Hallstatt and its surroundings – 6 must-see attractions
April 29, 2019
The small picturesque village of Hallstatt can be familiar to many, at least from photos or postcards. This settlement in Austria deserves to be called the gem of the Alps. From Hungary it can be reached by car in a few hours, so it is really worthy to hop in the vehicle and get down there for a few days basically any time of the year.
And what to do around the area? Well, here is the list of 6 things that are my personal top.
1) Wander around Hallstatt
The only main street in Hallstatt – Seestraße – runs along the lake and all the sights of the town can be reached from this road. Walk towards north all the way to the famous point where the village’s beautiful “postcard pictures” are taken. While walking, look around and admire the little beautiful hidden points of the village – I have written about them in more detail.
Meanwhile, take a stroll to one of the streets on the hill or the waterfront to enjoy the view of the deep-blue water and the surrounding mountains that are reflected in the lake from different angles.
2) Marvel the view from the Skywalk
It is worth making a bigger detour and visit the skywalk by funicular or on feet from where we can enjoy a breathtaking view: a fantastic symbiosis of the village and the nature surrounding it. It is not accidentally listed on the UNESCO World Heritage site.
For those with a fear of heights it is a special challenge to stand on the top of the triangular platform and overcome their fears on 360 meters.
3) Use the slide in the salt mine
If we go up to the viewpoint, it is worth taking the guided tour (well, there is no other way) of the Hallstatt Salt Mine, which is the world’s oldest salt producer still operating to date. Even though I wasn’t expecting too much from a salt mine visit, I was super pleasantly surprised . It was a special experience to roam around the mine as the workers do: on the built-in slides and the small railway. Several tours start daily between 9:30 and 14:30 or 16:00, depending on the season. For all information on prices, opening hours and more you can read in another post.
4) Take a boat ride on the lake
We’ve missed it, but next time we will surely go for a boat trip on the lake.
The boat called Stefanie runs all year around from Hallsatt to the train station that in on the other side of the lake.
During the summer we can also cross the water by boat to Obertraun that’s on the opposite side, or even visit the northern parts of the lake. We can get off the boat and take some time to look around in other villages too, then hop on another “water-bus”.
5) Go up to the 5-fingers viewőpoint
The closest larger mountain peaks can be reached from Obertraun with a lift that is used also by skiers in the winter.The Dachstein-Krippenstein cable car is open all year round, so even in the summer we can find ourselves on the hillside easily, where several sights are awaiting us, including the famous 5-fingers view-deck. In the wintertime it’s fun to rent out snowshoes that will help move around on the snow-covered mountains.
6) Visit one of the caves in the area
There are 3 caves inviting the fans of darkness and closure in the summertime. One is located just right on the border of Obertraun, the other two, the Ice- and Mammoth caves are at the 1st and 2nd section of the Dachstein-Krippenstein cable car. Unfortunately, I cannot share personal experience about any of the caves, as they were still closed at the time of our visit, but there is a detailed information online worth browsing.