On the Road is a weekday feature spotlighting reader photo submissions. From the exotic to the familiar, whether you’re traveling or in your own backyard, we would love to see the world through your eyes.
On the Road will continue, but it will be forever Alain’s.
I have no idea what Festung Hohensalzburg is, but I imagine we are about to find out! We’ll close out the week with Part 1 this morning, and Part 2 this evening, in On the Road After Dark. I’m sure I speak for all of us when I say that while it distresses me to learn that ottar has antibodies, I am delighted that he came through it okay and is still here t share his wonderful adventures with us. ~WaterGirl
During the Corona surge in Austria it was not recommended to visit elder relatives. When I learned that I had developed antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 in the beginning of June, I decided to visit my mother in Salzburg. Going by train was an interesting experience, as this was my first travel after three months of staying close to my home in Vienna.
Saturday (June 13th) was a warm and sunny day, and in the evening, we decided to go for a walk.
We chose the path via the Nonnberg convent: at about half hight this path (“Hoher Weg”) circles the southern end of the “Festungsberg”, the “mountain of the fortress”. Once we are on the other side, the old town lies beneath us. The big church is the cathedral of Salzburg. The entrance you can see is the “Stieglkeller”, an old beer garden. “Stiegl” is the oldest and largest brewery of Salzburg: they trace their origin back to 1492. And the carter to the Sound of Music tourists as well: there are signs that promote a music evening with Schnitzel + noodles. That always annoyed me, as no contemporary Austrian will ever eat his Schnitzel with noodles.
Continuing on, we reach the point where the path towards the entrance of the fortress splits from the road circling the mountain. High above us the fortifications loom. The house in the middle is the “Hoher Stock”, the central and oldest part of the fortress where the Archbishop had his rooms.
We already passed a first gate where we met the ticket officer who was just calling it a day. When I was growing up here, the entrance was free, and we kids often went up and roamed around the fortress. These days, there is usually an entrance fee (waived for locals, though), but came just at the right moment: no more controls, but not closed either. We had it easy. What you can see the main gate protected by a drawbridge over a steep ravine. If that bridge was up, you couldn’t even try to cross the moat, as the “moat” has a ~60° angle down towards the city. Try filling that.
If you managed to get past the drawbridge, you’re still not inside the castle. This this is the next gate you need to pass. The slits above are for archers and crossbows shooters.
The fortress has at least two layers: The outer ring of buildings follows the contours of the mountain. Inside of that ring, a central “fortress in the fortress” provides additional protection against attackers. By the way: that fortress was never taken by force. This picture was taken when we emerged from the passage protected by the previous gate. On the left side are the buildings of the outer ring, the right side belongs to the core of the fortress.
When I was a kid, the main courtyard of the fortress had a marvellous old Tilia / Linden tree. It was about 200 years old when it had to be removed in 2017. So now there is a new one there. On the right side you can see the chapel of the fortress.
Another picture between the outer ring and the inner core of the fortress.