How Many Days in Salzburg? The Best Itinerary for 4 Days


Salzburg, the picturesque Austrian city nestled in the heart of the Alps, is a destination that charms visitors with its rich history, stunning architecture, and musical heritage. Whether you’re a fan of “The Sound of Music” or simply seeking a dose of culture and natural beauty, Salzburg has something for everyone. But the big question is, how many days should you spend in Salzburg to truly savor its essence? Planning a trip to Salzburg? Check out the best flights. In this travel blog, we’ll guide you through the perfect itinerary for your stay in Salzburg.

Day 1: Arrival and Old Town Exploration


  • Your adventure in Salzburg begins as you arrive at Salzburg Airport or the Salzburg Hauptbahnhof (main train station). Both are well-connected to the city center, making for a convenient start to your trip.
  • Salzburg is known for its hospitality, and this extends to its accommodation options. Check into your chosen place to stay, which could be a charming boutique hotel like the Hotel Goldener Hirsch or a cozy guesthouse with a view of the Alps. Make sure you choose accommodation in or near the Old Town for easy access to Salzburg’s main attractions.
  • After dropping off your bags and freshening up, it’s time to start exploring. Begin your Salzburg journey by taking a short walk from your accommodation to one of the city’s most enchanting spots: the Mirabell Gardens. These beautifully manicured gardens are famous for their vibrant flower displays, well-trimmed hedges, and lovely fountains. The gardens are not just a treat for the eyes but also a perfect spot for a morning stroll and some Instagram-worthy photos.


  • By now, you’ve likely worked up an appetite. The Old Town has an array of delightful cafes and restaurants where you can enjoy a traditional Austrian lunch. Sample local dishes like Wiener Schnitzel, Tafelspitz, or a hearty bowl of goulash soup.


  • Continue your exploration of Salzburg by delving into its rich history and architecture. Start with the magnificent Salzburg Cathedral (Salzburger Dom), which dates back to the 17th century. Its impressive Baroque facade, intricate interior, and peaceful atmosphere make it a must-visit.
  • After your cathedral visit, head towards Getreidegasse, a historic shopping street that’s as picturesque as it is charming. The street is lined with colorful, ornate shopfronts, many of which house boutiques selling traditional Austrian clothing, souvenirs, and delightful sweets.
  • No visit to Salzburg is complete without ascending to the Hohensalzburg Fortress, perched on a hill overlooking the Old Town. You can either hike up the hill or take the funicular for a scenic ride. Once at the fortress, explore the various rooms, museums, and terraces, which offer breathtaking panoramic views of the city and the surrounding Alps.


  • As the day winds down, it’s time to indulge in some delicious Austrian cuisine for dinner. The Old Town is brimming with restaurants, many of which serve traditional dishes in a charming, historic setting. Consider trying dishes like Kasnocken (cheese dumplings) or Apfelstrudel (apple strudel) for dessert.
  • After dinner, check if there are any classical music concerts or theater performances happening in the city. Salzburg is renowned for its musical heritage, being the birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and attending a performance is a great way to immerse yourself in the city’s cultural atmosphere. If there’s nothing scheduled, a leisurely evening walk along the beautifully lit streets of the Old Town is a delightful way to end your first day in Salzburg.
old town

Day 2: Sound of Music Tour and Salzburg Lakes


  • Wake up refreshed and start your second day in Salzburg with a delightful excursion that will transport you to the world of “The Sound of Music.” Many tour operators in Salzburg offer Sound of Music tours, which typically begin in the morning. You’ll have the opportunity to visit iconic filming locations featured in the beloved movie. Some highlights of the tour include:
    • Mirabell Palace and Gardens: Revisit the scenes where Maria and the von Trapp children sang “Do-Re-Mi” and frolicked around the beautiful gardens.
    • Hellbrunn Palace: Explore the whimsical gazebo where Liesl and Rolf sang “Sixteen Going on Seventeen.”
    • Lake Wolfgang (Wolfgangsee): This stunning lake was the backdrop for the famous boating scene in the film. You’ll have a chance to enjoy the picturesque scenery and maybe even a boat ride.


  • During the tour, you’ll likely stop for lunch at a charming local restaurant where you can savor Austrian cuisine while discussing your favorite scenes from the movie.


  • After the Sound of Music tour, continue your exploration of the Salzkammergut region, a beautiful area known for its serene lakes and Alpine landscapes.
  • One of the most popular lakes to visit is Wolfgangsee. You can either continue your journey from the tour or start a new adventure there. Wolfgangsee offers opportunities for boat rides, swimming, and lakeside walks. If you’re up for a little more adventure, you can take the Schafbergbahn cogwheel railway to Schafberg Mountain for spectacular panoramic views.
  • If time allows, consider exploring other Salzburg lakes such as Fuschlsee and Mondsee, both known for their stunning scenery and tranquil ambiance.


  • As the afternoon sun starts to dip behind the mountains, return to Salzburg. Along the way, you can admire the scenic landscapes and perhaps make a few stops to capture the beauty of the Austrian countryside with your camera.
  • Back in Salzburg, unwind and relax in the comfort of your accommodation or take a leisurely stroll through the Old Town’s charming streets.
  • For dinner, you have the option to dine in Salzburg or in one of the lakeside restaurants near Wolfgangsee for a different dining experience. Either way, savor the flavors of Austrian cuisine while reflecting on the wonderful day you’ve had.

Tip: Don’t forget to bring comfortable walking shoes, a jacket (as it can get cooler by the lakes), and your camera or smartphone to capture the stunning scenery and moments from your Sound of Music tour and lakeside adventures. This day is all about embracing the natural beauty of the Salzburg region and reliving the magic of the movie that made it famous.

Mirabell Palace how many days in Salzburg

Day 3: Day Trip to Hallstatt


  • On your third day in Salzburg, embark on an unforgettable day trip to Hallstatt, one of Austria’s most picturesque and charming villages. Hallstatt is often referred to as the “Pearl of the Salzkammergut” and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, renowned for its stunning natural beauty and rich history.
  • To get to Hallstatt from Salzburg, you can either take a scenic train ride or opt for a guided tour that includes transportation. The train journey is a fantastic opportunity to enjoy the Austrian countryside and the beauty of the Salzkammergut region.

Arrival in Hallstatt:

  • When you arrive in Hallstatt, you’ll be greeted by a postcard-perfect view of the village nestled between the pristine waters of Lake Hallstatt and the towering Dachstein Alps. The setting alone is worth the trip.

Morning in Hallstatt:

  • Begin your exploration by wandering through the village’s narrow, winding streets. Hallstatt is known for its charming, pastel-colored houses adorned with window boxes overflowing with flowers. The lakeside promenade is particularly beautiful and offers stunning views of the lake and surrounding mountains.
  • Visit the iconic Hallstatt Evangelical Church, known for its beautiful wooden architecture and the Beinhaus (Bone House), a small chapel filled with decorated skulls.
  • Take a leisurely walk around the picturesque Hallstatt Lake and enjoy the tranquility of the area. You might even spot swans gliding gracefully on the water.


  • Savor a traditional Austrian lunch at one of the local restaurants or cafes in Hallstatt. Many of them offer outdoor seating with breathtaking views.
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Afternoon in Hallstatt:

  • Explore the Hallstatt Salt Mine, which has been in operation for over 7,000 years. You can take a guided tour deep into the mountain to learn about the history of salt mining and even slide down the wooden slides used by miners.
  • Alternatively, take a scenic boat ride on Lake Hallstatt to appreciate the village from a different perspective. The crystal-clear waters and surrounding mountains make for a mesmerizing backdrop.

Late Afternoon:

  • Before leaving Hallstatt, consider visiting the Hallstatt Skywalk. This observation platform offers stunning panoramic views of the village and the lake, providing a fantastic opportunity for photographs.

Evening Return to Salzburg:

  • As the day winds down, head back to Salzburg, cherishing the memories of your visit to the enchanting Hallstatt. The journey back provides another opportunity to admire the scenic landscapes of the Austrian Alps.


  • Upon your return to Salzburg, choose one of the city’s cozy restaurants for a delightful dinner. Reflect on the beauty of Hallstatt and share your experiences with fellow travelers or friends you’ve made along the way.

A day trip to Hallstatt from Salzburg is a memorable experience, and you’ll likely return with not only stunning photographs but also a deep appreciation for the natural beauty and rich cultural heritage of the Salzkammergut region.

Day 4: Salzburg Museums and Departure


  • On your last day in Salzburg, take it easy and enjoy a leisurely morning. Begin your day with a delicious Austrian breakfast at your accommodation or a nearby cafĂ©. Traditional Austrian breakfast items include fresh bread, butter, jams, cold cuts, cheeses, and coffee.
  • Depending on your interests and the time available, you can choose to visit one of Salzburg’s museums or take a relaxing walk along the Salzach River.

Museum Options:

  • Salzburg Museum: Located in the Neue Residenz building in the heart of the Old Town, the Salzburg Museum offers a comprehensive look at the history, art, and culture of the city. The museum’s exhibits cover everything from prehistoric times to the present day, including displays about Mozart and Salzburg’s role in the wider world.
  • Mozart’s Birthplace Museum: If you’re a fan of classical music, Mozart’s Birthplace Museum is a must-visit. This is the place where the world-famous composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born and spent his early years. The museum showcases his life, family, and musical achievements.
  • Residenzgalerie Salzburg: Located in the splendid Residenz Palace, this art museum houses a remarkable collection of European paintings from the 16th to the 19th centuries. You can admire works by famous artists such as Rembrandt, Titian, and Rubens.

Late Morning:

  • After your museum visit or morning activity, you may want to do some last-minute souvenir shopping or simply wander through the charming streets of the Old Town, savoring the atmosphere.
  • Don’t forget to pick up some Mozartkugeln, the famous Austrian chocolate pralines named after the composer. They make for excellent gifts or treats for yourself.


  • Enjoy a leisurely lunch at a local restaurant, trying any dishes you may have missed during your stay.


  • Depending on your departure time, you might have a few hours left to explore Salzburg. Consider taking a leisurely stroll along the Salzach River promenade, which offers beautiful views of the city and the surrounding hills.
  • If you haven’t already, take some time to sit in one of the city’s lovely parks, such as Mirabell Gardens or the Kapuzinerberg Park, and soak in the relaxed Austrian ambiance.


  • When it’s time to leave, gather your belongings and check out of your accommodation. Most hotels and guesthouses offer luggage storage if your departure is later in the day.
  • Arrange for transportation to the Salzburg Airport or Salzburg Hauptbahnhof, depending on your onward journey. Both locations are well-connected, making it easy to catch a flight or train to your next destination.

Farewell to Salzburg:

  • As you bid farewell to Salzburg, take a moment to reflect on the wonderful experiences you’ve had in this enchanting city. Whether you explored its historic sites, indulged in its culinary delights, or immersed yourself in its musical heritage, Salzburg has surely left a lasting impression.
  • Consider keeping a memento, such as a postcard or a small souvenir, to remind you of your time in Salzburg and the memories you’ve created.

Your visit to Salzburg has come to an end, but the memories of this charming Austrian city will stay with you forever. Whether you’re heading to your next destination or back home, carry the spirit of Salzburg with you, and who knows, you may find yourself returning to this captivating city someday.

salzburg museum

How Many Days in Salzburg: Conclusion

Salzburg offers a perfect blend of history, music, natural beauty, and cultural experiences. While a minimum of 2-3 days is recommended to explore its main attractions, spending 4 days in Salzburg allows you to immerse yourself fully in its enchanting atmosphere. Travel with the best travel insurance. However long you stay, one thing is certain: Salzburg will leave an indelible mark on your heart, beckoning you to return someday.

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