Austria, one of Europe’s most popular holiday destinations attracts tourists year round with places to visit. From the moment you visit, it’s clear to see why Austria is one of Europe’s most famous holiday destinations. When in summer do not forget about Vienna and Salzburg where your kids will enjoy cultural festivals celebrating Mozart or exploring picturesque palaces while adults can explore world-famous museums like Kunsthistorisches Museum which has a hands on workshop for children at their toy museum! In winter, visitors are drawn as much for the beautiful beauty of this Alpine republic’s areas. They are also great cities like Vienna (Wien) with its renowned opera house and beautiful Salzburg birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
The River Danube flows for nearly 350 kilometres from west to east within the northern part of Austria, adding to its attraction as a tourist destination. In this country that is predominantly a nation of upland areas and high mountains with 60% in Eastern Alps, you’ll find an abundance of natural beauty along with Austrian culture at every turn!
Austria is a country that has been well-known for hosting some of the most scenic sights in all of Europe. From mountains to lakes and everything else in connecting – Austria can provide you with an experience unlike any other! Here are just 17 places worth visiting when exploring this beautiful destination:
1. The Vienna Hofburg: Austria’s Imperial Palace
The Hofburg Palace in Vienna has had a long and illustrious history. For centuries, the palace was the seat of Austria’s monarchy – The powerful Habsburgs resided here for hundreds of years until Emperor Joseph II moved his court to less opulent surroundings just down the street following an economic recession. Nowadays it is home to our president who conducts state business from its many rooms that once belonged to this same emperor!
The beautiful building with more than 1 million square feet contains architectural influences spanning over 600 years due not only because every Austrian ruler since 1275 ordered additions or alterations but also because each monarch brought their own style into these buildings resulting in both Gothic-style arches as well as Renaissance paintings on its walls depicting scenes from mythology while Bar
The Hofburg Palace is an expansive complex with 59 acres of land and 2,600 rooms. Highlights include the Imperial Silver Collection that includes intricate silverware used in imperial banquets, The Sisi Museum which focuses on Empress Elisabeth’s life and times; as well as exclusive access to Emperor Franz Joseph’s former living quarters including his 19 room apartment.
With its various beautiful squares and gardens, the complete Hofburg Complex holds 59 acres, including 20 courtyards and 2 thousand 600 rooms divided over 14 floors (including 4 underground levels). In addition to being a true architectural delight thanks to its complexity layered by numerous architects throughout centuries it also has plenty of other highlights for visitors: from stunning collections like the Imperial Silver
2. Salzburg Altstadt, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
As the unique place of Christianity in Europe, Salzburg has been a holy center for hundreds of years. The Abbey Church of St. Peter was founded by Rupert and served as home to Archbishop’s from AD 690 until 1100s when they moved closer into town. As one can imagine, there are many interesting aspects about being an Archbishop – but their living quarters is not usually among them!
The City of Prague, often considered the most beautiful city in all Europe lays on top a hill giving it an even more breathtaking scenery overlooking picturesque buildings and its great river. The Prince Archbishops employed some of the finest artists and architects to build their churches which now compliment one another with medieval structures sitting next to Baroques ones while displaying old European artistry from across centuries that can be explored as you walk through this amazing town’s streets.
The Sound of Music filming site is not the only reason to visit Salzburg. Highlights include St. Peter’s Abbey and its church, the grand cemetery, and catacombs are directly recognizable as a favourite location for many films, including The Sound of Music! Nearby is another great attraction–the cathedral–and wandering among all these colorful Baroque burgher houses you’ll find charming squares, attractions that includes Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s birthplace now transformed into a museum so everyone can learn about this famous composer in person! Visitors may also enjoy exploring Above the beautiful spires and cupolas towering over Salzburg Castle – Hohensalzbourg-which visitors have access to by riding up on one funicular ride.
3. The Spanish Riding School, Vienna
The Spanish Riding School dates back to Emperor Maximilian II, who started Lipizzaner horses into Austria in 1562. Today it is one of the only areas where classical style riding favoured by society can still be practised and seen. Viewing famous equestrian displays contained within Baroque Winter Riding School – which have been held here since 1740s – when visiting Vienna, will surely impress you with its grandeur and history!
The Royal Hall is the home of a noblemen’s show and tell. With so many traditions, it can be hard to keep up with who has what when. Owning an elegant horse takes talent in itself, but rubbing shoulders on these horses seems like another level of skill all together- one reserved for those most respected among man or beast alike. The best seats are always at ringside seatings (though not without accommodations), where you’ll witness their skills firsthand as they perform their ballet amongst other equestrians and spectators alike! Get your tickets online before there gone because nothing beats being part time spectator yourself!
Address: Michaelerplatz 1, 1010 Vienna
4. Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna
The opulent Schönbrunn Palace is situated in Vienna on its outskirts, and was completed by the early 1700s. It’s now a summer residence for Empress Maria Theresa after it underwent modifications to make this possible. The palace has seen various other uses over time and served as an imperial guest house during World War II where Adolf Hitler met with his generals before invading Poland.
Highlights of a journey into the palace that is open to the people are Maria Theresa’s salon with its carved and gilded rosewood panels and 500 acres worth of parks and gardens.
The Palace Museum in Madrid has 1,441 rooms which span across five floors – from lavish living quarters for royalty down to guards’ cells! The highlights include Royal apartments; great gallery decorated with ornate ceiling paintings; million room (a failed attempt at being an auditorium); hall of mirrors framed by gold rococo frames housing over 70 neoclassical painterly scenes including portraits honoring Ferdinand VII’s victory against Napoleon Bonaparte on 24 July 1813
Your visit to Schönbrunn should include the many attractions spread throughout these grounds: formal gardens, a labyrinth with hidden passages and water fountains; an Alpine garden with farmhouse-style buildings where you can enjoy continental cuisine; Europe’s oldest zoo filled not only exotic animals but also art exhibits. The Classical Gloriette offers breathtaking views of Vienna in all directions from atop this marble structure that crowns one hill on the property.
The Former Winter Riding School in Dresden houses a carriage museum where tourists from around the world come to see 30+ different kinds of carriages–everything from royal coaches used throughout history all the way up through present day models. It also features more than 100 horses’ heads made out of plaster or bronze that look like those seen in old paintings!
Address: Schönbrunner Schloßstraße 47, 1130 Vienna
5. Innsbruck’s Hofburg and Hofkirche
Known as the “city of gold,” Innsbruck was made a focal point in Europe when Maximilian I, who reigned during the late 1400s and early 1500s, established it as his main residence. The Hofburg palace that he had built became one of many imperial palaces which were remodeled by Empress Maria Theresa into 18th-century Baroque and Rococo styles with sumptuous royal apartments to show off her power. Highlights on this tour are viewing paintings across ceilings throughout including those from Michelangelo’s workshop or admiring magnificent marble work like giant columns connecting floors adorned with masterful frescoes depicting biblical scenes amid breathtaking beauty unparalleled elsewhere in Austria!
The highlight of the Hofkirche, or Court Church is the magnificent Tomb of Emperor Maximilian I. Widely considered to be one if not THE finest work in German Renaissance sculpture, this monument has a black marble sarcophagus with bronze figure and reliefs depicting events throughout Emperor’s life. Around it stand 28 larger-than-life statues include King Arthur!
Hapsburg Innsbruck is the home of many famous landmarks. One example is The Golden Roof, a Late Gothic ornate palace that stands as an important architectural landmark in Old Town. This historic site now has its own museum dedicated to Habsburg history and culture!
Address: Rennweg 1/3, 6020 Innsbruck
6. Melk Benedictine Abbey
The Melk Abbey in Austria is one of the world’s most popular monastic sites. It has seven courtyards and a twin-towered church at its west end, all laid out around an amazing 325 meter long complex that towers 118 meters high!
The town of Melk is the perfect place to spend a day, and you are guaranteed never want to leave. This awe-inspiring abbey will only make it worse with its rich history combined in one location: Saint Coloman’s tomb; the House of Babenberg resting place; an imperial corridor reflecting on Austria’s past rulers (including Empress Maria Theresa); and many more breathtaking features that await your discovery within this magnificent site.
Address: Abt-Berthold-Dietmayr-Straße 1, 3390 Melk
7. Hallstatt and the Dachstein Salzkammergut
Hallstatt is a little town in Austria that has created salt since prehistoric times. The Baroque architecture and picturesque streets make it an ideal location to explore nearby Dachstein Salzkammergut, which was named as one of the world’s most impressive UNESCO World Heritage sites. You can visit underground caverns like Hörnerwerk or explore Europe’s deepest caves at up 1,174 meters deep! Take in the serene frozen waterfalls of The Giant Ice Cave and enjoy a panoramic view from atop 5 Fingers, an incredible metal structure with views of Alpine mountains.
8. Skiing at Kitzbühel and Kitzbüheler Horn
Kitzbühel is the site of one of Austria’s best ski resorts. Here you can ski 170 kilometers on slopes, and stop at mountain huts for traditional Alpine snacks and warming drinks. Kitzbühel has three skiing areas with terrain suitable for all skill levels: Bichlalm which caters to freestylers who want more than just downhill racing!
The Alpine town of Kitzbühel is not just for skiers. With its beautiful architecture and snow-covered Alps as a backdrop, the picturesque village has been attracting tourists off season since it’s so pretty in any time of year! You can explore all that this lovely high mountain offers by hiking up to the summit via cable car at Pletzeralm or take your pick from gorgeous walls and frescoed houses during winter months when skiing reigns supreme.
One of the most excellent summit views in the Tyrol is estimated: to the south from Radstädter Tauern, the Ötztal Alps and Lechtal Alps; to north Kaisergebirge and Hochkönig as well. To be taken on a cableway is also Kitzbüheler Horn with its 1,772-meter high mountain peak called Hornköpfli. Here you can find Gipfelhaus (mountaintop home), chapel or restaurant for refreshments before leaving this beautiful place among many other attractions such as an Alpine garden that will remind you how much nature has given us!
9. Belvedere Palace, Vienna
The Belvedere Palace is a breathtaking palace that was first built in the 18th century. Visitors can go to see two sections of it, one at ground level and another with stunning views from higher up.
Some of the most impressive artwork is in this part, where you’ll find Sala Terrena – one of Italy’s best preserved architectural gems. Here are sculptures and paintings galore! Beautifully fashioned by some of Europe’s finest artists from centuries ago, these pieces have withstood the test time to still be awe-inspiring today. You’ve got two stories worth exploring as well: marble flooring on both levels make for a beautifully luxurious atmosphere that seems anything but cold or austere.
You can’t leave without visiting the Lower Palace. Highlights include a marble gallery of statues, grotesque hall with great paintings on its walls, and another marble hall known for an amazing ceiling fresco which you might find there during Christmas season. If you’re in town all day (you should plan to be!), stop by their café or restaurant as well as three shops nearby that offer everything from souvenirs to handmade candles!
Address: Prinz Eugen-Straße 27, 1030 Vienna
10. Medieval Burg Hochosterwitz
The imposing Burg Hochosterwitz is Austria’s most famous old castle. After a turbulent history, the castle-first introduced in 860 AD was taken by the Khevenhüllers and was enlarged in 1570 to defend it from Turkish invaders. The family had never been conquered before but they were eventually won over by one of their own: Johanna von Khevenhu ller married Count Herman II whose son inherited both titles after he died at only 44 years old.
The Burgweg winds up through the 14 gates, opening to an arcaded courtyard with beautiful paintings that date back from 1570. The church is also located in this area and you’ll find it at the southwestern end of the castle where its high altar was built only 300 years ago.
Address: Hochosterwitz 1, 9314 Launsdorf
11. The Grossglockner Road to Franz-Josefs-Höhe
The Grossglockner Hochalpenstrasse is a mountain pass road discovered in the Pinzgau region of Austria. One can follow this route and be immersed into one of Europe’s most magnificent views, which includes mountains with glaciers on them as well as many different types of flora and fauna endemic to these high-altitude environments.
The Hohe Tauern is an incredible mountain range and stunning area to travel through. The Karawankenstraße, a 22 kilometer long highway in Austria that runs from the Slovenian border until it reaches Hochtor at 2,506 meters high. This route has become less traveled over time because of its difficulty to maneuver on but still provides scenic views as well as memorable experiences for those brave enough to take this drive!
The road is the access to a gorgeous mountain range, where one can find Franz-Josefs Höhe. Named after Kaiser Franz-Josef’s visit in 1856, this fantastic vantage point stands 2,422 meters over sea level and allows incredible vistas of the around countryside. Prominent in these views are Grossglockner at 3 798 meters Austria’s highest mountain which dominates any view from here with its beauty as looming over it all like a watchful guardian standing guard for those who dare come close enough to see what lies beyond their perceptive abilities
12. St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna
The imposing Gothic cathedral of St. Stephen’s (Stephansdom) is a place inside Vienna’s old city center and the first 12th-century Romanesque church was restored in the 13th century by a Late Romanesque church, which has been refurbished so that only its large gate and Heathen Towers continue from before.
The later Gothic reconstruction in the 14th century added a choir and chapels, including St. Eligius’ Chapel, St. Tirna’s Chapel and Chapelle de la Reine Jeanne d’Evreux, which houses an important collection of 16th-century tapestries by Pieter Coecke van Aelst (1510/11 – 1549) depicting scenes from Genesis; meanwhile in 1504 one of Europe’s oldest astronomical clocks was installed on top of it all! In the following centuries there were many additions to this beautiful cathedral: The famous 137-meter high South Tower or Steffl tower that is adorned with richly carved statues dating back as far as 1392 AD came along next followed by remod,
The Steffl is a landmark church in the Austrian capital of Vienna. Like many other buildings from World War II, this one was also heavily damaged and rebuilt after significant repairs were made to it. One thing that makes climbing up its 343 steps worth your time are the views you can get as an added bonus when reaching the top! There’s no need for an elevator though if anyone would prefer taking them instead – they’ll stop on their way at a viewing platform with a panoramic view before continuing onto another floor where there will be more interesting things waiting for people like yourself who want to see something unique yet traditional about Austria itself!. The catacombs here date back fourteen centuries ago; some visitors may find these even more fascinating than anything else
Address: Stephansplatz 3, 1010 Vienna
13. Klosterneuburg Abbey and the Verdun Altar
A flight of tracks in beautiful Klosterneuburg Abbey points down to the 12th-century St. Leopold’s Chapel where you’ll find a famous Verdun Altar, consisting of 51 panels depicting Biblical scenes by Nicholas from around 1181.
The original Romanesque church’s pulpit was destroyed in a fire, but the four panels that were on it and now hang above this altar are still intact. These paintings date back to before 1329 when they were first created- meaning they’ve been around for over 600 years! They remain as an homage of Vienna’s history even today.
Address: Stiftsplatz 1, 3400 Klosterneuburg
14. Maria Saal Cathedral
The Church of Maria Saal-more, often related to as Mariasaal Cathedral, is perched on a hill high over the Zollfeld and is one of the best places of pilgrimage in southern Austria. Nearby 750 AD, Bishop Modestus consecrated a service from which the surrounding area was Christianized.
The present twin-towered church was built in Gothic style in the first half of the 15th century on what had once been a Roman basilica. The west facade has two towers that were added during Renaissance and Baroque periods, but is home to some interesting gravestones from 16th-century Keutschach Epitaph depicting the Coronation of Our Lady as well as an ancient relief dating back 300 AD before Christ.
15. Krimmler Ache: Austria’s Tallest Waterfalls
The Krimmler Ache dives 380 meters in three large cascades and makes for a great journey from the nearby village of Krimml. At an altitude of 1,076 meters, Krimml-perched high above the Salzachtal in a wooded valley-is a wonderful place to stop for those who are looking forward to hiking. In addition to various walks that lead you up close with these waterfalls, there’s also rewarding trekking that takes you through some stunning scenery on your way back down – like climbing towards “Klimbinsel” at 2113 metres or ascending Mt Glockenkarkopf which is situated at Italy’s border line (2411 metres).
16. Eisriesenwelt: The World of the Ice Giants
The largest system of ice caves in the world, World of the Ice Giants is found on an edge that spans a distance from east to west. This cave was carved by underground river systems in Tertiary times and can be explored for 45 kilometers worth!
After winding along the Great Ice Wall, you’ll be confronted by a massive ice palace with its impressive icicles and formations. The tour takes two hours to complete but your journey may take up to five if you’re going back as well so expect it will probably use most of your day exploring this area.
17. The Styrian Armoury (Landeszeughaus)
Located in the heart of Styria is Graz and its Landeszeughaus. Built way back in 1644, this building houses a spectacular collection of completely preserved 17th-century arms and armors enough to equip 32,000 men with helmets and weaponry for battle.
Graz, Austria is a beautiful and captivating city that has so much to offer in terms of history. You could spend hours exploring the architecture alone! One highlight worth checking out while visiting Graz would be Landhaus which was built during Renaissance period from 1557-65. It’s main facade features rounded windows as well as an arcaded courtyard with pergolas on either side–it really does not get any better than this when it comes to experiencing what life in Europe around 1600 looked like (not surprisingly). To top things off there are countless other attractions situated within Landmuseum such both of the two courtyards or Knights’ Hall where you can admire some stunning stucco ceilings created by artists nearly 300 years ago for no added