We take pride in providing authentic travel recommendations based on our own experiences. We may earn a commission when you purchase a product or book a reservation. Learn more ›
The Alps are a famous mountainous region spanning several European countries, notably Austria. This fascinating country is home to stunning landscapes, medieval towns, and world-class ski resorts.
If you’re looking for a vacation with stunning landscapes, beautiful buildings, medieval towns, and world-class ski resorts, Austria is the perfect destination.
Some of the best places to visit in Austria include the Alps, Salzburg, Vienna, and Innsbruck, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg. The Alps provide some of the most picturesque scenery in the country, while Salzburg is known for its charming architecture and history.
- Best Places to Visit in Austria
- 1. City of Art & Music; Vienna
- 2. Wachau Valley; home to some of Austria’s finest Red Wines.
- 3. Belvedere Palace; fit for a Prince
- 4. The Picturesque Alpine Town of Graz.
- 5. The Charming Medieval Town of Salzburg
- 6. Bad Gastein for Hiking and Soaking
- 7. Picture Postcard Perfect Village of Hallstatt
- 8. Semmering Railway in Southern Austria
- 9. The Historic Winter Sports City of Innsbruck
- 10. Get Lost in Gesäuse National Park
- 11. Bask in the Beauty of Krimml Waterfalls
- 12. Visit the scenic mountain range of Grossglockner
- 13. Explore the Historic Town of Klagenfurt and the Carinthia Region
- 14. Saalbach-Hinterglemm; home to Alpine resorts and a great place to stay in Austria
- 15. The dreamy Gosaukamm mountain range in Salzkammergut
- 16. The looming Vorarlberg Mountains
- 17. Krems – one of the oldest and most beautiful towns in Austria
- 18. Admire the heavenly Hohe Tauern National Park
- 19. Lake Constance
- 20. Kick back at Bad Ischl
- What is the most visited place in Austria?
- What are the 3 major cities in Austria?
- What is the prettiest place in Austria?
- What are the best places to visit in Austria?
Best Places to Visit in Austria
1. City of Art & Music; Vienna
The capital city and largest city of Austria, Vienna, is a city of grandeur and elegance. Situated on the banks of the Danube River, Vienna is renowned for its beautiful Baroque architecture, ornate churches, and splendid palaces.
The city has a long and illustrious history, dating back to Celtic settlements in the Fourth Century BC. The Romans, Byzantines, Magyars, Habsburgs, and Nazi Germany all ruled over Vienna throughout history.
The city’s most famous landmarks include the Schönbrunn Palace, the Hofburg Imperial Palace, and St. Stephen’s Cathedral. Vienna is also home to numerous museums, including the Kunsthistorisches Museum, the Natural History Museum, and the Albertina Museum.
In addition to its historical significance to global culture and history, Vienna is a modern city with a vibrant cultural scene. Vienna has plenty of places to eat, drink, and party. In addition, the city is also known for its high-quality shopping scene, making it a great place to spend a day or two.
And if you’re looking for some winter excitement, Vienna is home to some of the best ski resorts in Austria, just a short trip from the city, including Schneeberg and Semmering. Vienna is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe and the world.
See Related: Best Hotels in Vienna, Austria
2. Wachau Valley; home to some of Austria’s finest Red Wines.
The Wachau Valley is a wine-growing region located in the federal state of Lower Austria. The valley frames the Danube, between the towns of Melk and Krems, and is well known for producing some of Austria’s finest red wines.
The landscape is characterized by rolling hills and picturesque vineyards, which produce some of the world’s most sought-after tipples.
Visitors to the Wachau Valley can enjoy a number of activities such as hiking, biking, and, of course, wine tasting. There are also a number of historical places to visit, including Melk Abbey and Dürnstein Castle.
The region has a Mediterranean climate with warm summers and cold winters. The Wachau Valley is home to a number of different grape varieties, including Grüner Veltliner, Riesling, and Blaufränkisch.
The soil is thick with limestone, which helps to provide good drainage and enables the grapes to absorb nutrients to grow fat and juicy.
The Wachau Valley has been inhabited since prehistoric times and was one of the first areas in Austria to be cultivated by the Romans. During the Middle Ages, it became home to several monasteries, and agriculture dominated the economy.
The introduction of grapevines transformed the region, with many castles built to protect and profit from this new booming industry. The Wachau Valley is now one of Austria’s most popular places to visit, with around half a million visitors annually.
3. Belvedere Palace; fit for a Prince
The Belvedere Palace is a Baroque palace located in Vienna, Austria, and is one of the top tourist attractions in Vienna. It was built in 1716 by Prince Eugene of Savoy. The palace has a beautiful garden that is worth visiting.
The Belvedere Palace was originally built in the 18th Century by Prince Eugene of Savoy. The palace was designed in a Baroque style and is one of the top tourist attractions in Vienna. The palace has a beautiful garden that is worth visiting.
It can be reached easily from the historic old town of Vienna by taking the U1 subway line to the stop named “Belvedere.” This iconic landmark is worth visiting in Austria’s largest city, Vienna.
4. The Picturesque Alpine Town of Graz.
Graz is a picturesque town located in the foothills of the Alps and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The town is famous for its preserved medieval architecture, and is also a major cultural center, boasting several museums and theaters.
If you’re looking for a relaxing vacation in a charming historic town, Graz is definitely worth a visit. There are plenty of things to do in the town. Some of the highlights of things to do in Graz include:
- Visiting the Schloss Eggenberg, a 16th Century palace museum
- Take a stroll through the old town, which is packed with stunning medieval buildings and alleyways
- Checking out the Graz Art Museum, which has a collection of over 10,000 works of art
- Going for a hike along the cliffside walkways or a bike ride in the surrounding hills and mountains
5. The Charming Medieval Town of Salzburg
Salzburg is a charming medieval old town in the Austrian Alps. It’s most commonly known as the birthplace of Mozart and one of our favorite places to visit worldwide. This beautiful city has magnificent Baroque architecture, breathtaking vistas, and a lively cultural scene.
Salzburg is a special town because of its history and culture. The architecture here is some of the most beautiful in Europe, and the charming cobblestone streets give the town a truly ancient feel.
There’s also a lively cultural scene in Salzburg, with plenty of museums, theaters, and music venues to explore. An important center for education, Salzburg is also home to one of Europe’s oldest universities.
6. Bad Gastein for Hiking and Soaking
Bad Gastein is a popular and picturesque spa town in Austria. The town is located in the Tauer mountains and is known for its fresh mountain air, thermal hot springs, and the roar of the Gasteiner waterfall.
The town’s historic buildings and villas reflect the Belle Epoque style of the city and are considered one of the best spa destinations of all time.
While you’re in Bad Gastein, be sure to soak in the local hot water springs, which provide abundant minerals and even radon. Bad Gastein also has easy access to all outdoor activities, such as hiking and biking in summer and skiing in winter.
See Related: Best Spring Break Destinations for Families
7. Picture Postcard Perfect Village of Hallstatt
Hallstatt is one of the most charming towns in Europe and an alpine village perched on a picturesque lake beneath snow-capped mountains. It’s one of the prettiest places in Austria and is well worth a visit during your holiday to this lovely country.
The village is actually much older than it appears – people have lived here and made their living from the salt mines that lie below the town since prehistoric times.
These days, the mines are a significant tourist attraction and holders of UNESCO World Heritage status. Visitors can tour them to learn about their fascinating history and stunning underground landscapes.
Hallstatt is one of Austria’s most beautiful places – not only does it feature pretty scenery, but also a charming lakeside village, fascinating historical sites, and stunningly unique geology.
8. Semmering Railway in Southern Austria
The historic Semmering Railway, built by hand between 1848 and 1854, is one of the greatest feats of civil engineering in Austria.
This UNESCO World Heritage Site still features many original 19th-century locomotives and carriages running the rails to this day, making it a must-see for train lovers.
The line is now used for freight and passengers, offering visitors a relaxing way to see the beautiful countryside of southern Austria. As a bonus, it’s also one of Europe’s most popular mountain railways, and you’ll definitely catch sight of some spectacular views from it.
See Related: Best Vacations for a Group of Friends
9. The Historic Winter Sports City of Innsbruck
Innsbruck is a charming medium-sized city, with a population of around 130,000. It’s located in the heart of Austria, surrounded by the Alps and the River Inn.
The city center has magnificent architecture, including the Golden Roof – a roofed balcony with golden-colored tiles added to the city hall in the 15th Century as a royal viewing box.
Innsbruck has plenty of options for both local and international cuisine, as well as shopping and dining, making it one of the best places to visit in Austria by far.
The Nordkette mountain range is a popular tourist destination in Austria. It’s located just outside the city of Innsbruck and offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside.
The Nordkette range is home to a number of famous, world-class ski resorts, which draw thousands of tourists during the winter months offering fresh pure mountain air. In summer, visitors can enjoy hiking and biking in the surrounding countryside.
Whatever time of year you visit, Innsbruck will charm you with its picturesque scenery and friendly atmosphere.
See Related: Salzburg vs Innsbruck: What is Better to Visit?
10. Get Lost in Gesäuse National Park
The Gesäuse National Park is a stunning natural area located in Austria. The park is home to wild rivers, looming mountain rock faces, and dense forests. It is a great place for excursions and is a favorite for rafter connoisseurs and trekkers.
The Hocktor mountain is the highest and most visited mountain in the park. Photographers and travelers will enjoy a trip to Austria – if they can reach a higher point. The views from the top are breathtaking.
11. Bask in the Beauty of Krimml Waterfalls
The Krimml Waterfalls are a series of waterfalls in the Hohe Tauern National Park in Austria. They are some of the tallest waterfalls in Europe at a whopping total of 380 meters in height.
The falls stretch over 4 kilometers and can be seen from different observation points along the trail, which provide visitors with a beautiful and peaceful setting to enjoy nature.
To get to the Krimml Waterfalls in Austria, visitors can take a train from Innsbruck to Zell am See and then transfer to the train to Krimml. The trip takes about 2.5 hours.
12. Visit the scenic mountain range of Grossglockner
The Grossglockner is Austria’s tallest mountain and one of the most popular tourist destinations in the country. If you’re looking for a beautiful and scenic place to visit in Austria, the Grossglockner is definitely worth a trip.
It’s part of a 36-mile-long mountain range, a stunning sight to behold, with snow-capped peaks and crystal-clear lakes. If you’re looking for a scenic drive, the Grossglockner Hochalpenstraße is a great option.
This winding road offers stunning views of the mountains and the valley below. Stop at one of the many overlooks for some amazing photos. There are plenty of things to do at the Grossglockner. If you’re a nature lover, there are plenty of hiking and biking trails to explore.
13. Explore the Historic Town of Klagenfurt and the Carinthia Region
The Carinthia region is located in the western part of Austria on the shores of Lake Wörthersee. It is home to beautiful lakes, mountain ranges, and medieval towns.
The Carinthia region is a great place for hikers and bikers alike, as there are many scenic trails in the area. In winter, the region turns into a popular ski resort.
14. Saalbach-Hinterglemm; home to Alpine resorts and a great place to stay in Austria
Saalbach-Hinterglemm is a beautiful resort town located in the district of Zell am See, Austria. The town is known for its ski slopes and mountain biking trails and is a great place to stay for those looking to explore the outdoors.
The town is oriented towards tourism, but this does not diminish its importance as a nature destination. Visitors can enjoy incredible panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and valleys from anywhere in the town.
The best places to stay in Saalbach-Hinterglemm offer visitors the most convenience and comfort. Some of the best hotels in the town include the following:
- Hotel Saalbacher Hof – This hotel is located in the heart of the town and is perfect for those looking for a central location. The hotel offers a variety of amenities, including a spa, pool, and restaurant.
- Mountain Chalet Hochalm – This chalet is located in the mountains overlooking Saalbach-Hinterglemm and is perfect for those who want to escape it all. The chalet offers amazing views of the town and surrounding countryside and is ideal for those who want to enjoy nature at its best.
- Hotel Schloss Prielau – This historic hotel is located in the heart of the Saalbach-Hinterglemm Valley and is perfect for those who want a taste of luxury. The hotel offers a variety of amenities, including a spa and pool, as well as fine dining options.
15. The dreamy Gosaukamm mountain range in Salzkammergut
Gosaukamm is the namesake mountain of the breathtaking Gosaukamm range in the Austrian Alps. At 2,995 meters (9,823 ft), it is the highest peak in the range.
The mountain is a popular destination for hikers, climbers, and skiers. The summit can be reached by a number of routes, including an easy, if lengthy, hike from the village of Gosau. The mountain is also home to a number of Alpine huts and cabins, which offer accommodation to anyone tackling the slopes.
The region is home to stunning lakes like the Traunsee, Grundlsee, and Wolfgangsee. And it’s a great winter sports destination, with places like Bad Aussee and Zwettl offering world-class skiing resorts.
16. The looming Vorarlberg Mountains
The Vorarlberg Mountains offer an incredible view for any hiker. The region between Lake Constance and the mountains is ideal for long hikes, particularly in a mountain zone that reaches more than 2000 meters in height. Värlberg has several natural beauty places. Montafon’s Verwall is one of our favorites.
Verwall is a mountain range in the Central Eastern Alps. It is located in the Bundesland of Vorarlberg in Austria. The mountain range has an area of about 190 km2 and reaches a height of 2,865 meters at the summit of Piz Buin.
The Silvretta Group, also in Vorarlberg, offers an equally stunning landscape and is a popular destination for hikers, climbers, and skiers. The highest peak in the Silvretta Group is Piz Buin at 3,312 meters.
17. Krems – one of the oldest and most beautiful towns in Austria
Visitors come to Krems and the Danube mainly because of its postcard-friendly setting along the River Wachau. Its renowned wines are well-known, and the UN has recognized it as an international heritage site.
The Wachau is a World Heritage cultural landscape in Austria that contains some of Europe’s most stunning river valleys. Many hiking trails and bike paths wind through the vineyards, forests, and meadows. The region is popular for skiing, swimming, fishing, and kayaking.
There are many places to stay in Krems, Austria, but one of the most popular is the Schlosshotel Seewirt. It is located in the heart of the city and overlooks the river.
The hotel has a long history dating back to the 16th Century. It has been renovated and updated over the years but still retains its historic charm and elegance.
Another popular place to stay in Krems is the Gasthaus Zur Schonen Aussicht. It is a small, family-owned hotel with traditional Austrian cuisine and stunning views of the river and the surrounding hills. The hotel has just six guest rooms, so it is ideal for a more intimate and personal experience.
18. Admire the heavenly Hohe Tauern National Park
The Hohe Tauern National Park is one of Austria’s most beautiful and diverse parks. The park is home to a number of different animal and plant species, including the golden eagle and the chamois.
The park offers a range of spectacular landscapes, including the Krimml Falls and Pasterze Glacier. This iconic Austrian National Park park is a great place for hikers and nature lovers to explore and enjoy the beauty of the Austrian Alps.
There are a number of great places to stay near the Hohe Tauern National Park. One of the most popular is the Hotel Schloss Mittersil. This pet-friendly hotel features free parking, a wellness spa, a pool, and a bar.
19. Lake Constance
The Bodensee, also known as Lake Constance, is a large lake bordering Switzerland, Austria, and Germany in Central Europe.
The lake is about 73 kilometers long and up to 17 kilometers wide. It has a total surface area of 539 square kilometers and a maximum depth of 253 meters.
The Bodensee is a popular destination for boating, swimming, windsurfing, and fishing. There are also a number of beautiful lakeside towns and villages that are worth visiting. Some of the most popular towns on the lake are Konstanz, Lindau, and Friedrichshafen.
20. Kick back at Bad Ischl
Bad Ischl is located in the Upper Austria region and is a town that is known for its spas. The town has many beautiful lakes located nearby and is also the gateway to the Hallstatt and Wolfgangsee areas.
Emperor Franz Joseph once made Bad Ischl his home, and the town grew even bigger after he made this decision. There are a number of places to stay in Bad Ischl, and many of them offer some great views of the surrounding area. Here are some of the best places to stay in Bad Ischl:
- Hotel Andreas Hofer: This hotel is located in the heart of Bad Ischl and offers excellent views of the town and the surrounding lakes.
- Gasthof Zur Post: This hotel is located in a beautiful setting near the edge of a lake, and it offers spacious rooms and a great breakfast buffet.
- Hotel Schloss Thannegg: This hotel is located in a picturesque castle setting and offers luxurious accommodations and amenities.
Seriously, you need to check out Austria. This European country is home to some of the most beautiful landscapes in the world. Please subscribe to our travel newsletter and join us on our worldwide journey. Auf Wiedersehen!
What is the most visited place in Austria?
The most visited place in Austria is Schönbrunn Palace. It’s an enormous palace complex that was once the imperial summer residence of the Habsburg monarchy. The palace has beautiful gardens, a zoo, and dozens of exploring rooms.
What are the 3 major cities in Austria?
Austria has three major metropolitan areas: Vienna, Graz, and Salzburg. Each of these cities has a rich history and plenty to offer visitors.
What is the prettiest place in Austria?
Many beautiful places in Austria are worth visiting, including Salzburg’s world-famous fortress town of Festung Hohensalzburg, the incredible cityscape of Linz, and the quaint Old Town of Hallstatt.
What are the best places to visit in Austria?
The best places to visit in Austria depend on what you’re looking for. If you’re interested in nature, the Hohe Tauern National Park is a must-see. If you’re looking for history and culture, Vienna is a great choice. Other popular destinations include Salzburg and Innsbruck.
- About the Author
- Latest Posts
Kyle Kroeger is the Founder and Owner of ViaTravelers.com. He is a full-time traveler and entrepreneur. Kyle started ViaTravelers.com to help travelers experience a fully immersive cultural experience as he did initially living in Italy. He’s a converted finance nerd and Excel jockey turned world wanderer (and may try to get lost on purpose). After visiting 12 countries and 13 national parks in a year, he was devoted to creating and telling stories like he’d heard.
Plus, after spending more time on airplanes and packing, he’s learned some incredible travel hacks over time as he earned over 1 million Chase Ultimate Rewards points in under a year, helping him maximize experiences as much as possible to discover the true meaning of travel.
He loves listening to local stories from around the world and sharing his experiences traveling the globe. He loves travel so much that he moved from his hometown of Minneapolis to Amsterdam with his small family to travel Europe full-time.