Visiting Austria with Children

Austria is full of family attractions, and children of any age will enjoy it. It may not have famous amusement parks such as Disneyland of Efteling, but it has a variety of other attractions and beautiful scenery.

The best areas for families to visit on a trip to Austria are, in my opinion, Tirol and Salzburg; but of course, there are things for children to do and see in Vienna as well: The famous ferris wheel in Wurstelprater, the Spanish Horse Riding School and a tour of Schoenbrunn Palace, which has its own charming gardens and a zoo.

Salzburgland:

The big, important city in this state is, of course, the city of Salzburg.

The main attraction for children in this beautiful city is Hellbrunn Palace, with its famous water tricks.

I also recommend visiting Salzburg’s open museum to learn how people there used to live, what their houses and tools looked like, etc.
A short drive south of the city you will find the Durenburg and Hallein salt mines. Any child (or adult!) will enjoy sliding down the miner’s slides, sail the salty waters, ride a small train through the mines, and even cross the border underground.

Austria has other mines which have been turned into tourist attractions. Some mines worth visiting are the silver mines, the copper mines, and the mines of Terra Mystica.

A particularly beautiful and unique place to visit is the Eisriesenwelt ice cave, also south of Salzburg. It is one of the largest ice caves in the world which are open to visitors. You will get to see incredible ice sculptures sculpted by Mother Nature as you walk through this cold, dark cave to the dim light of lanterns. You can reach the cave by cable car or walking. The view from the mouth of the cave is beautiful. This trip is not suitable for young children or people who have trouble walking, as it requires a lot of walking and climbing up stairs.
I recommend visiting (and also staying at) a charming city called Zell Am See. This is a lakeside holiday town with many options for entertainment, such as boating, swimming in the lake, mini golf, and more. In the winter, boating and swimming are replaced by skiing and ice-skating. Zell Am See is close to Grossglockner, the most impressive mountain pass in Austria, where you can look at the beautiful view and play around in the snow. On the way to or from the mountain pass, I recommend stopping at a lovely little amusement park called Wild & Freizeitpark Ferleiten near the town of Fusch. The amusement park is also next to a wild animal park.

Tirol:

The capital of this state is Innsbruck, a beautiful city surrounded by the Alps from every direction. I recommend viewing the city from the viewing platform of the Hungerburg cable car and touring the city centre: The pedestrian mall, the golden rooftop and the city tower. About half an hour east of Innsbruck you will find Swarovski Crystal Worlds, an amazing place with films, displays and effects relating to crystals, glass, and mirrors. There is of course a huge Swarovski shop there as well. Not to be missed!

An excellent trip out to nature in Tirol would be to Krimml Waterfalls.
There are dozens of cable car rides up to mountaintops all around Tirol. I especially recommend visiting Zugspitze peak on the border between Austria and Germany.

Beyond thrilling history, Rome is obviously the capitol of pizzas and pastas, and in short – a culinary festivity. As befits for a city, that sanctifies the good meals, superb wine and excellent ice cream, a culinary tour is an extraordinary tour.
Gourmetaly Company is a recommended company organizing such tours. The Company organizes tours on different subjects, such as a wine tour or a tour following the Tiramisu, however, for the tourists who wish to familiarize themselves as much as possible with the local cuisine, the “Food Crawl Rome Tour” is recommended. The tour lasts for about 3.5 hours during which you will visit the city quarters, colorful markets, family bakeries, famous delicatessen as well as less familiar restaurants to the average tourist, but that are considered real pearls in the eyes of the locals.
During the tour you will taste cheeses, sausages, pastries, pasta, wine, ice cream as well as some traditional dishes of Rome, such as fried artichoke, the traditional dish of the Jewish Ghetto. Very interesting and not less important – tasteful!
The tour is for a fee and reservation are required in advance on the Company’s site. The Tour departs in groups, up to 12 persons in a group. Each group has an experienced guide that knows to provide helpful hints regarding recommended (and less recommended) restaurants, where you can find the best pizza, where to buy quality pasta to take home, and which dishes are recommended to eat at which season.
This tour offers the visitor a different angle of Rome, and in a city in which food is a central and important cultural component, such a tour should not be missed!

After we were satisfied and enjoyed ourselves, the day of the tour can be continued by arriving to the smallest country in the world, the Vatican.  Although this is the smallest sovereign country in the world, that populates only 800 residents, it has its own language (Latin), a flag, currency, army, postal service and even a radio station. This is one of the most crowded sites in Rome, obviously mainly because of its extreme religious significance to the Christian World in General and the Catholic in particular.

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