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A trip to Austria...no clue where to start!

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A trip to Austria...no clue where to start!

Hi,

I'm trying to plan a surprise trip to Austria for my partners birthday in June. Neither of us have done much travelling outside of beach holidays, though I did go on a 'Balkans Adventure' last spring that was a guided, lone/group trip.

I'd like to plan something that allows us to see some sights, scenery (maybe lake district), and allows for some random pit stops.

Neither of us have driven abroad before but I'm willing to give it a go...

I've gone with the very broad 'Austria' trip because when my partner and I discussed the idea, I was trying to be vague and not too obvious about what I was planning! There's so much in Austria I'd love to see, and I'd like a good mix of destinations and things to do that aren't too far away from one another.

Any suggestions are out definitely welcome!

Thank you

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1. Re: A trip to Austria...no clue where to start!

Hi,

Here's some clues where to start:

Start with Salzburg and the nearby Berchtesgaden area and the nearby Salzkammergut area. These alone give you some charming old towns (Salzburg especially), lakes (Salzkammergut) and alpine vistas (Berchtesgaden area). Best part is, they are all close enough to day trip from Salzburg, but different enough to warrant their own stays at.

You could also add Zell am See as a beautiful old town on a lake with a gorgeous alpine backdrop.

Paul

Edited: 05 March 2014, 23:57
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2. Re: A trip to Austria...no clue where to start!

Thanks, Paul, I will start looking into these villages/towns. Do you have any accommodation recommendations? Ideally, I'd like mix guest houses and pensions with a cabin maybe?

Alix

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3. Re: A trip to Austria...no clue where to start!

I agree on the previous suggestion to visit Salzburg and the Salzkammergut area. Make sure to include a trip to Hallstatt.

Another nice day trip from Salzburg would be Werfen, where you could visit the magnificent ice caves and the fortress Hohenwerfen. The trip to Werfen can easily be done by train (less than one hour)

If you go to Zell am See, which is also a rewarding destionation, you can also consider a side trip to the Krimml Waterfalls, which are the highest in Europe. It's one hour and 20 minutes by public transport to Krimml from Zell am See.

I would say that if you visit These destinations, there is no Need to rent a car, except maybe for exploring the Salzkammergut area.

If you have never been to Austria, of course Vienna would be ineresting as well, but it definitely deserves three days or more. You can reach Vienna in 2 hours and 20 minutes from Salzburg by train.

Best regards, Christina

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4. Re: A trip to Austria...no clue where to start!

what are your interests? (and partners of course!). Austria is a country of contrasts and therefore it is hard to recommend one particular area. but as you like water, the salzkammergut area of Salzburg is a very good place to begin. how are you travelling? where are you landing?

as regards accommodation, again we don't know where you would be or the cost range you want, but generally accommodation is good.

some suggestions in the salzkammergut area...

st gilgen (40 mins from Salzburg, by bus) lakeside , with gondola, ferry, boating, hiking etc

bad ischl (70 mins) small historic town on a riverside location, with gondola lift and thermal baths

gosau (100 mins?) rural location in the mountains, with nearby high lake

fuschl (30 mins ) small lakeside village, quiet and idyllic

other places that might be of interest, but in a different area

kitzbuhel. medium size old mining town , with an international reputation

westendorf nearby small quiet village

etc etc the list is endless

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5. Re: A trip to Austria...no clue where to start!

Christina,

That's very helpful, thank you.

The distances on public transport aren't too bad all, and I like the idea of being close to water, but in small villages and possibly a pension or guest house.

Alix

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6. Re: A trip to Austria...no clue where to start!

When I went on the Balkan tours I preferred the pensions, guest houses and hostels to larger hotels - ideally I'd be looking for smaller locally owned and run establishments.

I'd looked at flying into either Salzburg or Linz.

Budget-wise middle of the board and also looking at a 7 day break.

Alix

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7. Re: A trip to Austria...no clue where to start!

Hi Alix,

Our two favorite places to stay in the Berchtesgaden area:

www.mayringerlehen.de

http://www.friedwiese.de/enska/isl.htm

tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g635853-d630183…

tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g198481-d628454…

www.worldisround.com/home/pja1/index.html

Paul

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8. Re: A trip to Austria...no clue where to start!

there are several companies that do all in holidays to Austria, and these might give you an idea as to what would be on offer. they also have the advantage of getting you from the airport to your chosen area, and they also have various excursions to places of interest. the main uk ones would be crystal lakes and mountains, and inghams lakes and mountains.

you can always do your own thing instead of taking their excursions.

there are not really many mountainy areas around linz, and Salzburg is about 1.5 hours down the motorway. therefore I would suggest that an area around Salzburg would be ideal for you, allowing you to fly in there and then choose your destination.

I admit that I am biased, but st gilgen is a lovely village with good access to many interesting attractions, such as Salzburg old town itself, lake with boating and swimming, ferry to st wolfgang where there is a cog railway (featured on portillos continental train journeys on bbc). then you have salt mine at the beautiful hallstatt village, ice caves close to hallstatt too, together with the five fingers viewing platform.

my avatar is the view down the wolfgangsee, over st gilgen.

Edited: 06 March 2014, 12:18
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9. Re: A trip to Austria...no clue where to start!

Linz

So that would be Ryan Air?

Easy access to the Salzkammergut via train from Linz Airport.

Of course if you are flying Ryan Air from Stansted you could fly into Linz and out from Salzburg. Or vice a versa. I would look at the flight times and cost for both.

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10. Re: A trip to Austria...no clue where to start!

Everything looks so beautiful, it's going to be hard to choose, flying into Linz and out of Salzburg would offer more options and stops along the way- price will swing it.

In terms of our interests, we will try anything! Dom us fitness crazy and I'm sure will think Thal when I say Austria because if Arnie and body-building! We both like swimming, canoeing, hiking, cycling...I like food, traditional Austrian food would be good, any restaurants you could recommend?

Art, museums, the ice caves sound amazing so they're on the list along with the waterfalls.

The Balkans offered up vineyards, honey museums and a monastery, all of which I loved and Dom said he'd have enjoyed. So, things like that, if there are any similar excursions...

Alix

Edited: 06 March 2014, 17:56
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