Castles + Sound of Music

In the event you’re planning to go to Salzburg, it is best to positively go on a day journey to Werfen. 

Situated simply 40 kilometres south of Salzburg, Werfen is a small, scenic alpine village set on the foot of the Salzach River and surrounded by the Austrian Alps. 

Werfen boasts a medieval citadel that sits on a hilltop overlooking the city, it is without doubt one of the filming places for The Sound of Music, plus it’s also residence to the world’s largest ice caves! That’s numerous to supply for a comparatively small vacation spot in Austria. 

So in case you’ve already spent a number of days sightseeing round Salzburg and having fun with all Mozart-themed dishes, and also you now need to enterprise a bit additional afield, it’s price hopping on a prepare to close by Werfen. 

Now, we’re going that will help you plan the right Werfen day journey.

Hohenwerfen Castle can be visited on a day trip to Werfen, Austria.
Hohenwerfen Fort might be visited on a day journey to Werfen, Austria.

Learn how to get to Werfen

Getting from Salzburg to Werfen is tremendous simple. There’s a direct prepare from Hauptbahnhof Salzburg (the primary prepare station) to Werfen with a number of departures per day.

In the event you miss the direct prepare (like we did), you may journey the prepare to Bischofshofen after which backtrack one station to Werfen on the native prepare.

The journey time ranges between 45 minutes to 1 hour, which makes it a tremendous simple day journey from Salzburg, and the right introduction to the Austrian Alps.

Issues to do in Werfen

Whether or not you’re visiting Werfen on a day journey or staying for a few days, there isn’t any scarcity of issues to do. From castles and mountaineering trails, to ice caves and river rafting adventures, there’s loads to select from.

Hohenwerfen Fort

Our first cease of the day was Hohenwerfen Fort, a medieval rock citadel that was constructed between the years 1075 and 1078. That is thought of the sister citadel to Hohensalzburg, which is the fortress overlooking town of Salzburg.

Hohenwerfen sits on a peak excessive above the Salzach Valley and the Salzach River, and it’s surrounded by mountains.

Entering Hohenwerfen Castle, the sister castle to Hohensalzburg.
Getting into Hohenwerfen Fort, the sister citadel to Hohensalzburg.
Inside the medieval castle of Hohenwerfen Castle in Werfen, Austria.
Contained in the medieval citadel of Hohenwerfen Fort in Werfen, Austria.
The gardens inside Hohenwerfen Castle in Werfen.
The gardens inside Hohenwerfen Fort in Werfen.

There are a number of other ways to achieve Hohenwerfen Fort; you may journey the funicular to the highest or you may hike the path (search for the signal that claims Fussweg Burg). We opted for the latter and it was a pleasant uphill stroll via the forest

Views of the Austrian Alps from the clock tower in Hohenwerfen Castle.
Views of the Austrian Alps from the clock tower in Hohenwerfen Fort.
The Austrian Alps surrounding the village of Werfen.
The Austrian Alps surrounding the village of Werfen.
The medieval stone walls of Hohenwerfen Castle and forest in the distance.
The medieval stone partitions of Hohenwerfen Fort and forest within the distance.

As soon as we reached the citadel, we realized there have been a number of totally different ticket choices. We booked the guided tour which gave us entry to the chapel, dungeon, arsenal, and clock tower the place you get some really spectacular views of the city under. There was a falconry demonstration, although we missed the time for that.

Inside the chapel in Hohenwerfen Castle.
Contained in the chapel in Hohenwerfen Fort.
Touring the dungeons in Hohenwerfen Castle.
Touring the dungeons in Hohenwerfen Fort.

To be sincere, whereas the citadel was actually attention-grabbing, we didn’t have the most effective information. Have you ever ever felt like an individual is simply going via the motions, however doesn’t actually care about their job? That was the state of affairs, so we left feeling ‘meh’, however you may be fortunate sufficient to have a passionate information – this was simply our expertise.

Lastly, the one factor to remember earlier than you go to Hohenwerfen Fort is that it’s solely open from April to November, so it’s not a year-round attraction.

Sound of Music Path

After the citadel go to, we walked the Sound of Music Path which presents stunning views of the Salzach Valley and the Austrian Alps.

For followers of The Sound of Music, this is a vital cease as a result of it’s the place Frau Maria taught the kids to sing the Do Re Mi tune and so they loved a picnic.

Alpine views on The Sound of Music Trail in Werfen, Austria.
Alpine views on The Sound of Music Path in Werfen, Austria.

And sure, you may deal with this path even in case you’re not an avid hiker! The Sound of Music path runs 1.4 kilometres from the centre of city to the Gschwandtanger viewing level, and there are many alternatives to relaxation.

Alps, valleys and forest on The Sound of Music Trail in Werfen.
Alps, valleys and forest on The Sound of Music Path in Werfen.
Silhouette and alpine forests in Werfen.
Silhouette and alpine forests in Werfen.

Alongside the best way, there are all kinds of cool artwork installations associated to the songs from The Sound of Music.

One of many highlights was the remaining space with wood benches that had engraved lyrics from the movie. The views from that lookout have been spectacular!

Werfen Ice Caves

Do you know the world’s largest ice caves are positioned in Werfen?

Neither did we, or we’d have booked a tour, however typically you solely discover out about issues after the matter!

Domestically often called Eisriesenwelt which means ‘World of the Ice Giants’, this can be a pure limestone and ice cave contained in the Hochkogel Mountain within the Tennengebirge part of the Alps.

It’s the largest ice cave on this planet stretching for greater than 42 kilometres. Nonetheless, solely the primary kilometre is open to vacationers and that’s the part that’s coated in ice. The remainder of the cave is shaped of limestone.

The Werfen Ice Caves obtain upwards of 200,000 vacationers yearly.

The cave’s first official discovery was by Anton Posselt, a pure scientist from Salzburg, who explored the primary 2 hundred meters of the collapse 1879. Previous to that, it was solely identified to locals, some who supposedly believed it was an entrance to hell and refused to discover it.

The cave is open from Could to October yearly, so it’s a seasonal attraction. You possibly can try their opening occasions right here.

As you may think about, temperatures contained in the cave are under freezing, so that you’ll need to deliver heat clothes for this outing.

River rafting on the Salzach River

One more reason to go to Werfen is to go river rafting on the Salzach River

It is a well-liked tour from Salzburg that’s geared at novices alongside a 10-kilometre run.

The Salzach River runs through the town of Werfen in Austria.
The Salzach River runs via the city of Werfen in Austria.

The tour consists of transportation to Werfen and also you then start the journey with the imposing Hohenwerfen Fort watching over you. 

The outing combines stunning mountains views and adrenaline all rolled into one. 

The place to eat in Werfen

Again on the town, we ate at Stiege N° 1 and the meals was excellent!

This restaurant takes conventional Austrian recipes and reimagines them with a contemporary, up to date twist. 

Sam bought the Wienerschnitzel with a cranberry sauce and a facet of potatoes with parsley, and I ordered the pork roast with bread dumplings and greens.

I’m not exaggerating after I inform you that this meal was one of many highlights of our journey to Austria!

Enjoying Austrian cuisine at Stiege N° 1 Restaurant in Werfen.
Having fun with Austrian delicacies at Stiege N° 1 Restaurant in Werfen.
Wienerschnitzel at Stiege N° 1 Restaurant in Werfen.
Wienerschnitzel at Stiege N° 1 Restaurant in Werfen.

We opted to dine outside on their patio beneath the shade of the outdated chestnut tree, and it was an exquisite setting for an beautiful meal!

Alpine chalets in Werfen surrounded by forest.
Alpine chalets in Werfen surrounded by forest.
Werfen's charming town centre.
Werfen’s charming city centre.

Werfen Day Journey Video

We actually loved our day journey from Salzburg to Werfen. It was tremendous simple to get there and the comparatively brief journey rewarded us with epic Alpine views, castles, and essentially the most scrumptious Austrian meals. 

In the event you’re planning to go to Salzburg and also you need to see a bit extra of Austria with out having to journey too far, this village is price including to your record. 

One other good choice is a day journey to Gaisberg for a style of mountaineering within the Alps and extra scrumptious Austrian delicacies.

Now we’ll go away you with a video we filmed of our day journey so you may get a greater concept of what to anticipate out of your go to. 

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