Hallstatt’s Old Town and Market Square
The little market village of Hallstatt, one of the most attractive places to visit in the Salzkammergut, is idyllically positioned on the southwest shore of the Hallstätter See.
Taking its name from the nearby salt mine, the village clusters around its charming Marktplatz, surrounded by traditional houses, their balconies draped in flowers. Shops and terraced cafés line the square, and a highlight is the elegant Holy Trinity statue.
One of the most famous views of the old village is from the popular Photo Point in the Römisches district, just a short walk away from Marktplatz. In the center of town is the 19th-century Evangelical Church of Hallstatt, its tall, slender spire a lakeside landmark.
Hallstatt Salt Mine
Really a number of excellent attractions in one, Hallstatt Salt Mine (Salzwelten Hallstatt) lies high above the town on the 1,030-meter-tall Salzburg (Salt Mountain). The star attraction, however, is the 7,000-year-old salt mine itself.
It’s accessible by cable car or a three-minute journey aboard the funicular railway. Highlights include the story of the preserved corpse found here in 1734, known as the “Man in Salt,” along with fascinating displays of ancient (and modern) mining methods. A new attraction here is the Salt Manufacture, which offers tours and a glimpse at how gourmet salt products are made.
Be sure to seize the opportunity to visit the Subterranean Salt Lake. Kids of all ages will want to whizz down the 64-meter-long Mega-slide, Europe’s longest wooden slide (all of it underground).
The salt mine is well worth visiting for the wonderful views from the Halstatt Skywalk alone. This breathtaking attraction consists of a viewing platform extending over a sheer drop, with Hallstatt itself some 350 meters directly below.
Even more spectacular views can be enjoyed from the historic Rudolf’s Tower (Rudolfsturm). This old fortification – accessible only by footbridges – was built to defend the mines against invaders, and now serves as a restaurant and observation tower.