Despite not being in Germany I’ve wanted to visit Salzburg for a long time. Salzburg is just under two hours by train from Munich and made for a great day trip.
After getting off the train, I found the tourist office to get a map and directions to the key things I wanted to see: Mozart’s Birthplace, the Cathedral and the Fortress.
The tourist office provided me with a suggested path I walk through the city to get to the Altstadt (old town) where most of the tourist attractions are. This path was meant to take me through a beautiful park, but unfortunately, many of the gates and sections of the park were closed due to snow.
Eventually I found my way into part of the park which was rather pretty in the snow, and then crossed a bridge into the Altstadt.
Once inside the Altstadt Mozart’s Geburtshaus (Birth house) was not hard to find. Rather disappointingly it is surrounded by an H&M on one side and other highly touristy shops on the other.
I walked along the main strip of shops and found a Red Bull World. Inside were more staff than I have seen in any store in a long time. Every staff member then decided to say hello and offer their help and soon enough I had brought a Red Bull Formula 1 t-shirt.
I then decided to visit the Mozart Museum inside the Geburtshaus, like other reviews I had previously read online I found it alright but not great. Most of the museum was focused on Mozart’s family and life and there was surprisingly little about his music.
Next I decided to find my way to the Salzburger Dom, the main cathedral in Salzburg. Along the way I discovered that Salzburg has many churches and also a large number of beggars who actively ask you for money as you walk by. And it can be really hard to know how to respond to some of these people in these circumstances.
The cathedral itself was amazing, beautiful frescoes are in many corners of the church and where there are no paintings there are decorations made of stucco.
Following on from the Cathedral I decided to catch the cable car up to the Festung Hohensalzburg, the castle overlooking Salzburg. Along the way I stumbled into a church graveyard (Petersfriedhof) buried in snow, missed the entrance to the cable car and ended up walking the entire way up to the Fortress.
Visiting the Festung Hohensalzburg was the highlight of Salzburg. Once inside the walls of the fortress you have freedom to explore much of the castle yourself. The view from the walls of the castle over Salzburg and across to the Alps are more than worth the entrance fee.
Additionally there is a great guided tour through part of the complex where you end up on the roof of the whole fortress. A second area that forms part of a museum of the history of the castle and its uses over time. I spent most of my afternoon exploring the fortress and was reluctant to leave.
Returning to the train station for the trip back to Munich I decided to do a bit of off the map exploring through other parts of the town and got myself a little lost. This exploring paid off though when I found a great bakery that had bread in the shape of skis and other fun figures.
Finally in the late afternoon I found my way back to the train station and on a train back to Munich.