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Hallstatt is a small town overlooking the Hallstätter See (Lake Hallstatt) in the Salzkammergut, in the federal states Upper Austria of Austria.

Formerly more known as a sleepy settlement nestled by a large salt mine, Hallstatt is spectacularly picturesque, due to its location on a narrow rocky west bank of the lake with the sheer rising mountains behind it. Considered by some to be one of the most beautiful places on earth, Hallstatt is sometimes called "the pearl of Austria".


A view of Hallstatt, as typically shown in guide books and brochures.

The Hallstatt-Dachstein/Salzkammergut area has been added to the UNESCO World Heritage List with the following inscription [1]: "Human activity in the magnificent natural landscape of the Salzkammergut began in prehistoric times, with the salt deposits being exploited as early as the 2nd millennium BC. This resource formed the basis of the area’s prosperity up to the middle of the 20th century, a prosperity that is reflected in the fine architecture of the town of Hallstatt."

Hallstatt was the site of an early Iron Age culture from 800 to 400 BC, which is known as the Hallstatt Era. Hallstatt is considered to be the oldest still-inhabited village in Europe.

The charm of the small town has enticed several motion picture producers to illustrate or film in the town as part of its plot, from South Korean 2006 television series Spring Waltz to the village of Arrandelle in Disney's Frozen films, although tourists would better off venture to Norway instead to see a perfect depiction of the latter. Even a Chinese housing development, also called Hallstatt, is modelled almost exactly based on the original town centre. Since then, Hallstatt's 780 residents (2018) have been feeling the effects of over-tourism, especially from East Asia. Residents have complained that the one million tourists each year, many of whom merely drive into town, take a few pictures, and leave a few minutes later, are exploiting the town.

During the off-season from winter (except the Christmas holidays) to early spring, fewer shops and restaurants are open, However, you are at an advantage of fewer tourists and can therefore easily stretch your visit by a few hours to a few days without the worry of crowds.

Get in[edit]

Hallstatt is normally included as part of a day-trip out of Salzburg for being the closest large city, but it is also easily accessible from other parts of Austria.

By plane[edit]

The nearest airport is at Salzburg, 75 km from Hallstatt, and should take less than two hours by car.

Vienna Airport, a larger airhub for Austria, is reachable in 3.5 hours.

By train[edit]

To get there by train is most scenic indeed. From the main line between Salzburg and Vienna (2 or 3 trains per hour), get off at Attnang-Puchheim. Take a connecting train from here towards Bad Ischl and Obertraun (trains are sometimes labelled "Stainach-Irdning"). Get off at the 1 Hallstatt train station, which looks more like a halt in the woods, and find yourself on the other side of the lake with a gorgeous view. A ferry service from dawn to dusk will meet each arriving train and take you to the 2 ferry terminal across the lake in 10 minutes for €3.50 one way. During the ride, let yourself be captivated with a postcard view of the village, especially in the morning when the rising sun is turning the town orange and yellow. Beware the weather: in winter the lake may freeze, hence no boat. In this case, ask at the station or the train conductor.

If you are based in Austria and want to visit Hallstatt in only one day, a cheap option is the Einfach Raus Ticket (€32 for up to 5 persons), allowing unlimited train rides throughout Austria for a whole day (from 09:00 to 03:00 the next day). You can only take regional trains (R or REX), but fortunately such trains circulate on most lines in Austria. The train from Attnang-Puchheim to Hallstatt is of course a regional train too.

By bus[edit]

As of 2020, the town is limiting bus tours and requiring most groups to stay in the town for at least two hours, with the result that both prices and the overall quality of the trip may rise.

Budweis-shuttle, ShuttleCeskyKrumlov and CK shuttle [2], offers a door-to-door transportation service from Český Krumlov to Hallstatt and back for €39–81 per person (Dec 2018), depending on the number of passengers. The ride takes about three hours.

From Salzburg, there are direct buses to Bad Ischl (€10.20), and then you can either take the train and ferry (see above) or another bus.

Hallstatt is served by bus line 542 from Bad Ischl train station (€6.20 one way) and 543 from Obertraun train station (€2.50 one way) daily from 07:30 to 19:00. The bus stops for the town are Lahn and Demelgasse.

By taxi or car[edit]

It is generally not recommended to take a car to Hallstatt, as the village center does not allow vehicles and the few parking spots within the immediate vicinity are reserved for local residents.

Hallstatt is located at the exit of Highway 166 between its entry just outside the nearest major settlement, Bad Goisern, and the Dachstein ski resort. The road goes along the west side of Lake Hallstatt.

From Salzburg, take Highway 158 to Bad Ischl and Highway 145 to Bad Goisern before joining Highway 166. From Vienna, you can connect to Highway 145 after exiting the A 1 freeway at Regau and continue southbound under the freeway for Bad Ischl.

From the south, exit the A 9 freeway at Selzthal before continuing along Highway 320 towards Liezen and detour to Highway 145 in the direction of Bad Aussee. Follow the highway until the junction with Highway 166 just outside Bad Goisern.

Alternatively, if you wish to enjoy a view of the lake from the south side, you can exit the highway at Bad Aussee by taking the second junction adjacent to Landmarkt turn left at the end of the road. The road has a high grade downward slope.


As no private vehicles are allowed to roam at the center, they must be parked at dedicated lots, two of which are right within the village - 3 P1 behind the petrol station for overnight guests with shuttle service and electric cars, and 4 P2 adjacent to the salt mine for day visitors.

If both lots are full, there are two more outside the village at the south side of the lake: 5 P3 which also serves drop off and pick up for tour buses, and 6 P4.

Parking rates at all lots are free for the first 15 minutes and thereafter:

  • 1 hour: €4.00
  • 2 hours: €7.00
  • 3-4 hours: €9.50
  • 5-6 hours: €10.00
  • 7-12 hours: €11.00
  • 13-24 hours: Day ticket €16.00

Some visitors can also get away with free parking using several pullouts before the village at the north side as well as short term parking in the tunnel, however the former risks you walking to the village and back on the road shoulders, while the latter has few spots and most are reserved for residents.

On foot[edit]

Hallstatt is on the Austrian Northern Alps Trail, a 1000-km footpath that goes from Bregenz near Bodensee at Tyrol to Vienna in the east.

Get around[edit]

The center of Hallstatt is for foot traffic and buses only. A walk from one side of town to the other would normally take only half an hour.


Lutheran Parish Church
  • 1 Salzwelten. Salt mine: Winter: daily 09:30-14:30; Summer: daily 09:30-16:00. Funicular: Winter: daily 09:00-16:30; Summer: daily 09:00-18:00. Get into the oldest salt mine in the world that formed the Hallstatt settlement and culture dating back to 7,000 years ago. To reach the mine, use the funicular from 7 Talstation 360 meters up to 8 Bergstation , where you will find yourself adjacent to Rudolfsturm, which originally functions as the fortification of the cave and offers a view of the mountains. A further 2-km hike will take you to the salt cave at 828 meters above sea level, which can only be visited with a tour starting from the bottom. It includes historical information, the longest miner's slide in Europe (64 m downward), a multimedia show inside a cavernous hall, and ends with a train ride out of the cave. The cave can also be visited by children ages 4 and above. Warm clothing recommended as the temperature inside is 7°C year round. Funicular round-trip €22, salt mine + funicular €40, children pay half price..
  • 2 Hallstatt Museum. November-March: W-Su 11:00-15:00, April & October: daily 10:00-16:00, May-September: daily 10:00-18:00. Find out more about one of the oldest known European cultures at Hallstatt, which shaped the Iron & Bronze ages of middle Europe from 1200 to 450 BC, and up to its discovery in the 1800s. Adults €10, children & college student €8. Hallstatt Museum (Q16334458) on Wikidata Hallstatt Museum on Wikipedia
  • 3 Ossuary (Beinhaus). "Bone House" in English. Due to the extremely limited space in the cemetery, burials are only temporary. After 10-15 years the grave is opened and the bones are removed and bleached in the sun. Then they are stacked in the Beinhaus. It's not as gruesome as it sounds. Skulls are often decorated with painted flowers and the family name. This practice was stopped in the 1970s with the approval of cremation by the Catholic Church - you will see that those who remain buried all have recent dates of death. Ossuary in Hallstatt (Q37855200) on Wikidata


It is easy to take a postcard photo of Hallstatt featuring the village itself, the lake, and the mountains within walking distance.

  • 9 Hallstatt Viewpoint. At the lake bank side uninterrupted by houses, the spot is high enough to capture all of the above in one picture.

If you prefer to have a view of just the mountains instead, there are two places to do so: lying low at village level, or heading up to the Skywalk at Rudolfsturm using the Salzwelten funicular (see above).

  • 10 Panorama View of Lake Hallstatt. Located at an island accessible with a wooden bridge. While the view of the village center might not be as good due to its distance, the spot is perfect to see the mountains. And best of all, it's usually quiet.
  • Hallstatt Skywalk Viewing Platform (accessible with the funicular from Salzwelten at Talstation). Winter: daily 09:00-16:30; summer: daily 09:00-18:00. Located next to the Rudolfsturm restaurant, there is a corner designated as a photo spot, with an exclusive view of the mountains without the village.


  • Hallstättersee-Schifffahrt Hemetsberger, +43 6134 8228. Take a tour on the Lake of Hallstatt
  • Hiking. There are many hiking trails in the mountains behind Hallstatt and throughout the Salzkammergut area. Ask at the Tourist Information office for a good hiking map as it can be easy to get lost in the rapidly changing alpine weather.
  • Rock climbing.
  • Children. There is a very nice lakeside playground about 500 m south of town with free WC, swimming, sunbathing, and the best views of town you'll see without going on a boat.
Dachstein Ice Cave
  • 1 Ice caves. In Dachstein, across the lake from Hallstatt, there are caves with ice waterfalls, lakes and ponds streaming through the limestone. Be sure to bring a jacket or sweater. Dachstein Giant Ice Cave (Q23286) on Wikidata de:Dachstein-Rieseneishöhle on Wikipedia



Despite the frequent tourists from all over the world, restaurant options are generally limited to typical Austrian fares, pizzas, and snack kiosks, while special dishes such as locally caught freshwater fish can be found at the fine dining establishments. The bright side however is most restaurants have an English menu and at least one staff member that speaks English.

  • 1 Café Derbl, Marktplatz 61, +43 6134 20692. Sa-Th 11:00-19:00 (until 21:00 in summer). Classic Austrian specialties and pastries in addition to pizzas, pastas, and grilled local fish.
  • 2 Cafe Bäckerei Konditorei Maislinger, Seestraße 156, +43 613 420 004. M-Sa 06:00-18:00. A little bakery overlooking the lake serving warm pastries and coffee, in addition to assorted bread, cakes, and cookies. Breads from €1.50.
  • 3 Marktbeisl Zur Ruth, Marktplatz 59. Daily 11:00-02:00 (closed F in winter). Pizza, soups, salads, and beer.
  • 4 Pizzeria Jugendherberg, Kirchenweg 48. M-F 14:00-21:00. Pizzas, salads, typical Austrian desserts, and beer. Pizzas from €10, beer from €4.
  • 5 Restaurant am See, Wolfengasse 105. Lakeside restaurant with outdoor seating and fish from the lake. Mains from €15, fish from €25.
  • 6 Rudolfstrum, Salzberg 1. Daily 09:00-18:00. Go way up in the mountains for a breathtaking view of Hallstatt and the lake beneath the Alps while savoring Austrian delights. Snacks available throughout the year, while heavier meals are offered only from middle April to middle October.


  • 7 Burgerman The Station, Salzbergstraße 251, +43 676 799 4997. W-Mo 11:00-17:00. Burger kiosk also serving hot dogs and hot drinks. Vegan option comes with falafel or hummus and flatbread. From €5.
  • 8 Einkehr Stubn, Pass Gschütt Str. (before the exit from Highway 166 to Hallstatt). Daily 10:00-19:00. Tiny kiosk offering sandwiches, snacks, and various hot drinks.
  • 9 Karmez Kebap Cart, Landungspl. 101. Kebab with bread or on a plate, or half chicken with fries.


The local Fassbier (tap beer) is from Salzburg: Stiegl. This is available throughout Austria, however. A more interesting regional beer to try is "König Ludwig Dunkel Brau" (King Ludwig Dark Brew) which is not as widely available, although you will find it also in Tirol, to the west. Stop by the local grocery store "Konsum" (which is in Lahn) to check out the local selection of beers and wines without paying restaurant prices.


Most hotels in Hallstatt are small with less than 50 rooms and family run, so that the cheapest finds here would count as mid-range elsewhere. There are villas (German: Ferienwohnung) that can be rented affordably for group travel.

Some hotels offer shuttle from the P1 parking lot for overnight guests.

  • 1 Heritage Hotel Hallstatt, Landungsplatz 101. Separated into three buildings with the furthest within 5 minutes from Kainz house, where you will check in and out, they offer the same tranquil view of the lake. Singles from €140, doubles from €200.
  • 2 Gasthof Simony- Hallstatt, Wolfengasse 105. The cheapest rooms for each category include a common bathroom and shower. Price includes breakfast. Singles from €60, doubles from €120.

Also try Obertraun, directly opposite Hallstatt on the lake. It is easily reached by ferry or train. The village offers good quality accommodation at cheaper rates, try the Obertrauner Hof in the centre with good access to shops, banks, and a tourist office.

Go next[edit]

  • Salzburg, from where you can continue into Germany
  • Vienna, from where the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Slovenia are accessible.
Routes through Hallstatt
Vöcklabruck  N  E  Bad AusseeEND
Ends at  W  E  Ends at

This city travel guide to Hallstatt is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.