If you have watched the famed musical drama film called “The Sound of Music,” you definitely could visualize the charming city of Salzburg. With the Alps on its background and Salzach River that traverses at the center, this Austrian city has a dramatic setting. Salzburg also lures its guests with its “Old Town” sculpted by fine buildings in Baroque architectural style. Not to miss in this is historic old town is the street called Gertreidegasse where the famous composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born.
Salzburg is rich in history depicted in its palaces, castles and churches. To explore the city’s culture, you could visit the museums, hop on bus to transfer from one palace to the other, or walk in the old town. However, no matter where you go the mighty fortress situated atop of the hill will never leave your sight – the Hohensalzburg Fortress. It is like a way of saying that it should be climbed. I met a native and told me that I could never say I visited Salzburg if I have not been to the top of the fortress. This means a visit in Salzburg would not be complete without ascending to the top of Hohensalzburg Fortress.
The Hohensalzburg Fortress/Castle
It is among the largest and best-preserved medieval European castle sitting gloriously above the Festungsberg hill at an altitude of around 500 meters. The fortress was gradually expanded century after century since its construction in 1077 until it occupied almost the entire Festungsberg area. This towering monument manifests the political power and authority of the archbishops during those period building fortifications to protect their interests.
The omnipresent structure over the roofs of the city’s Baroque buildings is unmistakably the symbol of Salzburg. It dominates the skyline of the city thus offers the best panoramic views of the entire Salzburg. Though there are numerous things to see and explore behind the thick walls of the fortress, nothing compares to the breathtaking silhouette of Salzburg seen from the top. You might be interested to look into the museums, art galleries, and the interior of the castle, but what would struck you the most is the fantastic views of the city. There might be several viewpoints of Salzburg, but for a first time visitor ascending the top of the fortress is the best option. You could stop by and dine at the restaurant while enjoying the landscape.
In less than a minute, you could reach Hohensalzburg Fortress through the funicular railway (Festungbahn) that runs every 10 minutes from Festungsgasse. However if you have walking stamina, you can make your way on top by foot which would take around 30 minutes.
The Fortress is open to the public all year round with the following time schedule:
January – April & October – December: 9:30am to 5:00pm
May – September: 9:00am to 7:00pm
Includes the following: Go up & down through Funicular, Audio guide, Castle museum, Rainer Regiment museum, puppet museum and Alm passage exhibition.
Adult = € 12.0
Child (aged 6-14) = € 6.80
Family =€ 26.60
Includes all the following mentioned in the basic ticket plus Prince’s Chambers and Magic Theater
Adult = € 15.20
Child (aged 6-14) = € 8.70
Family =€ 33.70