This picturesque Alpine nation has produced some of the world's finest composers, and benefits from a very high standard of living. One of the most famous Austrians is Arnold Schwarzenegger, a renowned Hollywood actor who originally earned a living as a bodybuilder, and served as the Governor of California for eight years until 2011.
One of the country's most entrancing landmarks is Hohensalzburg Castle, above the attractive city of Festungsberg, which is 250m long and was built from the 11th century onwards, benefiting from a significant restoration since the 19th century. The highest peak in Austria is the Grossglockner which, at 3,798m, is the second most prominent peak in the Alps, despite being more than 1,000 metres shorter than the most prominent and highest peak, Mont Blanc.
One of the most popular destinations for flights to Austria, the spirited city of Vienna is acclaimed for its Schönbrunn Palace, which has 1,441 rooms and is an outstanding example of Austrian Baroque architecture. The vast site, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is revered for its landscaped grounds and has stood for more than three centuries.
If you're a fan of Romanesque architecture, don't forget to visit towering St. Stephen's Cathedral, and see the awe-inspiring Belvedere complex, which comprises two other astounding Baroque buildings. For some unforgettable opera, book a show at the Vienna State Opera, or enjoy some fabulous local-themed cuisine at top-rated restaurants such as the Hill Restaurant, the Casino Restaurant Wien or the VIENNA CLASSIC Café-Restaurant
Just a couple of kilometres from the photogenic medieval village of Thal, where Schwarzenegger was born, Graz is famed for its stupendous Mariatrost Basilica, a magnificent Baroque building that was completed in 1724. See the majestic Eggenberg Palace complex, another striking Baroque building that is now part of the Graz Historic Old Town UNESCO World Heritage Site. This prestigious designation also includes the enchanting Rathaus Town Hall, the University of Graz, and many other fine buildings that collectively form one of the most aesthetically pleasing urban districts in Europe.
Spend some time at the pictorial Hellbrunn Palace with its romantic gardens, then visit the grand Mirabell Palace, one of the main landmarks of the Historic Centre of Salzburg UNESCO World Heritage Site. The birthplace of Mozart is also known for its handsome St Peter's Abbey, a seventh-century Benedictine monastery, and the historic Petersfriedhof, established around the turn of the eighth century.
One of Innsbruck's most popular attractions is the Tyrolean State Museum, where visitors can learn about the history of the Tyrol region in an iconic early 19th-century building. A few other noted sites in this city include the beautiful Hofgarten Park, the delightful Renaissance building known as Ambras Castle, and the historic Goldenes Dachl structure (Golden Roof) with its 2,738 copper tiles.
|Food and drinks||Prices average|
|Beer (0.5 litre)||£1.00|
|Meal at McDonald's||£6.00|
|Water (0.33 litre)||£2.00|
|One way tube ticket||£2.00|
|Taxi starting price (normal tariff)||£3.00|
|1 summer dress in a chain store (Zara, H&M,...)||£29.00|
|1 pair of jeans (Levi's 501 or similar)||£71.00|
|Average monthly disposable salary (net)||£1,580.00|