Austria Luxury Travel and Vacation Guide

  It is a country with a lot of history, having once been part of the Holy Roman Empire. Here you can enjoy a wide range of outdoor recreation and if cultural activities excite you, once you come to Austria, you might not want to leave. See the Cathedrals of Vienna, the vineyards of the Danube valley, and ski and hike at the resorts in the Alps. Visit the many museums and castles

 Austria is a landlocked country of mountains located in the Alps. Although the climate is mainly an Alpine one, the eastern part of the country has a continental climate. The weather you experience varies according to the altitude of your destination.

 This is a country known for its famous musicians, such as Mozart, Schubert and Strauss. With the many cities and small villages to visit, Austria has plenty to keep its visitors fully entertained. Enjoy the sights and sounds of the large city of Vienna or Salzburg, but there are also other delights in this country.

The Capital City of Vienna

 The capital city of Vienna is often called a melting pot of Europe because of the many different nationalities from all over Central and Western Europe that call this city home. The various architectural styles of St. Stephen's Cathedral are a sight to behold and you just have to walk the Ringstrasse, a former fortified belt around the city, which is now one of the main streets. A must on your itinerary is a visit to the Schloss Schonbrunn, which was once the seat of the Hapsburg Empire. This site contains parks, a butterfly, a palm house and a zoo. The Anchor Clock stands in the old town square and represents a typical Art Nouveau design. Take time to delight in the pleasures of the two Belvedere Palaces and experience the thrill of stepping back into medieval times at the Hoftburg Castle.

 City of Salzburg

Visit a city that dates back to the late 600's when you visit Salzburg. It is a picturesque sight located between two majestic mountains. The Fortress of Hohensalzburg holds 900 years of history and is the best preserved medieval fortress in Europe and you can visit the impressive cathedral of St. Sebastian. This city is the birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and is still a city to be reckoned with in the world of music. There are many concerts held at various times of the year, with the most well known being the annual festival known as the Salzburger Festspiele.

Hohe Tavern National Park

Other places of interest in Austria include the Hohe Tavern National Park, one of the last great wilderness areas of the continent, the Museum of the Future in Linz and the largest ice caves in the world at the Eisriesenwelt Caves. Visit the city of Swarvoski, where the Swarvoski Crystal is made and the Archaeological Museum in Carnuntinum. There is so much to see and do in this country, you will probably not be able to get them all in on one visit.

Travel to and within Austria

There are airports in Vienna, Linz, Graz, Salzburg, Innsbruck and Klagenfurt catering to airlines from all over the world. Since Austria also has borders with many other countries, you can drive into the country or you can take the Euro Rail into most of the major towns and cities.

With a network of about 5700 miles of rail, you will not have difficulty getting around the country by train. You can purchase passes to travel all over the country as well as to one or more of the neighboring countries. If you wish you can rent a car so that you can travel at your own pace and visit the many small villages.

Austrian Food and Drink

There are many restaurants and coffee houses in Austrian towns and cities. The traditional food such as Schnitzel, which is a thin cut of meat, usually veal that is breaded and fried. If done properly, you can actually sit on this meat without fear of leaving a grease stain on your pants. Other traditional foods include Erdapfel Salat, a side dish made from potatoes, Kaiserschmarrn, a dessert of pancakes and stewed fruit and the famous Apple Strudel.

You can get tea and coffee with your meal in this country, but as a rule, meals are accompanied by red or white wine. There are also a large variety of Austrian beers that you just have to sample. The favorites in the country are Stiegl Beer, brewed in Salzburg, Gosser Beer, brewed in Graz and Sipger Beer from the northern part of the country.

Language of Austria

German is the official language of the country and there are different dialects spoken in all the regions. However, in the larger centers, English is widely spoken.

 Shopping and Safety

There are no travel warnings for tourists in Austria, so you should feel reasonable safe when traveling the length and breadth of this country. As with traveling at home or in foreign countries, you do have to exercise usual cautions and use common sense.

The Euro is the currency of Austria and a tax of 20% is added to the price of the goods. Stores accept cash, debit and credit cards, but there is a limit of 400 Euros for each purchase using a credit card. You can shop from 9 A.M until 7 P.M. from Monday to Friday, but most of the small stores close at noon on Saturday. All stores are closed on Sunday.Shop for exclusive leather clothing, fine Austrian crystal, manu unique craft items and the delectable Austrian chocolate in any of the fine shopping centers throughout the country.

Entertainment in Austria

Enjoy dinner and Viennese music, take in concerts and theatrical performances or dance until dawn in one of the many nightclubs in whatever city you choose to visit. There are small pubs in the villages and towns where you can get a true feel for the culture and get to know the friendly people.

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