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Salzburg/Munich - Need opinions, options

My friend and I are headed to Salzburg/Munich third week in March, 2020, for 7 days including day of arrival. We won’t have a car so will need to travel using public transit. Last time we were in both places for a week we did the SOM tour, the salt mine tour, took a Bavaria tour in the mountains, Dachau, Neuschwanstein.

Interests: My friend’s first love is shopping so there needs to be knicky knacky shops around. I love scenery, historical sites, churches, music, museums...

With only 6 1/2 days I’d like to skip Munich and stay in Salzburg and day trip to nearby towns but is that the best option. I need a proposal for my friend as she never plans. My idea for Salzburg: I set aside one day for Mauthausen memorial (my friend studies the holocaust). Options for day trips: I know Eagles Nest won’t be open but thought we’d enjoy some time in Berchtesgarden. A day in Zell Am See. A day in Landshut. Hallstadt? Unsure. And at least one full day in Salzburg to explore. Last time all we did in Salzburg was go to Mozart’s museum and shop. I want to hear a Mozart concert, go the fortress, churches... just wander.

I’m thinking I’d rather leave Hallstadt for another trip and nicer weather and I’d like to stay overnight. Are the other towns I mentioned good for a March visit or do shops close down? Better ideas welcome.

If we split the trip half Salzburg half Munich I thought my friend could handle one museum, shop in and around Marienplatz and I’d like a day trip somewhere quant, quiet, cozy, pretty.... suggestions for a town? I thought about Oberammergau. But it could be busy with the play.

Flights will either be open jaw or round trip depending on final itinerary. Ideas, suggestions. TIA.

Posted by
479 posts

We enjoyed Oberammergau as a base for the area, but we had a rental car. Can't comment on Play congestion, but without a car I think your sight-seeing options would be limited...a hour or two would cover the painted houses and wood-carving shops.

Munich vs. Salzburg: certainly a matter of personal preferences, but I'd be inclined toward your 50/50 proposal, or even 60/40 -- Munich/Salzburg.

There are probably 1-day bus tours from Munich that make stops at Oberammergau, Wiesskirche, the Castles, etc.

It'll be a great holiday regardless.

Posted by
30931 posts


Given your goals, I'd suggest splitting the time between Munich and Salzburg. Some time in Munich will provide lots of shopping opportunities for your friend, while some time in Salzburg will provide time to visit Mathausen, etc.

While the Eagle's Nest probably won't be accessible, you should be able to still visit the Dokumentation Centre and Bunkers in Berchtesgaden. As I recall, most of the displays are in German but they do have English audio guides. If you'd rather not drive, have a look at Bob's Special Tours in Salzburg.

There's also a frequent Deutsche Bahn bus from Salzburg to Berchtesgaden. You'll have to check the DB website for the schedule.

If the weather is decent, I'd highly recommend having a look at Hallstatt, one of the most beautiful places I've seen in Europe. The tour company mentioned above goes there as well. Try to arrange most of a full day there so that you can take the Funicular up to Rudolfsturm (visit the Salt Mines if interested) and spend some time looking around the town.

Posted by
245 posts

The Passion Play doesn’t open until May. Oberammergau probably won’t be busier than a non play in March.

Posted by
197 posts

Our favorite day in Salzburg was taking the #25 bus from the main train/bus station to the cable car up Mt Untersberg, doing a bit of hiking and stopping for a drink at the cozy hut up there. From Mt Untersberg, we returned on the #25 bus, stopping mid-way to see Heilbrun Palace, with its charming mechanical miniatures and trick water fountains. At the Salzburg train/bus station, we purchased for 24 euro the Salzburg Card, which covered the bus, the cable car, and entry into Heilbrunn. saving us some money.