When visiting Austria this past summer, Salzburg was one of the main stops. Besides the attraction of “Sound of Music” tours and filming locations, the Hohensalzburg Castle was pretty hard to miss; It overtakes the Salzburg skyline.
The fortress was built in the eleventh century, under the rule of the Archbishop at the time. The castle only went under siege once, in the German Peasant’s War in 1525. By the 19th century, Hohensalzburg was made a staple tourist attraction. It is known as one of the largest and best preserved castles of 11th century Europe.
At the time, I sadly only had my iphone for taking photos so I apologize for the quality.
To make it to the castle you have two options: hike or take the tram. To save money, my family and I hiked (yes, I mean hike. the pathways/stairs get very steep at the top). Although, the steepest part is at the end; so, even if you take the tram, which goes almost to the top, you will have to hike up the steepest part (which thankfully had spread out steps to help hold your grip).
There was some signs showing us where to go, but at times it was guessing (& thinking, well ok I know I’m going to head up somehow…).
A good tip is knowing that there is an admissions fee to enter the fortress grounds. I don’t remember it being that reasonable, especially if all travelers are adults.
After admissions there is, in fact, another steep hill, and a few staircases!!! (Yay!! time to treat yourself to some Austrian pastries!!!!!) The path opens to a large court with a gift shop, restrooms, etc.
Upon entering the very top, there is a few museum-type exhibits going into the history of the fortress (the lines get long but move quick).
The top has multiple 360 viewing areas. The amount of photo opportunities even on a cloudy day is insane.
I recommend leaving yourself a lot of time to explore all the rooms and viewing areas. The views are worth every broken sweat. Times like this, only make me want to explore European castles to the fullest extent possible.