Getting there and getting around Austria's Salzkammergut

Left: Visitors can choose among many quaint inns while staying in Austria’s salt district; right: Cable cars throughout Austria’s salt region offer easy access to caves, ancient salt works and lookouts with gorgeous views. Credit: both: Lon Abbott and Terri Cook. Left: Visitors can choose among many quaint inns while staying in Austria’s salt district; right: Cable cars throughout Austria’s salt region offer easy access to caves, ancient salt works and lookouts with gorgeous views. Credit: both: Lon Abbott and Terri Cook.

Salzburg boasts Austria’s second-busiest airport, with nonstop flights to cities throughout Europe and connecting flights to a number of North American gateways. Munich, Germany, just 145 kilometers and 1.5 hours away on the A8 autobahn, has direct flights from North America. Picking up a rental car is easy at either airport. Austria’s official language is German, but many Austrians are fluent in English. Road signs are in German but are easily followed by English speakers.

Despite its small population, Hallstatt is no stranger to tourism, and the town has a helpful website that can answer almost all of your travel questions: www.hallstatt.net. Accommodations throughout the Salzkammergut run the gamut from luxurious resorts to cozy guesthouses (Gasthof) and bed-and-breakfasts. We loved the rural ambiance and affordability of Hinterkellaubauer, a pension near Küchl in the Salzach Valley, which we found on booking.com. If you’re visiting during the summer or holidays, it’s best to book in advance. You can also pitch a tent or park a motorhome alongside Lake Hallstatt at Camping Klaussner-Höll. Hallstatt is a great place to try local fish freshly caught from the lake, as well as that favorite Austrian confection: apple strudel.

Terri Cook and Lon Abbott

Terri Cook (www.down2earthscience.com) is a science and travel writer based in Colorado and an EARTH roving correspondent. Lon Abbott is a geology professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Friday, August 11, 2017 - 06:00