I recently took a brief trip to Austria, where I spent 3
days in Salzburg.
Salzburg is in a beautiful location and has a myriad of
excursions to offer to guests. The first excursion I chose
to undertake was Lakes and Mountains, a 4-hour tour that
takes the guest on a comfortable coach to the lake district
outside Salzburg. Lake Wolfgang is only around 50 kms from
Salzburg and therefore easily achievable even on a half-day
The tour leaves Salzburg at 2pm and meanders past Hof bei
Salzburg where it passes by the Red Bull headquarters that
have a stunning sculpture in front of the building, then
travels past Lake Fuschl to St. Gilgen on Lake Wolfgang,
where guests board a boat that takes them to the famous
village of St. Wolfgang. Not everybody knows that St. Gilgen
has its own claim to fame; it is the birthplace of Wolfgang
Amadeus Mozart’s mother, and also the place where
Mozart’s sister Maria Anna “Nannerl” lived for a good
part of her life, after marrying the magistrate of St.
The scenery in this part of the world is stunning in every
weather and I was lucky enough to see part of it on three
consecutive days with different weather conditions. The
Salzkammergut, which this area belongs to, has the clearest
lakes that make for beautiful photographs and, with the
backdrop of the mountains, are a nature lovers’ paradise.
Hiking, fishing, boating, swimming or even paragliding are
all part of the activities offered around the lakes.
After a leisurely 45 minute boat trip, guests get to St.
Wolfgang, where coach and driver have meanwhile arrived and
wait for them to conduct a brief exploration tour on foot
around the village and into the pilgrimage church with its
famous gothic winged altarpiece by artist Michael Pacher,
before allowing guests some time at leisure to explore the
town, do some shopping or, if they wish, enjoy a coffee or
ice cream on one of the many viewing terraces. The most
famous one of all is without a doubt the White Horse,
“Weisses Rössl”, which was the setting of the operetta
with the same name that was produced in Germany in the
1930’s. The area is rich in history, due to it having
experienced a very prosperous time several centuries ago,
when the salt mines were in operation. Remnants of the salt
mining era are visible everywhere.
After an all too brief time on the shores of Lake Wolfgang,
the tour returns to Salzburg via another scenic route that
passes Krottensee, Hüttenstein Castle and Lake Mondsee.
Salzburg Panorama Tours conduct this tour and many others on
a regular schedule. Normally the tours run every day, but
under the current circumstances with fewer visitors to the
area as a result of covid-19, there may be days when not
every tour is offered, so do check with the booking office
before making plans. The norm is that tours run with
40-seater coaches, however, at the current time, minibuses
that can accept up to 9 people run instead, in full
compliance with social distancing rules and mandatory face
coverings. On the tour I participated in, there were only
one couple and our guide Richard on the coach apart from me.
If you are flexible with dates or have other tours that you
would like to book, something can be found to enhance your
stay in this beautiful area.