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A Complete Guide to Hallstatt, Austria’s Most Charming Lake Town

Last winter, I traveled through the West of Austria for the very first time. And, just as I expected, I fell in love! Hallstatt Austria is a charming lake town village located between mountains on Lake Hallstatt. Hallstatt is home to less than 1,000 people and this well preserved town has been named a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

I was looking for fairytale destinations around Europe and I found it here in Hallstatt!

While I only had a day to visit Hallstatt, it was enough time to get a taste for this famous Lakeside Alpine Village in Austria. Aside from being the most beautiful place in Austria, Hallstatt is more than 7,000 years old and has the oldest salt mine in the world.

Here are the 7 places to visit in Hallstatt, Austria!

A Complete Guide to Hallstatt Austria

#1 Hallstatt Town

As soon as i stepped down from the bus and saw the painstakingly cute chalets in Hallstatt, I was totally immersed in fairytale world and alpine splendour! I rushed until the end of the town towards the most popular Photo Point and start taking photos from there.

Part of the fun is wandering around, gawking at the architecture of this charming town in Hallstatt. Each building looks like something Disneyland created but are still inhibited by locals that have lived there for generations. The stroll only takes about an hour trip, so take your time to stop and snap photos.

We very much enjoyed the time we spent wandering the village streets. And for yet another perspective of this quaint alpine town, we headed for the rooftops!

Hallstatt travel blog

Hallstatt Austria things to do

#2 Hallstatt Market Square

One of the famous views of the old village is from the popular Photo Point, and just a short walk away from the Photo Point is where the historic Market Square.

The historic Market Square located at the heart of the town and is the major attraction there. This Market Square is really tiny and so, so cute. Its foundations date back to the 14th century, but most of the colourful houses were built during the 16th century.

how to get to Hallstatt

Hallstatt things to see

#3 Hallstatt Evangelical Parish Church

The Church sits in the village centre and is one of the most recognised landmarks in Hallstatt. It was originally built as a house of prayer in the 17th century and rebuilt in the 18th century, as the church you see today.

With its charming buildings, cafés and hotels, the village centre is another most popular photography spots in Hallstatt.

Hallstatt day trip from Salzburg Austria

Hallstatt day trip from Vienna

#4 Hallstatt Charnel House or The Bone House

The most fascinating thing we saw in Hallstatt was the Charnel House or ‘Bone House’. And yes, it’s exactly as weird as it sounds. The charnel house is filled with bones and human skulls. It contains 1,200 skulls and located in the two-storey Michael’s Chapel. The skulls are painted, inscribed with the death date and arranged by family.

This tradition started in 1720, due to a lack of space in the church cemetery and no possibility of extending it. Since the graveyard is so small, skeletons are unearthed 10 to 15 years after burial, and moved to the ossuary. The skulls are then clean and decorated with symbols, mostly with flowers.

Hallstatt Bone House

(Source) They kept skulls in ossuary due to lack of space in the church cemetery

#5 Museum Hallstatt

The Museum Hallstatt was opened in 1888 in order to showcase Hallstatt history. With 7,000 years of history, there is so much to learn and appreciate about Hallstatt’s past.

The museum covers everything from prehistoric salt mining to geology, archaeology and culture. It takes you on a journey through Hallstatt’s rich history and influences on Europe and on the world. If you are a history enthusiast , you do not want to miss out visiting Museum Hallstatt.

Hallstatt museum travel blog

#6 Rent a Boat around Lake Hallstatt

If you think the views of Hallstatt are gorgeous from land, just wait until you’re seeing this breathtaking landscape from a boat, gently swaying to the gentle ripples of the Lake Hallstatt.

Enjoying the Alps from this perspective is an experience every traveler should add to their adventure bucket list. Renting a boat in Hallstatt and cruising around Lake Hallstatt is completely worth it. Just sitting on the boat and admiring the village, mountains and swans views!

#7 Hallstatt Skywalk

Skywalk of Hallstatt is one of the highlights that you shouldn’t miss! It’s not just the viewing platform which is pretty but the entire village of Hallstatt. Every turn of Hallstatt has its own beauty!

Ride the funicular up to the mountaintop above town is one of the best experience in Hallstatt where they’ve opened a new panoramic viewpoint. You can walk around on this Skywalk and stand high above the village and the glorious Lake Hallstatt.

With postcard shot of glassy lake waters and misty mountains in Hallstatt, it’s well worth the trip either from Salzburg or Vienna!

How To Get To Hallstatt, Austria On A Day Trip

Hallstatt, Austria is easy to visit on a day trip from Salzburg or Vienna. If you leave in the morning, you can get there in a few hours by bus, train and ferry. It might seem complicated at first glance, but I promise, it is very easy.

From Salzburg: You can either take the bus all the way (2hr 15mins) or by train (2hr 30mins)

    • By bus: Take Bus 150 from Salzburg to Bad Ischl. Then change to Bus 542 or 543 towards Gosaumühle/Hallstatt.
    • By train: Take National Railway OBB (Salzburg to Attnang-Puchheim). Then change to the train towards Hallstatt Railway Station. At the train station, take the ferry to Hallstatt port.
    • By guided tour: If you are little hesitant about taking public transport all the way to Hallstatt, I’d recommend taking a day trip tour from Salzburg! Tours typically happen daily at 12:00pm and depart from Mirabellplatz, Salzburg.

From Vienna:

  • By train (3hr 22mins): Take the train to Attnang-Puchheim. Then change to the train towards Hallstatt Railway Station. At the train station, take the ferry to Hallstatt port. 
  • By guided tour: If you are in Vienna and want to visit Hallstatt but don’t know where to begin, I’d suggest taking a day trip tour from Vienna! This guided tour  includes 20-minute boat tour on the Hallstatt Lake!

Hallstatt blog

Hallstatt travel blog

Hallstatt Austria Travel Blog

Have you ever visited Hallstatt? Let me know what was your favourite part of Hallstatt in the comment section below!

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  • Reply Nadhie

    Seriously cantiknya tempat! 🙂 suka tengok. bila la berpeluang nak pergi ni..

    May 2, 2017 at 12:44 am
  • Reply ema

    Wah, cantiknya tempat ni.. kelihatan sangat tenang.

    May 16, 2017 at 7:05 am
  • Reply Amanina

    amazing!! like heaven pemandangan dia. kalau pergi mana2 musim pun mesti xmengecewakan

    August 27, 2017 at 8:09 am
  • Reply Norra

    Syoknya 😍😍

    September 30, 2017 at 10:03 am
  • Reply amy hilmirda

    cantiknya pemandangan kat sini… bestnya kalau dapat pergi

    October 13, 2017 at 2:46 am
  • Reply Ray

    omg, the view. it’s mesmerizing. I’m in love with the view!

    November 18, 2017 at 9:16 am
  • Reply Mulan

    Tak sempat ke Hallstatt baru ni.. Limited time tapi Austria byk tempat cantik kan..

    January 15, 2018 at 7:45 am
  • Reply prashant kumar

    This is a nice travel blog, I like it very much.

    March 7, 2018 at 4:48 am
  • Reply MR Doctor

    This couldnt be Hallstatt.. It’s Paradise!

    May 24, 2018 at 6:06 pm
  • Reply Lux Malaya

    Adoyaiii .. Mmg fairytale Fatin. Mcm dalam mimpi tempat ni huhu …

    June 1, 2018 at 7:01 am
  • Reply Jenny

    Hi Fatin
    Well written article,tq! I have 5 days in Salzburg & deciding between taking a day trip or staying a night in Hallstatt.
    What’s your advice?
    Cheers, Jenny

    July 3, 2018 at 1:35 pm
  • Reply mijoe

    Salam Fatin,

    Thank you for this informative post.
    I’m planning to go to Hallstatt this coming September.
    Did you go to Hallstatt from Salzburg or Vienna?

    August 23, 2018 at 11:26 am
  • Reply Nurulhuda Abd Kadir

    Hi Fatin, do you find any halal restaurant in Hallstatt? Any recommendations?

    July 9, 2019 at 5:17 am
    • Reply fatindays

      Hi Huda, I end my day at Salzburg. It’s a bigger city than Halstatt and have more restaurants. I know one halal restaurant in Salzburg called Sabah. It’s a Turkish restaurant and selling kebab & rice. Hope it’s help! 😀

      September 19, 2019 at 2:27 pm
  • Reply kaknor

    Assalam Fatin, did u spent a night in Hallstatt, tinggal kt mana, boleh share.

    January 23, 2020 at 5:53 pm
    • Reply fatindays

      Wslm kak nor, thanks for reading this post 🙂 Saya tak overnight kat Hallstatt fyi

      January 24, 2020 at 2:51 am
  • Reply kaknor

    Assalam Fatin, bermalam tak kat Hallstatt..boleh tahu kt mana..

    January 23, 2020 at 5:54 pm
  • Reply kaknor

    Thanks for the reply. Which is better route nak ke Hallstatt, me n my sis from Brighton, should we take flight to Salzburg or Vienna..atau ada cara lain..thnak in advance

    January 30, 2020 at 5:51 pm
  • Reply kaknor

    Assalam Fatin..corona virus is here..what do you suggest..cancel trip or proceed..huhuhu T.T
    Suppose to travel on 9th April to London, then to Hallsatt, then to Amsterdam to see the tulips…Paris is now out of the picture T.T.

    March 10, 2020 at 5:36 pm
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