So you’ve decided to visit Salzburg, Austria – or just thinking about it – but yay! Most people don’t even give this beautiful location a second thought but it’s one of my favorite cities in all of Europe. And there’s tons of fantastic things to do in Salzburg! The city is filled with German and Austrian culture, some of the most pleasant people I’ve met, and (my personal favorite) delicious food.
When most think of Salzburg, Austria, the first thing that crosses their mind is The Sound of Music. This is where the beloved, music-filled movie was filmed – yet the city is much more than just a movie location.
Settled near the border of Germany and surrounded by the scenic northern Alps, Salzburg is a picturesque city that shouldn’t be missed on a trip to Europe! It’s one of the best preserved cities with its world famous Baroque architecture and several domed churches – and I was lucky enough to study abroad here for a summer!
I attended the University of Salzburg, taking an Austrian Folk Art Culture class and a beginners German language course, enjoying the beauty and culture of the city. When I wasn’t in class, I was walking around, exploring what Salzburg had to offer, eating my way through the districts of Altstadt (Old Town) and Neustadt (New Town), occasionally going out (wink, wink!) and having some fun at the bars with my fellow classmates and Salzburg locals.
As I spent my sun-filled summer here, I discovered some underrated things to do in Salzburg – and I’m going to share them with you! There’s much more to Salzburg than just being the chosen shooting location for The Sound of Music.
So, what is on my list of 5 underrated things to do in Salzburg, Austria?
1. Eat Apfelstrudel with a View
If you are in Austria, Apfelstrudel should be close to the top on your foods to eat list. It is fantastic. Like one of the best things I ate while I was there. AND I had the chance to eat it while looking at the beautiful northern Alps surrounding Salzburg.
If you visit Festung Hohensalzburg, you must eat Apfelstrudel at the restaurant there. I think the restaurant is called Restaurant zur Festung Hohensalzburg. While overlooking the city, you get to eat a delicious dessert (or snack, no judging here) and take in the view.
2. Mozart’s Geburtshaus (Birth house)
You may or may not know that the talented composer and famous musical genius Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born in Salzburg – and you can tour his birth house!
The building has been restored and turned into a museum where you can walk around reading about Mozart’s life and view various items that he owned or used – like his childhood violin.
3. Augustiner Bräu
The Augustiner Brewery and beer pub is not to be missed when figuring out what things to do in Salzburg! The monastery of Mülin has been brewing beer since 1621 and it is Austria’s oldest and most famous beer garden. When you walk in, you pay a very reasonable price for a huge (HUGE.) mug and quickly hand it over to the guys filling them up with tasty beer.
You can also go to one of the many vendors and grab yourself a delicious pretzel (a traditional German snack, perfect with beer!). If you’re looking for a fun and exciting atmosphere (or relaxed, depending on the time of day and where you sit), Augustiner’s is the place to be!
*ALSO – most traditional Bavarian pretzels are vegan. They’re usually only made with flour, salt, warm water, and yeast. Let’s all raise our hands in a hooray!*
4. St. Peter’s Cemetary and Catacombs (Petersfriedhof)
St. Peters cemetery is a somber site dating back to 1621 but it’s hauntingly beautiful and worth a visit. The old tombstones from the 1600s and the locked up catacombs with eternal inscriptions, all not to be passed up when planning your things to do in Salzburg.
Many historic families from the city and notable people are buried here, like Mozart’s sister. It may be a little creepy at first, but there’s also a peaceful and respectful atmosphere about this place you aren’t likely to forget.
5. Hike Up at Sunset to Enjoy the Beauty of Salzburg from Above
If you head over the Staatsbrüke bridge to the Neustadt district and head up the Linzer Gasse street, keep walking until you hit a T in the road where the street Kapuzinerberg (which will be to your left) and Linzer Gasse meet.
If you look to your right, you’ll see an arch and a small walking street heading up into nowhere – that’s where you’ll be going! Don’t worry, it heads up the hill to a small viewing area where you can take in the city from above.
The hike can be a little struggle (if I can climb it, you for sure can!) but it’s short, like maybe 10 minutes, and totally worth it. I mean, just look at those pictures! Gorgeous.
So have I convinced you yet that the city of Salzburg should be on your must-see list?! Cause let me just say, it wasn’t on mine but holy buckets, it was worth every second spending time there. If you have the chance to visit this place, make sure not to pass it up!
Hope you enjoyed reading about things to do in Salzburg, Austria!