Day 12 - Salzburg

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Europe » Austria
January 13th 2014
Published: June 21st 2017
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This morning we rose early for our last Munich breakfast before heading to Isartor station to transfer to our railjet train to Salzburg. It was only around a 90 minutes train journey. Once we arrived at Salzburg station we caught a taxi directly to our hotel, Hotel Am Dom, in the old town. My review of Hotel Am Dom can be read here:

We loved the hotel, it was one of the nicest rooms we had in all of our trip, such a shame that we only had one night to enjoy it. The reception staff were lovely and helpful. We dumped our bags in our rooms and headed straight out to walk around Salzburg.

We used the Rick Steves walking tour for Salzburg that we had downloaded to our iPhones.. We followed it fairly loosely as we really just wanted to wander around and soak it in for a couple of hours. This worked well for us. Unfortunately we did not have enough time to visit the Mirabell Palace on the other side of the river. That will have to wait until our next trip.

We started at the river on the pedestrian bridge, the Mozartsteg. This provided a sensational view and allowed us to get our bearings. The view of the fortress on the hill was spectacular, but we really wanted to walk around the old town and have lunch first. Then we could spend the rest of the day at the fortress.

One thing that we found very strange as we walked around – virtually all the statues in each square were covered by various types of plastic. It was a shame as we really could not get a good look at the statues. I guess it is to protect them from the winter weather, but I really don't know.

We next went to Residenzplatz and looked at the New Residenz and the Glockenspiel, from the outside only. On into Domplatz for a quick look at Salzburg Cathedral. After that was Kapitelplatz with its golden orb in the centre. From here we went to look at the waterwheel that apparently was once used to grind grain into flour for the bakery that is also here. We went into St. Peter's Cemetery which was beautiful.

After the cemetery we went into St. Peter's Church and when we came out we passed St. Peter's Stiftskeller which is where we had booked for dinner that night. Fortunately we didn't have to go back through the cemetery in the dark to get there!

Our walk continued on past the Festival Hall and various other concert halls into Universitatsplatz which had what was probably a wonderful market earlier in the day, but was now winding down. We could also see the back of Mozart's birthplace here.

We were getting hungry by now, so stopped in a place named Zipfer Bierhaus, which appeared to be a pub that had a separate restaurant. We had a very nice lunch of Wiener Schnitzel (what else in Austria?) with parsley potatoes.

Finally we headed to the funicular to ride up to Hohensalzburg. The views up here in the fortress were spectacular – particularly after we had looked around the fortress we joined a compulsory tour up to the top of one of the towers. We emerged at the top right on sunset. It was absolutely beautiful to look at the town and surrounding landscape just as the sun went down.

After the fortress the boys wandered off, and Gary and I spent a couple of hours window shopping along the Getreidegasse and some of the medieval tunnels off of it. I would have loved to visit Mozart's birthplace, but it was far too late by now.

We had prebooked dinner at the St. Peter's Stiftskeller as we were fascinated by the fact that it was the oldest continually used restaurant in Europe – dating from 803AD, when apparently Charlemagne ate there. We decided against the set price Mozart dinner. While we love classical music, we are not really fans of opera and there appeared to be quite a lot of opera involved in the event.

We simply went to the regular restaurant and ordered off of the a la carte menu. Funnily enough, I was really worried about this dinner, and up until the afternoon had been considering cancelling it. I was convinced it would be far too touristy with terrible overpriced food. I could not have been more wrong! It was one of the best meals we ate in Europe. The restaurant was absolutely gorgeous to look at, with all the Christmas lights still set up outside and in. The service was wonderful and so was the food. The boys as usual had their normal schnitzel, but Gary and I had had enough of German food temporarily so went for something different. We both had creamy Cauliflower Soup to start followed by a delicious Chicken and Red Capsicum Risotto. I followed this with Crème Brulee as I can never resist this dessert. Jesse and Jayden ordered the Salzburg speciality dessert, a Salzburg Nockerl, which is sort of a combination meringue and soufflé and served for two. It was so huge that even after the boys had had their fill, there was plenty left for Gary and I to sample. It was light, fluffy and delicious.

After a very long day, we headed back to our hotel for a good night's sleep before our journey to Lucerne.

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