We have been to Salzburg three times and this time, May 2013, we would love to stay in Hallstatt or the Berchtesgaden area. Does anyone have a favorite b&b ? My list is growing and I would love to hear advice from someone who has stayed in the area.
Carla, For stays in Hallstatt, you might have a look at.... > Gasthof Simony - it's an older property but very comfortable, with some rooms having a lake view. There's a nice restaurant and patio in front, close to the lake. In some ways, it's a true Rick Steves classic with creaky floors and lots of character. > Hotel Gruner Baum - a somewhat more posh Hotel, with a nice restaurant and patio in front (it's right next door to Gasthof Simony). Some rooms have balconies overlooking the lake. As I recall, the balconies were only added in the last few years, as I recall construction taking place in 2008. I've only visited Berchtesgaden on day trips, so can't help with lodgings there. Happy travels!
If we stayed in Hallstatt, would you also visit Berchtesgaden at all ? Or or they similar ??
I have stayed in both. Hallstatt:
Smaller, quieter with a more relaxed experience. Because it is quieter, I found it more charming and I liked the village much more than the village of Berchtesgaden. It is also possible to visit other nice villages (St Gilgan, Mondsee) on the drive out. Having said that, it is a longer drive out there and it is more remote from other areas you might want to see. Berchtesgaden: While there is a lot to do there, it did not have the charm and "quaint" factor that Hallstatt does. The town is beautiful, but it has more people and much more traffic. Having said that, the location is good for visiting many other close by areas. If you are planning on going into Salzburg, it is very close. Transportation is also a factor. Without a car, I would probably pick Berchtesgaden. I would love to go back to Hallstatt (for a 3rd time), and probably would not choose to stay in Berchtesgaden again. You can read into that what you would like. We actually did not stay right in Berchtesgaden, but in the village of Schonau nearby. In Hallstatt, we stayed at Helga Lenz B&B and loved it (it was a steep hike up) So it all comes down to what you are looking for: Some people find Hallstatt too small and quiet, others find Bertesgaden too busy and touristy. It just comes down to what you want. Let me know if I can answer any other specific questions.
I would pretty much agree with Connie as to the difference. I've been to both, Berchtesgaden three times. Hallstatt is possibly the most beautiful spot on earth, but Berchtesgaden is much more accessible and has more to see. For Hallstatt, I stayed in Lahn (1 km south of Hallstatt) in a farmhouse with a hostess who spoke only German, so I can't recommend it to English-only speakers. BTW, you can get to the Hallstatt Bahnhof (across the lake) easily by train from Salzburg via Attnang-Puchheim, but I took a series of buses from Salzburg so I could stop in Mondsee and see the wedding church from Sound of Music. The bus stop is in Lahn, where I was staying, so that worked out well. For Berchtesgaden, I stayed at Gaestehaus Alpina. It's a couple hundred meters up (west) Ramsauerstr. from the Hauptbahnhof, so when you arrive you don't have to wait for a bus or carry your luggage up the hill, and it's a flat walk back to the buses that go to Koenigssee or Eagles Nest. The price is good for Berchtesgaden and the owner speaks enough English.
Carla, I have stayed at and can recommend Haus Heidi Schönau on Weinfeldweg in Berchtesgaden and Haus Lidy on Kohlstrattweg in Hallstatt... both are nice small B&Bs. In both homes we had a very nice room with a bathroom and small balcony. Our bedroom and the balcony had a great view of Kehlsteinhaus at Heidi's. Both had car parking, a great breakfast, short walking distance to town... although Heidi's house has a short bit that is quite up hill. Both Heidi and Lidy are WONDERFUL hostesses.
We stayed at Gasthof Simony and it was lovely, feather bed, antique furniture, deck with lake view, and ample breakfast. We went there based on Rick's recommendation in Europe Through the Back Door. We were in Salzburg (we did have a car) and it was pouring rain. We almost didn't go, but found it to be a magical place, and of all the places in 6 countries we went to in the summer of 96, this was our favorite place of all. I haven't been to Berchtesgaden. Have a good trip.