VACANCES: Austria

Once again it has been way too long since I last made a blog post. Apologies! This trip now seems like it was forever ago even though it has been less than a month since I got back. This trip marked my 4th time in Austria, and once again, besides a few little hiccups along the way, it did not disappoint.

Innsbruck aka did Grenoble pick up and move to Austria? 

Innsbruck is a charming city surrounded by mountains, and it didn’t take long for Alyssa and I to notice its striking similarities to Grenoble. Some of the pictures I took on this trip could easily be mistaken for the “Capital of the French Alps.” As far as comparisons go, I would say that Grenoble’s mountain views are prettier while Innsbruck wins in the architecture and foodie departments. Alyssa and I spent four days here walking around the nice city center and bopping into cute shops, eating wonderful food which we had scoped out beforehand, and having some poor luck with site-seeing. We went to check out Bergisel, the famous ski jump used in the Olympics, but found that it was closed for construction starting that very day. Awesome! The next day we had are sights set on Nordkette – a ride in a funicular would take us up in the mountains for supposedly incredible views. Well, the snowstorm not only made our views nonexistent, but also made for a somewhat frightening ride in the funicular, lots of swaying back and forth in the wind. Yikes. I seem to have a tendency to pick the worst possible days for these types of adventures…I guess it’s time I stop trusting my weather app and look at the actual sky when making these decisions. Last but not least, as we were leaving Innsbruck for Salzburg, we hopped on the wrong train (it left from the same track approximately 8 minutes before ours was supposed to) and we therefore missed our actual train. After a frustrating conversation with very unsympathetic OBB (Austrian train line) customer service representatives, we opted for a Blablacar to Salzburg.

Despite all of these mini setbacks, we had a wonderful time in Innsbruck overall.

Highlight: Alyssa interns for a travel website, and her boss gave her a budget of $150 to try different cafes, eat the food, take pictures, and report back. She was nice enough to share so that was pretty awesome 🙂

Recommendations: Nordkette on a sunny, clear day. Exploring the yummy and adorable cafes – Haepinest, Goenndir and Cafe Moustache were a few of my favorites!

 

Hallstatt aka China made an exact replica of this little town and I can see why

I’m going to skip Salzburg since the only reason we really went there was to get to Hallstatt. It took us 2.5 hours there and back by bus, train, and ferry, 30 euros each and a 4:45 am wakeup call to take a day trip to this remote lake-side town, and it was 100% worth it. The best way to describe it is as a fairytale land…I think it was probably the most beautiful place I have ever seen. We walked around, trekked up a snowy and at times treacherous path to a lookout point and spent the majority of our time simply admiring the surreal views. There’s not much else to say except that I would HIGHLY recommend visiting this gem. A rental car might be the way to go…but either way you won’t regret making this trip.

Highlight: This day trip in itself was one of the highlights of my time here.

Recommendations: While I do think a rental car would have made this trip a lot easier..the little ferry ride was pretty great. Also the lookout point…hopefully if there’s snow on the path up you will be wearing thicker and sturdier shoes than I was.

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