Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Salzburg, Austria lured me in with the snowcapped Mtns and Castle on the hill!

When I left Vienna today I was planning to go to Berchtesgaden, Germany but first I had to switch trains in Salzburg, Austria. As my train was pulling into the city I was taken back by the unbelievable view from my window. You could see the Alps in the not so far distance and it was a dreamlike city that kept drawing me in. I got off the train in a daze I had ten minutes until my next train but never even considered making it.

This is one of the many joys of traveling with a Eurail Pass (I strongly recommend getting one if you travel for more than a week and are going to numerous cities, I have saved a ton of money and it gives you a lot of freedom!) and one of the only joys to traveling alone. I headed straight over to the information desk and asked her how to get to the castle! She pulled out a city map and drew a little loopy path for me to follow through a park, the city center, then up the mountain to the castle. Yay!

It was really easy; I just threw my stuff in a locker at the station and started walking. I found the park she looped on the map first and couldn’t believe my eyes! I’m sorry but this city was like a fairy tale for me! I just loved every bit of it and kept thinking about how lucky I was to be there! This park- The Mirabellgarten had a perfect view of the castle above and ridiculously well maintained gardens below.

*The view- from the Mirabellgarten
* This statue was in the gardens…sometimes I feel the same way!
Next I made my way to the river and was so mesmerized that for the first time on the trip I sat down and sketched the city in front of me and the castle above. It reminded me of a painting I did during high school and these towers could very well be the ones I replicated. I finally crossed the bridge into the main part of the city and checked out the churches and shops before starting my hike up the mountain. (I just realized while consulting my map that I totally missed Mozart’s house and she had even circled it! Ha, you can’t see it all.)

*This is what I sketched :)On my way up the mountain there were signs in two different directions and since I wasn’t sure what it meant I started with the sign for the Richterhöhe. Other people kept coming down from that direction so why not, I’ve already made it this far. Turns out it was a spot where you had an amazing (free!) panoramic view of the city below and the mountains in the distance!
Time to see this castle…the Festung Hohensalzburg.

*View from the Richterhöhe

Inside the castle walls I took a tour of the interior (torture room, lots about the history, etc.). On the tour we were led up to a tower for a 360° view of the region. OMG! Again, thank God I stopped here! Haha, really it was that good. Here are a few pics so you’ll get what I’m raving about…
The city below-

The Alps behind-

After I stopped drooling I made my way back through town to catch a train to Munich!

1 comment:

Abhay (India) said...

Great review