If your appreciation for the arts is heavy in the music department; then a tour of Austria is the perfect vacation destination. Surrounded by the creative inspiration of the Alps you can find a rich history of music and culture going back centuries. Have espresso at Mozart’s Cafe, see the palace rooms that were once full of young composers, sing “The Hills Are Alive” right where Julie Andrews did. Austria will fill your heart with song and set your taste buds on fire!
A Mozart Tour of Austria
Beginning your time in Austria with the Western part of the country will give you the best timeline for Mozart’s life. Because the composer was born and raised in Salzburg, Austria you should start your journey there! Salzburg is incredibly proud of their famous prior resident. Mozart’s childhood home has been completely preserved and remains very much the same as when the family inhabited it. The childhood home has been turned into a museum that IS WHEELCHAIR ACCESSIBLE. The home has the original “doorbell” on its exterior. Little details like the doorbell and door knocker are absolutely incredible and give such depth to the aesthetic design of the time period.
I was able to stand in the room that Mozart’s mother gave birth to him in. If you are a classical music, music theory lover (joke, no one is a music theory lover), you understand the magnitude of a space like that. The genius that was Mozart is truly paradigm shifting. As you tour Mozart’s humble beginnings you may find it hard to imagine the rise to fame that would follow. Therefore, you have great food for thought while you sip on your Composer Cappuccino next door at the Mozart Cafe. They serve you chocolates with Mozart’s face on them. I mean it doesn’t get any better than that.
If time permits, continue your tour to the other side of the country to Vienna, where you will find Mozart’s adult home. His home post fame is definitely more elaborate and really shows the shear amount of wealth acquired by his family. He would eventually leave the family home and the control of his parents to lead his own short adult life.
The Sound of Music
Millions of people have fallen in love with the Sound of Music musical. So much so that an entire tour industry has been developed around the films production. In Salzburg, Austria you can book a Sound of Music tour that will take you to all of the major filming spots. Along the way you will visit Mirabell Gardens where most of the Doe-Ra-Me scenes were filmed. Yes, there are dozens of people at any given time hopping up and down the exterior stairs. You will stop to see the famous glass gazebo where Lisle sings I Am 16 Going On 17.
The Sound of Music tour is an all day affair that will take you way out of the city of Salzburg to the Lake District of Austria. Here you will see where Julie Andrews sang The Hills Are Alive, you will also see the beautiful church that the wedding scene was filmed in. Throughout the time on the tour bus you will be participating in soundtrack sing along as well as Sound of Music trivia and behind the scenes details. The tour is absolutely amazing, worth every cent and then some if you are a true Sound of Music fan.
The Hills Fill my Heart with the Sound of Music
The lyrics in the Sound of Music describe Austria best. The Alpine landscapes and views are stunning. They bring to life creative juices and inspiration that you didn’t know you were capable of. The beautiful surroundings also had this effect on my children. As a family we adopted some wonderful habits from our time in Austria. For example, we have “afternoon coffee” now because of the relaxed ambience we experienced around the 2pm hour in Austria. So much about the Austrian culture should be implemented in our lives, especially so in regards to the Austrian love of music and film.
If you find yourself considering a trip to Austria please heed my advice and schedule in a whole lot of unscheduled time. Allowing yourself and your family to sip the afternoon away discussing the beauty you have witnessed will bring the experience to its fullest potential. Get out there and enjoy.