The Best of Salzburg, Austria in a Day: 24-Hour Salzburg Itinerary

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Salzburg, Austria. Home to Mozart and The Sound of Music, Austria’s fourth largest city is perhaps its most famous.  With a population around 150,000, this small city more than doubles in numbers during summer months when popular music festival come to town. This historical city is surrounded by mountains and has a quaint old town district that is easily walkable and will leave you wanting to run through the charming streets singing “Do-Re-Me.” Follow along on this 24-hour Salzburg itinerary to see the best of the city in a day!

24-Hour Salzburg Itinerary

Something In Her Ramblings travel blog shares a 24-Hour Salzburg Itinerary

With compact sights, Salzburg is a perfect destination for a weekend or two-day trip. Spend one day exploring the city center and reserve the second for the original Sound of Music tour that takes you to the surrounding lake district. With a well-informed plan you can surely hit the must-sees in one day. Here’s my recommended itinerary.

Something In Her Ramblings travel blog shares a 24-Hour Salzburg Itinerary

Your first stop of the day should be a Salzburg Tourism Office. Pick up a free map to mark your route and purchase the Salzburg card. For 23 Euros (26 during high season), this pass gets you access to most of the city’s main attractions for 24 hours and free access to public transport.

In the heart of Salzburg’s Old Town is Mozart’s Birthplace, a small apartment that blends in along the street. The museum, though tiny, provides a plethora of exhibits that will bring this famous composer to life.  The city’s many gift shops are overflowing with Mozart souvenirs, and a visit to the birthplace is essential to understand why.

Something In Her Ramblings travel blog shares a 24-Hour Salzburg Itinerary

From Mozart’s Birthplace, head to Salzburg Fortress, known to locals as Festung Hohensalzburg. This is the largest and best-preserved fortress in Central Europe and is quite an impressive sight. From Old Town, take the cable railway to the top of the hill. Enjoy stunning look out points and wandering around the historic grounds that date back to 1077.

Something In Her Ramblings travel blog shares a 24-Hour Salzburg Itinerary

Descend the cable railway and head to the Salzburg Cathedral, just a short walk from the cable exit. The Roman Catholic chapel still contains the baptismal font that was used to baptize Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was baptized here and the interior offers fine baroque architecture.

Something In Her Ramblings travel blog shares a 24-Hour Salzburg Itinerary

By this point in the day it is time for a late lunch. Walk along the streets in Old Town and browse at the shops. There are many cafes to choose from, but Café Tomaselli, just a few steps from the Salzburg Cathedral, is a classic choice. Founded in 1705, this is the oldest Viennese coffee house. Go figure, the oldest one isn’t in Vienna.

While wandering the streets be sure to make a stop by Mozartplatz, a square dominated by a large statue of Mozart that makes an excellent photo opportunity.

Something In Her Ramblings travel blog shares a 24-Hour Salzburg Itinerary

Post lunch, head to the Salzburg Museum. Housed in the New Residence, this is a great place to learn more about Salzburg’s rich and long history. The Archeology and Medieval Collection is particularly impressive.

Something In Her Ramblings travel blog shares a 24-Hour Salzburg Itinerary

By this point the day is almost over, but you can’t call it quits without visiting the Mirabell Palace and Gardens. Many statues and gardens here were used in scenes for the “Do-Re-Mi” sequence in The Sound of Music, perhaps the most noticeable is the Pegasus fountain.

Something In Her Ramblings travel blog shares a 24-Hour Salzburg Itinerary

As darkness falls over the city it may be time for dinner or rest at your hotel, but you can’t head to bed without taking a peak at the sparkling city lights from the rooftop bar at the Hotel Stein. A drink at Steinterrassee is on the expensive side, but a worthy price for the sweeping view. Gaze down at Mozartsteg Bridge, also featured in The Sound of Music, and congratulate yourself on conquering the best of Salzburg, Austria in a day.

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This Post Has 14 Comments

  1. Michelle

    I’m going to Salzburg tomorrow! Can’t wait — and thank you for your itinerary — I noted some places down 🙂

    1. Lauren

      Hi Michelle! I’m so glad my itinerary will help you out. Enjoy your time in Salzburg — it’s such a beautiful place!

  2. Tabitha B

    AhhhH!! I’m so glad I stumbled upon your blog! We’re going to Salzburg and Vienna this winter!!! I really want to go to Hallstatt… but after reading your post, I’m having second thoughts now…

    1. Lauren

      So glad to be of help and I hope you enjoy your travels!

  3. Aaditya

    Excellent itinerary. I am going to try to follow yours in the coming week. Good in-depth review.

  4. Koustav Dutta

    Excellent blog.. Just what I needed..
    I am travelling to Austria next week and I have only a day to spend in Salzburg.
    I will try to follow the schedule and I am pretty sure that I will enjoy every bit of it.. 🙂
    Thank you so much ..

    1. Lauren

      I’m sure you will – Salzburg is just stunning. Have a great trip!

  5. Eman

    Hi dear, my family and me will visit Salzburg for a day trip from munich. We Have 3 kids , do you prefer to go by car or by train? Which lake do you prefer for kids to swim. Thanks a lot

    1. Lauren

      Train is a great way to explore Switzerland!

  6. Susan Nagy

    Is it too ambitious to attempt to train or drive from Vienna to Salzburg and see most of the city in one day and return to Vienna on a later train? There will be 5 adults in my family and I am desperate to see some of the Sound of Music sights. We have Friday-Monday available for both Vienna and Salzburg. I know that my husband is also interested in the Salt Mines. We are not likely to want to spend too much time in museums or inside cathedrals as much as the castle, Sound of Music venues and enjoying the view from Hotel Stein — please advise — thanks, SCN

    1. Lauren

      Hi Susan! Most would probably not recommend trying to squeeze in a day trip to Salzburg from Vienna, but I think if you rise early and move fast you can manage to hit the highlights of Salzburg all in a day. The city is quite compact and easy to navigate.

  7. SAM

    Thanks a lot Lauren. Very good compact itinerary. Big help!

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