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Salzburg for the Family: Top things to do with Kids

Mother and three kids sightseeing the city of Salzburg. They are walking on the Marko-Feingold-Steg bridge. The Hohensalzburg Fortress is visible in the background. Shot with Canon R5

Salzburg, the hometown of the Trapp family singers, automatically brings up family-friendly associations connected to the global film classic, The Sound of Music: family sing-a-longs, idyllic mountain scenery and glorious picnics.  With the addition of its magnificent hills flanking the Salzach river, a towering fortress and salt mine, not to mention Mozart’s childhood home, Salzburg offers a wealth of attractions for families.

Wondering where to start? We break down the best activities for young travelers, many of which you can only find in Salzburg — so make sure you don’t miss out!


Take a family-friendly tour with Insight Cities

At Insight Cities we want the whole family to learn and have fun, so we happily customize our Salzburg Introduction tour to focus the sites that your kids will especially love.  For Sound of Music fans, embark on our Salzburg & The Sound of Music tour.  We’ll visit the famed film locations, including Mirabell Gardens (Do-re-mi) and the gazebo of Leisl & Rolf’s dance at Hellbrunn Palace.  If you like, you will also be treated to the legendary soundtrack in your comfortable Mercedes van while your group sings your way through the glorious Lake District in between stops at Maria’s Abbey (Nonberg), the wedding church at Mondsee and the field of the opening credits.

If the Sound of Music is not your thing, no worries — we can customize a private tour tailored to you and your family’s specific interests.  Just write to us at

In Salzburg

View of Hohensalzburg Fortress with houses and trees in the foreground under a graceful, large fortress against a blue sky with light clouds.



Looming above Salzburg, with majestic views of the city below and the surrounding mountains, Hohensalzburg is one of the oldest and largest castle complexes in Europe. The whole family will find a visit to the castle awe-inspiring. You can hike up or, if you’ve got many little pairs of legs, take the funicular and enjoy the ride.

The castle is home to three museums: explore the prince’s quarters with a new interactive exhibition and magic theatre, along with the armory at the Rainer Regiment Museum for more action-oriented history, the Castle museum for a general overview, and the Marionette Museum for kids fascinated by the art of puppetry.

Three kids are running in the vin tunnel at the park Mirabell Gardens in Salzburg.

Mirabell Gardens


Mirabell Gardens is a picturesque Baroque Park in Salzburg center, with a maze, a grand Pegasus fountain, a hedge theater, and a wonderfully peculiar dwarf sculpture park, with 17 statues of dwarves to astonish your child. Kids can re-enact scenes from Sound-of-Music or simply explore the grounds and the fascinations there.

Haus der Natur

Salzburg’s Haus der Natur is a popular destination for locals and visitors alike.  Tour through earth’s evolutionary history, from dinosaurs to crystals to the animal kingdom to the human body itself.  New additions, such as the Science Center, keep things fresh by innovative digital and interactive exhibits that give kids a hands-on learning experience.

Spielzeug Museum

The Salzburg Toy Museum has the largest collection of toys in Europe, including toys both old and new. However, this isn’t the type of museum where the collection is locked away in glass cabinets. Kids are invited to play with many of the toys on display, which are set at their eye level, and the first floor includes a slide. Of course, some historic toys are locked away on display, but worlds of toys from the past can be discovered in the second-floor labyrinth.

Tip: Much of the museum is shoes-free, so make sure you have some comfy socks to wear under the slippers the museum provides.

Scenic view of the Hohensalzburg fortress, Salzburg, Austria

Hike the Hills of Salzburg

Salzburg is flanked by high hills on both sides, with perfect hiking for active kids. Kapuzinerberg, on the eastern side, beckons with paths through medieval ruins, breathtaking views of the city below and the Alps in the distance. You may even chance upon some frolicking chamois, which still inhabit the hills!

Mönchsberg, on the western side and north of Festungberg, boasts easier trails and offers views of Hohensalzburg rising above the old city. Topped with meadows and woodland, it’s a popular recreation area for locals looking for a short respite from the city.

People playing a chess game drawn on asphalt in Kapitelplatz, near monument to Paul Fuerst "Sphere", a golden ball on which stands a small man. Castle Hohensalzburg in background.



In front of Salzburg Cathedral lies Kapitelplatz, a square featuring an 18th-century fountain and giant chess set. Its spacious and open layout makes it a popular place for Salzburgers to relax on a nice sunny day. Market stalls selling souvenirs, food, crafts, and other local products line the square and are sure to attract the curious traveler. Art lovers can observe the public artworks Sphaera and Woman in the Rock.

Tourists standing in front of a bright yellow building, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's birthplace house

Visit Mozart’s birthplace

As Mozart spent his childhood in Salzburg, kids may find something to relate to in this most-visited museum in Austria. Walking through the Mozart family’s middle-class residence, faithfully recreated, will immerse young music fans into the world of young Mozart, to discover what they had in common with the famous composer’s composer and what was different in his time.

An elaborate fountain at the Summer Palace (Schloss Hellbrunn)

Check out the trick fountains at Hellbrunn Palace and Park

Located five kilometers from Salzburg’s center, Hellbrunn Palace is surrounded by an expansive greenery, gardens and playground. The palace, built as a holiday “pleasure palace” in the 17th century, now houses an art gallery and a museum dedicated to its heyday and former owners. Sound of Music fans can discover the gazebo in its park!

Hellbrunn Palace is also home to the famed quirky trick fountains — statues and structures that spew out water at unexpected times. There is also a path featuring water automats — colorful moving sculptures powered by water. Kids and adults alike will delight in these peculiar novelties nestled in the grottos in the palace grounds.

Tip: The palace is only open from March until November, so save this spot for a spring or summer trip!

Two smiling alpacas, one black and one white, in Salzburg Zoo, Austria

Salzburg Zoo

Can a major European city consider itself such without a zoo? We think not, and Salzburg Zoo has its own place among the best zoos to visit in Europe. Located in the park surrounding Hellbrunn Palace, Salzburg Zoo houses over 150 species with 1,500 animals in total. The big cats, white rhinoceros, and tapirs are some of the more notable zoo residents, while there are species from every part of the animal kingdom to see. The zoo hosts regular events where visitors can get up and close and personal with the animals, while learning about their habits and behaviors.

Near Salzburg

A high mountain valley near Hallstatt, Austria

The Salt Mines

Salzburg got its name from the nearby salt mines (Salzwelten) that contributed to its wealth and development, and what better place to learn about Salzburg’s own history than at the Salzburg salt mines?

At the main mine in Hallein, an underground boat ride takes you through a journey of more than 2600 years of history, and you can visit Bad Ischler to see how salt is processed for our consumption, and perhaps have the chance to have a sample of the crystal salt pyramids.

In Hallstatt, the world’s oldest salt mine, you can take a funicular to enter the mine and discover the history of salt mining through the ages. Hallstatt also treats brave visitors with magnificent views of the valley on the Hallstatt Skywalk.

In the Altausee mines, only accessible by car or by foot, go on a treasure hunt as you learn about the true story of stolen art purloined by the Nazis during the Third Reich.

Note that entrance to the salt mines is for children 4 and up.

Located 30 kilometers outside Salzburg, the Salzburg salt mines are best for a half-day or full-day trip out of the city. Kids will likely enjoy a journey through the Austrian countryside as well.

Mother with children at observation bridge in Hallstatt, Austria.

Whether you want to stay in Salzburg city limits or venture outside the city, Insight Cities can organize a tour that informs and entertains everyone in your family, from our Sound of Music tour and guided visit to Mozart’s birthplace,  or help arranging excursions to Salzburg’s Lake District and Mine, we’ve got you covered with knowledgeable guides who will entertain you kids and keep their adults interested too!  Get in touch with us at to organize a memorable family Salzburg trip.

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