Brilliant Austria is a country that has to offer something for every traveler type. Fans of opera, sights and architecture should choose its capital Vienna for their Austrian holidays, fans of classical music can head to Salzburg, clear lakes and hot mineral springs attract tourists to charming Carinthia. Fans of modern art will find everything they are fond of in the "cultural" city of Austria – Graz, and those who are keen on spectacular scenery and crystal-clear lakes travel to Salzburg foothills, where the most prominent Austrian musician Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart lived once. For leisure holidaymakers on Austria holidays, the country has prepared excellent value-for-money resorts, which are rightly considered to be one of the best in the Alps.
In addition, Austria claims to be a classic European ski destination for the pros. There are good reasons for this claim: the qualitative and varied hotel infrastructure, rich "après-ski" facilities (which other European countries lack sometimes) and, of course, a huge number of well-groomed slopes, which make Austria ahead of the Alps. At the same time most of them can hardly be referred to the "warm-up" slopes: they require fairly good ski skills. In addition, the country has many glaciers, which guarantee a smooth ride regardless of the weather.
The climate of Austria is temperate with a transition to continental and highly dependent on the altitude. Winters are mild, with frequent snowfalls, the coldest winter month is January, the temperature drops to -2 ° C in the valleys, and up to -14 ° C in the mountain areas. Summers are warm and sunny; the hottest months are July and August (on average +25 ° C, some days up to +30 ° C). Comfortable summer temperature prevails in most areas of the country in the period from early June to mid-September.
In the Alps, it is very cool at night, and in the middle of summer Vienna can be subject to strong east winds. In the lakes of Carinthia water warms up to +26 ° C in summer. There are two tourist seasons, when it’s better to go on holidays to Austria: summer (July-August) and winter (Christmas). Best time to visit Vienna - early autumn and late spring. Ski season at most resorts lasts from November until mid-April.
The best time for visiting Austria depends on whether you are aiming to be an urban explorer or head to more rural parts. For example, most of the mountain resorts have two distinct tourist seasons, one for enthusiasts of winter sports, and the other for summertime hikers. In between seasons, you may find many of the tourist-oriented facilities closed.
Austrian capital Vienna is the city of elegant and solemn life and the ideal starting point for weekends. It attracts travelers with the sounds of waltz, striking beauty of temples, palaces and squares, beckoning scents of strudels that can be smelt from coffee shops. The city of Mozart and Strauss is associated with art in general and music in particular: the Vienna Opera, the Konzerthaus, the Burgtheater, the Volkstheater are real architectural masterpieces, worthy of attention, even if you do not go inside to a play or concert. Even more stunning impression is produced by local castles and palaces: Schönbrunn, the Belvedere, the Hofburg, Kreuzenstein .
For holidays in Austria, the second largest city of Austria is Graz with its manicured parks, baroque palaces, and original contemporary art objects. The heart of Graz is the area Hauptplatz, its symbols are the famous clock tower on the Shlessberg Mountain and the Grand ducal castle built in the 15th century. In general, the architectural appearance of the multi-ethnic city, which managed to serve as a residence of the kings several times in its history, is very eclectic.
Innsbruck is known for amazing alpine scenery and a popular ski resort with modern infrastructure. And yet everything is filled with Tyrolean culture here: souvenir shops are full of local hats and suites made of leather and linen. Peculiar attraction should be paid to "Swarovski" factory and a museum dedicated to legendary jewelry.
Not only Innsbruck is known for its ski resorts, there are many other resorts in the country to be discovered, where you can spend your Austria holidays. Mayrhofen is equally good for both young people due to its vibrant nightlife, and for families with children. Zell am See is suitable for the beginners: there are excellent schools with professional instructors and uncomplicated routes. Serfaus is a resort with impeccable service, modern lifts and cozy family hotels.
It is impossible to go on holidays to Austria and evade its classic and historic heritage. Take a photo somewhere in the heart of an Austrian town and you will certainly get in the frame a little house, if not the birthplace of Mozart himself, then one of his relatives. You go to a cafe to try the famous "melange" and sit at the same table where Sigmund Freud once enjoyed his strudel. You go to Vienna restaurant to try an authentic veal schnitzel and get to the room, where Strauss and Chaliapin used to have dinners, and the walls of the restaurant are decorated with paintings, which were the compensations for dinners paid by a talented, but mentally unstable painter, prone to gambling.
Austria is one of the European leaders in the number of sites per area unit, and it is difficult to tell which ones are more important: the natural or historic one. The most popular places in terms of city tours are Vienna, Salzburg, Innsbruck, Graz, Melk, but even in a shabby town, which you will pass during your holidays in Austria, you will certainly find "the same table" or "the same entrance", which was marked by one of the great musicians (philosophers, painters, persons of royal blood - the list can be continued).
Austrian Alps - a truly royal attraction on a European scale are to be mentioned separately. The word combination Ski Austria is as sustainable as Mozart and Vienna for the following reason: there are a lot of ski resorts with well-developed infrastructure, a variety of high-quality slopes, where you can ride the record number of months in a year, and large-scale apreski facilities. So if you want to have the perfect ski vacation you should go to Austria - this country is guaranteed not to disappoint your expectations.
Austrian hotels and other objects of accommodation can be divided into several types. When you buy a tour package in a travel agency you usually get a typical city hotel, in general they are of the same level as hotels in other European cities. Nevertheless, unpleasant surprises occur sometimes even in five-star Vienna hotels: you might get a small room or an unsightly view from the window. So the hotels in the same category may vary considerably in the level of service, therefore, you should better check the description of the hotel you are going to stay at thoroughly.
There is a variety of hotels, from the family ones to the chalet at ski resorts. Pensions - two-story houses with 6-10 rooms or four-star hotels of good level are quite popular here. You won’t often find apartments in Austria to book as and the so-called "dorms" don’t exist here at all.
Some Austrian hotels are awarded Michelin stars and offer exquisite cuisine. So if you want to remember your Austria breaks for longer, you can book a room in one of these properties.
Austrian hotels by the lakes are usually rated four-stars, and you shouldn’t expect VIP-service here, it will be more like a rural vacation rather than elite one. However, there are some advantages of these hotels as well: a welcoming attitude towards tourists with children, a private beach, a good half-board. Most hotels offer restaurants, bars, gyms and saunas, sometimes they provide swimming pools.
Check for the variety of hotels and holiday packages on Booked.net for your memorable Austria holidays.
Austrian Airlines is the main airline in the country. Other airlines flying into Austria from the UK include British Airways, easyJet and germanwings.
Flight times from London to Innsbruck take two hours; to Salzburg two hours and to Vienna - two hours and 10 minutes.
A flight from New York to Vienna takes eight hours and 25 minutes.
Compact, landlocked Austria offers visitors alpine scenery, museums that are world-class, cobbled quaint streets, and Wiener schnitzel. Unlike its neighbor Germany, Austria is happy to relax in its good living and opulent past as the former owner of one of the grandest empires in Europe.
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