Salzburg has gone soft. What used to be the site of pillaging and burning, churches falling into piles of divine rubble, and Mozart clawing around the edges of truth sonata after sonata is now perfectly content to orient most of the typical tourist experience around an admittedly well-shot but absurdly plotted movie starring Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer. Alas, all cities cannot retain their crusading kick-assery, and it’s probably a good thing for Salzburg’s architecture, considering everything in the city has been destroyed and rebuilt multiple times. But then again, you would be remiss to define Salzburg solely by mountain-twirling and wistful sing- ing about Edelweiss. For one thing, the definitive symbol of Salzburg is a fortress (Festung Hohensalzburg) that has never once been conquered. If you fancy yourself an ascetic or devotee more than a war-buff, Salzburg boasts a dozen more-famous- than-the-next cathedrals (the Dom), abbeys (Nonnberg Abbey), churches (Franziskaner Kirche), and monasteries (the Augustinian Monastery) and then there’s the shopping. Getreidsgasse is the Diagon Alley of Europe; its hundreds of stores are packed along the street, each with a classy metal banner hanging outside the front.

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Salzburg was last modified: April 14th, 2016 by Maria Jose Sada