Salzburg

Getting to know Salzburg is not too difficult, because most of its sights are within a comparatively small area. The Altstadt (Old City) is a compact area between the jutting outcrop of the Mönchsberg and the Salzach River. The cathedral and interconnecting squares surrounding it form what used to be the religious center, around which the major churches and the old archbishops' residence are arranged (note that entrance into all Salzburg churches is free). The Mönchsberg cliffs emerge unexpectedly behind the Old City, crowned to the east by the Hohensalzburg Fortress. Across the river, in the small area between the cliffs of the Kapuzinerberg and the riverbank, is the Steingasse, a narrow medieval street where laborers, craftsmen, and traders served the salt mining industry and travelers coming in and out of the region’s important mercantile hub. Northwest of the Kapuzinerberg lies Mirabell Palace and its manicured gardens.

It's best to begin by exploring the architectural and cultural riches of the Old City, then go on to the fortress. Afterward, cross the river to inspect the other bank. Ideally, you need two days to do it all. An alternative, if you enjoy exploring churches and castles, is to go directly up to the fortress, either on foot or by returning through the cemetery to the funicular railway.

If you are doing this spectacular city in just one day, consider taking a walking tour run by city guides; one sets out every day at 12:15 pm from the tourist information office, Information Mozartplatz, at Mozart Square (closed on some Sundays during off-season). There are also escorted bus and bicycle tours through the city .

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  • 1. Schloss Hellbrunn

    Castle/Palace/Chateau

    Just 6½ km (4 miles) south of Salzburg, the Lustschloss Hellbrunn was the prince-archbishops' pleasure palace. It was built early in the 17th...Read More

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  • 2. Fortress Hohensalzburg

    Castle/Palace/Chateau

    Founded in 1077, the Hohensalzburg is Salzburg's acropolis and the largest preserved medieval fortress in Central Europe. Brooding over the...Read More

  • 3. Mirabell Palace

    Castle/Palace/Chateau

    The "Taj Mahal of Salzburg," Schloss Mirabell was built in 1606 by the immensely wealthy and powerful Prince-Archbishop Wolf-Dietrich for his...Read More

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  • 4. Residenz

    Castle/Palace/Chateau

    At the very heart of baroque Salzburg, the Residenz overlooks the spacious Residenzplatz and its famous fountain. The palace in its present...Read More

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