cover photo road trip Austria Germany Slovenia 2 week itinerary

Road trip Austria itinerary: 2 weeks (14 days) plus Germany and Slovenia

Are you wanting to experience an epic 2-week Germany, Slovenia Austria road trip? Look no further!

I collected info on some of the best things to do in the Bavarian, Austrian and Slovenian Alps regions and combined them into an epic two-week road trip itinerary! I’ve included some of the best landmarks from each country and combined them into a tidy little driving route.

This is a fast-paced trip but if you’re determined you’ll have enough time to fit it all in! Pace too fast? Have only 10 days? No problem, just pick and choose your favorites.

Overview: 2 weeks in Germany and Austria and Slovenia

Travel Style for this trip:

  • Medieval towns and cobbled streets
  • dense forests
  • dreamy castles
  • palaces
  • adventure
  • caves
  • UNESCO World Heritage sites
  • bucket list worthy locations
  • milky blue rivers and streams
  • alpine lakes
  • mountains
  • waterfalls

and so much more! = dream trip!

I avoid larger cities in favor of small villages (no big cities!) The largest city we’ll visit on this trip is Salzburg, population 152,367 (2017)

At a glance:

5 total days in southern Germany
3.5 days in beautiful Slovenia
5.5 days in Austria

Trip Route

This “road trip Austria Germany Slovenia” route was planned to be as efficient as possible adding as many highlights as possible with as little driving as possible.

Our starting point, Frankfurt Germany because a) it was cheaper to fly into b) had better flight options and shorter flight times c) the rental cars seemed to be much less expensive.

IF you can start your journey in Munich, it will save you approximately 8 hours of driving! Additionally, this trip could start in Salzburg. HOWEVER, if you choose either of these starting points, you will miss out on Rothenburg ob der Tauber.

Total Drive time for the entire trip:

FRA-Berchtesgaden-Slovenia-Hallstatt-Salzburg-FRA approximately 22 hours driving

driving route road trip Austria Germany Slovenia 2 week itinerary
driving route road trip Austria south Germany Slovenia

Getting around

public transport
It’s affordable and efficient, but you’re at the mercy of transit schedules so you may not be able to fit everything in. You can explore your options on the Rome2Rio website or app. (New to Public Transportation? You may find this article for beginners helpful)

driving
Because of the remote locations on this itinerary, a road trip is the best way to do this trip. With your own car you can get around faster.

1-Do yourself a big favor and add the GPS onto your car rental, or bring one along. We have this GPS unit from Garmin.
2- You may need an International Driving Permit to drive in Europe. Get one at your local AAA office.
3-Rental Car: Search on Booking.com or Expedia to find the best rates and then book with the company directly for peace of mind.

where to stay?

I’ll include the places we stayed but if they don’t suit your tastes, my favorite place to search accommodations is booking.com.
If you use the links in this article to book your stay, you’ll help me continue to fund this website! Thank you! Danke! And Hvala!

Booking.com

*Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission. I only recommend products I would use myself and all opinions expressed here are my own

*** Day 1 ***

arrival in Germany and Rothenburg ob der Tauber

Where to stay: 1 night: This one isn’t optional! Historik Hotel Gotisches Haus garni is located in a 700-year-old building and is decorated in gorgeous old world furnishings. It’s my favorite place to stay in Rothenburg! Prices starting at: $150 per night Guest rating 9.1

travel time: 2 hours (TRAFFIC DEPENDANT)

arrival in Germany

First up: we’ll spend the better part of the first week in Germany.

BEFORE YOU HEAD TO GERMANY check out my Ultimate Guide to Traveling in Germany!

getting money

You may want to hit the ATM and get some Euros before you leave the airport. It’s the fastest, easiest and often least expensive way for travelers to obtain foreign currency. Don’t forget to refuse the Dynamic Currency Conversion.

Pick up your rental car on the first day

Most companies charge a nominal fee for crossing country borders. Inquire with your rental company.

***Drive to Rothenburg ob der Tauber: 2 hours (IF the autobahn isn’t a congested mess)

Rothenburg ob der Tauber (Germany)

Rothenburg is a fairytale come to life. This medieval city will charm you with its half-timbered houses, cobbled streets, and 14th century medieval town walls. There’s a lot to do in Rothenburg. Since, depending on your arrival time, you only have a few hours, my recommendation would be simply walking the medieval town wall and exploring the old city center. It’s a great way to get an overview of the town.

plonlein rothenburg ob der tauber germany must see attraction for your first time in rothenburg Germany
Photo: Historic buildings of Rothenburg, the famous Plonlein

Get more details: in my how to make the best of your trip to Rothenburg! article

Dinner: There are two very special places to eat in Rothenburg: (you’ll need a reservation for both) Zur Holl is located in an old and ancient looking 1,000 year old building! and Altfränkische Weinstube is located in a 650-year-old building that looks like it was designed for gnomes! (No CREDIT CARD, cash only at this one)

Optional experience (September): Rothenburg Imperial City Festival. What a treat! The entire town turns into a medieval encampment with thousands of Germans wearing traditional costumes.

south Germany and the German Alps

*** Day 2 ***

Herrenchiemsee New Palace and mountain carts

where to stay: night 1/3: We stayed at Pension Greti in the Königssee area because it seemed central to our activities. Prices starting at: $110 per night Guest rating: 8.1

total drive time: 5 hours

Drive to Chiemsee: 3.5 hour drive

Herrenchiemsee New Palace (Neues Schloss Herrenchiemsee) Germany

King Ludwig strikes again! Known for his masterpiece, Neuschwanstein Castle, this sprawling palace is his answer to Versailles! On strict orders from the King, it was imperative that everything in this palace be done in the French style.

Herrenchiemsee Palace is located on an island in Chiemsee Lake so you will need to take a 20-minute ferry over. When you arrive at the island you can either walk 20 minutes from the dock on the island or take a (very reasonably priced!) horse drawn carriage ride.

Schloss Herrenchiemsee Palace Germany
Photo: Castle grounds of Schloss Herrenchiemsee Palace are reminiscent of Versailles!

Optional experience: While you can technically do this in a couple of hours There is so much to do in this area, consider skipping the mountain carts and spending more time here.

***Drive to your next hotel: approximately 1.5 hours. NOTE: you will either want to set your route to avoid toll roads in Austria or purchase your toll pass now. More on that later.

Adrenalin Erlebnis mountain cart tour (Germany)

Take a mountain cart tour with Adrenalin Erlebnis. Both the young and the young at heart will enjoy this adventure with fantastic mountain views! Contact Marco through their website for more information.

*** Day 3 ***

alpine lakes

where to stay: night 2/3

total drive time for the day: minimal

Königssee and Obersee Lakes Germany

Catch the first boat of the day for a scenic boat tour through the Bavarian Alps on fjord like Konigsee lake. Disembark in Salet and then take the path that leads to Obersee, an idyllic emerald-green alpine lake with stunning views! Obersee was a bucket list experience for me. From Obersee you can take a trail to Röthbachfall waterfall, Germany’s highest waterfall! (sorry Triberg, it’s a fact)

Get more details: in my Obersee Königssee article.

Königssee Lake, fjord like lake in Bavaria (Bayern) Germany
fjord like Königssee Lake, one of the best ways to see the lake is by boat!
Obersee Lake Germany
Obersee Lake

*** Day 4 ***

scenic gorge and waterfall, iconic church, national park

where to stay: night 3/3

total drive time: minimal

Wimbachklamm gorge and waterfall (Germany)

Don’t miss this stunner! Transverse elevated wooden walkways and bridges that run through this ridiculously scenic gorge with multiple waterfalls. Easy 1.4-mile loop.

I couldn’t quite capture the natural beauty of this place in photos. Here’s my video instead!

Parish Church of St. Sebastian (Germany)

The adorable St. Sebastian Church has been on my bucket list for quite some time. I finally made it! It’s picture perfect with the mountains in the background, and the little brook and bridge in the foreground. You don’t want to miss it!

fun fact: You may not know it by looking at the pictures, but I was so surprised that the church is actually located in town with a road running through it!

Get more details: get full details on visiting the Parish Church of St. Sebastian

Parish Church of St. Sebastian Church/ Ramsau Church/ Ramsau Kirche in Ramsau Germany
The Parish Church of St. Sebastian: Ramsau Church/ Ramsau Kirche in Ramsau Germany

Lake Hintersee (Germany)

There’s another lovely lake just a short drive from the church. Hintersee Lake has a 3.5-kilometer trail that circles the lake and takes you through a magical forest. I’ll be honest, this wasn’t the prettiest lake I saw on our trip but I’m a huge sucker for a scenic trail, or rent a swan boat or electric boat and get out on the lake!

Hintersee Germany
Hintersee Germany

Berchtesgaden National Park (Nationalpark) Germany

Berchtesgaden National Park boasts 174 named mountains, including the Watzmann, the tallest peak in the park. Hiking trails are abundant in the park, it’s a veritable hiking paradise. Make your way to one of the mountain huts scattered throughout the park for refreshments and good views or simply ride the ALM ErlebnisBUS shuttle through the park.

tips: Bring water OR just bring a water bottle. Because on a happy note, the water that comes off the mountains and fills the streams is drinking water quality. Get familiar with the bus schedule. I assumed that there were frequent buses. There are not. (my video from the park:)

optional experience: My husband decided that he was interested in seeing Eagle’s Nest. It’s just a few kilometers away. You can either drive there or take a tour with a local guide from Salzburg. Check Get Your Guide for options.

travel day Austria / Slovenia

*** Day 5 ***

Hohenwerfen Castle / drive to Slovenia

Where to stay: night 1/2: Klavze 28 (this one isn’t optional either! I’ll review it below)

total drive time: 4 hour 15-minute drive

***Drive to Hohenwerfen Castle: 45 minutes. IMPORTANT: Stop at the Germany Austria border (a gas station near the German border works) it is time to purchase your vignette sticker. This toll pass allows you to drive on the Austrian expressways

Hohenwerfen Castle (Austria)

The nearly 1,000 year old Hohenwerfen Castle sits high above the valley below, surrounded by mountains. This delightful castle has a daily falconry show and when we were there the current castle exhibit was all about witches…perfect! Take the steep path up or ride the somewhat pricey funicular. Want to guess which we chose? I’m all about saving my legs any and every way possible on these long trips! The guided tour lasts about an hour.

It gets a bit crowded so try to get there as soon as they open. You may even get to sleep in a bit! When we visited, the first tour didn’t start until 10 am.

get more information: Visit Hohenwerfen, everything you need to know!

Hohenwerfen Castle famous Austrian Landmarks
Hohenwerfen Castle famous Austrian Landmarks

***Drive to Klavze 28 in Slovenia: 3.5 hours. Stop at the Slovenia border for a Slovenian vignette (this one is a receipt instead of an actual sticker). IF you are sure you won’t be using any toll roads while in Slovenia you can skip this one. 15 euros for a 1-week pass.

Klavze 28 (Slovenia)

Klavze 28 is a rustic farmhouse bed and breakfast located in a secluded area of the Soca Valley. Two old restored farmhouses sitting pretty in an idyllic valley surrounded by mountains, rolling hills, meadows and forests. We have things planned for the next day, but you may love it here so much you may decide not to go anywhere!

Klavze requires a 2-night stay. I gladly rearranged our entire itinerary to make it work.

Dinner: This area is remote. You may want to ask Klavze in advance of your arrival to make a dinner reservation for you at one of their recommended restaurants. Hisa Polonka in Kobarid is recommended by Rick Steves (closed Tuesday and Wednesday)

Get more details: Read my in depth review of Klavze 28 here or if you prefer, just book it now!

Klavze 28 farmhouse Bed and Breakfast Most na Soci Slovenia
Klavze 28 farmhouse Bed and Breakfast Most na Soci Slovenia, nestled in the surrounding forests! the best place to overnight in the Slovenian Alps!

Slovenia

*** Day 6 ***

Predjama Castle, Slovenia show caves, and dinner in Italy!

where to stay: night 2/2

total drive time: 4-hours drive time for the day

***drive to: Predjama Castle 1 hour 45-minute drive

Predjama Castle (Slovenia)

(Prehd-YAH-mah)/ Predjamski Grad is an over 800-year old cave castle (the largest in the world) that was actually on both mine AND my husband’s bucket lists! This castle really had a great feel that seemed to shine through even though it was SUPER CROWDED! Self-guided audio tour, pay the entrance fee and head in, no need to wait for “tour times.”

There’s a Stone Age cave behind the castle but Rick Steves says that it’s skippable, so we did. We figured our time and money would be better spent at one of the world class show caves, our next stop.

Predjama Cave Castle in Slovenia
Predjama Castle

Choose a cave: There are two popular show caves in this area. Postojna Cave (10 km ride the underground train! ) and Škocjan Caves (35 km) Due to time constraints you are going to have to choose.

***drive to Škocjan Caves: 30 minute drive

Škocjan Caves (Slovenia)

We chose Škocjan Caves. I can’t quite remember what the deciding factor was. Škocjan Caves have been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which very well could have been the deciding factor because we love to add UNESCO sites to our travel itineraries. There’s a raging underground river that flows through Škocjan Cave. Visitors experience a guided 2-mile hike, that includes 400 stairs, through the caves.

Warning: We arrived late in the day and tickets were sold out! Entry denied! It was such a disappointment. You may want to consider pre purchasing tickets.

Dinner in Italy?

If you happen to be at Škocjan Caves, then you also happen to be only 25 km from Italy. I had never been, so it was just too tempting and I had to cross over. Why not stop in Trieste and have dinner overlooking the Adriatic Sea? From there it’s a 1 hour 45-minute drive back to Klavze.

*** Day 7 ***

The Julian Alps/ Triglav National Park / Lake Jasna/ Vintgar Gorge

where to stay: night 1/2: We stayed at Hiša Pr’Pristavc in Bohinj (central to activities on our itinerary) prices starting at: $139 per night guest rating: 8.7

travel time for the day: 3.5 hours drive

You will need to be at Vintgar Gorge well before closing time so plan appropriately!

The Julian Alps/ Triglav National Park (Slovenia)

Napoleon’s bridge, make a quick stop at this neat bridge for photos.

Kozjak Waterfall trail is a fairly easy hike that leads to a dramatic cascade plunging 50 feet through a narrow cavern into a beautiful pool. 1.5 hours round trip. Just before you reach Kozjak Waterfall you’ll need to stop and buy a ticket so bring cash.

Kozjak Waterfall Slovenia
Kozjak Waterfall
Brv Cez Soco Suspension Bridge
Brv Cez Soco Suspension Bridge, a great spot to stop on the trail to Kozjak Waterfall

River stops: As you follow along the route, you’ll want to make frequent stops to enjoy the remarkable clarity and milky blue waters of the Soča.

Vršič Pass (vur-SHEECH) Pass Scenic drive
This amazing high altitude drive (5,285 ft) through the Julian Alps includes 50 hairpin turns (each numbered and labeled.) (We’ll be doing it backwards so starting at 50.) There are frequent pull outs along the way so stop for the views. #24 is the highest point (summit.) Stop at the cozy Tičar Lodge for refreshments and stunning views.

FULL disclosure I was completely intimidated by the thought of this drive. I am glad we did it because it was such a joy!

me slaying the Vrsic Pass!

Would you rather someone else do the driving??? You can take guide tours from Bled, Bohinj, and even Kranjska Gora that include the Vršič Pass! Shop your options on Get Your Guide!

Lake Jasna (Jezero Jasna) Slovenia

As we continued our journey, suddenly the most stunning emerald-green lake with a mirror-like surface reflecting the surrounding mountains came into view. You’ll want to work a little time into your schedule for this one!

Get more details: in my Jasna Lake article!

crystal clear water at Jezero Jasna Lake in Slovenia reflect the surrounding mountains
crystal clear water at Jezero Jasna Lake in Slovenia reflect the surrounding mountains

Vintgar Gorge (Slovenia)

Make this stunning mile long gorge a priority! Transverse wooden boardwalks and bridges deep below in the valley of this gorge. Allow 1.5 hours round trip from entrance. See the official website for details.

Vintgar Gorge Slovenia
Vintgar Gorge

*** Day 8 ***

Lake Bled

where to stay: night 2/2

total driving: minimal

Lake Bled Day (locals pronounce it “Blade”)

Lake Bled seen from Bled Castle Slovenia
Lake Bled

Laundry day!
Our first stop of the day was to drop off our laundry first thing. We picked it up later in the day, washed, dried and folded! 15 euros per load for same day service. (Anze Stalc) Trough 63 4260 Bled, phone 041 575 522 address that is from their map: Pralnica Perila MANA, Koritno 63, 4260 Bled. Don’t forget to pick it up before they close!

Bled castle
We then drove straight to Bled Castle in an attempt to beat the crowds. The castle itself was alright. The real draw to this 1,000-year-old cliff hanging castle is the intoxicating views of Lake Bled and surrounding mountains! Outstanding! Pricey paid parking at the castle, restaurant with nice views.

Parking travel tip: Repark the car. Parking in Bled can be challenging. We parked at the Luge lot for free! We never had to show any proof that we were paying customers.

around the lake
There’s a 3.5-mile path that surrounds lake Bled. Here are some options for getting around the lake: Walk, rent a bike or an ebike, or a tourist train (stops along the way)

boat ride
A boat ride to the island in the center of the lake-the island and the cute church that occupies are what make up the iconic view of lake bled. To get to the island: electric boat tour OR Cruise over on a Pletna boat (these are the traditional passenger row boats) or rent a rowboat and row yourself over.

Pletna Boats lake Bled Slovenia
Pletna Boats

Summer tobogganing at Straza Mountain.
We took a few turns on the toboggan run! It was a little expensive but fun, something I’ve been wanting to do for a while.

Where to eat: anywhere along the lake with a view! The food may or may not be great, but the views are guaranteed to be! Be sure to try the Kremna Rezina or kremsnita layer of cream, layer of custard between sheets of crisp crust.

Massage
By now your muscles probably could use a massage, consider making an appointment for tonight to cap off your day.

travel day Slovenia / Austria

*** Day 9 ***

Lake Bohinj / Savica Waterfall / Hochosterwitz Castle

where to stay: night 1/2: in or near Hallstatt. We stayed at Welterbe-Wirtshaus Steegwirt (Bad Goisern) because it was central to Hallstatt and Gosausee. Its a 400-year-old building with a mountain backdrop. Simply gorgeous! prices starting at: $240 per night guest rating: 9.4

total travel time: 4.5 hours of driving

Lake Bohinj (Slovenia)

The next morning you’ll need to get an early start. Head for Lake Bohinj ( BOH-heen) and stop and get pictures of the Zlatorog the Goldenhorn first thing! It’s going to get crowded.

Lake Bohinj Slovenia
Lake Bohinj

Savica (sah-VEET-seh) Waterfall
This is a moderate to strenuous 20-minute uphill trail 553 stairs) to a remarkably pure pool of aquamarine snowmelt. Bring cash for the small fee. 1.4 miles round trip.
Tip: bring your hiking poles for this one!

*** drive to Hochosterwitz Castle

Burg Hochosterwitz Castle

Hochosterwitz Castle, one of the most famous Austrian landmarks, is a 9th century medieval fortress that’s perched on rock high above the valley below. Take the funicular up because I know you must be tired at this point and there’s lots more to come! We drove about an hour out of the way to visit this castle but I would say it was worth it!

Get more details: in my Hochosterwitz article!

*** Drive to your hotel

Dinner options: If you are staying at the recommended Welterbe-Wirtshaus Steegwirt save yourself the trouble and have dinner there. The food is DELICIOUS!

Burg Hochosterwitz Castle Austria
A closer look at Burg Hochosterwitz Castle, the formidable castle on the hill

Austria

*** Day 10 ***

Hallstatt and Gosausee

where to stay: night 2/2

total drive time: about an hour

Hallstatt (Austria)

Head for your day trip to Hallstatt early because if there ever was a time to practice crowd beating tips it is now!

The charming small town of Hallstatt sits prettily on the shores of beautiful Lake Hallstatt, surrounded by majestic mountains and lush forests. Another UNESCO site and yet another of my bucket list destinations! Traditional Alpine architecture and colorful houses built into the mountainside, each one adorned with flower boxes and views of the swan studded lake! Choose from things like:

  • the bone chapel that contains hundreds of human bones and skulls
  • Roman ruins
  • getting out on the lake
  • OR above the little town for a unique perspective
  • the 700-year-old salt mine.

Lunch: same as before, anywhere along the lake with a view! The food may or may not be great, but the views are guaranteed to be!

Get more details: in my Hallstatt article (that includes crow beating tips!)

Hallstatt Austria things to do and crowd beating tips in this bucket list destination
Hallstatt Austria things to do and crowd beating tips in this bucket list destination

Now after an early lunch, get the heck out of town, because it’s about to get real crowded.

Gosausee (Austria)

In order to avoid the crowds in Hallstatt, I headed to another lake. Gosausee. The crystal-clear emerald green lake reflects the surrounding majestic mountain range. There’s a picturesque trail that circles the lake, or head up the cable car for views of the lake from above. Gosausee is a popular tourist destination too, however nowhere as crowded as the city center of Hallstatt! (25-minute drive from Hallstatt)

Get more details: In my article on how to plan the perfect trip to Gosausee, the prettiest place on earth!

Gosausee Lake Austria mountain reflection, prettiest place on earth! Gosausee Dachstein
Photo: Gosausee Dachstein mountain refection on the lake

Dinner: I’d eat dinner at the restaurant on Gosausee Lake. The restaurants in Hallstatt can close up pretty early. (We ended up getting stuck eating gas station food! HA HA HA!)

Round 2 Hallstatt

Now that the midday and late afternoon crowds have dissipated it’s time to head back to Hallstatt for sunset views and a romantically lit evening!

*** Day 11 ***

Drive to Salzburg / explore Salzburg

where to stay: Night 1/3: Bloberger Hof, this one is highly recommended, by me! You could stay in the hustle and bustle of the city, but you won’t need your car while there and you’ll likely pay a premium for parking. Bloberger Hof has free private parking and is conveniently located near a bus stop that goes to the city center. Our balcony had mountain views and the food was delicious! 10/10 for me! prices starting at: $140 per night guest rating: 9.2!

total travel time: 1.5 hours

***Drive to Salzburg: 1.5 hours. You have two options here. Let the GPS show you the most direct route OR take the Salzkammergut Scenic drive (Hwy 145 N to north of Bad Ischl and then take the 158 to Salzburg)

Check into your hotel (too early? They should be able to store your luggage)

PURCHASE SALZBURG CARD (your hotel probably sells them) whic covers many of the recommended attractions in this article, ride area buses for free, a free round trip boat ride and more! Discounts on the hop-on-hop-off bus tours and more! If you plan on visiting many attractions it’s a good idea to get a Salzburg Card. We figure it saved us about 30 euros per person over the 3 days.

Head to Salzburg Old Town City Centre: We jumped on the bus, easy and free of charge with our Salzburg cards!

Charming Salzburg Old Town, (Altstadt) Austria: Day 1

a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of the very best-preserved European cities. The unique architecture is a fanciful mixture of baroque architecture and Gothic, which gives the town a decidedly ornate appearance. You will simply fall in love with it! To further add to its charm Salzburg is surrounded by mountains which provide a stunning backdrop.

Salzburg is the birthplace of Mozart, and they are proud of it! There are so many neat Mozart related things to do, I wrote an entire article: Mozart in Salzburg

Get more information: I’ll be working on a Salzburg itinerary next, with everything you need to know. Stay tuned!

Day 1 Salzburg highlights include:

  • Mozart’s Birthplace (Mozart was born here in 1756.)
  • Getreidegasse is the very crowded main drag in old Salzburg, which looks much like it did in Mozart’s day.
  • The Mozart Family Residence (after they moved from the birthplace)
  • Mirabelle Gardens and Dwarf Park (Mirabelle Palace is worth a look too!)

Total walking about 1.5 miles

Get more information: I’ve got a more in depth look at Salzburg in my 3-Day Salzburg Itinerary

Salzburg Austria
The Catacombs is a great place to get photos of beautiful Salzburg

*** Day 12 ***

Salzburg Day 2

where to stay: night 2/3

total travel time: none!

Salzburg Day 2 Highlights:

  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Statue
  • Italian fountains
  • Salzburg Cathedral (Salzburger Dom) where Mozart was baptized and served as organist for two years
  • St. Peter’s church and Catacombs: Medieval hermit monks lived here.

Hohensalzburg Fortress (Festung Hohensalzburg)

Take the funicular (skip the line with the Salzburg card!) up to the 1,000 year old Hohensalzburg Castle, also known as the Hohensalzburg Fortress is a medieval fortress perched high on Festungsberg Mountain overlooking charming Salzburg. It offers panoramic vistas of Salzburg’s fanciful rooftops and surrounding mountains.

The expansive eight-acre fortress complex, a nice place to grab an ice cream and wader, has about of 50ish buildings. Consider attending one of the world class Mozart Dinner Concerts at the Fortress.

*** Day 13 ***

Salzburg Day 3 (Hellbrunn Palace and Mozart Dinner Concert)

where to stay: night 3/3

total travel time: almost none

Schloss Hellbrunn Palace and Gardens

Drive to Schloss Hellbrunn, also known as Hellbrunn Palace, a baroque palace located on the outskirts of Salzburg. Built in the 1600’s, what makes Hellbrunn so special are the dozens of playful trick fountains located in the gardens. The water features that were designed to entertain guests. The palace interior is stunningly decorated and worth seeing for its intricate frescoes and ornate furnishings.

Hellbrunn Palace Landmarks in Austria
Hellbrunn Palace

You have the rest of the day free. Might I suggest relaxing? A massage? Your choice.

Mozart Dinner Concert

This unique experience is a MUST elegant baroque setting, three courses of food, Mozart era recipes, three 20-minute courses of music. It was the BEST EXPERIENCE! Located in Stiftskeller St. Peter restaurant. The Mozart family frequented this restaurant, and Charlemagne ate here in 803, making it perhaps the oldest restaurant in Europe. Book it on Get Your Guide!

travel day

*** Day 14 ***

drive from Salzburg to the airport

where to stay: I like to stay close to the airport. We stayed at Best Western Hotel Airport Frankfurt

total travel time: It’s the last day so head back to the airport, for us, Frankfurt International: 4 hours (according to Google maps but only IF the autobahn isn’t congested.)

Looking for something to do on the route from Salzburg to Frankfurt? Here are a couple of options:

  • Furstenfeld Abbey Monastery church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary near Munich for jeweled skeletons.
  • Wurzburg Palace is stunning if you haven’t already been.
  • Burg Frankenstein for dinner? You’ll need to make a reservation but it’s only a half hours drive from the airport. Mary Shelley was a visitor to this castle 2 years before penning her novel.

When is the best time to go?

Spring and Fall are ideal times to visit this region of Europe. However, mountain regions may already or still be dealing with snow.
Winters are cold. Expect to deal with winter weather road conditions, particularly because most of this Germany Slovenia Austria itinerary is located in the mountainous Alps region. Some mountain passes may be closed.
Summer is prime time to visit for summer activities like swimming and boating but it will be crowded.

crowd beating tips

The common sense rule of thumb for avoiding the worst crowds at popular tourist attractions are:

  • Visit early morning or late in the day (i.e., the first or last tour of the day)
  • Weekdays are often less crowded than weekends.
  • Travel in the shoulder or off season

When in Rome

If you’re like me, then the best part of the trip is usually the food! When in Rome, try the local cuisine!

When in Rome: Slovenia Cuisine

  • Burek: Savory phyllo-dough pastry
  • Struklji: dumpling cakes stuffed with cheese, meat etc.
  • Repa is a turnip prepared like sauerkraut.
  • Not common to ask for tap water but try asking for a voda iz pipe.
  • Potica walnut roll

When in Rome: Austrian dishes

  • Eiernockerl (their version of spaetzle with cheese and fried onions)
  • Speckknodel (dumplings with ham and bacon mixed in, served with broth)
  • Mozart cake
  • Salzburger Nockerl, (souffle resembling mountain peaks with a snowy dusting of sugar)

when in Rome German Food:

German food, you know the basics…wurst, schnitzel…I love German food so much I wrote an entire article on it! Learn all about the best German food you simply MUST try!

cost and money saving tips

the cost

How much can you expect to spend on this “road trip Austria Germany Slovenia” trip?

(2023 rates)
Hotel (based on double occupancy$1,900 (14 nights)
rental car$722 (Enterprise)
Tours and admission$800
estimated total for two people$3,422 = (plus the cost of food/drinks)

(prices are an approximation)

Don’t forget to add the cost of airfare (we fly free, learn how here!) PLUS sign up for “Going” (formerly Scott’s Cheap Flights) to get FREE flight deals sent to your inbox! see the world for less!

Want to take that trip you’ve always dreamed of but not sure how to pay for it? Here are some easy budget friendly ways to pay for your Austrian road trip.

Protect yourself with trip insurance

Road trips in Austria cost money. Protect your investment with “cancel for any reason” trip insurance. Shop for one at Travel Insurance.com! but don’t delay, most CFAR policies need to be purchased within 14-21 days of your initial trip payment, depending on the policy.

Travel Resources

Check out my Travel Resources page to learn how to get the best deals on airfare, rental cars for your Austrian road trip, accommodations, language learning resources and more!

Plan your road trip

Want to create your own unique Germany Slovenia Austria Road trip? Plan the perfect road trip in just 6 simple steps! Get the best Europe travel Guide: You only really need one book! The absolute best books on traveling Europe!

don’t forget to check here to plan a trip to Germany or anywhere in Europe on a budget!

Nervous about not speaking German or Slovenian? No problem! I have a guide to overcoming the travel language barrier so you can relax and enjoy your travels!

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2 Comments

  1. Thank you Angie from Kansas for your blog. Im looking to do a road trip vacation frankfurt to slovenia in 10 days. I would obviously have to cut out some of your stops but it looks like it is doable. I am from canada, nova scotia so lakes and ocean are common here. I do like the mid evil towns and alps. We are traveling end of june and dont want go anywheres too …hot. any tips you could offer would be appreciated.
    Thx in advance
    Cindy from Nova Scotia

    1. Cindy, how exciting for you! Hopefully you can give a little more time to the amazing medieval town of Rothenburg. We have been there before but I can’t hardly drive by it without stopping so we just spent a few hours there on an overnight stop. Hallstatt was simply magical but crowds may be at their peak that time of the year. If you follow the crowd beating tips in my Hallstatt article it may be a more pleasant experience. Back when I was a child living in Germany a/c wasn’t really needed in that part of the world. Sadly, that isn’t always so anymore. It may be quite warm during the day. I believe that Slovenia was the coolest place we visited and anywhere that you can get up into the mountains will be cooler.

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