Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Top 10 Things to See & Do in Austria

1.Hike the hills of Hallstatt
This amazing hilltop villages should arguably be one of the top destinations in Europe.  It has a little bit of everything for every type of traveler. High mountains to climb and lots of nature to get lost in and a huge lake to swim in for the adventurer.  It even has a beach for those who want to relax.  And those who are there for the view?  Well, let's just say they will not be disappointed in the slightest.

2.Visit the Dolomites
The Dolomites kind of belong to both Italy and Austria, but to be sure, even the Italian side seems more German.  The Austrian side doesn't offer quite the same stark views for example of the Val di Funes, but it has quite a few great views of its own, and many many places to relax, drink wine, and dip your toes in the cold mountain streams.

3.Tour a museum in Vienna
Vienna has long been the home of many great painters, writers, and artists.  It is still home to many of the finest art galleries in Europe and it is here that you will find Klimt's famous "the kiss" painting at the Belvedere Gallery.

4.Ski the Alps
It's hard to really differentiate ski resorts in the Alps.  Not many really have the sheer drop of mountains like in the Western US, but this is because you really get the feeling that you are on top of and at the same time in the mountains.  Peaks rise up all around you.  It's a spectacular thing to behold, and Austrian resorts are king at this.  Some of the best places to go are Angertal and Lech Zuers.

5.Witness the odd St. Nicolas Festival (Krampusnacht)
This has got to be one of the greatest world festivals just because of the sheer terrifying nature of the Krampus. No one really knows where Krampus comes from, but many think it's the left over version of a pagan deity from when Christianity began mixing with paganism.  In the festival, Krampus is a devil with chains that comes and scares bad children, while St. Nick walks around giving gifts to good children.  This festival goes throughout much of Central Europe, but nowhere is Krampus as terrifying as in the Alps, where the festival usually takes place at night with large fires.  It's a photographer's and a well, demon's dream.

6.See the Opera in Vienna
If you've seen the most recent Mission Impossible, you caught a glimpse of one of the most prestigious art events in all the world.  Vienna's opera is the premier stage for opera.  Nothing else really compares, and the tickets show it.  Opera tickets here can be ridiculously expensive.  Make sure to dress to the t as well.  This is no minor league event.

7.Get tickets to the Spanish Stables
Ok, so these Andalusian stallion training grounds are so famous that you can see horses coming out of them touring throughout the world, but there is something magical to being in the ancient building, where it is standing room only and watching these magnificent creatures perform.  you feel like royalty, although if you didn't get a seat, maybe like a third cousin of the king and queen.

8.Walk the gardens of Salzburg
Want to listen to the hills sing to you?  Well the first step is to find the beautiful gardens of Salzburg.  The gardens of Mirabell Palace was made famous during the Sound of Music, but even without that this city is a magical diamond encircled by hills.  It is also a great launching point to see castles in southern Germany or Hallstatt.

9.Bike Schlogener-Schlinge
This is the Austrian version of Horseshoe Bend in Arizona.  This huge bend in the Danube really is quite the beautiful site, and one of the things of the beaten track in Austria.

10.Tour Hitler's Eagle's Nest
You couldn't really get a full experience of Austria without visiting the Alps, and why not make the place you visit the great Eagle's Nest at Berghof?  One of the most portrayed spots of Hitler's residences and for good reason.  Not only is it beautiful, but he spent the most time in this aloof nest.  Recently it has appeared Amazon's Man in the High Castle, and in HBO's Band of Brothers.

If you have any suggestions or would like to contribute click here to send me an email.  If you would like to sponsor my trip somewhere to showcase your business or to work with me please send me an email as well.

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