The Sound of Salzburg

Itinerary: 

Dates: September 18-October 5, 2015

Our Odyssey: 

Salzburg, literally “salt town” was our second stop in
Austria. Salzburg is a “Sound of Music” lover’s paradise, as this is where much
of the movie was filmed. Interestingly, many locals have not even seen this
movie and don’t really know what all the fuss is about. Tim and I watched the
musical last year while traveling around the world. I believe it was on our TV
one evening in our hotel in Thailand…

That said, we are by no means the biggest fans of the
musical and most all references to it are lost on us.

Thankfully, Salzburg has more to offer. Birthplace of
Mozart. Fortress ruins on a cliff. Beautiful Salzach River. It’s a perfectly
lovely town.

Mozart statue in his hometown of Salzburg

Bees pollinating the flowers surrounding the Mozart statue. Salzburg is probably their hometown too. 

We stayed a 20 minute drive from the city at an adorable bed
and breakfast with stunning views of the surrounding hills. This place alone
was worth the visit to Salzburg (and was another Rick Steves’ recommendation).

View from the balcony of our B&B

The evening we checked in we ventured into the city and set
off on Rick Steves’ self-guided walking tour, which took us through the main
sites and history of the city. That particular afternoon, the city was setting
up for some sort of carnival. All through the main square were half-erected rides
– a carousel, a Ferris wheel. I decided this made for an interesting
photographic opportunity and took several pictures with my new camera.
Meanwhile, Tim stood by waiting for me. “You having a camera is going to be
really annoying.” Sorry dear!

Setting up for a carnival in Salzburg

Ferris Wheel in Salzburg

Our tour took us to a really fascinating old cemetery outside
of St Peter’s Abbey, which was founded in 696 AD. This was our first time in an
Austrian cemetery and we both immediately noticed how it felt more like a
garden than a graveyard. Every plot was covered in flowers, making it one of
the most beautiful cemeteries I’ve been in.

Graveyard garden outside of St. Peter’s Abbey. 

After exploring the heart of the city, we took the funicular
up to the top of Monchsberg Cliff to visit the Hohensalzburg Fortress ruins.
This site is pretty unique in that you don’t need to buy an entrance ticket to
enjoy most of the ruins. They are open to the public, and while there are a few
museums (puppetry, anyone?) and guided tours you can pay for, you’re free to
explore most of the fortress. We happened to time our visit perfectly with
sunset out over the valley with the mountains behind. Cue Tim – “You having a
camera is going to be really annoying.”

Tim, my favorite thing to photograph

At Hohensalzburg Fortress

Sunset view from Hohensalzburg

For dinner, we went to St. Paul’s Stub’n beer garden, a
non-touristy Rick Steves recommendation. We tried the spatzle, a baked cheese
and potato dish. It was heavy, greasy and delicious.

We enjoyed our brief time in Salzburg, even if it wasn’t as
fascinating as other places we’ve visited (and other places we had yet to visit
on this particular trip). If you’re a big Mozart or Sound of Music fan, you
would probably enjoy the city more than we did. Either way, you’d probably
enjoy the spatzle.

View of Salzburg from the fortress

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