I was thinking about heading to Austria in September. Is everything rolled up and put away for the winter? I've never been out of the USA and have no idea what I'm getting into. People from other countries fascinate me, I just like talking to locals while enjoying a beer and some local grub. Would September be a good time to go? This site is full of great info, I've read alot of good info on Austria already.
We've been to Austria a number of times in October and no, everything is NOT rolled up and put away for the winter. I can't comment on Sept. in particular, but we know Oct. is ideal. I'm sure Sept. is even better (warmer than Oct.).
I was in Austria in May, and I very much doubt that Austria will be "rolled up and put away for the winter" in September. In fact, the fall "shoulder season" is an excellent time to travel.
As you've never been out of the USA, to begin with I would highly recommend reading the Guidebook Europe Through The Back Door as it provides an enormous amount of very useful information - things like using the rail systems, languages, money and also Itinerary planning.
Which locations in Austria are you considering? What prompted the choice of Austria as your first trip to Europe? A few locations you could consider are Vienna, Salzburg and Hallstatt.
If you have a PBS station in your area, you may get good ideas for touring or sights to see by watching Rick's TV shows or checking Guidebooks. Depending on how long you have to travel, that part of Europe is very "compact" so you could also venture into parts of Germany if you wanted to cover a bit more area (Munich is wonderful!).
One caveat though - the heavy smoking drove me out of a few restaurants. "No Smoking" laws are supposedly going to be enacted soon, but I'm not sure this has been done yet.
Good luck with your planning!
I have been to Austria three times in September. It is a great time to travel there. Austria and Switzerland are my two favorite countries. You can get some snow up in the mountains (we have been snowed out of some planned hikes) but there is always something else to do. Highly recommend September for your trip. Let us know if you have any specific questions about where to go or what to see.
September in Austria is an optimal time of the year to visit! Life is in full swing, in many areas the wine harvest festivities (Weinherbst)begin, the tourists have thinned out, the children are back in school, the weather is mostly lovely.
Here a site to help you with your first round of planning:
I greatly encourage you to order some of the free brochures. Once you have an idea of what you have in mind where, I'll be delighted to give you more information and insider tips. :-))
To answer your question of if Austria closes for the winter... watch the next winter Olympics. Notice which country usually dominates the downhill skiing events. I think those Austrians have found ways to keep themselves busy in the winter.
Absolutely right, Tom :-)) Austria NEVER rolls up and shuts down for the winter ;-))
Austria is great in September. It's harvest time.
Some of us are going to Corinnas for tea, so maybe you want to join us?
I would just adore to have you over for tea!!!!!!!! :-))))))
I found a link to quite a nice video about the province of Burgenland! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!
I also wanted to mention that 2009 is Haydn Year in Austria, and since he was born in Eisenstadt, Burgenland, there will be many wonderful events.
There also is a nice video clip in this link:
The above posters are correct. September is probably the best month to be in Austria. You can still have glorious summer weather with just a hint that autumn is about to arrive. Lovely time to while away the hours in the garden of a Heuriger, eating plum cake and sipping a glass of local muskateller wine. But I digress... Jo and Corinna, am I invited for tea too? I apologize for being so presumptuous! :-)
Sure you are, Thomas! You wouldn't even have far to go :-))
Corinna, what great videos of Austria. The music and scenery was wonderful. Can't wait for my Sept trip to Austria. Thanks for the post.
Corinna, Thanks for all your great posts. If everyone in Austria is half as nice as you my trip should be spectacular. By the way, I'm a tea drinker also, what time and date are we meeting for tea. I'd love to sit and talk about life and culture in Austria.
You are most welcome, Jim.
In matter of fact, I want to thank YOU for giving me the chance to 'show & tell' :-))
And many thanks to all the other posters as well. In the meantime I feel like the resident Austrian on this board (tag teaming with Thomas in Vienna), and I really appreciate all of you! I know I am pretty outspoken at times, thank you for tolerating a Euro in your forum, even if I step on some toes along the way ;-))
I look forward to posting many more tips and perspectives.
Jim, we were in Salzburg in September last year. Except for rain (which can happen anytime of year!) it was a great time to go. It's a bit cooler than it was at our other destinations because of being among the Alps (compared to how warm Munich and Prague were). But it was definitely busy with tourists in the Old Town!
Do NOT leave out Innsbruck. We enjoyed it very much, maybe even more so than Salzburg and Vienna, which we adored. Take the tour of Kristallwalten (Swarovski's incredible gallery - world class) and the bike trip to Melk along the river. Rick doesn't seem to like Innsbruck, but I think it would be an ideal intro to Europe for you since it's not that big, easy to get around, friendly and feels very European. Also, go their Website and see if you can arrange a Lantern Hike up into the mountains to a little lodge where we sang and drank and just had fun, then hiked back down by lantern light.
Forgot to mention the lantern hikes are free.
Austria in September is a great time to go, Jim. Unlike most places, Austria/Vienna actually shuts many things down for July/August. Prime examples: The Opera, and the Vienna Boys Choir. They being back up in September. It's also cheaper, less crowded, and the weather can still be good. Have fun!