The replica of Hallstatt in Guangdong, China Courtesy: Sydney Morning Herald
A visit to the Salzwelten (Salt Mines) is an enriching experience
The slider to different levels of the Salzwelten is exciting for adults and children alike. Salt Miners used these sliders extensively
Hallstatt The viewing platform after going up the Funicular provides panoramic views of the village below, the Hallstattersee and the Dachstein mountains Courtesy: Tourismusverband Inneres Salzkammergut
Ferry Stephanie carrying tourists from the Train station to the Hallstatt Schifffart (Hallstatt boat station)
Another view of Hallstatt Courtesy: Tourismusverband Inneres Salzkammergut
A view of Hallstatt Courtesy: Tourismusverband Inneres Salzkammergut
Cost (In euro)
FUNICULAR TO THE VIEWING PLATFORM FOR PANORAMIC VIEWS OF THE HALLSTATTERSEE AND THE DACHSTEIN MOUNTAINS
|24.00 (funicular plus salt mine tour)|
salzwelten (SALT MINE TOUR)
dinner at the brauhaus beside the lake or candlelit dinner on the boat cruise
Unless you take the 7 am train out of Salzburg, in most likelihood, you would have arrived in Hallstatt late morning. Check into your hotel / apartment, have a meal and take some rest. In Hallstatt you want to be at leisure!
Post-afternoon take the Funicular up to the Hallstatt Salt Mine (Salzwelten). It takes less than 5 minutes for the 800 metres ride. Take a conducted tour of the Salzwelten, which takes you through the history of salt mining in Hallstatt and life in the pre-historic age. This is a fun tour for all as it also involves wearing costumes, sliding down the layers of the cave, many speaking statues and train ride out of the cave. Particularly interesting is the "Man in Salt" - the dead body of a miner preserved completely for years by the salt he was covered in. The last tours are at 4 30 pm so ensure that you are well within time. Not to be missed! On the last slide, a photographer would take your picture sliding down and charge ~Euro 5 for the picture. While it is optional, we believe it is worth purchasing the picture for a memory of a lifetime!! For more information please check http://www.salzwelten.at/en/hallstatt/saltmine/
Once out of the Saltwelten, step onto the Viewing Platform for panoramic views of the Hallstattersee and the Dachstein mountains and the town of Hallstatt right below. Spend time here to just appreciate nature at its best!
Later in the evening, either spend time at the Brauhaus beside the lake having a rather large glass of beer watching the boats pass by as the sun sets or get onto a Boat cruise yourself for a Candlelit dinner in the lake in the midst of nature.
Hallstatt literally means "Salt Settlement". Hallstatt first found mention as the European capital of salt mining in the Dachstein mountains surrounding Hallstatt. Mining flourished for more than 7000 years right till the middle of the 19th century, when Hallstatt's immense tourism potential was realised. The Austria King Franz Josef found tranquility in Hallstatt and came here frequently in the summers.
While much of the salt mining has lessened, Hallstatt continues to produce upward of 750,000 tonnes of salt each year. Today, some of the salt mines are accessible for tourists and make excellent excurions, completely off the Beaten Path! The Hallstatt of today embodies the the very Austrian concept of "Gemütlichkeit" - a situation which creates a cheerful mood, peace of mind, and unhurried behaviour.
|Where||The Salzkammergut, Austria|
|Why||To experience the Austrian way of life|
|For whom||Walkers, boaters, nature lovers|
Stretched day trip, ideal 2 day trip
|Best season||April - October|
|Likely cost per person||Euro 175-200 (Rs 12,000 - 16,000)|
|Approximate cost per person (2 days)||In Euro||In INR|
Inputs taken from Bikash Agarwal for this article. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
Being a small place, there are not a lot of restaurants in Hallstatt. However most hotels / guesthouses offer relatively reasonable three course set meals open for all.
However, we had excellent Italian cuisine at Cafe Derbl (http://www.derbl.at) and Pizzeria Bella Milano (http://www.bella-milano.at/pizzen.php) and would be happy to recommend them. Try the pizzas and salads at Pizzeria Bella Milano. Both these places are relatively inexpensive and expect to pay between Euro 10-15 per person for a meal not including alcoholic beverages.
Hallstatt has only a few hotels but almost every household seems to have rooms to spare for the tourists. However, in Hallstatt stay as the Hallstatters do. There are plenty of ivy-covered Gästezimmer (guest houses) which one could choose from. We would in particular wish to recommend the following accommodation options.
|Accommodation||Hotel Heritage Hallstatt||Gasthof Weisses Lamm||Gasthof Gruner Anger|
|Hotel / Apartment||Hotel (http://www.hotel-hallstatt.com/)||Ferienwohnung (Apartment) (|
|Tariff (For 2)||Upward of Euro 150 pn||Euro 80-100 p n||Euro 80-90 p n|
|Location||Outstanding||200 metres from the Town Centre||400 metres from Town Centre|
|Value for money||Very good. For the luxury seeker||Excellent||Very good. Very friendly hosts. Decent rooms.|
Hallstatt is a very tiny village. On one side of the town is the Hallstatter See (Lake Hallstatt) and with a small plateau, the mountains rise almost abruptly, without warning. Almost impossibly, the village is located on this small piece of land.
The village's pint sized centre is just beside the Schiffart (Docking port for the boats). In this largely traffic free village, your legs are your best friends.
1. JUST WALK AROUND THE VILLAGE
2. FUNICULAR TO THE VIEWING PLATFORM GIVING PANORAMIC VIEW OF THE HALLSTATTER SEE
3. TOUR OF THE SALT MINES
4. LEISURELY BOAT RIDE IN THE HALLSTATTER SEE
Another view of the beauty of Hallstatt. Check the clouds and the church clock tower in the background Courtesy: Tourismusverband Inneres Salzkammergut
The Dachstein Ice Caves Courtesy: Dachstein Ice Caves website
Right beside the lake with excellent views, one must have a meal / drinks at Brauhaus Lobisser in Hallstatt Courtesy: Brauhaus Lobisser, Hallstatt
The Heritage Hotel is a luxury experience! In particular have a meal at the terrace of the hotel overlooking the Hallstattersee Courtesy: Hotel Heritage, Hallstatt
The pizzeria Bella Milano serves relatively inexpensive and excellent Italian food. Courtesy: Pizzeria Bella Milano, Hallstatt
The pintsized town centre of Hallstatt
We are happy to recommend Gasthof Weissez Lamm with excellent apartments and great location Courtesy: Weissez Lamm, Hallstatt
Hallstatt with the Hallstattersee (Lake Hallstatt) and the Dachstein mountains in the background Courtesy: Tourismusverband Inneres Salzkammergut
Cost (in euro)
the dachstein ice caves
the hallstatt museum
the beinhouse en michaelschapel (michael's chapel and the bone house)
Consider a tour to the Dachstein Ice Caves. From Hallstatt, make way to Obertraun where you can follow the clear instructions for the Cable Car - "Dachsteinbahn". The cable car would take you about 15 minutes to get to the top. Once up, experience the vast ice caverns, many of which are hundreds of years old and aglitter with ice stalactites and stalagmites, illuminated by an eerie light, a must do in our opinion. For more information please check out http://www.dachstein-salzkammergut.com/
For a museum enthusiast, get a chance to discover the history of Hallstatt covering more than 7000 years in the Hallstatt Museum.
For something crazy, eerie and completely off the Beaten Path, head to the Michael's Chapel and the Bone House. Legend goes that, as people died and were buried, somewhere in the 12th century AD, locals realised that for a tiny town with very little plateau, there is not enough space to expand the cemetry to bury the dead. Hence started a new tradition to excavate the skeletons of those buried for over 20 years to create space for the new. The skulls of the skeletons thus excavated were then decorated. The names of the dead, date of birth and death are also written. These skulls have then been preserved in a separate enclosure called the 'Beinhaus' (Bone House)
In most probability your gateway to Hallstatt would either be Salzburg or Vienna. The journey from Salzburg takes a little over 2 hours while that from Vienna takes 3.5 hours. Keep your eyes open throughout your journey. The scenery is unparalleled and nature is at its best!
|Salzburg||Trains generally leave from Gleis 2 (Platform 2) in direction of Vienna. Transfer at Attnang - Punchheim for train to Hallstatt Bahnhof (Hallstatt Station). From Hallstatt Bahnhof, you would need to take a ferry - "Stephanie" across the Hallstattersee to reach Hallstatt Village. The ferry schedule is set to meet the incoming as well as the outgoing trains. Entire journey takes a little over two hours||Euro 24.60 for the train journey and Euro 2.40 for the ferry ride to Hallstatt Village.|
|By bus - take Bus no. 150 to Bad Ischl from where take train to Hallstatt followed by the ferry ride. Takes a little over two hours||Euro 15 plus ferry ride - Euro 2.40|
|Vienna (Wien)||Trains leave from Wien Westbahnhof (Vienna West station) to Attnang - Punchheim and transfer to Hallstatt and the ferry ride follows. Takes almost 3.5 hours||Euro 19 plus ferry ride - Euro 2.40|
The boat trip across the Hallstatter See is outstanding. Just the view of this quaint town getting bigger and bigger would fill you with goosebumps and make you look forward to your trip to Hallstatt !! For further details check www.oebb.at