The majesty of the green hills that surround Salzburg is calling to you and the baroque era architecture and cobblestone streets makes this small city perfectly romantic. But what about some basic information you need to know about Salzburg? And do you want to save money while visiting Salzburg? Bubbly Tourist has a major tip for you. Read on to find out what else you need to know about Salzburg including where to stay, where to eat and how to navigate yourself to the airport and train station.
Salzburg Need to Know Information
Getting to the Airport / Old Town by Bus
From the Salzburg airport to Old Town there is a 20 minute bus ride that leaves every 15 minutes. The bus stop is located directly in front of the airport terminal building. Bus lines 2 and 10 connect the airport with the city center and the main railway station. Just google access in the Old Town to Salzburg Ferdinand-Hanusch-Platz. Buy your ticket in the kiosk at the stop (you can use a credit card) or in cash with the bus driver that is slightly more expensive. If paying the bus driver directly, either go in the bus door entrance or grab a seat to drop off your bags and then walk back to the bus driver to pay for your tickets. There is the transit guard on board that will check for your ticket. Or buy a Salzburg Card (see below) at the information desk in the arrivals hall first and get free transportation.
Getting to Old Town / Train Station (Hauptbahnhof or Hbf) by Bus
Access to the train station from the Old Town is convenient via bus. One of the most convenient bus stops to the train station is Salzburg Makartplatz. It's only 7 minutes by bus or 20 minutes on foot. There are multiple bus lines going to the train station that you can google for the most convenient time. Buy your ticket in the kiosk at the stop (you can use a credit card) or in cash with the bus driver that is slightly more expensive or use your Salzburg Card (see below).
In addition to public transportation (except for the S and U train lines), the Salzburg Card gives you discounts at many of the main attractions as listed in our article. Bubbly Tourist calculates that you only need to go to two attractions to break even with the cost of the card which is paid up front. We bought one for each of us and then it allowed us to do more activities than we probably would have done without it. You can buy one, two and three day passes conveniently from the Information Center at the Airport (in Arrivals Hall) or Train Station or in town at Mozartplatz or Alstadt Verband Salzburg. Just google Info Center.
Where to Stay in Salzburg
Bubbly Tourist always recommends staying in the Old Town of any city including Salzburg. Salzburg's Old Town is a pedestrian area and is walking distance to all the sights and includes older architecture which makes your visit more authentic. We stayed at two different hotels during our separate visits in Salzburg: the Hotel Stadtkrug and the Hotel Stein. Both are comfortable and very nice with excellent service but are available at different price points. We'd recommend Hotel Stein over the Stadtkrug for the sole reason that air conditioning is not always available at certain times of year at the Stadtkrug (we were there in early May when Salzburg and the room were very warm) but a/c was available for us in late September at the Hotel Stein. The two hotels are a stones throw from each other conveniently located to everything. The Hotel Stein has a separate cafe off the back plus a rooftop restaurant (see write-up below) with amazing views where breakfast is also served. The Hotel Stadtkrug has a restaurant on the ground floor with indoor / outdoor seating and also a separate bar where you can have wine and drinks.
Where to have an incredible meal with a view
In addition to the two places mentioned in our segment, In Search of Bubbly below, there is one spot where Bubbly Tourist had lunch that really was outstanding and we highly recommend, M32. The food here is absolutely delicious and the views on the outdoor terrace of the Old Town, the Fortress, and the Salzach are stunning! Use your Salzburg Card to get a free ride in the Mönchsberg lift up to Salzburg's Museum of Modern Art. When you arrive up top, either partake in the museum's exhibits and/or head up just a few stairs to the doors that lead you to the terrace. You'll be rewarded by the stunning views and the gorgeous food. M32 is one of the finer restaurants in Salzburg. You'll need a dinner reservation but for lunch, we walked up without one.
What to bring back from Salzburg
There are a couple Christmas stores and a Christmas Museum in the Old Town from which you can buy some Christmas ornaments, figurines and other paraphernalia if that's your thing. Also, if you're interested in local trachten (dress) to make you look like a local, there are some really nice stores from which you can buy an Oktoberfest dress for ladies called a dirndl or lederhosen for men which are the traditional leather shorts with suspenders. The local product can be relatively expensive compared to some of the basic trachten you can buy at the festivals or online, but you'll without a doubt have quality, authentic clothes. If you're an avid book reader and looking for a book, you may be interested in visiting Austria's oldest bookstore, Buchhandlung Hoellrigl, located in the Old Town since 1594.
In Search of Bubbly
In an ongoing segment by Bubbly Tourist, we always search for a location - if not the best location - to have some champagne wherever we go.
Rooftop Restaurant, Steinterrasse
Looking for a rooftop destination for your bubbly or for dinner, look no further! The Stein Terrace situated on top of the Stein Hotel is perfectly located on the river to give you amazing views while you enjoy your champagne. And it has a large collection of champagne too, offering nine different champagne houses from which to choose. The crowd is fashionable yet the environment is chill. It also has an extensive cocktail, wine and whiskey menu. It gets packed even during the week so make reservations. We were staying at the hotel and made dinner reservations (the hotel also serves breakfast on the terrace) and had two edge seats looking down over the river while we enjoyed a beautiful sunset dinner with incredible views to go with our delightful champagne.
Plaza Chillin, Wein & Co
For a more casual, yet still very nice environment head to Wein & Co's Platzl location and sample some local wine. It's a great location which allows for excellent people watching as folks make their way to the Old Town. It's a pedestrian only zone in a high foot traffic area but you're far enough back from the flow of people in your outdoor seats so you can enjoy your drink and snacks while you watch the locals tourists go about their daily lives. We had a chance to try some local bubbly here - some Schloss Globelsburg Brut Rosé - which we were pleasantly surprised by. Derived from Pinot Noir, Zweigelt, and St. Laurent from the hillsides of the Danube valleys, this bubbly is lovely (see photo below).
Bubbly Tourist Bon Voyage!