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Salzburg | Christmas Markets and €0 Notes




Fun Fact: "Salzburg" literally means Salt Castle in German. Due to its location on the banks of the Salzach river, Salt mining prominent around this city.

Getting to Salzburg

↠ By Plane: year round flights operate from German (Berlin, Hamburg, Frankfurt, Cologne/Bonn, Düsseldorf), London (LHR/LGW), Brussels, Paris, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Oslo, Stockholm and Istanbul. There are also SEASONAL FLIGHTS (click to browse) from various locations. 

↠ By Train: Salzburg Hauptbanhof serves the following cities via long distance trains, Munich (ICE high speed train), Dortmund - Cologne - Frankfurt - Stuttgart 

And of course you can get to Salzburg from Vienna by plane, train, or a 3 hr drive by car. 


When to go?
Spring: Averaging 9C/48F, Salzburg hosts Easter classical-music festivals as it is known for being the birthplace of Mozart.

Summer: Averaging 18C/64F, summer is a great time to go to enjoy wine outdoors in Gardens. Room prices are also high in the Alpine resorts in this season.

Autumn: Averaging 10C/50F, catch the autumn leaves in this shoulder season while room rates are lower. 


Winter: Averaging -1C/30F, sip on Glühwein (mulled wine) in the many Christmas markets. Catch a Hot air balloon just above Filzmoos' summits.

Salzburg in Winter
↠ Recommended wear: thick sweater, thick jacket, thermal pants, boots, warm hat, gloves
↠ Point of interest: Mozart Museum, Griegass Street, Dom Quartier, Christmas Market (Residenzplatz & Hellbrunn Palace)

Mozart Museums
The two most popular ones are Mozart-Wohnhaus (Motzar's Residence) which is North of the Salzach river, and Mozar's Birthplace located South of the Salzach river. An interesting Souvenir to bring back is a €0 Note from the Mozart-Wohnhaus. If you're like me who is into collecting notes from each new location, the €0 Notes are especially great as different cities and countries all make this €0 Note in purple but with their own design, kind of like the €1 coin with different countries. Other popular €0 Notes you can collect are from the Berlin DDR Museum, Aparicoes de Fatima in Portugal, 0 Euro note from Paris, and from the Alpenzoo of Innsbruck-Tirol.


Griegass Street
This is the main shopping street on the Southbank of Salzach river. This is a pedestrian only street with shop after shop, and little side alleys that lead up to the backyard of buildings, which are normally outdoor restaurants. Since it was Christmas time, a lot of the shops were selling ornaments of all sorts! 

 

  


Dom Quartier & Residenzplatz Christmas Market
Dom Quatier is a series of 5 museums which circle around the Residenzplatz Christmas Market. It includes the Residenz of the prince-archbischops held court until Salzburg became the Habsburg empire in the 1800s. (Yes, Salzburg used to be its independent country. From the balcony of the Dom Quartier, you get a panoramic view of both the large Christmas markets in this area, a good way to escape the crowds for some photos. 


 

Hellbrunn Palace - Christmas Market
Hellbrunn is around 5km south of Salzburg, reachable by a 12min ride on bus #25, or easily by taxi/car. This is the Christmas market with the best Christmas holiday atmosphere in Salzburg, which Christmas trees everywhere and its main building that turns into an Advent calendar! The market here is much less commercial compared to the one in city center. Most shop owners here are independent business owners making their own goods. One of my favorites is the spice store from the 3rd photo below. They had all kinds of spices to make you a delicious steak or a mean curry. 

 




What to Eat?
If you are going there near Christmas day, be sure to book a restaurant table in advance. Our hotel concierge recommended s'Herzl. This is an authentic Austrian restaurant in the style of a Salzburg country inn from the 15th century. Waitresses dress in dirndl dresses greet you with a warm smile. The restaurant is ideal for couples or small groups up to 6. Have a Altwiener stock pot soup to warm you up after wandering out in the Christmas markets. 

 

 

Stay Here - Sheraton Grand Salzburg
Hotel prices are high no matter where you go in Salzburg if you are there for Christmas. With that said, the Sheraton Grand in Salzburg is one of the best Sheraton hotels I've seen and well worth the money. Walking in you see a beautiful Christmas tree, you hear the sound of their live pianist playing in the near the back, and a taste of Christmas cookies as you check in. 

SPG Members have a chance of getting upgraded to one of their many suites and access to the club lounge on the top floor. 

The Sheraton Grand is also walking distance to the busy area of town, but just far enough to be quiet as it is North of the river. 

The hotel staff were incredibly nice when I stayed there. They were very kind to explain how to get to the Christmas markets as well as booking restaurants with authentic Austrian food. Another important thing I look for in a hotel is a nice bathtub. There's nothing like the feeling of a hot bath after a long day in winter, and I was not disappointed at all with the bathroom (Grand Suite). 



*Below photos are from Sheraton's office website*





Looking for a Scenic view?
↠ Makartsteg Bridge: near Mozart-Wohnhaus, this lock filled bridge will take you over the Salzach river with a view of the Southbank and its buildings. 

↠ The walking trail behind Hotel Schloss Mönchstein: on Google maps, behind this hotel you can see a faint green line in between Mönchsberg street and Müllner Haupstraße which runs along the riverbank. Because this is on a steep slope, the easiest way to get access is to come from the west side along Mönchsberg and go around the back of the hotel. Keep heading South along the footpath until you can see a breathtaking view of Salzburg city right before your eyes. 










Follow me on instagram @ariel.land for more photos





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