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Scenic train trips in Austria Alps

Copenhagen, Denmark
1 post
Scenic train trips in Austria Alps

I am going to be in Vienna for a few days at the beginning of May. I am planning a day trip, by train, through the Austrian alps during this time. I've been in Denmark the past 8 months, and originally being from the Rockies, I am in dire need of beautiful scenery and MOUNTAINS!

My first idea was to train to Salzburg, spend the day there, then train back. Does anybody know if this is a nice scenic route (ie lots of mountains)?

My other idea was to go to a smaller town if the scenery would be significantly better (mountains more breathtaking). Other places I've heard about are Zell am See, Kaprun, and Graz. How is the scenery (mountains) here compared to Salzburg? Are there other small towns, or hidden gems, that you would recommend?

I guess my main question is: if you were in Vienna, where would you go for a day trip, by train, to see some gorgeous mountains? Mind you, I don't want to be in a train all day, and would like to have a lovely destination town to explore and eat lunch in.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!!

Vienna, Austria
Destination Expert
for Vienna, Austria, Innsbruck
Level Contributor
26,961 posts
29 reviews
1. Re: Scenic train trips in Austria Alps

In order to see gorgeous mountains you need to go farther away what necessarily involves a longer train ride. Another problem is that you won't find a place that accommodates all properties stated (lovely town, hidden gem, majestic mountains, easily reachable by train, not too far from Vienna.....). If I were you I would contemplate the following scenarios:

1. Take the first train to Innsbruck which is a nice little city surrounded by majestic mountains. The city has a small but fine city center and you can easily and quickly go up to 2.300m above sea level by ropeway. Ex Innsbruck you could optionally/additionally visit the Karwendel Area with places like Seefeld and Mittenwald. The Karwendel Railway is known for spectacular views. Prepare for a long day but it is feasible!



2. Salzkammergut Lake District East of Salzburg City. Please browse the forum as advice on this area has been given numerous times. Places of interests: St. Wolfgang, Bad Ischl, Hallstatt, Dachstein Mountain

3. Rax or Schneeberg Mountain close to Vienna. Rax Mountain is accessible via ÖBB Station: Payerbach-Reichenau, Schneeberg Mountain from Puchberg am Schneeberg (1 transfer necessary). Rax is linked to the valley by ropeway, Schneeberg by a cog railroad.

ÖBB Itinerary Planer:


Edited: 25 April 2010, 14:19
2. Re: Scenic train trips in Austria Alps

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