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Salzburg Travel guide

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Surrounding mountains and straddles the Salzach River near the border with Germany, picturesquely shelters Austria’s hometown of Baroque, and the birthplace of that talented tunesmith Mr Mozart.
Three bishop-princes largely built the Salzburg that everyone knows and loves in the late-16th and early-17th century, which is what gives the city its Italian flavour and its skyline punctuated by countless medieval spires, domes, belfries and turrets.

The old town, on the south bank of the river, is a Baroque masterpiece of churches, plazas, courtyards and fountains, oozing so much charm that it's enough to make you forgive young Wolfgang for being so precocious and omniscient. Museums, houses, squares, chocolate bars, and liqueurs - you name it and it's got a Mozart tag stuck on it.


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Salzburg Travel information

Salzburg guide

The high point of a visit to Salzburg (literally and metaphorically) is a tour of the 11th-century Hohensalzburg Castle, which stands on a rock outcrop about 120m above the city. It's almost a separate village in its own right, with all the usual self-sufficient accoutrements of a tiny settlement like torture chambers, staterooms, a tower and two museums.

On the east side of the old town, the stunning Museum of Natural History has the standard flora and fauna displays, good hands-on physics exhibits and some stomach-churning deformed human embryos. To round off the grisly experience, there are tours of the catacombs in the graveyard of the 9th-century St Peter's Abbey.

Salzburg Sights, sightseeing, culture:

Salzburg sights

If you're on a musical pilgrimage, you can visit Mozart's birthplace, his home, the grave of his father and widow, and the house of a person who once knew someone who knew someone whose great-great grandfather once played second bassoon in a Mozart opera. The Summer International Festival held in Salzburg in July-August naturally gives his tunes a good workout. If you're looking for kitsch, try The Sound of Music tour: ten bucks to the best rendition of Julie Andrews singing `The Hills are Alive with the Sound of Music'. Four km south of Salzburg's old town is the Baroque Hellbrunn Palace, built in the 17th-century by bishop Marcus Sitticus. The grounds contain ingenious trick fountains and water-powered figures thanks to the bishop's strange fascination with soaking unsuspecting visitors. Expect the tour guides to continue the bishop's perverse tradition.
St Anton the Arlberg region comprises several linked resorts and is considered to have some of the best skiing in Austria. St Anton is the largest and least elitist of these resorts, but even here budget travellers can kiss their savings goodbye amid the easy-going atmosphere and vigorous nightlife. St Anton has good, medium-to-advanced runs as well as nursery slopes on Gampen and Kapall. The resort went down in skiing history as the place where Hannes Schneider pioneered the `Arlberg method' in the early 20th century. This basically involved skiing with your legs glued together and fortunately is no longer used by the footloose crowds on the slopes today. St Anton is on the main railway route from Bregenz to Innsbruck.
Eisriesenwelt Caves set at an elevation of 1640m, the Eisriesenwelt Caves are the largest accessible ice caves in the world. They comprise more than 40km of explored passageways and 30,000 cubic m of ice. Entry to the caves is regulated and a 75-minute tour takes in several immense caverns containing elaborate ice formations and frozen waterfalls. The caves were first entered in 1879, but it was one Alexander von Mork who pioneered the most extensive exploration: when he signed off, his ashes were placed in an urn in the `cathedral' cave. Be sure to wear warm clothes because the passageways are as close as you'll ever come to feeling you've been trapped in your Westinghouse icebox. The caves are open between May and early October and are located near Werfen.

Grossglockner Road, for a fantastic 50km mountain tour, load up the car and head for the Grossglockner Road, Austria's No1 panorama drama. The road was built between 1930 and 1935, but the course it follows has been an important trading route between Germany and Italy since the Middle Ages. Most of the juicy bits are in the Hohe Tauern National Park where there are dramatic views of numerous unpronounceable peaks, including the mighty Grossglockner which looms across the vast tongue of the Pasterze Glacier and looks every centimetre of its 3797m. The Grossglockner Road requires a toll and is open to traffic between May and November. Start the journey in Zell am See and end in Heiligenblut.

The Cathedral is the most impressive building in Early Baroque style north of the Alps. Initial building in 774 by St. Virgil; 1181-1200 construction of the Late Romanesque cathedral; demolition after destroyed by fire in 1598. Reconstruction started in 1614 under Prince Archbishop Markus Sittikus, planned by Santino Solari; consecrated in 1628 by Prince Archbishop Paris Lodron. Very interstice Cathedral museum with historic from various centuries.

The complex of the Holy Trinity Church in the Makartplatz is, next the palace and garden Mirabell the main architectural feature of the New Town.

Former royal stables built in 1607; extended and reconstructed as the Small Festival Hall in 1924/26 as well as in 1937; redesigned in 1962/63. The Large Festival Hall has been designed and built by Clemens Holzmeister from 1956 - 1960; Entrance design by Fischer von Erlach. The Felsenreitschule (Riding School) was built in 1693 by designs of Fischer von Erlach in 1693.

The Horse Pound was presumably designed and built by plans of Fischer von Erlach around 1695. The rear wall with paintings of a horse tamer by M.B. Mandl was built to cover a former quarry located behind.
The Residenzfountain is the biggest fountain out of the baroque period on the northern side of the Alps. Built by Tommaso di Garona for Prince-Archbishop Guidobald Graf Thun(1658-1661). 4 horses, 3 athletes and 3 dolphins.
The Residence - Art Gallery - European Paintings, is the official art gallery of the Salzburg Province, 15 historic rooms with European paintings from the 16th - 19th century, also Dutch masters (Rembrandt, Rubens), as well as Italian, French and Austrian paintings from the 19th century (Amerling, Ender, Waldmüller).

Marionettes perform some of the greatest operas in the Salzburg Marionette Theatre, using records performed by magnificent orchestras and singers. The Salzburg Marionette Theatre is older than the Salzburg Festival and has a very high global reputation, generated mostly by the many tours which take the theatre and its marionettes around the globe. Operas performed by the Salzburg Marionettes seem to be more magical than with live artists. "...the power that lifts them into the air is greater than that which ties them to the earth ..." (Heinrich von Kleist) In its magnificent baroque theatre, some 160 performances take place annually; theatre seasons in Salzburg are as follows: Christmas to January, Easter, May to Sep/Oct.

Traditional Salzburg Costumes - past and present, a fine exhibition of traditional everyday and festive dress as worn in the city and Province of Salzburg. Contemporary costumes and examples of historical dress from the baroque and Biedermeier epochs.
Hellbrunn Zoo, there are over 400 animals at Hellbrunn Zoo. As a geo-zoo Hellbrunn Zoo is laid out as a geo-zoo, split into particular geographic regions. As a result, various species from a particular continent live in a dedicated area of the zoo.
Klesheim Palace – Casino,Fischer v. Erlach planed this great countryseat. It was built in 1700.The ramp and Archbishop Firmian added terrace. Nowadays the casino is accommodated in the palace.

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