After a relaxing two hour fast train ride, we arrived in Salzburg just around dusk. A sweet little city, Salzburg was put on the map for many westerners after it was made famous in “The Sound of Music” movie, but thankfully, there is SO much more to this gem of a Austria town than the biggest tourist trap. We avoided anything related to The Sound of Music tours and opted to roam around the Alstadt (old town center) instead. After settling into our charming little B&B near the river, we bundled up and headed out over the bridge to where the Christkindlmarkets were just lighting up.
All the sights, sounds and smells lured us into the magic of a quinessential Bavarian style Christmas with all the trimmings. The outdoor market booths were almost identical in their presentation of red and green but sold a wide variety of goods from wood art, to candles, to toys, to food and drink, to everything Christmas!
Among many favorite memories was when the cathedral bells of Salzburger Dom began to chime. My mom visited Salzburg back in the 1950’s with my Dad and baby me in tow. She always reminisced about the sound of those bells and there is indeed something sitrring about them. So much so, that the next day we were drawn back to the cathedral to experience Sunday mass where the choir sang pieces from Mozart and Bach. The acoustics and surroundings were beautiful!
Another wonderful memory was the night we rode the funicular up to the hilltop castle, the Festung Hohensalzburg, for a Mozart concert.
The preconcert “gluhwein”, 2nd row seats in a small venue room of the castle and music provided by a string ensemble and Austrian folk musicians all combined to make it a truly memorable experience.
And just when we thought it couldn’t get better, we stepped outside to softly falling snow.