Because traveling to far away places is not possible at the moment, we are now always looking for destinations that are close by and yet have a special charm. We are lucky to live at Salzburger countryside where are many beautiful places with countless sights worth seeing.
Trip into a past time!
Bad Gastein is an Austrian spa and winter sports resort located at 1,002 m above sea level in the Hohe Tauern National Park south of Salzburg.
Architecturally and historically Bad Gastein is certainly one of the most interesting places in Austria to me.
With its historical and magnificent multi-storey hotels, it is unofficially called the "Monaco of the Alps".
A special feature is the location of the center, which was built on the steep slopes around the waterfall and is characterized by very steep and narrow streets.
On these cliffs, multi-storey houses were built to save space, so that the appearance of the village is reminiscent of a city
The architecture is mainly from the Belle Époque. One feels transported into another time by these historical buildings. "I wonder what it was like here in imperial times?"
If you explore the place on foot, then you can best put yourself into these times.
"A waterfall across the village"
From the waterfall path, the view falls on the central Gastein waterfall, which plunges into the valley. The foot of the waterfall can be reached by a central path from several directions. There are several very good instagrammable points for the perfect photo.
Good to know:
The Gasteiner Ache flows over a length of 40 km through the Gastein Valley, which is located in the province of Salzburg in Austria. The three main towns of the Gastein Valley, Bad Gastein (1002 m ),
Bad Hofgastein (858 m ) and Dorfgastein (830 m ), are located along the Gasteiner Ache.
Another historical sight is the Nikolauskirche. This church from the 15th century. Its well-preserved late-Gothic frescos and the awe-inspiring Baroque altar are particularly worth seeing.
Bad Gastein is also home to numerous famous personalities from the end of the 18th century in the field of art and culture, such as Otto von Bismarck,
Prince Heinrich of the Netherlands or Wilhelm I.
The first German Emperor visited Bad Gastein several times for a health cure, and he also met the Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph I, among others at the Kaiser-Entrevue in Gastein in 1887.
Unfortunately, it must also be said that Bad Gastein was partially put into a Sleeping Beauty sleep for decades. Unfortunately, many historical buildings, mainly hotels, have stood empty for decades and are slowly decaying. For example, the renowned Grand Hotel de l'Europe, once one of the largest and most exclusive luxury hotels in Europe, had to file for insolvency in 1988. Until 2015 it even housed a casino.
In 2018 3 properties in the city center were sold to a Munich real estate group, under the condition to build at least a 4-star superior or a 5-star hotel at the latest three years after the necessary permits were obtained.
Nothing has happened yet, but it could be the future for Bad Gastein, the unique charm of many beautiful and historic buildings is certainly a tourist magnet.
I hope very much that in many of these buildings a new exciting life will soon move in.
But beyond that, Bad Gastein has a lot to offer and is blessed with natural treasures.
The waterfall in the middle of the town center, many thermal & healing springs, unique healing tunnels and a great ski area attract many tourists every year.
Unfortunately we didn't have too much time to explore all the sights sufficiently but Bad Gastein really captivated us with its very special charm!
“We would like to come back very soon and that preferably for a whole weekend!”