Had Enough of Mozart

We drove from St. Wolfgang into Salzburg to have a look around. Had a nice little Saturday walk around the city streets, it was alive with weekend vendors and visitors. The city is dominated by Hohensalzburg Fortress, one of the largest medieval castles. Although it is high on the Festungsberg it has been made more accessable for tourists by the addition of a speedy Funicular railway. An interesting place with a long history that starts in 1077 and stretched to  include WW I POWs and and Nazi activists before Austria  “joined” with Germany in the 1930s. Now full of tourists. Would you like to visit the dungeon? Imagine the difference between that qustion asked today and several hundred years ago.

We also stopped off at several locations related for Salzburg’s favorite son, Mozart. The city (and Austria itself) is full of references to him, so much that Sydney finally told us that she had “had enough of Mozart” when we left. The two main locations in Salzburg are where he was born and where he lived with his family when they outgrew the place where he was born. It was nice to see some items he actually owned and, supposedly, a lock his hair.

One the way back to the car we bumped into the Barockfest in the Mirabell gardens, a festival where people celebrated the Baroque lifestyle and dress and paused long enough to enjoy the atmosphere and a little Prosecco. Ok, more than a little. Then it was time for the drive back to St. Wolfgang. We reworked this part of the trip several times and even had plans to stay in Salzburg. Ultimately we decided on a longer stay in St. Wolfgang due to its beauty and easy drives to other Austrian highlights. This did work out and we would recommend it to others.

Another thing we noticed the locals wear more traditional garb than we saw elsewhere. Men in Lederhosen, women in long apron dresses. Apparently this is a habit of the residents of the Salzkammergut (Estate of the Salt Chamber) region where we are and it was nice to see. The picture below is not a representation of what we mean, by the way….

Upon arriving in St Wolfgang we found our way blocked by a big crowd watching a classic brass band in front of our hotel. Although we tried to maneuver it was a no-go and we ended up parking and listening for a while. And sipping schnapps…

Kim and Sydney in Salzburg, Austria

Kim and Sydney in Salzburg, Austria

Hohensalzburg Fortress & Salzburg from the Salz river.

Salzburg Austria from Hohensalzburg Fort

Mozarts Birthplace

A stroll thru Salzburg.

Once he finishes this he will take out the garbage...

Some in Austria still honor the traditional ways.

Wolfgangsee at sunset.

Some traditional music

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Salzwelten Hallstatt

Today we visited the town and salt mine in Hallstatt.  This mine has been explored since the stone age and how the original discoverers found it is beyond me. We had to take a funicular railroad then hike up an additional distance just to get to the entrance. But it was worth it, long tunnels, two slides, a rail ride, an underground lake, history… you get the idea. Our expectations were high for this day and they were exceeded. Lunch the town of Hallstatt then back to the hotel for the swim I promised Sydney. Not in the lake (yet), too cold for her….

Riding the venicular lift towards the sat mine entrance.

Sydney dressed for the salt mines.

The entrance to the Salt Mine at Hallstatt

Deep inside the salt mine

The second slide in the salt mine.

An underground lake

Sydney in the Salzwelten Hallstatt

Another part of the mine.

Hallstatt, Austria

Moonlight over Wolfgangsee.

k: This was a fun day.  Loved the slides in the salt mine and the train out of the mine.  Hallstatt was beautiful, tucked into the mountainside with calm, deep waters.  Watched about 12 parasailers launch off the mountain top and head for a landing across the lake.  Ended the day with some champagne.  Cheers!

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