Salzburg, Austria: Tissa Fontaneda’s Guide To The City

By Guest Writer

1 year ago

'I am in love with this place'

Salzburg is a city you’ll want to return to over and over again, says Tissa Fontaneda. Situated at an important crossroad – 150 km east of Munich (the beautiful Bavarian capital), a three hour drive from Vienna, and at the entrance of Tirol region and the central Alps – the Italian border is not far away, and the influence is clear. Many speak of this charming little town as the Rome of the North because of its beautiful baroque buildings and churches. If you cross the Mozartplatz at the sound of the church bells, even less sentimental personalities than myself feel thrown back into another world. I am in love with this place.

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City Guide: Salzburg, Austria

Old town of Salzburg, Austria, at sunset in winter.


Stay in a hotel surrounded by history: the Hotel Sacher, right at the shore of the river Salzach (or just try the original Sacher Torte if you enjoy eating chocolate cakes); or at the Goldener Hirsch, situated in the GetreideGasse with its precious and colourful wrought iron signs – it’s very Austrian and my absolute favourite.

If you want to escape the often crowded city centre, stay at the Schloss Mönchstein, situated on a hill overlooking the city. Enjoy breakfast in the garden when the weather is fine.

For those who feel that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, stay at the newly renovated Hotel Stein, on another part of the river. The view is so unique.

A 30-minute drive from Salzburg, you will find the picturesque Hotel Fuschl situated at the Fuschl See. I love this place so much that I decided to get married there!


My secret tip for lunch or early dinner is Pauli Stubm (Herrengasse 16); it’s a legend only a few people know about. In the summer months, you can sit outside in the beer garden. To get there, walk through the old graveyard – it’s pretty impressive. 

Every time I visit Salzburg, I try to have Kaffee und Kuchen (coffee and cake) at Tomaselli – but I rarely get a table. You should give it a go – it is absolutely worth it!

Salzburg Cathedral


Salzburg is the city of music and, while you walk around, you will hear beautiful classical music everywhere – music that sounds through an open window or church door, music that passes through the walls of a house, with musicians always rehearsing for their next concerts. The building of the Festspielhaus is impressive and it hosts some of the most important music festivals in the world. You must have heard of the Salzburger Festspiele, haven’t you?

Stroll around in the Altstadt (the old part of town) and feel its magic. The presence of Mozart is everywhere. It’s more than a mere tourist attraction. You can feel his musical energy, if you are open to it.

Salzburg is also surrounded by stunning lakes, one more beautiful than the other, which you should take time to visit at least once in your lifetime.

Walk up to the imposing castle (you can take the cable car if you want) and enjoy an outstanding view of the whole town. Walk into the cathedral – or into one of the other countless churches – and, if you are lucky, you might be part of a beautiful concert while you admire the wonderful architecture that will transport you into the past.

Regarding stores, Salzburg has many amazing places to shop – such as the beautiful multibrand Dantendorfer situated next door to the Hotel Goldener Hirsch at the Getreidegasse. It’s hard to find a better selection of Italian and Austrian brands elsewhere.

Another tip: only buy the Mozartkugeln that are wrapped in silver and blue paper. Those are the authentic ones and definitely the best. If you don’t like Marzipan mixed with chocolate, you should go for the Mannerschnitten. Be careful: they are highly addictive.

Tissa Fontaneda is the brain behind the eponymous Spanish handbag brand and its iconic ‘bubble’ bag. 

A portrait of Tissa Fontaneda in a blue coat