Xmas Markets & Winter Magic from Vienna to Salzburg …

… Austria at its very best. Really! If like me you are lucky enough to catch a glimpse of how wonderful your own country may be in the eyes of foreigners, you really are tempted to wear that proud, happy smile of yours day and night. Austria = island of the blessed?! If you ask happy and enthusiastic travel journalist Terry Lee, of www.LiveShareTravel.com, Austria is indeed meant to rule the world – at least his and the one of the Brits. “Oh, I LOVE Austria”, is what I keep hear him saying throughout the trips we take together. Terry’s eyes then start to shine, his tribute to Austria knows no end and a soft blanket of sadness wraps itself around our group of international travel writers when he says: “I wish we could stay longer. I wish I could live in Austria! It is absolutely beautiful.”

I think Terry is right. At least after having this look at our last trip from Vienna to Salzburg …


Christmas markets in Vienna: From Spittelberg via Museumsquartier to Maria-Theresien square …

… we only have to walk a few minutes: Ideal therefore in order to get a feel for the pre-Christmas buzz in the Austrian capital city. Terry Lee & his wife Sarah, Katrina Stovold as well as Máximo Perez and I start our walk from trendy & comfy 25 Hours Hotel Vienna, reaching Spittelberg Christmas market in less than ten minutes. Here, the inner city of Vienna makes for a peaceful little haven: I really enjoy the small city flair, the beautiful historic cobblestone lanes right here in Spittelberg. Only a stone’s throw away, yet entirely different in atmosphere and appearance, is Museumsquartier Vienna on your way to the Christmas market at Maria-Theresien square: It is here where modern light installations mix with cool outdoor bars and hot drinks to attract a crowd of young people and visitors like us. Between the two magnificent art and natural history museum buildings, we finally end our Xmas walk in Vienna not without tasting lots of Glühwein, berry punch, Brezen and Austrian sausage “Wurst”, of course. 😉

Die Glühwein- bzw. Weihnachtsmarkt-Truppe - von links nach rechts: Máximo Perez, Sarah Lee, Katrina Stovold & Terry Lee. Thanks everyone for coming along!

Our Glühwein, say Xmas market explorer group – from left to right: Máximo Perez, Sarah Lee, Katrina Stovold & Terry Lee. Thanks everyone for coming along!


Das Museumsquartier empfängt uns mit coolen Lichtinstallationen wie hier auf dem Leopold Museum ...

Museumsquartier receives us to some cool light installations like here at Leopold Museum …


... und macht generell mit all den umliegenden Weihnachtsmärkten für den "Winterzauber" Stimmung.

… adding to the “Winterzauber” winter magic atmosphere of the surroundings.


Die Weihnachtsdörfer laden ein: Heiß dampfend ist an kalten Nächten wie diesen am besten!

Welcome to the Christmas markets of Vienna: Hot & steaming is what a drink should be on those cold nights!


Eine prächtige Kulisse bietet hier beispielsweise das Kunsthistorische Museum Wien zum Weihnachtsdorf am Maria-Theresien-Platz.

The Art History Museum at Maria-Theresien square offers a magnificent backdrop for this particular Christmas market right in the heart of Vienna.


Da kommt Freude auf: Geschenk-Stimmung unter Freunden ist einfach die beste Medizin gegen lange, kalte Winternächte. :D

Present time & happy moments with friends & family is the best “medicine” on long, cold winter nights. 😀


“Why is Sankt Wolfgang known as the ‘Advent town of Austria’?”, Sarah Lee keeps asking on our way from Schallaburg Christmas market in Lower Austria to Sankt Wolfgang in Salzburg.

I smile while telling her the best and most logical answer I can come up with (how could I, as our “tour guide”, after all admit that I have never even been to THE “Advent town of Austria“? Gosh! 😉 ): “Because Sankt Wolfgang is just about one of the most iconic, pretty and beautiful spots of Austria …!” (and if they proclaim an entire “Advent town” here in Salzburg, it must be really special right!).

And this, dear readers, is exactly what it was like. Wow. Tall and strong black horses, pulling up a wonderful sleigh right in front of our eyes. All those cute little market stalls, each of them extremely well tended, with aromas & offers mixing to create “a better world” – a beautiful, traditional Christmas world, at least for the moment. The smell of roasted chestnuts. Happy people laughing with us. Bratapfel Punsch. Mountain & lake views to die for (or get green with envy, anyway). Very, very pretty indeed. And not over the top, either: The Advent town Sankt Wolfgang does manage to walk the line between authenticity and commercialisation in a very elegant way. Now take this look at it. Don’t you, too, feel a longing to come here and dive right in … ?

Auftakt auf dem Weg nach Salzburg: Wir besuchen das berühmten Renaissance Schloss Schallaburg mit seinem Weihnachtsmarkt.

Travelling to Salzburg: We visit the famous Renaissance Palace Schallaburg and its Christmas market south of famous Melk Abbey near the Danube river, in Lower Austria.


Die fein gearbeiteten Kunsthandwerke begeistern meine internationalen Gäste und mich.

The intricate crafts displayed there fascinate our visitors and myself.


Der Innenhof der Schallaburg zählt aufgrund seiner bestens erhaltenen, historischen Details zu den schönsten Renaissance-Schlössern nördlich der Alpen.

The inner courtyard of the palace boasts many historical details and helps build the reputation of the Renaissance Palace Schallaburg as one of the most beautiful north of the Alps.


Abends in Sankt Wolfgang am Wolfgangsee, Salzburg: Der Mond scheint hell über dem Adventdorf von Sankt Wolfgang.

Evening stroll in Sankt Wolfgang am Wolfgangsee, Salzburg: The moon is up high here in the advent town of Sankt Wolfgang.


Auch hier begeistern uns Details und Kunsthandwerks-Reichtum der Aussteller im Adventdorf.

Here, too, we are fascinated by the crafts and souvenirs on display.


Dieser Blick blieb mir nicht verborgen: "Zur Salzburger Krippe" stand in großen Lettern vor diesem schön geschnitzten Krippenhof mit Figuren in (Über)Lebensgröße.

Check out this beautiful view of the nativity scene carved in wood, with the full moon sort of “guarding the scene” on top.


Der Duft nach frisch gebratenen Maroni ...

The smell of roasted chestnuts …


... blieb auch der herzlichen Katrina Stovold von www.TourAbsurd.com nicht verborgen: Hier beim gemütlichen Austausch mit den Einheimischen.

… is what particularly got to Katrina Stovold, of www.TourAbsurd.com: Here, she enjoys a short chat with one of the local vendors.


Unser Gastgeber: Das Hotel Weißes Rössl direkt am See von Sankt Wolfgang - ein Traum von einem Hotel.

Our host for the day (and night): Hotel Weißes Rössl right at lake Wolfgang – a beautiful place.


Der SeeSpa führt hier direkt vom Haus aus auf den See hinaus ... bzw. fängt mit der Badewanne in der "Rössl-Suite" schon mitten im Zimmer an. ;)

The local lake spa is set right in front of the hotel leading out into the lake – or starting in your room with that bath tub in the “Rössl suite”, even? 😉


Und dann das ... wie ein Werbefoto wirkt meine letzte Aufnahme unseres Besuches hier, dabei ist alles absolut echt und rein gar nichts gestellt. Selbst muss ich wiederholt auf das Foto blicken, um es zu glauben: Kann Sankt Wolfgang - Salzburg - Österreich !! - wirklich SO SCHÖN sein? :D

And finally this: Like an image in a catalogue, however his is exactly what lake Wolfgang and the surrounding landscape looked like in the morning. Just so very beautiful – wow! 😀


Thank you so much, Terry & Sarah Lee, Katrina Stovold & Máximo Perez for the happy travel moments on our magic winter trip here in Austria! Check out Máximo’s travel videos, Katrina’s travel insights as well as Terry & Sarah Lee’s “pearls of Austrian travel wisdom” here:

WE LOVE YOU! 😉 See you next time in good old Austria.!


You may also like

Join the discussion