Feel the sound of music in only one day.
My suggested itinerary is based on travel from Munich, Germany
Whether you grew up singing “Raindrops on Roses…” or somehow ended up on the Captain Von Trapp thirst part of TikTok….then Salzburg is the place of your dreams.
When I visited Germany, I knew that no matter what I had to spend some time in Salzburg, Austria so that I could fully live out my childhood dream of being a Von Trap Family Singer. If you're short on time, this one-day itinerary will get you just the taste of the Von Traps you need!
If you get anxious about finding your way around public transportation — don't be. Germany is known for its efficiency and with good reason. If you're staying in town, hop on the subway and take the line to the Central Train Station. The subway system in Munich is extremely simple — just be sure to grab a subway ticket. While they don't check if you are caught without a ticket it's a hefty fee!
When you arrive at Munich Central Station trains are easily marked. If you're choosing to go alone, check ahead of time for train schedules. To make things even easier, you can book a guide to meet you at their booth in the Central Station and guide you onto the right train, give you footing when you arrive in Salzburg, and pick up you when it's time to take the train back to Munich.
Once you find your train, take a window seat and relax on your 90 min ride through the German and Austrian countryside!
Congrats! You've made it to Salzburg. You can hop a quick bus downtown or take a stroll.
If you haven't booked ahead, I would streamline to one of the two Mozart museums as they are usually filled up. When I visited in March I was able to get in without a reservation, but that was because it was off-season. You can visit Mozart's birthplace as well as his residence. I chose Mozart's birthplace and thoroughly enjoyed it. You can see actually instruments that Mozart played. Which, if you were an orchestra kid like me, is FREAKING AWESOME.
Now that you've seen where Mozart began his life, it's time to join him where he drank! Cafes are a huge part of Austrian culture, and Mozart himself enjoyed visiting Café Tomaselli. The Austrians say that this cafe is both a place to see and be seen. And I could see why. The servers were dressed to the nines. Now, don't let that stop you from popping in for a bite. While a bit pricier than other institutions, the experience, and quiet glamour of the cafe is not easily duplicated.
Now that you've gotten your mandatory history lesson out of the way, it's time to turn up your personal musical theatre dial and explore where Julie Andrews recreated the iconic Maria.
There is are official Sound of Music tours, but we opted to wander on our own. We asked our guide a couple of questions before leaving the train so we knew what we wanted to see. Luckily, the filming locations are all extremely close together….and just a short walk from Café Tomaselli.
If you remember the famous Do-Re-Mi scene, you can see essentially all of it by taking a 360° turn in the main gardens. After you've sung your heart out, head across the bridge covered in locks to climb your way to Nonnberg Abbey, the church where Maria and Captain Von Trapp were married.
My walk up the mountain to Nonnberg Abbey was beautiful and reflective. I was traveling with my mom, and she needed a break so I climbed the steep hill alone. As you inched closer and closer to the top you could hear the nuns singing in the abbey. It was the most vivid musical display I've heard in my entire life. I truly felt that I could close my eyes and pretend I was right there alongside Sister Maria.
When I reached the top I wasn't able to go inside because the mass was going on, but I don't regret the trip for one bit. The abbey itself is beautiful and offers immaculate views of the surrounding Alps.
By the time you journey back to flat ground, it will likely be time to catch your train home. Grab some Wiener Schnitzel for the road, and enjoy your train ride home. You've just lived in a fairytale.