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Breathtaking mountain scenery, jewel-coloured alpine lakes and some of the freshest air around, Austria is for the person who loves the outdoors. But what about the cosy cafes, buzzing wine taverns and haunting churches and abbeys? Austria provides just as much for the traveller who wants to experience the culture of Austria as well.
And that is without mentioning the musical geniuses that hailed from Austria such as Mozart, Beethoven, Strauss and Schubert. The combination of all these aspects of Austria add up to a spectacular country with something to offer everyone.
The geography of Austria
Two thirds of Austria is covered in mountainous regions including the Alps, with Austria retaining four other major geological formations – the Vienna Valley, the Alpine and Carpathian Foreland, the Czech Massif, and the Pannonian Basin.
The mighty River Danube cuts a swathe through Austria which is a landlocked country in the south east of Central Europe, surrounded by eight other countries. The landscape and climate of Austria is just as diverse with the south east benefitting from a Mediterranean climate while the south contains Alpine grasslands and low meadows.
Some of the fascinating sights of Austria
If you want to be bowled over when you go on holiday, visit many of the sights in Austria and you will not be disappointed. There is the ice palace at Werfen, which is part of the world’s largest accessible ice caves. There are 42km of narrow passages burrowing deep inside this mountain in Austria, so remember to take your jumper!
Not far from there is the longest ravine in the Austrian Alps called the Liechtenstein Gorge. It takes an hour to explore this amazing sight with its swirling waters, towering cliffs and white granite culminating in a 50m waterfall. If you take a trip in the late afternoon when the light is at its loveliest, you will see the water a stunning opal blue colour.
If you are into Mozart or The Sound of Music, or both, then Salzburg in western Austria is a must. This is where Mozart was born and where the Julie Andrews film was made. There is more to this city than those two pointers though, from glorious architecture to a 900-year-old cliff-top fortress.
If you fancy going where Austrians chose to holiday, then head for Styria in the southeast of Austria. This is Austria’s second largest province and is an area dominated by forests and meadows with six nature reserves, five thermal spas, and 800 mountain peaks.
The capital of Styria is Graz, the second largest city in Austria, with an incredibly well preserved old town and home to two world famous classical music festivals.