The views from the fortress in the direction of both the city and the Alps are exceptional. On a clear day you can literally see for miles around. The largest peak visible from this vantage point is the Untersberg. At it's highest point, it is 1972 metres tall. Pretty small by Alpine standards but imposing nonetheless.
Untersberg is probably the nearest accessible mountain from Salzburg and offers excellent views of the city (see photo) and the surrounding area. It is also accessible by public transport - take bus number 25 from the old town side of Mozart-steg (the bridge nearest Mozartplatz). The bus stops right oustide the cable-car terminus.
On top of the mountain there is the usual cafe and gift shop and there are several different trails marked out of different lengths and difficulty so you could spend an hour up at the top or the whole day if you wish. There are also some plaques dotted around the trails detailing information about the nature and wildlife of the mountain as well as the history and myths and legends relating to Untersberg.
What a spectacular day out, just a short 20min bus ride from the old town on bus number 25.
Up the cable car and then a short hike for amateurs like me to the Geiereck (1805 meters), visit the mountain climbers memorial, or walk to the Salzburg Hochthron mountain (1856 meters). From the summit, you'll be able to see the airport and Salzburg in the far distance, as well as the ice-capped Hohen Tauern mountains. You can sit on top of the mountain with a cold beer (or a walm coffee!) at the Zeppezauer house while on the Untersberg.
It's important to remember that you are in high-alpine country and that you should therefore have proper clothing and shoes.
More experienced mountaineers can visit ice caves and other peaks.
Free cable car with the Salzburg card.
We arrived mid-morning from Vienna, so while waiting for our friends to get home from work, we decided to take the tram up to the top of Der Untersberg. It's a very popular destination for day trips and located only a few miles from the city center. It's a mountain that offers plenty of things for different likes...hiking trails, a cable car that is available all year round, a bike trail, climbing routes, ice caves as well as mountain huts. But the most impressing thing about the mountain is the natural beauty...going up by cable car gives you the opportunity to get to the top fast, but also you get to enjoy the splendid views of the nearby Alps. It costs $18.00 EU to take the tram up and back.
Untersberg mountain is just outside Salzburg, to the south, and on a clear day, you have amazing views. On a not so clear day, you have amazing views going up, until you hit the clouds...
This didn't stop us, and we figured we should just go up there, so paid the €17 return cable car ride, and hoped for the best!
The actual cable car took around 10 minutes, and the scenery was great! You go pretty high up (1200 metres), and on a clear day, it is possible to walk a bit further to a restaurant (it was impossible when we were there!).
Looking down on Salzburg, the fort looked tiny!
At the top there was little to do because of the clouds, so got the next car down, which was packed full of people, although on the way up, it was just us two.
When you arrive at Salzburg Airport, the Untersberg Mountain is the large mountain you see, when leaving the main terminal.
Untersberg is Salzburg's tallest mountain and you can take a cable car (furnicular) up to the top to walk around and reach the peak. Legend has it that Charlemagne never died, but sleeps in the heart of Mt. Untersberg, to wake when the "need of the empire is at it's greatest." There is a restaurant at the top and bottom of the mountain.