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Millstatt, Carinthia, Austria
Scenic view of Millstatt, on the Millstätter See in Carinthia, Austria
photo sourcehttp://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Millstatt_Ost_Seeh%C3%B6he_2006.JPG
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Places in Austria on this website

View Austria in a larger map

Austria is a small, landlocked country in Western Europe. It shares a border with Germany in the northwest, the Czech Republic in the north, Slovakia in the northeast, Hungary in the east, Slovania and Italy in the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein in the west.

Church at Dobratsch
The German church at Dobratsch is the highest mountain church in Europe
photo sourcehttp://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Deutsche_Kirche_Dobratsch.jpg
authorshipMarkus Steiner
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Austria is very mountainous. As much as 68% of Austria is located over 500 meters (1,640 feet) above sea level. Its tallest mountain is 3,797 meters (12,457 feet) tall. While German is the main language spoken in Austria, it also recognises Slovene, Croatian and Hungarian as regional languages.

Visitors to Austria will find that it has something to occupy them any time of the year. In winter you can go skiing at its many ski resorts, while at other times of the year you can explore its beautiful cities and countryside. Vienna is the music capital while Salzburg is simply gorgeous, with its baroque churches. In Innsbruck, you can get panoramic views of the Austrian Alps.

Franzikanerkirche, Salzburg
View of the ceiling of Franzikanerkirche in Salzburg
photo sourcehttp://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Franzikanerkirche_Salzburg_Gewoelbe.jpg
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Preparing Money for Austria

The currency used in Austria is the Euro (EUR).

Planning your visit to Austria

By Plane
The main international gateway to Austria is the Vienna International Airport (VIE), located 18 kilometers from downtown Vienna. It receives flights from all over the world. The other international airports are located in Graz, Innsbruck, Klagenfurt, Linz and Salzburg. You can also fly to Munich and take a train or bus to Austria.

By Train
There are train services connecting Austria with all its neighbors. High-speed ICE (Inter-City Express) and RailJet trains connect Austrian cities with Zurich, Munich, Frankfurt, Passau and Budapest.

Planning your travel within Austria

The most practical form of transport is the train. They are comfortable, moderately priced, and can get you can practically any city or town in Austria. The train tickets are sold by the Österreichische Bundesbahnen (http://www.oebb.at/en/index.jsp), the Austrian Federal Railways. Through their website you can purchase your ticket online and print it out yourself. The fare is calculated according to distance travelled.

Recommended Travel Guidebook

My favorite travel guidebook for Austria is the Austria Eyewitness Guide, because it follows a format that I find useful to users, not to mention I have also contributed to some of the titles in the Eyewitness series of guidebooks.

Principal Cities of Austria

List of Austrian cities with estimated population for 2010.
  1. Vienna (1,700,000)
    Capital and biggest city in Austria.

  2. Graz (260,000)
    Second largest city in Austria. One of the best preserved cities of Central Europe.

  3. Linz (190,000)
    Third largest city in Austria. Located near the Czech border, on both sides of the Danube.

  4. Salzburg (150,000)
    City famous for its baroque architecture, setting for The Sound of Music and birthplace of Mozart.

  5. Innsbruck (120,000)
    State capital of Tyrol, located in a valley between high mountains.

  6. Klagenfurt (90,000)
    State capital of Carinthia, located on lake Wörthersee and the Glan river.

  7. Villach (60,000)
    Second largest city in Carinthia, with evidence of human habitation going back to 3500 BC.

  8. Bregenz (28,000)
    Austrian city on the shores of Lake Constance, the third largest lake in Central Europe.

  9. Eisenstadt (12,000)
    Former seat of the Eszterházy Hungarian noble family.

World Heritage Sites in Austria

  1. Historic Centre of the City of Salzburg (1996)
  2. Palace and Gardens of Schönbrunn (1996)
  3. Hallstatt-Dachstein / Salzkammergut Cultural Landscape (1997)
  4. Semmering Railway (1998)
  5. City of Graz - Historic Centre (1999)
  6. Wachau Cultural Landscape (2000)
  7. Fertö / Neusiedlersee Cultural Landscape (2001)
  8. Historic Centre of Vienna (2001)
  9. Prehistoric Pile dwellings around the Alps (2011, join inscription for Switzerland, Austria, France, Germany, Italy and Slovenia)
The following sites in Austria have been submitted to the World Heritage Tentative List.
  1. Cultural Landscape of "Innsbruck-Nordkette/Karwendel" (2002)
  2. Iron Trail with Erzberg and the old town of Steyr (2002)
  3. Old part of Hall in Tirol (1994)
  4. Bregenzerwald (Bregenz Forest) (1994)
  5. Abbey of Kremsmünster (1994)
  6. Heiligenkreuz Abbey (1994)
  7. Hochosterwitz Castle (1994)
  8. Cathedral of Gurk (1994)
  9. National Park "Hohe Tauern" (2003)
  10. The City of Graz - Historic Centre and Schloss Eggenberg (extension to City of Graz - Historic Centre) (2005)
  11. Prehistoric Pile Dwellings around the Alps (2009)

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