When I was in Munich in June, one of the day trips that my cousin and I took together was to Salzburg in Austria. Salzburg is known as the birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and home to the “Sound of Music”. Salzburg lies about 145 km south east of Munich. With the German ‘recommended’ highway speed of 130 km per hour, it took us just a little bit over an hour to get there by car.
Upon our arrival in Salzburg, the weather was sunny, warm, 32 Celsius, and humid. We managed to see five of the top sights in Salzburg: Hohensalzburg Fortress, Mozart’s Birthplace, Mozart’s Residence, Salzburg Old Town, and Salzburg Cathedral Quarter.
Hohensalzburg Fortress is the biggest fully preserved castle in Central Europe. Construction of the Hohensalzburg Fortress started in the year 1077 and ongoing development of the fortress architecture continued until 1500. The fortress is open year round and can be reached on foot or by funicular. It’s worth visiting if you’re interested in historical exhibits, including original furnishings from the year 1501/ 1502.
Mozart’s Birthplace and Residence, both of which are now museums, provide a glimpse into his extraordinary childhood:
- The yellow-walled Geburthaus (or Mozart’s Birthplace) at 9 Getreidegasse where Mozart was born on January 27, 1756 and lived there until 1773.
- The soft pink-walled WohnHaus (or Mozart’s Residence) at 8 Markatplatz where he lived with his family from 1773.
Salzburg Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is located on the left side of the Salzach River which divides Salzburg into two halves. The pedestrian-only streets in the Old Town are lined with shops, all with decorative metal works above the entrances. We enjoyed exploring the maze of streets leading to and from several main public squares.
Salzburg Cathedral and Cathedral Square (Domplatz): Of its numerous churches, the cathedral is Salzburg’s most important sacred building. The façade is made of marble. Looking down from it are four monumental statues: Apostles Peter and Paul holding a key and a sword, as well as Salzburg’s two patron saints, Rupert and Virgil, clasping a salt vessel and a model of the church. The two statues at the top of the gable commemorate the two builders of the cathedral, Markus Sittikus and Paris Lodron. The cathedral interior is also stunning to see.
Cathedral Square connects with Residence Square (Residenceplatz) which is surrounded by the Residence building (left in the photo below) and Salzburg Museum (right in the photo below).
In the centre of Residence Square is the beautiful baroque Residence Fountain created by the Italian sculptor, Tommasso di Garone. At the base of the fountain, four snorting horses seem to spring forth from the spouting rock. Giants rooted in the rock carry the lower basin, in which three dolphins balance the scalloped upper basin. The upper basin holds a Triton, a jet of water shooting into the air from his conch-shell trumpet. It’s truly magnificent artwork.
From Residence Square, we walked to Salzburg Market to pick up fresh snacks and to browse all kinds of food products, traditional folk wear, and souvenirs. Then it was time to head back to Munich.
I had a wonderful day trip to Salzburg. I hope you’ve enjoyed visiting (or revisiting) Salzburg through my lens.
I’d love to hear your comments.
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