Part of St Gilgen's charm is its unique musical heritage. The village is the ancestral home of Mozart's family, and you can even visit the house where his mother lived and look around the museum dedicated to the famous composer. In the centre of the village at the Mozartplatz, you'll also find a statue of Mozart playing the violin, as well as a number of shops, restaurants and pretty buildings.
Adding to the area's music credentials is the fact that St Gilgen and Lake Wolfgangsee also feature in the background of the iconic Sound of Music film. The mountains and valleys that surround the lakeside village were the setting for the opening shots where we saw that iconic picnic scene with Maria and the Vonn Trapp children.
Unmissable mountain views
A trip to the summit of Schafberg Mountain – on the steepest cog railway in Austria – is a must for anyone staying in St Gilgen. To experience this thrilling ride, catch the ferry to St Wolfgang and take a short walk to the station. As the historic train climbs the side of the mountain, you'll get unbeatable views across Lake Wolfgangsee and the wider Salzkammergut region.
For more breathtaking views, the Zwolferhorn mountain cable car operates throughout the year and gives passengers a unique vantage point of the area's lakes and surrounding mountains. At the summit, there's a variety of paths for those feeling adventurous.
A day by the water
The stunning Lake Wolfgangsee is undoubtedly one of the main reasons that visitors on holidays to Austria choose St Gilgen. One of the best ways to appreciate the beauty of this Austrian lake is by walking or cycling along the shores and exploring the waterfront villages, including the picturesque St Wolfgang.
There's also plenty of water-based activities on offer, including regular boat and ferry rides which transport passengers to some of the lake's most scenic spots. Other leisure pursuits include paddleboarding, windsurfing and rowing. If you prefer something a little more relaxing, there are a few beaches and jetties scattered around the coastline where you can hire sunbeds and work on your tan.
A charming lakeside village with plenty of history
Package holidays to Austria in St Gilgen are all about the laid-back way of life. The village is known for its rich history and friendly atmosphere, where lazy days can be spent admiring the frescoed buildings, enjoying the cafe culture and taking a leisurely stroll along the promenade. The village's attractive domed church, weekly farmer's market and Mozart museum are also well worth a visit.
If you want to explore the wider area, there's around 80 kilometres of marked paths accessible from the village centre, with something for both the casual walker and the intrepid adventurer. Excursions to Salzburg – which is just a 30-minute drive away – are also popular with those who want to experience the hustle and bustle of city life for a day.