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The Best Road Trips in Austria
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The Best Road Trips in Austria

Picture of Kate Jackson
Updated: 30 April 2018
Exploring Austria by car is packed with adventure. From high alpine scenery in the west to the flat landscapes in the east, these Austria itineraries introduce you to various road trip options.

From Vienna to Salzburg to Innsbruck

This four- to five-day trip allows you to see three of the best cities in Austria, whilst also passing through some incredible rural landscapes along the way. After you’ve seen what the capital has to offer (see our guide for some inspiration), you can take the route through the Berchtesgaden area when heading towards Salzburg. Although this drive is fairly lengthy (around three hours), it allows you to experience the beautiful Lake Königsee (on the border of Germany), as well as some stunning mountainous trails. Then, you can make your way along to lovely Salzburg, which can easily be explored in a day or two. Next, on to Innsbruck via the Autobahn A-12, meaning you can experience the Ziller Valley.

Zell am See to Graz

As with the first route, this road trip gives you the chance to take the glorious Grossglockner High Alpine Roa, as well as plenty of opportunities to ramble in the Hohe Tauern National Park. The A2 Autobahn will take you straight to the humble city of Graz. However, if you feel so inclined, you can stop off at Hochosterwitz Castle, one of the country’s most famous medieval fortresses.

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The stuning Hochosterwitz Castle | © Austrian Tourist Board

Six of Austria’s sights in six days

Although ambitious, this route will allow you to see many different sides of the country, both urban and rural. Beginning in the charming city of Innsbruck and ending in the capital of Vienna, you will see all that Austria has to offer, from glittering lakes to cosy coffee houses. After you’ve seen the sights of Innsbruck, you embark on the two-hour trip to Zell am See, a popular rural holiday destination where you can enjoy a range of outdoor activities in the summer. The next day, you will take to the road again for two hours to the village of Hallstatt – a place so pretty that it was recreated by the Chinese – and from here to Salzburg. The last leg of the trip takes you from Salzburg to the wine valleys of Melk and, finally, to the capital of Vienna, where you can celebrate your arrival with one of the city’s famous cakes.

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Zell am See | © Austrian Tourist Board

From Bregenz to Innsbruck

The town of Bregenz, on the shores of the beautiful Lake Constance, is an idyllic place to begin this relaxed tour. In order to get to Innsbruck, you must pass through the B200, a winding road that offers panoramic Alpine views. Those who want a pit stop could do so in Lech am Arlberg, a charming resort town that is popular with skiers and hikers.

Innsbruck at night
Innsbruck at night | ©

Grossglockner Hochalpenstrasse

This winding route is known as the “High Alpine Road”, which takes you from Salzburg to Carinthia. Allowing travellers to pass through gorgeous scenery of the Hohe Tauern National Park, with views of almost 40 mountains, it is a favourite among both Austrians and tourists. The highest point of the Alpine Road is a staggering 2,504 metres, which unsurprisingly gives awe-inspiring views as well as the excitement of many hair-raising twists and turns. The landscape is varied enough to keep you interested for the duration of the one-hour trip, with miles and miles of gorgeous hills, cliffs, meadows, lakes and, of course, the beautiful Alps.

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The winding road | © Austrian Tourist Board