Austria holidays

Austria holidays

Deals from £150 per person

Austria holidays offer a fascinating blend of history, culture and adventure. Charming towns lie nestled in valleys under towering Alpine peaks, while cities like Vienna promise plenty of  grandeur with an abundance of magnificent palaces just waiting to be explored.

Beyond the cityscapes, holidays to Austria ignite the soul of the music lover. From the birthplace of Mozart, Salzburg, to the renowned Vienna State Opera, the country thrums with the legacy of classical music.

In winter, pristine slopes unfurl for world-class skiing and snowboarding. While in summer lace up your hiking boots and conquer the majestic trails of the Alps.

History & Culture

On your Austrian holiday you'll discover a captivating fusion of influences from its neighbours and its own rich history, resulting in a culture that is both distinct and diverse. From the powerful Roman Empire to the artistic Renaissance, each era has left its mark. 

Things To Do

If you’re going on a Vienna city break don’t miss Schönbrunn Palace (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) once the playground of Habsburg emperors. And if one palace isn't enough, there's also Hofburg - a former winter residence. To truly soak in the Viennese atmosphere, you must visit one of the city's famous coffeehouses. Indulge in a slice of decadent Sachertorte or Apfelstrudel with a steaming cup of coffee.

Salzburg's main landmark is the imposing Hohensalzburg Fortress, a majestic medieval stronghold perched high above the city offering stunning views. Ascend the Festungsberg funicular to reach it. Back down at the bottom there's the spectacular Mirabell Palace and Gardens, a filming location for The Sound of Music.

Food & Drink

Beyond the cultural delights, Austria offers a tantalising culinary adventure. From hearty stews like Tafelspitz (boiled beef with vegetables) and Gulasch (rich stew with meat and onions) to comforting dumplings (Knödel), Austrian cuisine is a delicious blend of comfort and sophistication. Pair your meal with a glass of local wine or a frothy mug of beer, and complete your experience with a Linzer Torte (jam tart).

If you’re staying in or visiting Salzburg you must try one of the chocolates named in Mozart’s honour. These delicious treats contain marzipan, nougat and pistachio and are covered in a layer of dark chocolate. The original recipe variants have blue wrappers and are marked Fürst, but as the chocolatier didn’t register the patent you’ll find alternative versions at various shops in the city and internationally.

Map of Austria

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Austria experiences a diverse climate, with cooler temperatures and abundant snowfall in the  Alps, while the lowland areas have a temperate climate with distinct seasons.

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2 to 2.75 hours
Fly to Vienna, Salzburg and Innsbruck

Austria is best for...

Music lovers: Salzburg is famous for being the birthplace of Mozart. His first home has been turned into a museum, with original instruments on display. However, don’t expect to find a large palace - think more city centre apartment above a grocery store.

Outdoor activities: Austria’s lake district is a paradise for hikers and cyclists. Lake Mondsee is around 30 minutes by road from Salzburg, or you could cycle the 30km route. Film lovers will recognise the area from The Sound of Music.

Chocoholics: When browsing the shops in Austria you’ll see familiar names like Lindt, but an extensive range of different varieties and cheaper prices than in neighbouring Switzerland. Maybe take back a bar of Alpine milk nut or creamy gianduja to share with your friends and family?

Fast facts for Austria

Language: German is the official language for Austria. 

Currency: The currency used is the Euro (EUR).

Local time: Austria is one hour ahead of GMT/UK time. 

Fly to: The country’s main airports are Vienna, Salzburg and Innsbruck. There are year-round flights to Vienna from many UK airports, while flights to Salzburg and Innsbruck are mainly seasonal.

Flight time from the UK: Flights to Austria vary from 2 hours to 2 hours 40, depending on which airports you’re travelling to and from.

Tourist Information: Further information for planning holidays to Austria can be found at the official website for tourism in Austria.

Visa / health: Before you travel, please check the latest advice from the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office.

Getting around Austria

Local public transport: Within Austrian cities you'll find an efficient network of local public transport. This can include U-Bahn (underground trains), S-Bahn (suburban trains), trams, buses and trolley buses (a cross between a tram and a bus). 

Road network: The motorway network is called the Autobahn and a toll is payable for using it. Unlike in neighbouring Germany the speed limit of 130km/h (81mph) is mandatory, not just a recommended maximum.

Rail network: The main Austrian cities are connected by fast trains. You can even catch direct services to cities in Germany, Hungary, Switzerland and the Czech Republic.

Events in Austria

Vienna New Year's Concert: This annual classical concert is performed at the Musikverein concert hall. While the 1st January performance is televised globally, the same concert is also performed on 30th and 31st December. However, with a venue capacity of just 1,700 tickets are limited.

New Orleans Festival: As New Orlean’s twin city Innsbruck brings the New Orleans Festival to Europe each summer with a symphony of Jazz, Blues and Gospel musicians.

Krampus Parade: An unusual part of Salzburg’s pre-Christmas festivities is Krampus (a festive demon) parades through the streets on 5th December. 

Best hotels in Austria

Is Austria a cheap holiday destination?

Austria isn’t known as a low cost destination. Prices are similar to neighbouring Germany, but cheaper than Switzerland. With Austria being both a popular summer and winter destination, the best deals on package holidays can usually be found in spring and autumn.

When is the best time to visit Austria?

That really depends on the purpose of your visit. If you’re planning on going hiking or skiing you need to travel during the right season for the activity you wish to do. Temperatures in the cities can reach the high 20s or low 30s in summer, so if you’re planning an Austria city break you may prefer to travel in May or September. Despite the low winter temperatures Vienna is usually bustling around the festive period due to the popularity of the Christmas markets and New Year’s celebrations.