of different tours you can do – some even include a Mozart concert up in the Castle. You can learn more about the exact tour routes and times here.
One of the most popular boat cruises is the one that brings you down the river to Schloss Hellbrunn – a beautiful palace that we checked out (and mentioned below in this post). You can find that handy combo ticket for a river cruise and Schloss Hellbrunn here.
Address for Dock: Ferdinand-Hanusch-Platz, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
Salzburg Treats like Salzburger Nockerl
If you are in Salzburg and you have a bit of a sweet tooth, then you are in luck because there are desserts that you should try! Aside from a few desserts that are known to Austria in general – like apple strudel, kaiserschmarrn, or sacher torte – there is one that is specific to Salzburg: Salzburger Nockerl.
This massive dessert with its characteristic “three peaks” (the three hills surrounding the city) is served all over the city centre for the visitors to enjoy. It usually also comes with powdered sugar on the top to represent the snow on the hills which is a nice touch.
Made from more eggs and sugar than you might want to know about, we saw this soufflé also prepared with a raspberry sauce! We didn’t actually try it when we visited – it would have been too much for two people – but saw it being eaten around us and it looked like a wild experience.
>> If you want to try baking your own Salzburger Nockerl as well as apple strudel, you should participate in this Salzburg baking class experience with master chef!
Schloss Hellbrunn & Trick Fountains
One of the other top attractions to visit when you are in Salzburg is Schloss Hellbrunn. Built back in the early 1600s by Markus Sittikus von Hohenems (a Prince-Archbishop of Salzburg), this beautiful palace is open to tour with an audio guide while the gardens are free to enter to wander around.
We actually paid to go into the palace and do a self-guided tour with an audio guide. The audio tour was actually well done and it was really interesting to hear all about his life as well as the history of the building and the city.
Back outside, the garden grounds also feature a famous gazebo – the same one used in “The Sound of Music” – which is a highlight for movie buffs. One more thing to explore on the grounds is the Folklore Museum which is housed in an old hunting lodge built in the 1600s.
The other top reason one would head to visit Schloss Hellbrunn is for the famous trick fountains – called Wasserspiele in German. Back in the day, Markus Sittikus had a thing for entertaining and tricking his guests at his grand palace. So, using only the power of water – and still only water to this day – his engineers built a number of fountains, water features, and mechanical works of art – with water “tricks” around every corner.
We actually went on the guided tour through the back gardens and learned about the history of the water features. It’s pretty entertaining for all ages – just be sure to watch where you sit, and stand, and walk, and take photos… SO worth it!
So you know, the Palace and grounds are located quite a ways south of the city centre. You can catch the bus or drive there. We biked to the Palace along the Salzach which we would highly recommend in the warmer months!
>> If you wanted to get a boat ride down the Salzach River to then visit Hellbrunn, consider this combo river cruise and Hellbrunn ticket!
You can learn all about visiting Schloss Hellbrunn and the famous Trick Fountains here. The seasons really do dictate the tour times and schedules so be sure to check in advance of your visit!
Address: Fürstenweg 37, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
Sound of Music Tour
Speaking of Sound of Music filming locations, are you in Salzburg because of the famous 1965 film? If you are, you might already know that the city is famous for being the actual home of the real von Trapp family and many of the actual filming locations!
To dive into the history of the family and the iconic film, you can explore the city through the various filming locations. From the gazebo sitting in the gardens at Schloss Hellbrunn to Nonnberg Abbey and the Mirabell Gardens, there are numerous places to relive the movie magic.
If you want to see some of these sights and get a guided tour of the beautiful surrounding countryside – which also includes other filming locations in the movie – you can hop on a guided Sound of Music bus tour.
Kapuzinerberg & Capuchin Monastery
Back in the city centre, there is another spot you can head for views of the city: up the Kapuzinerberg to the Monastery. Known as Kapuzinerkloster in German, this large yellow monastery has been up there since the late 1500s. Kapuzinerberg is, of course, one of the famous hills that surround the city centre – as seen in the Salzburger Nockerl dessert!
These days, the church itself is nothing overly fancy. It’s a great place to head to on a hike to get great views of the city from the other side of the river from the Castle. The monastery is also great for some quiet reflection.
There are numerous ways to hike up there but one of the more obvious is from a path off of Linzer Gasse – the popular shopping street we mentioned above. You can learn more at the website here (German only).
Address: Kapuzinerberg 6, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
Mönchsberg Lookout & Museum
If you hadn’t had enough of the beautiful views around the city, there is one more that you might like: head up the Mönchsberg! This hill is located just to the northwest of the historic old town and is the place to get that classic photo of Salzburg you sometimes see (we used it in the “Old Town” section in this post).
At the top of the hill, you will find the Museum der Moderne as well as a restaurant/cafe called M32. The museum – unsurprisingly – is home to modern art while the restaurant/cafe in front offers visitors amazing views of the city below. There’s also a few historical landmarks (towers) up there to see and walking paths that lead you into a wooden area.
To get up there, we’re pretty sure you can walk but you’d have to take walking paths that snake you around the back of the hill. The most direct way from the city centre is to take the elevator (shown above) which is basically in the side of a sheer cliff.
We bought tickets for just the elevator ride up and down but you can also buy a ticket that includes the museum admission, too. We’d recommend the viewpoint for the photo because it really is very pretty. That said, we did stay for a bit by sitting for a rest at the cafe. We just ordered two coffees to enjoy the views.
The restaurant wasn’t very busy because of the time of year but some people were eating full meals. To be honest the service wasn’t great (and the reviews reflect that) but a simple coffee was a safe bet. Some people ordered Salzburger Nockerl which was an experience just to watch people eat it!
Address: Mönchsberg 32, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
Back in the heart of the Old Town, you can find a classic city market to wander through. This market – called Grünmarkt – is a lively (almost) daily farmers’ market that has been running since 1857!
You can find the market close to the university in an area that is car-free called Universitätsplatz. The stalls sell everything from fresh bread and produce to baked goods and even souvenirs for visitors. You can even grab a bite to eat if you are looking for one. It’s open from 7:00 am to 7:00 pm Monday to Friday and from 06:00 am to 03:00 pm on Saturday. It’s closed on Sunday.
Aside from the market, this is also a great little area to explore. The square with the market is actually right behind Mozart’s birth house and right in front of the beautiful Kollegienkirche (yet another church to explore). Nearby, you can relax in Furtwänglerpark which is a little green space to get away from the busy city!
Address: Universitätsplatz, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
Museum of Natural History and Technology
Close to the Salzach river and the Mönchsberg elevator, you will find one more popular museum which you can visit: the Museum of Natural History and Technology or the Haus der Natur (in German).
This highly interactive museum focusses on science, technology, and nature. This means that you will find exhibits on the human body, space, dinosaurs, and beyond. There is even a reptile zoo and an aquarium where you can learn about coral reefs, plants, and animals.
The museum has special exhibitions that rotate through so be sure to check the website for when you want to visit because there might be something very cool going on. This place is great to visit with or without kids. You can learn all about visiting the museum here.
Address: Museumspl. 5, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
Toy Museum Salzburg
If you are travelling to Salzburg with kids, a stop at the Toy Museum might be a great idea! Located at the end of Getreidegasse (close to where you catch the elevator up the Mönchsberg), this museum spans three levels and is designed to get kids playing!
Aside from exhibits that feature antique toys, the museum is also very interactive so that kids of many ages can show up and actually play with toys/get involved when they visit.
From marble racing and race tracks to dollhouses and slides, there are permanent and rotating exhibits and there’s even a refreshment bar for the adults while the kids play! You can learn more about the Toy Museum here.
Address: Bürgerspitalgasse 2, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
If you’re a fan of beer and you’re visiting Salzburg, you might want to head for Stiegl Beer World (Brauwelt in German). Located a short drive or bus from the city centre, this is a unique chance to visit the place where Stiegl is brewed and praised!
Once there, there is lots to keep you busy. You can do a guided tour of the brewery as well as see the production area (at select times and in select seasons). There is also an onsite museum and a restaurant that you can visit if you need a bite to eat. So between learning about the history of the iconic brand or eating Austrian cuisine, there’s something here for almost everyone.
Of course, you can also do beer tastings – a tasting is included in a guided tour if you book one! You can learn more about visiting the Stiegl Brewery here.
Address: Bräuhausstraße 9, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
If you want to enjoy the beer in the city centre, you can head to the Stiegl Restaurant and Beer Garden (shown above). It sits in the shadow of the Castle and the outdoor sun terrace tables give you sweeping views of the city centre.
If you are looking for something a little more adrenaline-charged, you should head outside the city centre to the airport for Hangar-7. This hangar – built beside the actual Salzburg Airport – is owned by Dietrich Mateschitz, the guy who founded Red Bull.
Inside, you’ll find a wild collection of old airplanes, helicopters, and actual Formula 1 race cars. The modern hangar also has space onsite for art exhibits and boasts a top restaurant, two bars, a cafe, and an outdoor lounge. This means that you can visit for reasons other than just to see the famous Flying Bulls’ fleet of planes.
That said, entrance to the Aircraft Fleet Museum is free. Some of the bars and restaurants have different opening hours than the museum part so you should have a look at those before you go. You can learn more about visiting Hangar-7 here!
Address: Wilhelm-Spazier-Straße 7a, 5020 Salzburg, Austria (at the Airport)
Another famously popular place to visit that is tucked into the shadow of the Castle is Nonnberg Abbey. The nunnery was founded back in the early 700s and the building itself has been built and destroyed a number of times over the past millennium. Yes, that’s not a typo – a thousand years!
More recently, the abbey is known for its role in the film “The Sound of Music” when it is seen in the opening scenes. Today, you can visit the Abbey by walking up the stairs along Nonnbergstiege. We actually climbed this set of stairs on accident and came across the Abbey on the way to the Castle! You can learn more about visiting the Abbey here.
Address: Nonnberggasse 2, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
If you want a bit of peace and quiet while you are visiting the city, you can head just outside the city centre to the Volksgarten. This urban park is located by the river and features a small lake with a fountain, a few paths, and numerous sports courts, outdoor pools, and a skating rink.
There is even a mini-golf course which makes the park a nice option if you are travelling with kids who are sick of learning about history and old buildings!
We walked by/through the park numerous times and while it’s small, it is located in a quiet area of the city and can be a nice little getaway with great views of the Castle. Just cross the Karolinen Brücke from the city centre and you’ll be right there.
Address: Hundertwasser Allee, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
Bonus: Cable Car Untersberg
We thought we would include one thing that is slightly outside of the city of Salzburg in this post since we have a whole guide on day trips from Salzburg. That said, a really popular thing to do south of the Salzburg city centre is to ride the Untersberg Cable Car to the top for amazing views of the area.
Topping out at a height of 1,767 metres, this is a ten-minute cable car ride up that is not for those with a fear of heights! Aside from viewing platforms, there’s also hiking, skiing, a restaurant, lodging, access to the ice cave, and more up there. If you want a little adventure, plan your trip up the cable car here.
You will need to check the site in advance for closures, be prepared for the weather conditions, and you should have good shoes in any season if you visit!
Address: Dr.-Friedrich-Oedl-Weg 2, 5083, Austria
And there you have it – a comprehensive list of the top things to do in Salzburg, Austria! In the end, there are more things to explore but we have covered quite a number of the top and lesser-known things in the city. We had a great time exploring Salzburg and you can bet we will be back to explore in the winter!
As always, Happy Salzburg Waddlin’,
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