Sunday, July 3, 2016

Europe 2016: Day 11...Hallstatt Austria...

We woke up on Monday morning and boarded a train to Hallstatt Austria!  The train ride was a little over two hours and it was a beautiful ride at that.

Hallstatt is a tiny village that sits on a fjord like lake in the middle of the Salzkammergut region of Austria.  I was excited to see the beauty of Hallstatt, but also a little nervous because I knew that there was a chance it might be a little more overrun with tourists than our liking.  I will follow up with a post in a few weeks with a few tips on Hallstatt that I do not want to include in these vacation posts.

Hallstatt bound!

We arrived to Hallstatt and immediately went to our hotel, Seehotel Gruner Baum, to drop off our bags.  Gruner Baum is a beautiful hotel that sits right on the lake.  I had reserved us a lake front room with a large balcony that we really enjoyed having.

The gorgeous view from our balcony

Our first order of business was a snack.  We went to the restaurant that was within our hotel and decided on iced coffees.  These iced coffees are not just any iced coffees, they also include ice cream!

Beautiful and delicious!

The weather in Hallstatt was a little surprising.  It ended up being quite a bit warmer than we were expecting and was in the 70's.  We had been used to weather in the 50's and 60's with rain, so the 70's and sunshine was quite a treat!

We decided to do an easy hike that took us through town and over to a waterfall that was just outside of the city.  

The cliffs kind of reminded me of the Lauterbrunnen Valley, just a little less dramatic

Waldbackstrub.  I am not going to lie, this waterfall was a little anti-climatic compared to some of the others we had visited during this trip.  Nonetheless, we were happy to enjoy the hike, weather, and the opportunity to get away from the others within the city center.

The view in Hallstatt that most visitors never see

This was my favorite house we saw along the hike

After our hike, we stopped for an early dinner and drinks at a restaurant along the lake.  Just as we were finishing dinner, it started pouring down rain.  We quickly went back to our hotel to enjoy the view of the lake as the rain fell.

Ken enjoying the rain from our balcony

The rain did not last long and we decided to venture out since most of the day trippers had left.  It was a lot less busy and it gave us a good opportunity to check out the city of Hallstatt.

The town square of Hallstatt

Beautiful Hallstatt

We ended our evening by walking through town to a park along the lake.  We were all alone in the park and sat around enjoying the glistening lake and discussing our plans for the next day.  

Enjoying the night on Lake Hallstatt

We had a very low key first day in Hallstatt, which was just we needed after a busy 10 days hiking all around Europe.  

The end of a lovely day in Hallstatt

Up next, a full day in Hallstatt!

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