Salzburg, Austria, is a stunning city with amazing attractions and activities that make for an unforgettable adventure. This city has something for everyone, from beautiful architecture to picturesque natural scenery.
“Salzburg is a vision in white and gold, where every corner whispers tales of grandeur.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
If you’re looking for the best of what Salzburg has to offer, look no further than the top 10 best things to do in Salzburg. From exploring the ancient fortress of Hohensalzburg to indulging in a Mozart Concert, this list will ensure you have the most amazing adventure in this beautiful city.
1. Mozart’s Birthplace and Museum
“Salzburg is the city of Mozart, the great composer who left an indelible mark on the world of music. Visiting Mozart’s birthplace is like stepping into the life and genius of this musical prodigy.” – Arthur Schopenhauer
Mozart’s Birthplace and Museum is located in Salzburg, Austria. It is a must-visit attraction for music lovers and history enthusiasts. This historic building is the birthplace of the world-renowned composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Here are the five best things to do at Mozart’s Birthplace and Museum:
A Musical Journey Through Mozart’s Childhood Home
Visiting Mozart’s Birthplace in the Getreidegasse district is a must-see experience for any music lover. The museum gives a fascinating insight into the world-famous composer’s early years.
Discover Mozart’s Treasures
The museum offers an extensive collection of Mozart’s belongings, including his violin, keyboard, and early compositions. Visitors can also see family portraits and other significant historical items.
The Multimedia Experience
Visitors can take advantage of the audio guide, which offers a comprehensive multimedia tour that explores Mozart’s life and achievements in more detail.
Attend Concerts and Events
The Birthplace also hosts concerts and events throughout the year, allowing visitors to experience the composer’s music live.
A Walk Through History
The Birthplace is in a historical building dating back to the 12th century. The architecture, decorative artwork, and atmosphere create an unforgettable immersive experience.
2. Hohensalzburg Castle
Hohensalzburg Castle is one of the must-see attractions in Salzburg. The medieval fortress, which sits on a hill overlooking the city, has been well-preserved over the years, and visitors can get a glimpse into the city’s rich history by exploring the castle’s various sections. Here are the five best things to do at Hohensalzburg Castle, making it a top pick on any list of Salzburg’s ten best things to do.
Take the Funicular
The funicular ride to Hohensalzburg Castle is an experience in itself. The ride takes about 90 seconds and offers stunning views of the city and the surrounding mountains. Make sure to have your camera ready!
Visit the Castle Museum
The castle museum offers visitors a glimpse into the castle’s past. It houses a collection of medieval weapons and armor, as well as paintings, sculptures, and tapestries from the castle’s history.
Tour the State Rooms
The State Rooms, once used for royal events and ceremonies, are ornately decorated with frescoes, carvings, and chandeliers. Visitors can explore these rooms and marvel at the castle’s opulence.
Explore the Chapel
The castle’s Chapel is a beautiful example of medieval architecture. Its walls are decorated with frescoes, and the altar is adorned with intricate carvings. Visitors can attend a mass in the Chapel on Sundays.
Take in the View from the Watchtower
The Watchtower offers breathtaking views of Salzburg and the surrounding mountains. Visitors can climb to the top of the tower and take in the stunning vistas of the city. It’s a perfect way to end your visit to Hohensalzburg Castle.
3. Mirabell Palace and Gardens
“The Mirabell Gardens in Salzburg are a true delight, with their meticulously manicured flower beds, grand fountains, and breathtaking views. It’s a place of serenity and beauty.” – Maria von Trapp
Located in the heart of Salzburg, the Mirabell Palace, and Gardens are one of the most stunning attractions in Austria. Prince-Archbishop Wolf Dietrich built the palace and its grounds in the 17th century for his lover, Salome Alt. The Mirabell Gardens have been the setting for many famous movies, including “The Sound of Music.” Here are the top 5 things to do at the Mirabell Palace and Gardens.
Take a stroll in the garden
The Mirabell Gardens are known for their intricate landscaping and elegant fountains. Take a leisurely walk and enjoy the flowers and greenery while marveling at the stunning architecture of the palace. Be sure to visit the Pegasus Fountain, one of Salzburg’s most photographed attractions.
Check out the hedge maze
The Mirabell Palace Gardens are also home to a hedge maze created in the 18th century. It is one of the oldest and most impressive in Europe. Get lost in the maze, which takes around 15-20 minutes to solve. Children will especially enjoy this unique and fun activity.
See the Marble Hall
The Marble Hall is a magnificent concert hall located in the Mirabell Palace. It has a breathtaking ceiling painting and a grand staircase leading to the main entrance. Mozart himself performed here several times. If you can, attend a concert or event in this historic and beautiful venue.
Explore the Dwarf Garden
The Dwarf Garden is one of the most charming attractions in the Mirabell Gardens. The garden features playful sculptures of dwarfs, animals, and other figures. Take some time to appreciate the artist’s intricate detail and humor. It is sure to put a smile on your face.
Visit the Rose Garden
The Mirabell Gardens also have a stunning rose garden, most beautiful in June and July. The garden has over 800 rose bushes and is arranged in geometric patterns. It is a wonderful spot to relax and enjoy the beauty of Nature.
4. Sound of Music Tour
The Sound of Music Tour in Salzburg allows you to relive the magic of the beloved movie, exploring the iconic filming locations and immersing yourself in the enchanting landscapes that inspired the story.” – Julie Andrews
If you’re a fan of the classic film, then taking a Sound of Music tour is an absolute must during your time in Salzburg. The tour takes you on a journey through the city and its surroundings, showing you some of the most iconic locations from the movie.
Visit the Von Trapp Family Home
The tour begins with a visit to the real Von Trapp family home, located just outside the city. The house is now a hotel and restaurant, but you can still see the famous gazebo where Liesl and Rolf sang “Sixteen Going on Seventeen.”
Stroll Through the Mirabell Gardens
Next is a visit to the Mirabell Palace and Gardens, where the famous Do-Re-Mi scene was filmed. You’ll recognize the steps and the fountain where the children danced and sang.
Visit the Church of Mondsee
The Sound of Music tour also takes you outside Salzburg to the beautiful Church of Mondsee, where the wedding scene was filmed. The Church is located on a picturesque lake and is a great place for photos.
Stop at Leopoldskron Palace
This beautiful palace was used as the exterior of the Von Trapp family home in the movie. While you can’t go inside, you can admire the stunning View of the palace and lake from across the water.
See the Nonnberg Abbey
The tour ends with a visit to the Nonnberg Abbey, where Maria was a postulant. The abbey is still a working convent, but you can visit the Church where Maria and the nuns sang “Maria.”
5. St. Peter’s Abbey
One of the oldest monasteries in Europe, St. Peter’s Abbey in Salzburg is a must-visit for history and architecture enthusiasts. Here are five things to see and do at the abbey:
Visit the Church
St. Peter’s Church is a beautiful example of Baroque architecture with a rich history. It was first built in the 8th century and has been rebuilt several times. The interior of the Church is adorned with stunning frescoes and artwork.
Admire the Cemetery
The St. Peter’s Cemetery is the oldest Christian Cemetery in Salzburg and has a unique charm. The gravestones and memorials are beautifully decorated with flowers and candles, and there is a peaceful atmosphere here.
Climb the Bell Tower
The bell tower at St. Peter’s Abbey is a great spot for panoramic views of Salzburg. You must climb 220 steps to reach the top, but the effort is worth it.
Check out the Library
The monastery’s Library is home to over 100,000 books, some centuries old. The interior of the Library is breathtaking, with intricate ceiling frescoes and ornate furnishings.
Try the Stiftskeller Restaurant
The Stiftskeller Restaurant is located in the abbey’s cellar and serves traditional Austrian cuisine. The restaurant has operated since the 12th century and is one of the oldest in Europe. Take advantage of the opportunity to try their famous St. Peter’s Beer!
6. DomQuartier Salzburg
DomQuartier Salzburg is a museum complex in the heart of Salzburg, Austria. It comprises several historical buildings, including the Cathedral, the Residenz Palace, the Museum of the Cathedral, and the Gallery of Painting. Here are five things to explore when visiting DomQuartier Salzburg:
The Salzburg Cathedral, also known as the Cathedral of Saint Rupert, is a stunning baroque building that dates back to the 17th century. It is a must-visit attraction for architecture lovers, with its impressive domed ceiling, intricate stonework, and exquisite frescoes.
The Residenz Palace
The Residenz Palace is a grand building that was once the residence of the archbishops of Salzburg. Visitors can explore its opulent interiors, including the state apartments, the Royal Chapel, and the reception rooms decorated with ornate furniture, tapestries, and artworks.
The Museum of the Cathedral
The Museum of the Cathedral is located in the former residence of the archbishops. It houses an impressive collection of religious artworks and artifacts, including sculptures, paintings, and tapestries, many dating back to the Middle Ages.
The Gallery of Painting
The Gallery of Painting is another highlight of DomQuartier Salzburg. It showcases a collection of European paintings from the 17th to the 19th centuries, with works by famous artists such as Rembrandt, Rubens, and Van Dyck.
Finally, visitors can enjoy stunning panoramic views of Salzburg from the top of DomQuartier Salzburg. The observation deck offers breathtaking views of the city and surrounding mountains, making it a great place for photography and relaxation.
7. Hellbrunn Palace and Trick Fountains
Hellbrunn Palace and Trick Fountains are important tourist destinations in Salzburg, Austria. This palace was built by Markus Sittikus von Hohenems, Prince-Archbishop of Salzburg, in the 17th century. Hellbrunn Palace was meant for relaxation and entertainment purposes for the Prince and his guests. Here are five things to explore when visiting the Hellbrunn Palace and Trick Fountains:
Explore the Palace’s Architecture
The palace has a unique Baroque architectural design that is worth exploring. You can wander around the courtyards, visit the Chapel, and enjoy the palace’s elaborate décor and paintings.
Discover the Palace’s Historical Significance
Hellbrunn Palace has played a significant role in Austria’s history and culture. The palace was once home to the Archbishop of Salzburg and hosted important guests like the Empress Maria Theresa of Austria and King George III of England.
Visit the Trick Fountains
The Trick Fountains are a highlight of the Hellbrunn Palace, especially during the summer months. The fountains are equipped with various surprises, water jets, and water tricks that provide visitors with an exhilarating experience.
Enjoy the Beautiful Gardens
The palace has beautiful gardens that are worth exploring, with a collection of exotic trees, flower beds, and scenic paths. You can also find various statues and sculptures located throughout the gardens.
Take a Guided Tour
Guided tours are available, and they offer a more informative and entertaining experience of the Hellbrunn Palace. During the tours, you will learn more about the palace’s history, its design, and the various water features around it.
Getreidegasse is a narrow street in the heart of Salzburg’s Old Town. It is known for its picturesque buildings with intricate iron signs, attractive shop windows, and history as the Birthplace of Mozart. Here are the top 5 things to do in Getreidegasse.
Visit the famous composer’s Birthplace at number 9, Getreidegasse. The museum houses exhibits on Mozart’s life, including musical instruments, portraits, and letters.
Getreidegasse is the perfect destination for shopping lovers. The street has various shops ranging from exclusive boutiques to souvenir shops. One can find stylish fashion, handcrafted leather goods, ceramics, and traditional Austrian products.
Salzburg is known for its traditional cuisine. While exploring Getreidegasse, try out traditional dishes such as Schnitzel, Tafelspitz, or Kasnocken in one of the street’s charming restaurants.
Stroll and Take Photos
The narrow street’s charming architecture and the wrought iron signs hanging from the buildings offer a beautiful backdrop for photography enthusiasts.
Located on the façade of the Old Town Hall, the Glockenspiel is a beautiful clock tower that performs twice daily, at 11 am and 6 pm. The tower has 35 bells chapping a famous Austrian folk song while moving mechanical figures dance to the tune.
9. Salzburg Zoo
Step into the fascinating world of animals at Salzburg Zoo! Located amidst the natural beauty of Salzburg, this zoo offers a delightful experience for everyone. Here are the top 5 things to do at Salzburg Zoo:
Meet Amazing Animals
Get ready to meet a wide variety of animals from around the globe. From playful monkeys to graceful giraffes, a whole host of creatures is waiting to capture your imagination. Learn about their habits, habitats, and what makes each species unique.
At Salzburg Zoo, learning becomes an adventure! Engage in interactive experiences where you can feed the animals, watch their feeding sessions, and even get close to some friendly creatures. Discover interesting facts and stories about the animals from knowledgeable zookeepers.
Enjoy Family Time
Salzburg Zoo is a perfect place for a day of family fun. Let your children explore the dedicated play areas where they can climb, swing, and slide to their heart’s content. Create cherished memories as you explore the zoo together and witness the wonder on your little ones’ faces.
Picnic in Nature
Take a break from the animal encounters and relax amidst the beautiful surroundings. Find a cozy spot, spread out a picnic blanket, and enjoy a delicious meal surrounded by Nature’s tranquility. Listen to the birds singing and soak up the peaceful atmosphere.
Learn about Conservation
Salzburg Zoo is committed to conservation efforts and educating visitors about protecting wildlife and their habitats. Take part in educational programs and initiatives that promote conservation awareness. Discover simple steps you can take to contribute to the well-being of our planet.
10. Untersberg Mountain
“Salzburg is a tapestry of mountains, meadows, and magnificent palaces, woven together in harmony.” – Johann Nepomuk Vog
Welcome to the magnificent Untersberg Mountain, located near Salzburg in Austria! This natural wonder, rising majestically on the horizon, offers breathtaking views and thrilling adventures. Here are the top 5 things to do at Untersberg Mountain:
Spectacular Hiking Trails
Wear your walking shoes and explore the stunning hiking trails that wind through Untersberg Mountain. Enjoy the fresh mountain air as you traverse lush forests, discover hidden waterfalls, and revel in the panoramic vistas. It’s a hiker’s paradise!
Cable Car Excursion
For a more leisurely experience, hop aboard the Untersbergbahn cable car and ascend effortlessly to the mountain’s summit. Marvel at the sweeping views of the surrounding valleys, rolling hills, and distant peaks. It’s a thrilling ride that offers a unique perspective of the landscape.
Nature lovers and photography enthusiasts will find endless inspiration on Untersberg Mountain. Capture the beauty of alpine flowers, rugged landscapes, and the play of light and shadows. Every turn reveals a picture-perfect moment waiting to be captured.
Alpine Cuisine Delights
Treat yourself to alpine cuisine at one of the cozy mountain huts on Untersberg—sample hearty traditional dishes from locally sourced ingredients, such as delicious dumplings or savory stews. Relish the flavors while surrounded by the peaceful mountain ambiance.
Take a moment to immerse yourself in the Serenity of Untersberg Mountain. Find a quiet spot to sit, breathe in the fresh mountain air, and let the tranquility wash over you. Feel the stress melt away as you soak up the peace and solitude that only the mountains can provide.
Salzburg, Austria, offers an incredible adventure with beautiful attractions and activities. From exploring Mozart’s Birthplace and Museum to visiting Hohensalzburg Castle, there’s something for everyone. You can stroll through the picturesque Mirabell Palace and Gardens or take a Sound of Music tour to relive the famous movie scenes.
“Salzburg is a vision in white and gold, where every corner whispers tales of grandeur.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Take advantage of the historic St. Peter’s Abbey or the fascinating DomQuartier Salzburg museum complex. For some entertainment, visit Hellbrunn Palace and its Trick Fountains. And if you’re a fan of shopping and history, Getreidegasse is the perfect place to explore. Finally, the Salzburg Zoo offers a delightful experience for the whole family. Get ready for an amazing adventure in Salzburg!
Salzburg is best known as the Birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and the filming location for the famous movie “The Sound of Music.” Its charming baroque architecture and UNESCO World Heritage status make it a must-visit destination.
To fully enjoy Salzburg, spending at least three days in the city is recommended, allowing for a relaxed and leisurely exploration. If you plan to venture out on day trips to the surrounding region, consider staying a few additional days.
The best time to visit Salzburg is during the high season, which includes June to August and December, for optimal weather and a vibrant tourist atmosphere. However, the low season from January to March offers a chance to experience Salzburg like a local and find budget-friendly prices.
Yes, it does snow in Salzburg, Austria, particularly during the winter months of January and February. It is common to see snow-covered countryside during this time.