It almost felt like home while visiting the “city of salt” in Salzburg, Austria. Coming from Salt Lake City, I didn’t realize that “salz” meant salt and that I’d be visiting what could be the sister city of my home state’s capital. With my friend Rachel, we spent a day in Salzburg and stayed overnight before leaving the next morning to Hallstatt. In just one day we visited sights from The Sound of Music, explored the ancient fortress and ate enormous pretzels.

Salzburg, Austria

Mirabell Palace and Gardens
We roamed the gardens when we first arrived in Salzburg as it was just a 10 minute walk from the train station. This was the place where The Sound of Music had filmed the scene of the kids singing ‘Do, Re, Mi” while dancing around the pegasus statue, which is still there today. Other recognizable settings include the terrace steps by the fountain, the hedge maze and vine tunnel. There was also a cute dwarf gnome park to the west of the fountain with a dozen statues of lifesize gnomes. From the gardens, there is a grand view looking up at the city of Salzburg leading up to the Hohensalzburg Fortress. The gardens are free to the public.

Salzburg, Austria

Salzburg, Austria

From the Mirabell Gardens we walked across the bridge and into the main street of Salzburg is Getreidegasse with name brand shops and eateries. It’s a narrow pedestrian road with fancy shop signs hanging off the side of the buildings. Even McDonald’s adheres to the building code with its majestic McDonald’s iron sign. It’s a very picturesque street that is also home to where Mozart was born and raised until he was 17 years old.

Salzburg, Austria

Salzburger Brezen Reisinger (Pretzels)
In the market located in the town center we found Salburger Brezen Reisinger that sold the largest pretzels I’ve ever seen. Apart from regular pretzel flavors they also had donut, chocolate, apple, and pizza flavors. These were so big that Rachel and I bought one to share and still couldn’t eat all of it between us.

Salzburg, Austria

Hohensalzburg Fortress
Our last stop before heading to our hostel for the evening was the Hohensalzburg Fortress. It was built in 1077 and is the largest preserved fortress in Central Europe. To reach the fortress, we could have rode the funicular up the hill or walked up it. We chose to walk since the line was so long to ride the funicular. Once we got to the top, we were able to walk inside the grounds and take an audio tour through a portion of the fortress. At one part of the tour, it took us to the very top tower where we had outstanding views of the city on one side, and the Austrain mountains on the other side. The fortress also housed a marionette museum inside that was free to look at as well. The cost of admission to enter the fortress grounds, which included the audio guide, was €8 for adults.

If you go:

Take the Westbahn train from Vienna to Salzburg, which was half the cost than the other trains taking that route.

About The Author

Britnee traveled around the world with her husband on a shoestring budget for a year. A few of her favorite destinations include Scotland's Isle of Skye, Chile's Torres del Paine, Bolivia's Salt Flats and Nepal's Annapurna Circuit.

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