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Salzburg Region Travel Information

Austria's diversity shines through its landscape and through its population as well. Due to its central location in the heart of Europe sharing borders with Germany, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Italy, Switzerland and Liechtenstein and its vibrant history, a cross-section of cultures flow together and are combined in Austria.

Austria is a destination whose scenery is the stuff of legends and postcards. Home to fairytale mountains, massive glaciers, and sparkling Alpine lakes it also has exhilarating fresh clean air and some wonderful paths for walkers to explore. There is also cycling, swimming, golf and horse-riding. With picturesque villages, medieval towns, traditional folklore and music, it is a destination for those looking to truly experience the ‘Great Outdoors’.
 
Austria is a country with scenery beyond compare. Lush green valleys, filled with exquisite spring and summer flowers, backed by snow-capped peaks. Sparkling streams, waterfalls and the shimmering beauty of crystal-clear lakes. Add to this a whole host of activities, including, walking, cycling, swimming and golf, and you have a wonderful holiday destination, with the ability to exhilarate and entertain every holidaymaker!

Wherever you chose to stay, the warmth and hospitality of the local people will greet you and add to your holiday experience.

Austria is located in a temperate climatic zone with a Central European climate influenced by the Atlantic climate. Each season has a typical temperature and climatic character and due to the topographical diversity and the relatively large West-East expanse, there are three differentiating climatic regions: East: Pannonian climate with a continental influence – low precipitation, hot summers but only moderately cold winters. Alpine Regions: Alpine climate - high precipitation (except inner alpine valley regions such as the upper Inntal), short summers, long winters. Remainder of the country: transient climate influenced by the Atlantic (in the West) and a continental influence in the South-east.

Austria's culture over the centuries has grown into a fascinating blend of numerous European heritages. This is one reason why it has established itself as one of the continent's most popular travel destinations. Another is that, within an area of no more than 83,858 km2 it harbours a wealth of unique attractions: an extraordinary variety of landscapes, from Alpine peaks to rolling plains; and an immeasurably rich legacy of art treasures from every era of European history. In addition, Austria is the ideal venue for innumerable sports, from hiking to climbing, from yachting and windsurfing to diving and canoeing, from golf to cycling and mountain biking, and from hang-gliding to summer skiing.

Despite its mountain topography, Austria's cities, towns and villages are all readily accessible via its modern road and rail network. You can even drive your car (or take a bus) close to the countries highest mountain, the Grossglockner (3,797 metres). The renowned Grossglockner High Alpine Road climbs to an altitude of 2,576 metres.

Austria's nine federal provinces, taken together, may make up a single country, but each has an entirely individual character in terms of its scenery and cultural traditions.

Burgenland, in the East of Austria, is a region of fertile plains stretching to the horizon around the shores of Lake Neusiedl, Central Europe's only steppe lake. Close by is a National Park which serves as a sanctuary for countless rare bird species.

Lower Austria encloses Vienna on all sides. To the East it is undulating hill country, a patchwork of vineyards, and to the North the hills are densely wooded. The Wachau, the picturesque stretch of the Danube Valley between the abbeys of Melk and Göttweig, is a major tourist attraction.

Crossing the Semmering southwards, you enter Styria, known as the "green province" for its vast expanses of forests. Between the glacier-clad peak of the Dachstein (2,995 metres) on its northern border and the vineyard-clad hillsides south of the provincial capital Graz, it harbours an abundance of scenic and cultural treasures. One of its most attractive areas is the Styrian Salzkammergut, a region of lakes and mountains centred around Bad Aussee.

The enchanting Salzkammergut, also shared by Upper Austria, is famed for its natural beauty and its health resorts. Emperor Franz Joseph and his wife Elisabeth, spent many summers taking the waters in Bad Ischl. Further North, the Mühlviertel is an area of wooded hills extending up to the boarder of the Czech Republic.

Carinthia, in the south of Austria, is best known for its large bathing lakes - like Wörthersee, Ossiachersee and Millstättersee. The province also includes the highest point in Austria, the summit of the Grossglockner, and it is a treasure house of art and culture.

The Hohe Tauern National Park, a paradise for hikers and nature lovers, is shared by Carinthia and Salzburgerland. The City of Salzburg has long since established itself as a metropolis for superb music-making. It owes its fame partly to Mozart, who was born in the city's Getreidegasse, but also to its annual summer festival.

Tirol's delightful old towns and cities are strung out along the Inn Valley like pearls on a necklace: Innsbruck, Hall, Schwaz, Rattenberg and countless others. The side-valleys of the River Inn have become household names among winter sports enthusiasts - the Zillertal, Stubaital and Ötztal are just three of many.

Austria's westernmost province is Vorarlberg. Within a small area it encompasses the full range of scenic variations from the majestic peaks of the Silvretta Mountains to the Rhine Valley and the shore of Lake Constance, which it shares with Germany and Switzerland. The lake stage hosts sumptuous opera productions during the annual summer festival in Bregenz.

Austria's topographic diversity accounts for a great variety of flora and fauna, including endemic species that are under preservation.

In recent years, Austria has become home again to a small bear population, which can mainly be found in the heavily wooded southern and central mountainous regions.

Austria's nature parks, that stretch across 3 percent of the country, document the diversity of the landscape with its natural landscapes, such as the rain and virgin forests.

That means out into the fresh air, for a bike ride or a dip in the lake. There are so many summer activities to choose from in Austria you’d have to stay a good three months to get through them. Europe’s foremost family holiday destination holds out the promise of endless fun while you’re out and about. There’s an unwritten law prohibiting boredom throughout the summer, so don’t expect a single dull moment. Instead, brace yourself for unforgettable memories of the countryside, thrilling adventure trails and action-packed children’s leisure programmes. Incidentally, the age limit for kids in Austria is upwards of 90, so head straight for the place where children of any age have the time of their lives.

It took years of talks and preparations, but the time has finally come: the Schönbrunn Zoo has two new additions to the family: a pair of beautiful adult pandas.

Austria is dotted with exciting caves and interesting mines to be discovered.
 
Austria's cycling trails are some of the most beautiful routes in Europe. The clearly marked paths are either exclusively for cyclists, or run along back roads with only light motor traffic. The trails often lead along scenic lake shores or river banks. A light trekking bike with tyres of medium width and good gears is ideal for cycling these routes. Hotels and inns situated along the way are used to catering to cyclists special wishes, while special cycling maps and route descriptions make it simple to see the rich variety of sights and natural wonders along the way. Bicycles can also be transported on the baggage cars of most trains. For mountain bikers permanent circuits and mountain bike centres have been established.
 

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