Salzburg is a popular Austrian tourist destination close to the German border. Famous as the birthplace of Mozart, as well as the setting for the Sound of Music, visitors flock to the city to discover classical European culture! Aside from the more obvious attractions, there are plenty of great restaurants and bars across the town.
Though it is quite small, figuring out the best area to stay in can still be tricky. Most central areas are within walking distance of each other, however, some are more convenient than others for getting to the major attractions and nightlife areas.
That’s why we’ve created this guide! We’ve figured out the seven best areas in Salzburg and categorised them by what they are best for.
So let’s get started!
Quick Tips – Where to Stay in Salzburg
- Altstadt – Best neighborhood in Salzburg for your first time
- Elizabeth-Vorstadt – Where to stay in Salzburg close to everything
- New Town – Where to stay in Salzburg for nightlife
- Lehen – Best neighborhood in Salzburg for families
- Schallmoos – Where to stay in Salzburg on a budget
- Maxglan – Best neighborhood in Salzburg for couples
- Nonnberg – Best neighborhood in Salzburg off the beaten path
Where to Stay in Salzburg
Looking for a specific place to stay? These are our highest recommendations for places to stay in Salzburg.
Best Hostel in Salzburg
A member of Europe’s Famous Hostels, Yoho International takes our top spot for hostels in the city! Its location in the new town allows you to explore all of the main sights of the city centre, as well as the best nightlife in Salzburg. They have excellent communal spaces and host regular events.
Best Budget Hotel in Salzburg
Elizabeth-Vorstadt is not only a great area for being centrally located, but is also one of the cheapest districts in the city! This makes Hotel Hohenstauffen a perfect choice if you are on a budget but still want to get around easily. Despite the low price, they have great facilities and high service standards.
Best Splurge Hotel in Salzburg
As the highest rated five-star hotel in Salzburg, Hotel Goldener Hirsch is our top pick for splurge hotels in the city! It is located right in the heart of the Altstadt giving you unbeatable access to the main attractions. The traditional style means this historic building oozes charm and class.
Salzburg 7 Best Neighborhoods to Stay in
Let’s take a look, in more detail, at the five best neighbourhoods in Salzburg. Each caters to different interests, so be sure to pick the neighbourhood that’s right for you.
(Best neighbourhood in Salzburg for your first time!)
- COOLEST thing to do in Altstadt – check out the street performers and live events at Plaza Residenz
- BEST place to visit in Altstadt – wander around the magnificent Salzburg Cathedral, where Mozart played as a child
As the old centre of Salzburg, the Altstadt is the focus of most tourist attractions and definitely the place to be during your first visit to the city! Classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Altstadt is surrounded by beautiful architecture, winding alleys and historically important attractions.
There are also plenty of traditional bars and restaurants to keep you entertained and well fed during your stay in the area. Though many of these can be quite touristy, simply veering off into the hidden alleys can uncover some local gems. If you want to be right in the heart of the action, you can’t beat Altstadt!
- Check out the Mozart Residence on Markatplatz – the composer’s second family home, it is now a great museum dedicated to his work
- Go on the Sound of Music Tour of Salzburg, which stays mostly within the Altstadt, to discover some of the locations from the film
- Hohensalzburg Castle is one of the largest medieval castles in Europe and looms over the entire Altstadt area
- Housed within a historic building, Zum Eulenspiegel is an excellent restaurant to sample authentic Austrian cuisine
- Grab a drink at Zipfer Bierhaus – this authentic Austrian restaurant not only has great local cuisine but a huge range of Austrian and German beers
Best Hostel Altstadt
As the highest rated hostel in the Altstadt, it’s easy to see why Stadtalm Naturfeundehaus is a popular choice with backpackers in the city! Situated on the Mönchsberg Mountain, guests are treated to marvellous views across Salzburg. The on-site dining room also serves up typical Austrian cuisine throughout the day.
Best Budget Hotel in Altstadt
Star Inn Hotel is part of the Comfort Inn accommodation chain, ensuring you great levels of comfort at affordable rates! It is based on the Mönchsberg Mountain area, giving you easy access to all of the main attractions in Altstadt. A complimentary buffet breakfast is included as part of the fee.
Best Splurge Hotel in Altstadt
This luxury hotel is truly unbeatable for those willing to splurge on a trip to Salzburg! Located within a historic building, the rooms are elegantly decorated with classical Austrian design and antique furniture. There is a restaurant and bar on-site, as well as a huge library and business centre.
Editor’s Recommendation! These are the staff pick for the top hostels in Vienna (for all budgets!)
(Where to stay in Salzburg close to everything!)
- COOLEST thing to do in Elizabeth-Vorstadt – head to the Mirabell Palace and Gardens for a romantic stroll through the surrounding natural beauty
- BEST place to visit in Elizabeth-Vorstadt – Bibelwelt Erlebnismuseum is an interesting attraction that showcases the importance of religion to Salzburg
Just north of the New Town, Elizabeth-Vorstadt is a somewhat up and coming area that gives you easy access to the rest of the city! The main train station is located right next to the area, allowing you to explore even further in Austria and Germany. If you are only staying for a few days, Elizabeth-Vorstadt is a great choice.
Whilst not as packed with historic attractions as the central city, Elizabeth-Vorstadt still has its charms. There are some excellent shopping streets in the area, and those looking for cheap restaurants will be heavily rewarded for choosing to base themselves here!
- Hire a bike and cycle along the path that lines the Salzach River – a great way to get to know the city!
- Saint Julien Strasse has a big city feel despite Salzburg being relatively small, with excellent shops and boutiques lining the pavements
- Magic Salzburg Tours are based in the area and offer budget-friendly trips around the city as well as into the surrounding nature
- Wirtshaus zum Hirsche might seem pretty basic to look at, but their well-priced menu is sure to offer you a hearty Austrian feast
- For a bit more of an upmarket experience, Bar Roque offers modern takes on Austrian dishes as well as fantastic cocktails
Best Hostel Elizabeth-Vorstadt
The closest hostel to the central train station, a&o Salzburg is perfect for backpackers that are only visiting for a short trip! They are a popular hostel brand across Europe thanks to their excellent service standards and great facilities. There is free high-speed WiFi available throughout the property.
Haven’t Booked for Salzburg? Read up on our favorite hostels in Salzburg (for any budget)!
Best Budget Hotel in Elizabeth-Vorstadt
This hotel is located in one of the quieter parts of Elizabeth-Vorstadt, giving you a calm respite away from the crowds of the city centre! They offer a complimentary breakfast buffet every morning, as well as high-speed WiFi throughout the hotel. It is situated within a traditional building and decorated to reflect this.
Vienna has a strong tour game – check out the best tours in Vienna (for all budgets!) here!
Best Splurge Hotel in Elizabeth-Vorstadt
The Sheraton Grand Salzburg is another great five-star hotel right in the heart of the city! Though located in neighbouring Altstadt, it is within walking distance of Elizabeth-Vorstadt and the central train station. There are great facilities on-site, including a fitness suite, spa and sauna. Parking is also available.
(Where to stay in Salzburg for nightlife!)
- COOLEST thing to do in New Town – wander around riverfront area to discover the best bars and clubs in the city
- BEST place to visit in New Town – catch a live performance – from theatrical productions to music concerts – at the Landestheater
Just across the river from the Altstadt, Salzburg’s New Town (also known as the Right Bank) has many of the city’s most popular attractions! Like most European cities, the New Town is still centuries old – meaning this is a great place to discover another part of Salzburg’s varied history.
For nightlife, you can’t go wrong with visiting the Old or New Towns, but we’ve chosen the New Town due to it having some more local bars! This is where you will get to drink and dance with Salzburg residents, and it has a less touristy feel than the Altstadt.
- Check out Chez Roland Bar – they have a great selection of innovative and well-priced cocktails for you to kick start your night out in Salzburg
- If you’re after a more laid back vibe, Bricks Music Bar is the perfect watering hole – they also have pool tables
- The Salzburg Whiskey Museum is more of a bar than a museum – but their great selection of whiskeys will certainly help you learn more about the drink
- For hearty Austrian meals, dine at Wein & Co Platzl – they also have an outdoor seating area that is perfect for the summer months
- Linzergasse is one of the main streets in the area, with historic shop fronts and quirky boutiques where you can pick up unique souvenirs
Best Hostel New Town
This highly rated hostel is perfect for backpackers that want to stay close to all the main attractions and experience the Salzburg nightlife! They have great social facilities, including a large on-site bar and restaurant where you can enjoy discounted food and drink whilst socialising with other guests.
Not sure where to start when you arrive? Our article on things to do in Vienna can help you schedule your days!
Best Budget Hotel in New Town
This hotel is one of the cheapest in central Salzburg, and provides everything you will need for a short stay in the city! Whilst they are only open during the tourist season, they have a great rooftop terrace for you to soak up the atmosphere of the city. They also provide a complimentary breakfast.
Best Splurge Hotel in New Town
Hotel Bristol is a popular hotel chain across the world, known for their high standards of service and luxury finishes! This five-star hotel has a great on-site restaurant that provides a rich complimentary breakfast every morning. They also have a library, and guests can opt to book massages during their stay.
Will you be in Vienna a while? Here’s your guide to the top day trips from Vienna for exploring the area!
(Best neighbourhood in Salzburg for families!)
- COOLEST thing to do in Lehen – Mozart Express guided tours, based in Lehen, offer excellent trips around the city themed around the composer
- BEST place to visit in Lehen – just south of Lehen in Mülln, Old Market Square is surrounded by historic architecture and has a frequent farmers market
Just north of the Altstadt, and right next to the river, Lehen has a very calm atmosphere that is perfect for families visiting Salzburg! Though a mostly residential area, there are some excellent hotels within the vicinity that allow you to sit back and relax whilst still being within easy walking distance of the city centre.
For families, there are plenty of great parks in Lehen where you can enjoy a casual stroll and let the kids play on the swings! Lehen also gives you an insight into local life in the city, allowing you to enjoy a more authentic Austrian experience.
- Ignaz Harrer Strasse is the main street in the area, where you can find plenty of locally owned cafes and stores
- Head west to the Glankanal Area – this is a gorgeous public space with some great hiking trails to suit all abilities
- Need to relax? Serenity Massage and Wellness is a highly rated spa facility located between Lehen and Mülln
- The area surrounding the Russian Orthodox Church has some excellent Russian shops and restaurants, allowing you to experience immigrant life in Salzburg
- For a more authentically Austrian experience, take the family to Daghofer’s Bar and Grill – the large tables give it a very communal and friendly atmosphere
Best Hotel for Backpackers Lehen
As a mostly residential area, there aren’t any hostels in Lehen – however, Hotel Lehenerhof is still a well-priced option for backpackers that want to stay in a more peaceful part of the city! Located within a historic building, they provide a complimentary breakfast as well as free parking facilities.
Don’t worry! We put together a best cheap hostels in Vienna article with great budget options!
Best Budget Hotel in Lehen
Another great budget option, Hotel Kohlpeter has a couple of larger rooms available making it the perfect choice for families! It is located right next to a major public transport stop, giving you easy access to other areas of the city. A continental breakfast is provided every morning, as well as free high-speed WiFi.
Best Splurge Hotel in Lehen
Though located in neighboring Mülln, Hotel Schloss Mönchstein is the closest five-star hotel to Lehen and well worth the trip! There is a private park surrounding the hotel, which comes with great views across the city and an infinity pool during the summer months. There is also a large spa centre.
(Where to stay in Salzburg on a budget!)
- COOLEST thing to do in Schallmoos – shop at Moser Outlet – a large shopping centre where you can pick up heavily discounted designer goods
- BEST place to visit in Schallmoos – wander around the Kapuzinberger area and admire the graffiti-clad monuments and parks
Just east of Elizabeth-Vorstadt, Schallmoos is one of the cheapest areas to stay in whilst visiting Salzburg! Located next to the train station, it is also well connected to the rest of the city and further afield in Austria – making it the perfect base for those on an extreme budget that want to explore the country.
Schallmoos is a largely residential area, so there aren’t many tourist attractions. Nevertheless, the local atmosphere makes it a great place to experience modern life in Salzburg and mingle with locals. If you want to see the real side of Austria, you can’t go wrong with Schallmoos!
- Cafe Bar Laganini is an interesting nightlife experience to see how local residents like to party – they also have budget-friendly drinks
- If you are coming as a large group, Exit the Room is a highly rated escape room experience right next to the train station
- Fuxn Salzburger Volkswirtschaft is a highly rated restaurant right in the heart of Schallmoos with a large menu
- For a more alternative nightlife experience, Rockhouse Salzburg is the largest rock venue in the city and often hosts live concerts
- Race around the courses at Kartworld Salzburg
- Enjoy some home comforts at Susie’s Diner – an American themed restaurant
Best Hostel Schallmoos
MEININGER are renowned across Europe for their excellent hostels, and their Salzburg property is located right in Schallmoos! They offer a well priced all you can eat breakfast every morning, and high-speed WiFi can be accessed from anywhere in the building. There is also a large games room.
Best Budget Hotel in Schallmoos
This family-run hotel has a warm and welcoming environment – and is adult only, ensuring you can enjoy some peace and quiet during your stay! The quirky rooms have interesting decor and are very spacious, with large bathroom suites. A continental breakfast is included in the rate, with vegetarian and gluten-free options.
Best Splurge Hotel in Schallmoos
As splurge hotels go, Best Western comes in at a decent price – and its location in Schallmoos ensures your cash will go further! There is a large spa area on site with a variety of holistic therapies on offer, and the roof terrace is the perfect spot to relax and enjoy the sunshine during the summer.
(Best neighbourhood in Salzburg for couples!)
- COOLEST thing to do in Maxglan – check out the gorgeous boutiques and cafes that line Innsbrucker Bundesstraße
- BEST place to visit in Maxglan – admire the beautiful baroque architecture of the Parish Church of St Maximillian
Though a little bit further out of town, Maxglan is a highly desirable area in Salzburg and perfect for those looking for an upmarket experience! For couples, the easy-going lifestyle of Maxglan provides the perfect backdrop for a romantic getaway in this beautiful city. With excellent locally owned stores and restaurants, it is also a good way to discover local life.
Getting from Maxglan into the city centre is a breeze, and simply walking along Innsbrucker Bundesstraße on the way is a rewarding experience! Whether you want the perfect date night restaurant, or an independent boutique selling quirky gifts, Maxglan is the premier luxury destination in the city.
- Hangar-7 is a popular attraction owned by the owner of Red Bull – here you can discover his private collection of aeroplanes
- Friedhof Maxglan is a small public park to the west of the area, providing the ideal setting for a romantic stroll
- Weinstoeckl Stadtheuriger is a great restaurant for a date night, serving a good mix of Austrian and other European cuisines with a vast wine menu
- The main canals in the city run through Maxglan – also a great location for a relaxing walk, they have great recreational facilities
- For a more typical Austrian dining experience, head down to Gasthof zum Noistering and order a hearty meal for a great price
Best Hotel for Backpackers Maxglan
Maxglan is another area that doesn’t have any hostels, however, B&B Hotel Junior is nevertheless well priced and perfect for young couples on a strict budget! The family-run bed and breakfast has a welcoming atmosphere and serves a hearty buffet breakfast every morning. Private parking is also available.
Best Budget Hotel in Maxglan
Hotel Max 70 is a little bit of an upgrade, and has a more romantic atmosphere whilst still being reasonably priced! Rooms are fully air-conditioned and come with large flat screen TVs, as well as other modern conveniences. Guests can choose between a small continental breakfast or a buffet every morning.
Best Splurge Hotel in Maxglan
As a mostly residential area, Maxglan is lacking in luxury hotels. For couples that are willing to splurge, hiring an apartment is a great option – especially if you want to self cater! Apartment Soriat has some excellent luxury touches that rival the convenience of the larger hotel chains.
We can convince you to visit Austria. See what our guide to Austria has to say!
(Best neighbourhood in Salzburg off the beaten path!)
- COOLEST thing to do in Nonnberg – climb up to Salzburg Fortress for marvellous views across the city, and take a tour of the castle whilst you are there
- BEST place to visit in Nonnberg – check out Nonnberg Convent – where the real-life Maria von Trapp lived!
Despite being considered part of the Altstadt, and containing some of the city’s most popular attractions, Nonnberg is off most tourist radars in terms of places to stay! This gives you a good combination of convenience for exploring the city, with plenty of local attractions that allow you to see a different side of life in Salzburg.
Nonnberg is dominated by Salzburg Fortress, which overlooks the entire city atop the hill! The historic streets have some quieter attractions than in the central Old Town, allowing you to really get up close with Salzburg’s history.
- Salzburger Kunstverein is a modern art gallery showcasing works from across Austria and the rest of the world
- Cajetan Church is a beautiful building right in the heart of Nonnberg – a little less touristy than other churches in the city, this can be an entirely different experience
- Brancaccio Marini Art Gallery is another great spot for art lovers, with works by smaller artists that you can purchase to take home
- Lindy’s Wein and Aperobar is inspired by the local taverns of Southern Europe, giving you a laid back atmosphere to sit back and enjoy a drink
Best Hostel Nonnberg
JUFA Salzburg City is deeply embedded in the culture of the city, giving you the ultimate visitor experience! They screen the Sound of Music every evening, allowing you to mingle with other guests and prepare yourself for exploring the city. They also offer great prices on local tours around the city.
Best Budget Hotel in Nonnberg
Located in neighbouring Nonntal, Pension Katrin is a guesthouse that takes you away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre! They offer a complimentary breakfast every morning, and also provide free parking and WiFi to all guests. It is entirely family run, giving the property a homely vibe.
Best Splurge Hotel in Nonnberg
Radisson Blu are known for their high-quality hotels for good reason, and their Nonnberg offering is no exception! Located in a historical building, it is located within a stone’s throw of all the main attractions in the city centre. Guests are also given a complimentary one day explorer pass and discounts at nearby shopping outlets.
Final Thoughts on Where to Stay in Salzburg?
Salzburg is a gorgeous city that lets you get right to the heart of Austrian culture! Whether you are interested in culture, cuisine or shopping, there’s something for everyone in this quaint mountain city.
For the best area, we’re going to go with Nonnberg! Despite being so close to the Altstadt, it is still a bit of a hidden gem – giving you the best of both worlds with local atmosphere and easy access to tourist sites.
We hope this guide has helped you plan your trip to Salzburg. We are sure you will fall in love with the city!
Have we missed anything? Let us know in the comments!
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