Are you looking for the best one day in Salzburg Itinerary? Then I got you covered!
Salzburg is a beautiful old city in the Austrian Alps with a quaint Old Town (Altstadt) that is on the list
of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Being the birthplace of Mozart, and the gorgeous background created by the mountains and the Salzach River, draw in visitors from all over the world.
If you only have one day in the beautiful city, you’ll want to make the most of it.
I have grown up in Austria and have been to Salzburg many times. I have also asked my friend Mindy, who’s an expert on Salzburg as well, for her insider tips and must-see places for visitors.
So I know just the right spots you need to hit up on your day trip.
Let’s get to it.
Table of Contents
- 1 Day in Salzburg Itinerary – at a Glance
- Salzburg Points of Interest – Interactive Map
- How to Get to Salzburg
- Taking a Day Trip Versus Staying in Salzburg
- What is Salzburg Known For?
- Start Your Day With an Austrian Breakfast
- Stroll Down Getreidegasse and Do Some Shopping
- Visit Mozart’s Birth House
- Try Nockerl in a Café
- Visit Mirabell Gardens or Take a Sound of Music Tour
- Hohensalzburg Fortress
- Enjoy Some Traditional Food and Drinks at the Augustiner Brewery
- Evening Things to Do in Salzburg
- Other Things to Do in Salzburg
- What is the Salzburg Card?
- What Is the Best Time to Go to Salzburg?
- Is Salzburg Safe?
- Places of Interest in Salzburg – Bucket List
- Salzburg vs. Innsbruck
- Conclusion: One Day in Salzburg Itinerary
- FAQ: One Day in Salzburg Itinerary
- About the Author
1 Day in Salzburg Itinerary – at a Glance
Find here an overview of my ideal one day in Salzburg itinerary. If you need more information on the stops I mentioned, keep on reading to find out more.
- Traditional Austrian Breakfast
- Getreidegasse – Shopping
- Birthplace of Mozart
- Try “Nockerl” in a Café
- Mirabell Gardens or Sound of Music Tour
- Hohensalzburg Fortress
- Augustiner Brewery
Salzburg Points of Interest – Interactive Map
How to Get to Salzburg
The main sites of Salzburg can certainly be seen in a day. This makes the city a great day trip option
from Vienna, Munich, or Innsbruck.
Vienna is under 2.5 hours away from Salzburg by train. Munich and Innsbruck are both less than 2 hours away.
An easy way to book train tickets is via Trainline. They compare the prices and connections of all providers, so you can find the best option for you.
If you don’t have a car in Austria, the train is certainly the best way to get around. Road-tripping in Austria is also a great and easy way to explore the country.
Another good way to get to Salzburg from Vienna is by booking a day tour. That is certainly the most convenient option.
Here are some great day tours from Vienna to Salzburg:
- Salzburg Day Trip from Vienna, 4/5 ⭐
- Private Day Tour of Salzburg, Hallstatt and Melk, 5/5 ⭐
- Salzburg and Lake Region Small Group Day Tour, 5/5 ⭐
Flying to Salzburg
The Salzburg airport allows visitors to fly directly to the city from many locations throughout
Europe, such as Frankfurt, Istanbul, London and Berlin.
The number 10 bus departs every 15 minutes from the airport to the city center every day of the week, except Sunday.
You can also go by train. The train station in Salzburg is called Salzburg Hauptbahnhof (Hbf). Once you make it to the train station, it’s a 15-to-20-minute walk to the city center. You can also take bus number 25.
The bus station is right outside the train station. There is a kiosk to buy tickets.
You can also use a taxi to get around Salzburg. They are readily available at the airport and the train
station. The trip should cost around 20 EUR.
Taking a Day Trip Versus Staying in Salzburg
As mentioned before, the most epic tourist sights in Salzburg can be seen in one day. But if you travel from further away, your day might get a little stressy.
If you’re traveling from further than Vienna or Munich, it’s better to stay overnight in Salzburg to avoid being rushed.
This also gives you the opportunity to experience the nightlife in Salzburg and explore some nearby places like Hallstatt.
If you decide to stay in Salzburg overnight, I have some great hotel recommendations for you.
Most of the things to do are in the Old Town, so that is considered the best part of the city to stay in.
What is Salzburg Known For?
The thing that Salzburg is most commonly known for is being the birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
It is also well-known for being the filming location of The Sound of Music.
Salzburg is also known for its beautiful baroque architecture.
And you can’t miss the Hohensalzburg Fortress, perched on a hill overlooking the city.
In winter, Salzburg has one of the best Christmas markets in Austria.
And don’t forget the Salzburger Festspiele, a big deal music festival in the world of classical music
Start Your Day With an Austrian Breakfast
As an Austrian, I have to recommend trying a typical Austrian breakfast before you head out to explore Salzburg.
If we Austrians are in a rush, we typically grab breakfast at a bakery. This includes a small coffee and a yummy pastry.
Two of the most famous bakeries in Salzburg are Holztrattner Bakery and Bakery Funder.
If you want to have a more relaxed experience, I recommend the oldest cafe in Salzburg: Cafe Tomaselli. It used to be frequented by Mozart himself.
For those who love breakfast with a view: try Hotel Stein or Hotel Arte.
Stroll Down Getreidegasse and Do Some Shopping
Getreidegasse is the most famous street in Salzburg. It is full of high-end stores, boutiques, restaurants,
cafes and Mozart’s birth house.
There are some souvenir stores in charming historic buildings, lined up side-by-side down the cobblestone street.
Some of the buildings include through-houses, to allow pedestrians to explore surrounding courtyards, squares, and streets.
The through-houses include some interesting historical remnants from the previous residents. Keep your eyes open for crests, inscriptions, and décor.
Another thing of note on Getreidegasse are the ornate, wrought iron signs. You can spot them protruding from the storefronts.
They originated in the Middle Ages when a lot of people relied on those signs to know what was what because they could not read.
Most stores in Austria are closed on Sundays. And Getreidegasse is not an exception to that rule. If
If you’re interested in actually going in the stores, make sure you visit on a different day of the week.
Visit Mozart’s Birth House
Mozart’s Birth House needs to be on everyone’s 1 Day in Salzburg itinerary. It is one of the biggest places of interest in Salzburg.
As mentioned, Mozart was born on Getreidegasse. That “Hagenauer Haus” at No. 9 Getreidegasse
has since been turned into a museum.
The Mozart residence was only a few rooms in the building. Nowadays, a full three floors of the house are now used to display instruments, letters, portraits, and other artifacts to celebrate Mozart and tell his story.
This extremely popular museum takes about an hour to go through. I recommend going on a self-guided tour.
It is open every day of the week, with last admission 30 minutes prior to closing.
Try Nockerl in a Café
Austria is known for its great café culture. They serve perfect coffee and delectable desserts pretty much anywhere in the country.
But some cities in Austria have desserts that they are especially known for. For example, Vienna has the Sacher Torte and Salzburg has the Nockerl!
Nockerl is a tall, fluffy, souffle with several peaks. The peaks are meant to represent the mountains around the town. It kinda swims in a fruit jam.
Take a break from the hustle and bustle of the city to relax, recharge with an espresso, and
enjoy the beloved Salzburger Nockerl.
You can get Nockerl at almost any café in the Old Town. My favorite places are Café Mozart, Wirtshaus Elefant (Hotel Elefant’s restaurant), and Goldene Kugel.
They are quite mighty so that totally covers lunch. If you are into sweets, make sure to book an Apple Strudle Baking Class.
Visit Mirabell Gardens or Take a Sound of Music Tour
As I mentioned, Salzburg is very well known for being the filming location for “The Sound of Music”.
The most famous of those filming sites is Mirabell Gardens. This is where Maria and the children run around and sing “Do Re Mi”.
The gardens are open to the public and free to explore.
Whether you’re a fan of the movie or not, the gardens are some of the most beautiful in Europe and are considered a must-see place for Salzburg visitors.
If you want to see more from the film than just Mirabell Gardens, there are plenty of guided tours to see
Sound of Music filming locations all over the city.
This spot needs to be on every One Day in Salzburg Itinerary.
Hohensalzburg Fortress overlooks the old town of Salzburg and the surrounding areas and is a beautiful place to check out.
You can go up the Fortress Funicular for the views, and then stay to enjoy some of the museums that are now housed in the fortress.
I spend about 3 hours going through the museums. The Fortress Museum focuses on what life would have looked like in the fortress.
I also liked the Marionette Museum with the large puppets staged in
Lastly, the Museum of the Rainer Regiment gives a glimpse into the life of the fortress’s military regiment.
You can also see the historic armory house, the dungeons, a viewing platform at Reckturm Tower, and parts of the princes’ chambers. They still have their original furnishings.
This is my favorite spot on this one day in Salzburg itinerary.
Enjoy Some Traditional Food and Drinks at the Augustiner Brewery
The Augustiner Bräu Salzburg is a great piece of interactive history and its one of my favorite thing to do in Salzburg in one day.
They have been brewing and serving beer since 1621!
Fast forward to today, and you have Austria’s biggest beer tavern. It includes 5 halls of indoor seating, several private rooms, an outdoor garden, and a terrace.
Food stands are serving up traditional Austrian cuisine in the “Schmankerlgang” (food court).
To get a beer, you simply grab a mug of whatever size you like from the shelves lining the walls. Rinse it
quickly at the fountain and pay for your drink at the cash desk.
Then take the voucher they give you to the beer counter. You’ll hand your voucher and stein over. When it’s returned to you it will be full and ready to enjoy!
You can create your shandy by ordering a small beer and lemonade to add to it (we call that Radler in Austria). Or you can always purchase a non-alcoholic beverage to enjoy instead.
The beer is good, the atmosphere is great and you’ll have the ability to step back at the Augustiner. This is the perfect way to end the 1 Day in Salzburg itinerary.
Evening Things to Do in Salzburg
If you do decide to stay overnight in Salzburg, there are many fun things to do in the evening as well.
One of the best activities there is the Best of Mozart Concert and Dinner at Hohensalzburg Fortress.
Another great thing to do in Salzburg in the evening is the Mozart Dinner Cruise on the Salzach.
Of course you can also visit a classical music concert at the Marble Hall of Mirabell Castle.
Other Things to Do in Salzburg
If you have some more time on your hands or want to switch out some of my stops on the Salzburg itinerary, I have some more options here for you.
The Franciscan Church in Salzburg is one of the oldest churches in the city.
Really cozy and intimate inside, but the architecture is a mix of styles—some Gothic, some Romanesque influences.
It’s in the Old Town, so you can easily walk there from other famous spots. Definitely worth a visit if you’re into history and culture.
Explore Salzburg’s Open Squares
Residenzplatz is a must-see, super grand with a big fountain in the middle.
Then there’s Kapitelplatz, right next door. It is known for the quirky “Sphaera” sculpture—a giant gold ball with a man on top.
Mozartplatz is another fave among tourists, especially if you’re a Mozart fan. It’s got a cool statue of him.
University Square has some great food trucks selling pretzels for a snack.
And lastly, Mirabellplatz by the Mirabell Gardens. Perfect for some flowery Instagram shots!
Each square has its own vibe, so you’ll get a nice mix of history, culture, and some great photo ops!
St. Peter’s Abbey
St. Peter’s Abbey in Salzburg is a real hidden gem! It’s one of the oldest monasteries in the German-speaking world. Their history is dating back to like the 7th century.
The inside is gorgeous, with lots of gold and intricate artwork.
The abbey’s got its own cemetery too, which is super pretty and kinda famous. You know the movie “The Sound of Music”? Some scenes were filmed there!
And hey, if you’re into music, they sometimes have concerts in the church.
St. Peter’s Abbey needs to be on your one day in Salzburg itinerary.
Pedestrian Bridge to Old Town
The Marko Feingold Steg is a pedestrian bridge over the Salzach River in Salzburg.
It’s named after Marko Feingold, who was an Austrian Holocaust survivor. The bridge connects the Old Town with the New Town.
The views from the bridge are awesome, especially during sunset. It’s a popular spot for both tourists and locals.
You’ll often see love locks attached to the railings, which is kinda cute. And yes, I have a lock there too.
It’s not just a bridge; it’s a place with deep meaning and great views. Definitely a good spot to check out on your one day in Salzburg.
The Mozart Residence, also known as “Mozart’s Wohnhaus,” is where the famous composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart lived for a good chunk of his life.
Don’t confuse it with Mozarts Birth House in the Old Town.
It’s in the New Town area of Salzburg, close to the Mirabell gardens.
The place is now a museum, and it’s super interesting. It takes about 1.5 hours to visit.
You’ll find all sorts of stuff inside, like instruments Mozart actually used, plus letters and portraits.
They’ve even got some rooms set up to look like they would have back in Mozart’s day.
The DomQuartier in Salzburg is a cultural jackpot! It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
It’s this complex that connects the Salzburg Cathedral, the Residenz Palace, and a bunch of museums. Basically, you get to stroll through these interconnected buildings and courtyards, soaking up art and history.
There’s a lot of Baroque flair going on, so expect some grandeur. Paintings, sculptures, historical rooms—you name it, they’ve got it.
If you’re into history and culture, the DomQuartier is a must-see.
Insider tip: the views from the terrace are Insta-worthy!
The Salzburg Cathedral, or Salzburger Dom, is the heart of the city’s Old Town.
It’s huge and super impressive, with these twin towers that you can spot from far away. It was built in the Baroque style, so it’s all about that grandeur and drama!
Inside, it’s just as jaw-dropping with epic frescoes on the ceiling and a big old organ. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was actually baptized there.
The cathedral’s also got this underground area called the crypt. It’s a little more subdued but still super interesting. Great spot for some quiet reflection.
What is the Salzburg Card?
Salzburg makes visiting even easier by offering an “Salzburg card” for purchase.
The card is valid for either 24, 48, or 72-hours, depending on which option you purchase.
The 24-hour card only costs 30 EUR in peak season (May through October), or 27 EUR from November through April.
It will get you free admission (once) to all city tourist attractions and museums and free use of the public transport (buses, trams, cable cars, and funiculars). And you get discounts on additional tours, excursions, concerts, and other events.
You can buy the Salzburg card online.
The validity starts with first use, not with purchase. So you can nicely organize ahead.
What Is the Best Time to Go to Salzburg?
I have been to Salzburg throughout the year, and my favorite time to go is definitely around Christmas. Salzburg Christmas Market is one of the best in the area (except maybe Hallstatt Christmas Market).
However, there are pros and cons for visiting during every season. Here is a quick overview of the best time to go to Salzburg.
Spring (March – May)
- Less crowded
- Gardens in bloom, like Mirabell Gardens
- Mild weather
- Some attractions may still be closed
- Weather can be unpredictable
Summer (June – August)
- Warm and sunny, great for outdoor stuff
- Festivals galore, like the Salzburg Festival
- Most attractions are open
- Crowds, like, everywhere
- Higher prices for hotels and stuff
Autumn (September – November)
- Beautiful fall colors
- Fewer tourists
- Great for scenic drives and hikes
- Weather gets chilly
- Days are shorter
Winter (December – February)
- Christmas markets! Super cozy
- Skiing nearby
- Beautiful snowy landscapes
- Super cold
- Some attractions are closed
Is Salzburg Safe?
Yeah, Salzburg is generally pretty safe, especially when you compare it to other cities globally.
Crime rates are low, and it’s a popular spot for tourists.
Of course, always good to keep your wits about you, especially in busy tourist areas where pickpocketing could happen.
But overall, I always felt pretty comfy exploring the city, even by myself as a female.
Do you need travel insurance in Salzburg? Yes, travel insurance in Salzburg is highly recommended. Lost luggage, hiking accidents, and food poisoning are only a few examples of when travel insurance could come in handy. EKTA offers worldwide travel insurance with 24/7 service and no hidden fees or restrictions.
Places of Interest in Salzburg – Bucket List
Salzburg vs. Innsbruck
One of the biggest questions people ask me whether Salzburg or Innsbruck is more scenic. And I think it is a difficult question, because they are both epic.
Both Salzburg and Innsbruck are awesome, but they’ve got different vibes.
Salzburg is all about that classical charm. Think Mozart, Baroque architecture, and the Sound of Music. It’s a bit like walking through a fairy tale with its old castles and squares.
Innsbruck, on the other hand, is a mountain lover’s dream. Nestled in the Alps, it’s the go-to for skiing, hiking, and just soaking up those mountain views. The town itself has a cool mix of modern and old-world feels.
So, Salzburg for culture and music, Innsbruck for outdoor adventures. Either way, you can’t go wrong!
Conclusion: One Day in Salzburg Itinerary
Following this one day in Salzburg itinerary will make for one fantastic day in the city of Mozart!
Getreidegasse, Mozart’s birth house, Nockerl, Mirabell Gardens, the Augustiner Brewery, and Hohensalzburg Fortress are all integral to the city’s identity.
They will give you great insight into why people travel to Salzburg from near and far, in a
relatively short amount of time.
Lastly, the Red Bull Ring is another attraction in Austria for visitors.
I hope you enjoyed my one day in Salzburg itinerary.
FAQ: One Day in Salzburg Itinerary
One full day in Salzburg is definitely enough to see the main sites listed here; even at a relaxed pace. If you also want to visit nearby places, such as Hallstatt or the Eagle’s Nest I suggest adding a night in Salzburg.
The bus network in Salzburg is extensive, and makes it very easy to get around the city. The large bus
stations will all have ticket kiosks where you can purchase an unlimited hour, day, or week pass that
you’ll need to validate on your first ride. If you start from a smaller stop with no ticket machine, you can always purchase a single or 24-hour ticket from the bus driver instead, but it will be about 30% more expensive. Timetables are posted at each stop, so you’ll know when to expect the next bus to arrive.
The old town is very walkable, and the city at large is walkable to a slightly lesser extent. However, if you don’t want to walk from one end of Salzburg to another, you can always take advantage of the buses to get around instead.
Salzburg is a great destination year-round, but if you’re looking for warm weather, April through
October is ideal. At the beginning and end of that time, Mirabell gardens will be in full bloom and
Crowds tend to be at their worst in July and August when the Salzburg Festival is going on. A lot of
people also love visiting in December when the legendary Christmas markets are happening.
In the months surrounding December, it will be cold, but you will have fewer crowds to deal with during your visit!
Salzburg hotels and restaurants are relatively expensive, but the attractions in Salzburg are reasonably priced; especially if you take advantage of the Salzburg card. Therefore, a day trip to Salzburg can definitely be done on a budget.
Wolf Dietrich von Raitenau was the Archbishop of Salzburg back in the late 1500s to early 1600s. He’s a big deal because he transformed Salzburg into this Baroque city that we see today. Think of him as the guy who gave Salzburg its makeover!
Start your day at Mirabell Gardens for some early morning vibes. Head to the Old Town, check out the Salzburg Cathedral and the DomQuartier for a history fix. Grab Nockerl at a local café. Spend the afternoon at Hohensalzburg Fortress for killer views. Evening? Mozart concert for a touch of genius. End with dinner at a riverside restaurant or the Augustiner Bräu. Non-stop fun in 24 hours!
About the Author
Sabrina is a passionate travel blogger and content creator, based in the Netherlands. She spends about half of the year traveling to various destinations together with her husband.
She provides slow-paced itineraries that focus on quality over quantity. Sabrina wants to help her readers to get more out of their travel experiences – while doing less. Read more.