Salzburg. Austria.

What comes to mind when you first think of Austria??

“The hills are alive… with THE SOUND OF MUSIC!”

That’s right. The Sound of Music was filmed in Austria, near Salzburg. Sadly, I couldn’t talk Michael into going on “The Sound of Music” tour, so instead we ‘tried’ to relax. (Big surprise, I know).

During our three days in Salzburg, we visited the Augustiner Bräustübl Tavern in Mülln for some practice for our upcoming Munich Oktoberfest trip. The system is confusing for newcomers: pay for your beer (pint, half liter, or full liter), pick your mug, rinse out your mug, hand ticket and mug to the beer pourer who fills up your mug from the wooden keg barrel. For food, there are different vendors throughout the two-story property. This felt like a very local spot, more than I expected, mixed with a few well-researched tourists. It’s not uncommon for people to join you at your table if there are open seats [We met a lovely Austrian couple and shared a few pints]. 

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Besides “The Sound of Music”, Salzburg is also known for Redbull. Yes, the energy drink. They have a beautiful hangar at the Salzburg Airport with displays of their famous aircraft, cars, and other technical gear. Lunch at Hangar-7 was delicious, and the views are pretty great too.

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Take a stroll through the Old Town, Mozart’s House, Makartsteg Bridge, and the Hohensalzburg Castle.

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Eisriesenwelt Ice Cave.

For a different outing, check out the largest ice cave in the world. It’s huge, and freezing, so bundle up! You can’t take pictures inside due to the magnesium lights/flames, so you’ll just have to take my word for it. I felt like I was inside the Matterhorn at Disneyland and expected the Abominable Snowman to jump out behind every turn. But the views from the top were stunning, both from the hike up (which can be difficult for those less active) and from the cable car. The neon green grass looks fake and the peaks are jagged and enormous.

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There’s a fortress on the way to the Ice Cave which is situated on a hill overlooking the town – Very picturesque.


Overall, Salzburg is a beautiful town with wonderful charm.

Refugee Note:

We took the train from Salzburg to Innsbruck which is normally 1h30m direct through Germany. However, the German border was still closed so we were rerouted through Austria, adding on another 2.5hrs. But that doesn’t even matter. What hurts is seeing for the first time hundreds of refugees sitting on the train station floor in Salzburg patiently waiting for the border to reopen in hopes of getting on a train to Munich. All of the men, women, and children waiting so patiently, escorted by police. That was when it all became real to me. Not just seeing it on the news, from afar, but witnessing it firsthand. Breaks my heart. I wish there was something more I could do to help, but I don’t speak German or Arabic. Heartbreaking. Humbling. {{Michael posted a picture I snapped of the refugees in Salzburg and CNN called him for an interview.}}

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Next Time:

  • Brunch at Icarus Restaurant in the Redbull Hangar.
  • The Sound of Music tour


  • Beautiful, clean Austrian town
  • Nice walks along the river


  • Felt like a sleepy town at times with not too much going on. Just a few days here is enough.

Fun Fact:

  • The city passed a law that you can’t sing songs from “The Sound of Music” in public places. – My mom and I definitely did this when we were here 15 years ago!
  • Mozart’s birth place
  • Traditional local’s actually wear lederhosen every day, walking down the street.


  • 8 hour train from Interlaken to Salzburg – Very nice train with wifi and food service.