With pastel-coloured houses casting shimmering reflections onto the glassy waters of the lake, and towering mountains on all sides, Hallstatt’s beauty alone would be enough to guarantee it fame. Boats chug tranquilly across the lake from the train station to the village, situated precariously on a narrow stretch of land between mountain and shore. So small is the patch of land occupied by the village that its annual Corpus Christi procession takes place largely in small boats on the lake.
Salt in the hills above the town made it a centre of salt mining. The Hallstatt Period (800 to 400 BC) refers to the early Iron Age in Europe, named after the village and the Iron Age settlers and Celts who worked the salt mines here. Today the sheer volume of visitors can get annoying at times, and makes finding a hotel room difficult in midsummer. Consider staying in Obertraun, which retains its sleepy feel.
The train station is across the lake from Hallstatt; to get into town you have to take the ferry.
Hallstatt destination guides
An inspiring traverse around Dachstein Mountain (2995m)
Private Tour: Hallstatt Tour from Salzburg
Travel to the village of Hallstatt in the stunningly scenic Austrian Lake District (Salzkammergut) on this private tour from Salzburg. Admire amazing views of Dachstein Mountain on your way to Hallstatt, a UNESCO World Heritage Site linked to several ancient cultures. Learn the history of this culturally significant area from your knowledgeable guide.