When planning the second part of my spring break, I mentioned to Liz that I might want to go to Salzburg, and wondered if she would like to join me. She said yes and added that we could book a room in the Sound of Music house. She was joking, but when I discovered that this is something you could actually do I booked it immediately. That sealed the deal for me, Salzburg was going to be part of my spring break!
Before we headed off to Salzburg, I did some touring around Munich while my hosts worked. I love how easy it is to get around major European cities. Bus, train, tram, etc, they are all simple to use and frequent. One of the days I took my iPod and my Rick Steves Munich podcast and set off for a three hour walking tour of central Munich. Most of the sights and information I already knew from my previous visits, but I did see some new things. I really like those podcasts, I have now used Rick Steves audio guides in three countries. Here are some photos from my stroll.
A few days later we set off for Salzburg, the weather report was looking grim and I was sort of starting to regret wanting to go. But, I layered up and we toughed it out. Luckily, it didn’t rain on us until the end of the day.
Our first stop was the castle (aka Hohensalzburg Fortress), to learn a bit about Salzburg’s history and take in the great views of the city from the fortress on the hill.
After touring the castle we headed for the catacombs, which were very interesting. They are very old and are used for religious retreat, and despite being a tourist spot are still used for hermitage.
After the catacombs we wanted to rest our feet and have a snack. Liz directed me to what is thought to be Europe’s oldest restaurant. I was intrigued by this, but figured it would be out of our price range. But, luckily, we could get apple strudel for a decent price. And when in Austria, one must have apple strudel and why not have it at a restaurant where Constantine is believed to have dined?
With a little food in our bellies we headed for our first (and only) The Sound of Music film stop, the Mirabel Gardens. This is the garden where Maria and the children sang “Do, Re, Mi” in the film. It was gorgeous, lots of beautiful flowers in bloom.
As the rain started to come down, we decided to head to our hotel. Now remember, we were staying the night in the actual Von Trapp family home, not the one in the movie (I think that one was a studio set). Off we went on the train, to step back into a bit of history.
I do love the film The Sound of Music (up until the arrival of the Nazis), but I’m by no means a die-hard fan. For me, staying in Villa Trapp (the name of the house now) was more about staying somewhere with meaning rather than just some hotel in town. Granted, many places in Europe have storied pasts, but I like the idea of staying where I have a bit of a connection. Even if that connection is to a grossly inaccurate film made in America.