All is calm, all is bright in Austria


Marvel at the wonders Austria has to offer. With the European Capital of Culture, the home to The Sound of Music and plenty of Christmas magic – it’s the perfect destination all year round

Austria – mountains, lakes, The Sound of Music, Mozart and Christmas – what isn’t there to do in this tranquil country nestled in the heart of Europe?

We’re visiting four out the nine provinces in Austria: Salzburg, Upper Austria, Tyrol, and Vienna. Here groups can expect to find a range of exciting sights and activities to suit all ages.


The City of Mozart is the place to visit for a daily dose of movie and musical history; Salzburg is the birth place of one Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and the location of not only where The Sound of Music was filmed, but also where the real Trapp family once lived.  

Located in the city centre is the Mozart Residence on Makartplatz and the Mozart Birthplace on the Getreidegasse. Now museums, they are two sites that are must-visits when in the area.

Motzart’s Birthplace is of the most popular museums in the country. Here, expect to see original items, portraits and a reconstructed period apartment to take you back to the 18th century.

Head over to the Residence to find Mozart’s fortepiano – you can also look forward to a multivision show and an exhibition about the history of the Mozarteum Foundation.

Group rates are available on individual or combined tickets for groups of 10 or more.

People who visit the region deem it to be ‘the sound of music city’ with Mozart as an added bonus.

Roam in the footsteps of Maria von Trapp and Julie Andrews, from Mirabell Gardens to the Felsenreitschule and Schloss Leopoldskron: Salzburg’s bursting at the seam with The Sound of Music locations.

Key sights to visit include:

  • Nonnberg Priory

The convent became famous internationally thanks to Maria von Kutschera whose story inspired {The Sound of Music}. The convent can be reached either from the Kaigasse by climbing the steps of the Nonnbergstiege, or via a narrow lane from Nonntal. The church is open daily from 0645hrs until dusk (1900hrs in summer).

  • Karajan Square & the “Horse Pond”

Located right at the foot of the Mönchsberg cliffs, Sigmund’s Gate opens out onto Herbert von Karajan Square and Salzburg’s historic district. During a carriage ride through Salzburg, Maria and the Trapp children marvel at the famous square and the unique Horse Pond.

  • Leopoldskron Palace

On 18 November 2018, the Hotel Schloss Leopoldskron will reopen its doors from 1300-1830hrs. Under the motto ‘The Sound of Christmas’ the visitors are led through the state rooms of the castle. 

  • Mirabell Palace and Gardens

In the film, Maria and the children dance around the Pegasus Fountain in front of the palace, singing the song ‘Do Re Mi’. At the end of the scene, the Trapp family stand on the steps in front of the Rose Hill and sing the song’s final bars. Admission is free.

Upper Austria

Upper Austria is the perfect mix between picture-perfect nature scenes, and historic and cultural sights.

As well as its many lakes, something a little on the wilder side awaits in this region, for groups can visit Schmiding Zoo at Schloss Schmiding, a castle in Upper Austria. It also features, der Aquazoo, the country’s largest marine aquarium.

Discounted entrance is available for groups, as well as coach parking directly at the entrance and coach drivers and tour guides receive free entry.

Just 30 minutes away, arrive in Linz, the European Capital of Culture and UNESCO City of Media Arts.

When visiting, be sure to ride the Pöstlingbergbahn, a narrow-gauge railway that climbs up the steep incline of the Postlingberg hill in the northern part of Linz and see the beautiful cityscape of Linz and scenery.

Or if reaching great heights on the train doesn’t tickle the group’s fancy, then maybe a boat ride on the Danube/Linz Harbour will.

Sit back, relax and soak up this wonderful city as the river calmly transports visitors around, offering a truly different view of Linz.


Advent is the best time to visit Tyrol, with its Christmas markets in the eight towns of Innsbruck, Achensee, Hall in Tyrol, Kitzbühel, Kufstein, Lienz, Rattenberg and St. Johann in Tyrol – it makes up the ‘Advent in Tyrol’ programme.

But the area also offers much to see and do when it’s not the festive period.

Described as ‘Tyrol’s scintillating Jewel’ Swarovski Crystal Worlds in Wattens, just 20 minutes outside Innsbruck, is one of the country’s most-visited attractions which has been dazzling visitors since it opened in 1995.

Groups will visit 16 sparkling Chambers of Wonder and see The Giant that watches over them, the pieces in the chambers have been inspired and designed by some of the world’s greatest artists including André Heller, Salvador Dalí and Andy Warhol.

Be sure to also visit The garden of the Giant – 7.5 hectares of land surrounding the iconic Giant – which contains pieces of art and ancient history, complete with the sparkling Crystal Cloud and Mirror Pool, you’ll be stepping into a garden like never before.

Group rates are available for groups of 10 or more.

Also in Wattens is the ‘House Upside Down’ a fun and unique sight. It’s a fully furnished and equipped house and garage which groups can walk around and admire the building from this bat-like perspective.

Group rates are available from 15 people.


On to the capital of Austria, Vienna, which is the cultural, economic, and political hub for the country.

The city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and has much to explore.

Dine in the air at Danube Tower, one of the city’s key landmarks. Be transported 564 feet in the air, with the help of two express elevators 35 seconds and enjoy the view at the rotating restaurant.

Groups get a reduced price. Entrance ticket includes access to the viewing terrace, the coffee house and the restaurant. 

A visit to St. Stephen's Cathedral is a must for every visitor to Vienna. This 12th-century building is one of most important religious buildings in Vienna. Guided tours of the cathedral and the catacombs are offered on a regular basis. Visit

The cathedral also has one of the best viewing points of the city, but it will mean climbing the 343 steps to the top of the 450ft high south tower, or take the lift to the belfry in the north steeple, it’s not as high, but still provides a captivating view – tickets are required.

For something special, visit Hofburg Palace – the former imperial palace.

Book a private tour of the state rooms as the highlight of a visit to Vienna. One ticket gets entry into three imperial attractions:

Sisi Museum and the Imperial Apartments

Highlights of the Silver Collection

State banquets past and present.

Admission charges apply for up to 20 people: Flat rate of €338 or from €16.90pp.


On 24 December 1818, Joseph Mohr and Franz Xaver Gruber sang ‘Silent Night’ in Oberndorf near Salzburg for the first time.

Now, 200 years on, the country is celebrating the anniversary with 13 Silent Night Places.

The country is hosting a range of events and special sights to celebrate the occasion. Visit to find out what festivities are in store.