Salzburg, Austria is well-known for it’s idyllic seat in the Austrian Alps, and as the setting for The Sound of Music, a classic Julie Andrews’ film. However, there is much, much more to the startling beautiful city. The following will hopefully serve as a small appetizer to the delightful city.
20 historic churches are located in Salzburg as recognized by the Salzburg city government, the majority of which are decorated in a gorgeous Baroque style. With the most significant be the Salzburg Cathedral, which stands as a reminder of the power of the Prince Archbishops that used to rule Salzburg. The exquisite churches and cathedrals range from over the top to lovely. This is due to the fact that Salzburg, and the surrounding countryside were ruled by a Prince Archbishop, who guaranteed that there would be extensive investment in maintaining the holy community. All of this means that there are many churches for the spiritual to feel fulfilled, and there is much history for the less devotional who wish to tour.
The Birthplace of Mozart
Another sight well worth a visit in Salzburg is the birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, who was (and is) vastly influential to Western music, and remains one of the most popular classical composers. So visiting this sight while not mandatory would be quite a shame, because of his vast reach. It is also worth a visit because visitors are treated to the sight of Mozart’s various instruments, which were passed down from his widow after his death, as well as apartments that are decorated as fitting for the time Mozart would have lived there. Visitors are also treated to the delightful experience of looking at various models staged to show many of Mozart’s operas, and the diverse ways they may be interpreted.
The original fortress was built in 1077, and was expanded significantly between 1495-1519, Luckily, for the less athletically inclined a railway has been running since 1892. The fortress dates to a disagreement between the emperor and pope over who had the right to appoint the bishop. The first bishop was loyal to the pope and had the stronghold built on his territory. During the 15th and 16th century the fortress was put into use due to various uprisings and wars. While the fortress has served as protection to various archbishops, it has also served as military barracks and a prison. One interesting bit of trivia is that the fortress has never been conquered enemy troops. Today, it is open to the public year round, and serves as a setting for various artistic pursuits.
This palace was originally commissioned in 1612, and remains the premier example of Renaissance architecture north of the Alps. It is well known, as well, for the beautiful gardens that surround it, and the different “trick fountains” that dot the gardens. The gardens themselves were extensively redone in the 1730’s, at which time the oldest open air stage in Europe was created. The trick fountains, though, have been the main attraction of the palace since it was built.
Of course, a The Sound of Music tour
Last, but not least is a tour of Salzburg based on visiting the locations from the film The Sound of Music. There are many tours to choose from, so it is not necessary to book before heading off to Salzburg, but it may be preferable to wait until in Salzburg, where everything can be better fit into the schedule, and where you will be able to best scout out what tours are the best price, as well as the number of tourists that are also looking at that particular tour.
Nice post and good tips. I love the photo of Hohensalzburg fortress in the winter, absolutely great shot.
Have my own post on Salzburg, with more photos of the pretty city: http://bbqboy.net/salzburg-austria/
I have been to Salzburg too and loved it; thank you for sharing this post and the beautiful pictures!