A friend and I were in Salzburg for 6 days. While there, we did two Panorama tours -- the cheesy but fun Sound of Music Tour and the Eagle's Nest/Salt Mine/Berchtesgaden full day tour which was marred by a very unpleasant guide.
Our Sound of Music guide (Peter) was great. He gave a nice overview of Salzburg and the surrounding area as we drove to SOM sites. We saw many of the major sites from the movie, and at the end of the tour, he walked those interested into Mirabell Gardens (adjacent to the pick up/drop off location for Panorama) and directed them to filming sites located there. For those interested in SOM, it's a very enjoyable half-day, and I would readily recommend Panorama for this trip.
As for the Eagle's Nest (et al.) tour, it was a hurried day with an irritable guide. Upon approaching the bus, we met our frowning guide who impatiently barked orders at his guests (no welcome). He did provide a nice commentary as we drove to Eagle's Nest, but yelled at and totally humiliated some members of our group for a very minor offense related to poorly-given directions in the Eagle's Nest building. What a jerk. After that, I took extra care to make sure I too didn't do something to set off the volatile guide, which obviously detracted from the sites. The visit to Eagle's Nest was cursory at best (with as much time spent at the gift shop at the bottom of the mountain as at the actual site). Berchtesgaden was a lunch stop; we were glad that we brought energy/granola bars to eat for lunch so that we could explore instead of having a sit-down lunch; there are some nice things to see a street or two over from the touristy area of town. The salt mine tour after lunch was a lot of fun. We then went to the national park area for a brief peak at Konigssee (beautiful), followed by a return to Berchtesgaden for "tea" (for us, more exploring). The tour gave me a nice taste of the area... enough to know that it may be worthwhile to return to Eagle's Nest and Berchtesgaden National Park some day to do more exploring on my own at a more leisurely pace. Given the way our guide treated our group, though, I wouldn't recommend Panorama for any non-SOM tours.
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