Republic of Austria

Austria, along with neighbouring Switzerland, is the winter sports centre of Europe. However, it is just as popular for summer tourists who visit its historic cities and villages and hike in the magnificent scenery of the Alps. This diverse mix of landscapes is packed into a relatively small area of size.

Austria tourism website
Government website
Tourist information about Vienna

Basic tourist information

Tourists often make the mistake of classifying Austrians as Germans, which despite a common language (well at least on paper), they are not. Arguably, Southern Germany, especially Bavaria, is a close cultural relative of Austria in many ways.

Contrary to popular perceptions, Austria is not all about mountains. Glaciers, meadows, alpine valleys, wooded foothills, gently rolling farmland, vineyards, river gorges, plains and even semi-arid steppes can be found in Austria.

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Visits to Austria mostly include trips to Vienna with its St. Stephen’s Cathedral (map). Salzburg, birthplace of Mozart, Innsbruck, capital of Tyrol surrounded by the Alps. Linz, capital of Upper Austria with the largest Cathedral of Austria and modern cultural highlights. *Danube valley with its vineyards, for example the *Wachau (map) or *Dunkelsteinerwald (map), which are between *Melk (map) and Krems (map).

In the western part of the country the province Vorarlberg (map) reaches the Lake Constance (map), in the eastern part Neusiedler See (*Lake Neusiedl). The three most visited landmarks in Austria are Schönbrunn Palace (map), Tiergarten Schönbrunn (map) and Mariazell Basilica (map).

In the winter season, a number of winter sport resorts in western Austria overtake Salzburg in the number of tourist overnight stays: Sölden (map), Saalbach-Hinterglemm (map), Ischgl (map), St Anton am Arlberg (map), and Obertauern (map).

Austria is well known for its scenic cycle routes along its largest rivers. Though Austria is a mountainous country, cycle routes along rivers are flat or gently downhill, and therefore suitable even for casual cyclists.

It is normally safe to hike without a guide in the Austrian Alps, as there is a dense network of marked trails and mountain shelters. However, a few lethal incidents do happen every year as a result of carelessness. Walkers are strongly advised not to stray off the trails and not to hike in bad weather or without suitable equipment.

Before setting off, always check with the local tourist office whether the trail corresponds to your abilities.

If you really want to show respect, pick up any litter you happen to see in your path and dispose of it at the end of your hike (it’s a bit of an unwritten rule). Long-distance trails are marked with the Austrian flag (red-white-red horizontal stripes) painted onto rocks and tree trunks.

Most trails and mountain huts are maintained by the Austrian Alpine Club. Some are run by other equivalent organizations, such as the German, Dutch and Italian Alpine Clubs. Mountain huts are meant to be shelters, not hotels.

Summer and winter, large flocks of tourists are drawn to Austria’s mighty mountainous scenery. With no less than 62% of the country at an altitude of 500m or more, it’s hard to miss the stunning snow-covered peaks and green valleys.

Highlights include for example the High Mountain National Park in the Zimmertal Alps (map), with peaks up to 3476m, narrow gorges and steep cliffs. National Park Thayatal (map) combines beautiful valley landscapes with a variety of castles and ruined fortresses.

The country’s highest peak is called Grossglockner (map) and is located on the border between Carinthia and the East Tyrol. To get a good view, the Grossglockner High Alpine Road, with its gorgeous panorama’s comes highly recommended.

Also сheck оut мore info about Austria: Wikipedia • Wikivoyage • UNESCO

Must to See & Do

Vienna

City of Vienna, the capital of Austria

Salzburg

City of Salzburg

Krampusnacht. Klagenfurt

Krampusnacht. Klagenfurt

Bodypainting Festival (Klagenfurt)

Bodypainting Festival. Klagenfurt

All our articles about Austria

Also check out all informative articles about popular cities, attractions and festivals in Austria

Regions & Cities of Austria

Austria
::: Source: www.ezilon.com

Salzkammergut – the region is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site as “Salzkammergut Cultural Landscape“. Lower Austria, Wachau — inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2000 with the towns *Melk, *Spitz, *Dürnstein and KremsSalzburg (state) – the most important forms of income are tourism and agriculture.

Tyrol – is a multi-national historical region in the heart of the Alps. South Tyrol, despite its German-speaking majority, has been part of Italy since the end of World War I. It makes up the northern portion of the alpine Italian autonomous province Trentino-Alto Adige with its capital in Bolzano / Bozen.

Vorarlberg – the state is almost entirely mountainous and enjoys one of the highest standards of living and income levels in Austria due to its proximity to Switzerland. It is also is home to an Alemanic alpine culture, quite different to the rest of Austria making it a special place in the country even to other Austrians.

For the most up-to-date information, see the official tourist resources.

Transport around Austria

Journeying to and through Austria by rail is easier than ever before. What better way to travel than through stunning alpine scenery, lush valleys, historic towns and picturesque villages on comfortable trains?

Getting There & Around (austria.info)

Eurolines Austria / ÖBB postbus.at / InterCityBus

Trains are the best and most common form of mass transportation in Austria. Comfortable and moderately priced trains connect major cities and many towns; buses serve less significant towns and lakes. The two forms of transport are integrated and designed to complement each other, and intercity coaches exist but don’t provide anywhere near the level of intercity rail service.

FlixBus are one of the leading long-distance providers in Europe and operate a network of around 1,700 stops within 28 countries. Within Austria, this coach provider operates a network of 34 stops which make it easy to travel even further.

RegioJet are a private Czech coach provider, who operate bus routes around the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and 90 other cities throughout Europe.

The railways are managed by the Austrian Federal Railways ÖBB. Wien Hauptbahnhof (map) – is the main railway station in Vienna. The station names of all stops in Vienna start with its German name “Wien“.  + Rail Europe

Wien Westbahnhof (map). The services from Salzburg run by the private company WestBahn terminate here. Apart from it, only regional trains serve the Westbahnhof. Westbahn also serves a few other otherwise regional stations such as Wien Mitte and Wien Praterstern.

The Alpen Express is a sleeper train that takes you directly from Amsterdam to Austria’s most famous ski areas in Tirol.

Travelling times between major Austrian cities:

  • Vienna ⇔ Salzburg = less than 2,5 hours with ÖBB railjet
  • Salzburg ⇔ Innsbruck = less than 2 hours with ÖBB railjet
  • Innsbruck ⇔ Bregenz = starting from approx. 2,5 hours
  • Vienna ⇔ Graz = 2 hours 38 min.
  • Graz ⇔ Linz = starting from approx. 3 hours
  • Graz ⇔ Innsbruck = starting from approx. 6 hours

Austria has a well-developed road network which lets you reach your destination with ease. Find all pertinent information about rules of the road and answers to frequently asked questions.

“Vignette” toll stickerCurrent traffic informationAustrian driving rules in detailElectric filling stations in AustriaHire a car

An excellent motorway, highway, and federal road network connects Austria with its neighbouring countries. All main border check points are open day and night. In general, Austrian traffic regulations and traffic signals are similar to those enforced in other European countries.

Vienna International Airport (map), located 18 km (11 mi) southeast of the city center. City Airport Train – non-stop airport transfer to Vienna! (+ St. Gallen-Altenrhein Airport)

Riverboats on the Danube include connections with LinzBratislava and Budapest, but are slower and more expensive than other options.

LOD – Run a fast hydrofoil between Vienna and Bratislava May–October with up to two daily departures.

Twin City Liner – A fast catamaran between Vienna and Bratislava March–December with up to four daily departures.

Mahart Passnave – Operate a fast hydrofoil between Vienna and Budapest May–October with daily departures during the peak season.