Posts tagged Austria

Grossglockner Road

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The highlight of Austria (for us at any rate) was the High Alpine Road of Grossglockner. This toll road is expensive by toll road standards at €28 for the day, but as it kept us gasping in awe for hours it was well worth the price. At one point there are 30 mountains over 3000m in view; perfect scenes for postcards and chocolate boxes.

We got up at the crack of dawn and enjoyed a quiet road to start with. The northern ascent (from Salzburg) was dramatic with impressive peaks at every turn. The road quickly racks up many metres above sea level via some very sharp hairpin bends. We stopped frequently for photo opportunities (or sniff-and-pee breaks in Odie’s opinion)

The day was clear and bright (a welcome change after weeks of annoying rain), and consequently the road started to get very busy. By the time we reached the peak there was a constant stream of traffic behind us. We had a very quick look at the glacier at the top, but decided to pass on the visitor centre and surrounding tourist hubub, dragging an frantic Odie away from the marmots he was eager to devour. A quick descent down the other side of the mountain range led us to a beautiful stop for lunch at a restaurant featuring an alpine waterfall as a backdrop. Next stop, Italy!

Wolfgangsee

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Austria (on purpose this time) was our destination on a day when the rain had finally let up, or for a couple of hours at any rate. We drifted through Salzburg intending to stop and see the sites. However, we saw signs saying that camping was ‘verboten’ so our idea of free parking went up in smoke. Unfortunately we did not find a suitable campsite so we continued on to one of Austria’s alpine lakes, Wolfgangsee. At least we got to see something related to Mozart!

The campsite itself was lovely, full of apple trees (to David’s scrumping delight) and situated right next to the lake shore. You could literally dive from your van into the water, if you felt crazy enough to brave the icy temperatures. Howling winds and beating rain kept us inside – what a shame 🙁

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