Friday, October 26, 2018

Hallstatt, Austria

Thursday 13 Sep 2018

Another early start for us today. At 7am, we bade Frau Huber goodbye to continue our next leg to Hallstatt. It was indeed too short a time having spent only 2 nights in Schladming. There was so much hiking that could be done in the Schladming Dachstein area. But alas, we only had less than 2 weeks for our trip this time.

We took the bus from Gastehaus Huber (free with Schladming Dachstein sommercard) to Rathaus. Then we walked the short bit to Schladming train station to catch the replacement bus to Stainach-Irdning train station as the Schladming train station was closed for upgrading works. The bus departed at 7.50am to Stainach-Irdning. Then we waited for a bit at the train station for our train to Hallstatt at 9am. We arrived at Hallstatt bahnhof at 10.30am. The bus and train ride from Schladming to Hallstatt cost EUR 17.90 per person which we bought from the ticket machine at Schladming train station.

Then we took the short ferry ride across the Hallstatt lake to reach the village. The "Stephanie" Ferry ride cost EUR 3 per person.

the ferry to Hallstatt

welcome to Hallstatt

houses by the lake

view of the Hallstatt lake

posing by the Hallstatt lake

We were not staying in Hallstatt, as we would be continuing our journey today to Salzburg. We had our backpacks on today, and would be keeping them in the locker at Hallstatt salt mine. We took some photographs at the famous postcard view site with the Hallstatt church and lake which is just a short walk from the ferry jetty. This quaint little village is charming, albeit getting busier nowadays with throngs of tourists coming in. Perhaps it would be calmer earlier in the morning, which would be ideal if you were staying in the night.

Postcard view of Hallstatt

houses of Hallstatt

Hallstatt town

We walked towards the Hallstatt salt mine at the funicular train entrance, enjoying views of the village and lake while walking there. You could also hike up to enter the Hallstatt salt mine instead of taking the funicular, but with our backpacks, it was not a good idea. At the Hallstatt salt mine shop, which was also the entrance for the funicular ride up the mountain to the salt mine, we kept our backpacks in the locker for EUR 6 per locker for 3 hours. We then bought our Hallstatt salt mine tour with return furnicular train ride for a discounted fee of EUR 25.50 per person (regular EUR 30) with the Schaldming Dachstein sommercard.

walk by the lake

take the funicular train ride up the mountain

We spent about 3 hours at the salt mine, beginning with the funicular train ride up the mountain which only took a few minutes (compared to 2 hours of hiking). After reaching the peak, we walked to the Welterbeblick viewing platform to get a vantage point of Hallstatt town with the surrounding mountain and lake. Such a majestic view!

view of Hallstatt town and lake from the mountain
view of Hallstatt town and lake from the mountain

We then proceeded to walk about 10 more minutes to the entrance of the salt mine tour. Firstly, we had to wear coveralls on top of our clothes. You can also deposit your belongings here if you do not want to bring them in the salt mine. You will be given luggage tags for picking up later.

It was cool inside once we entered, about 8 deg Celsius. The salt in the Hallstatt mountain was deposited millions of years ago.  As a result of colliding tectonic plates new mountain ranges were formed. In the rift located in their foreground, a huge sea was formed. Rock salt layers were then deposited in the reservoirs. The Hallstatt salt mine is still operational in mining activities, in fact it was ongoing during our tour. More about the Hallstatt salt mine here.

We had a fun time sliding down the miner's slide, apart from being an educational tour in the salt mine. We also had the chance to take a train ride exiting from the mine.

salt mine tunnel entrance

in the salt mine tunnel

slide down

the slide down the mine

salt lake inside the mine

narrow tunnel

take the train to exit the mine

You could always buy some rock salt souvenirs at the salt mine shop at the exit after descending the mountain via the funicular train. We were short for time as we would be journeying onwards to Salzburg, so we didn't browse through the shop. We took the 4.20pm bus, with a change at Bad Ischl for EUR 13.60 per person. We bought the ticket from the bus driver by cash. We finally arrived at Salzburg bus station at 7pm after 2.5 hours. Today was a full day from early morning until dusk so for tonight, we just had dinner in our room with the supplies we brought from home.

rock salt for sale

At Salzburg, we stayed at MyNext Summer Hostel, booked via for EUR148 for 2 nights with ensuite bathroom and kitchen but no air cond. The hostel is about 15 mins (1 km) walk from the bus station. We weren't aware that there is a Salzburg metro S-Bahn station just behind our hostel, or we could have taken the metro from the bus stop.

MyNext Summer hostel Salzburg room



Post a Comment

<< Home