Salzburg and Salzkammergut

Old Sep 10th, 2017, 04:49 PM
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Salzburg and Salzkammergut

Hello,

My husband, myself and our two children (ages 7 and 10 at the time of travel) are planning to travel to Salzburg and the Salzkammergut in Summer 2017 - this with be a small portion of a larger trip. We will have a vehicle.

The musts on this visit to this area are:
1. Berchtesgaden.
2. Sound of Music Tour and all the places associated with the movie
3. Salzburg: Old Town, Marionette Theater, Glockenspiel, Hohensalzburg, Getreidegasse
4. Luge Ride (Bad Durrnberg or other)
5. Hallstat ... rent boat on lake
6. St. Wolfgang - Schafbergbahn (cogwheel railway)
7. Rent and ride bikes to Hellbrunn Palace

I'll attempt to be organized with my questions below.

1. I've read and researched 3 salt mines in the surrounding area of Salzburg. I'm looking for opinions on which one is the best to visit. All 3 appear to be close to where we will be so distance is not a factor. We only want to visit one.
~ Hallein Salt Mine (which is in Bad Durrnberg
~ Berchtesgaden Salt Mine
~ Hallstatt Salt Mine

2. I've read that 3 days is a nice amount of time to see Salzburg, Salzkammergut and Berchtesgaden. Thoughts? We do tend to take fast paced trips ... the kids can keep up based on past trips so we aren't concerned with that.

3. Do you recommend spending the night in Hallstat or making a day trip from Salzburg?

4. Berchtesgaden: Would you drive and tour yourself or take Dave & Christine's Tour? We tend to do our own touring but I've read a lot of great reviews for this organized tour so thought it might be worth it? Pros and Cons, other than time limitations when on an organized tour?

4. There appear to be many luge/toboggan runs in this area - is the one at Bad Durrnberg the best? I think I read it was the longest. I also read that Strobl has one and possibly others.

5. I've read a bit about a Fairytale hiking route for children in Unterach. Anyone have experience with this?

Anything else outdoors I am missing for kids? They are very sporty/athletic and adventurous! We don't plan on visiting many museums and zoos on this trip. We will be visiting Switzerland after Austria and will get lots of hiking in there.

Thank you so much for your help!!
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Old Sep 11th, 2017, 03:38 PM
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anyone?
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Old Sep 11th, 2017, 05:41 PM
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1. I've only been to the salt mines near Berchtesgaden. It seems to hit all the main things but I have no basis to compare the three you mention. They say the Hallstatt mines are the oldest.

2. You'll probably spend at least an entire day in Salzburg... I don't know that only 1 day in Salzkammergut and then only 1 in the Berchtesgaden area are enough. For me, I'd say the pacing is too quick.

3. I always recommend at least one night in Hallstatt. Otherwise you are there with all the other day trippers and you don't really experience how lovely it really is.

4a. In general, I always prefer doing things on our own rather than using a tour when possible... just my preference. I'm not familiar with that tour.

Just my 2¢. Enjoy your trip
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Old Sep 11th, 2017, 09:03 PM
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1. We've only visited the salt mine in Berchtesgaden, and really enjoyed our visit.

2. On our first (one-day) visit to Salzburg we took the morning SOM tour, and felt pretty rushed to enjoy Salzburg as its own destination. Also, keep in mind that if your Salzburg day falls on a Sunday, Getreidegasse will be rather dull, as most of the shops will be closed.

If your Salzkammergut day includes the Schafbergbahn (and hiking) and visiting the towns on Wolfgangsee, that could feel rushed, too. (you'll probably visit Mondsee, another Salzkammergut town during your SOM tour.)

3. If you can, splurge on an overnight in Hallstatt with a balcony room facing the lake. When the day tourists depart, Hallstatt will feel magical.

4. Rodelbahn are, according to our children, pretty much all the same--that is, they're all fun.
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Old Sep 12th, 2017, 03:08 PM
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Thank you so much for the responses! It sounds as though we need more time in this area. We will be visiting Switzerland after we leave Austria (Berner Oberland and a couple of days in Eastern Switzerland to do Heidiland - my girls love the movie) - so a bit limited on time if wanting to do both. We'll only have close to 3 weeks and are going to try and make the most of both countries in this time frame.

In Berchtesgaden we were only thinking of doing the Eagles Nest, documentation center and salt mines. The more I keep researching this area, the more I find that it's a beautiful area/countryside to tour.

My husband and I have been to Switzerland and we are hoping that the mountains and countryside we are visiting aren't repetitive - meaning berner oberland, appenzeller land, and Salzkammergut. I know they are all different in their own way, especially the bernese oberland.

Is there a lake that either of you would recommend swimming in in any of these areas mentioned above?

I also just happened upon the ice caves in the Salzkammergut ... we may have to save that for another time.

This is our girls first trip to Europe - so it's their introduction tour ... SOM tour, Heidiland, Alps, Countryside and culture, etc.

Thank you again for your help!
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Old Sep 12th, 2017, 09:39 PM
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Both places are important historically, but the Eagle's Nest and the Documentation Center could be *meaningless* for your children; and in the summer, the crowds at the former might be downright miserable.

The Documentation Center offers programs for families with children ages 10 and up, suggesting perhaps the material can not be meaningfully presented for younger children. Our daughter and her classmates toured when she was in Grade 8 (ages 12 and 13). Just FYI.

There are dozens of swimming lakes and beachside lakes in the Salzkammergut. If your plans include Wolfgangsee or Mondsee you will find nice "bathing" beaches at both.
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