no matter where you go, there you are

Sunday, November 7, 2010

what will this day be like? i wonder...

Before I continue with my tour of Salzburg, I just want to talk about our hostel for a few. Anne and I got a private room, which was amazing and it had full size bunkbeds so we each got a very large bed to ourselves. We spent the evening chatting and planning the next day, making sure we'd hit all The Sound of Music points we hadn't yet seen. There were plenty and some had to be visited at specific times; and with me being the planner I am, planning was to be done. And after we caught up with life for the most part, to bed we went.

For breakfast, our hostel didn't offer any free stuff, but had 2 options for purchasing breakfast: 1) a coffee, bowl of cereal, roll and 2) unlimited. I was cheap and refused to pay. Anne had to eat so she got the unlimited. We both ended up eating. She just kept getting food and I ate half of it. Wonderful! And the best part was at the end when we took 6 extra rolls for later and Anne thought I was crazy for wanting to get more. We had room to stash them! back to my Sound of Music/Salzburg tour...first stop of the day was the Mirabell gardens once again. It was lightly cloudy, but not rainy and uber-gray so I wanted to get some more pictures, and as it was early in the day few people were around. We then went to the Mozart Wohnhaus, Mozart's residence when he wasn't traveling Europe as an adult. This museum was similar to the one visited the night before but had more history about Mozart's composition rather than his family. There was some about his parents, but the focus was on his acheivements. Next door to the museum is the Holy Trinity Church, where Mozart first played piano when he was a very young boy. It was small and empty, but nice. A very nice piece of musical history.

Holy Trinity Church

We then wandered over the river again, and with the better weather, and it being early instead of late in the day, the river was brighter and quite pretty. The Fortresshonhensalzburg sat high and mighty on the hillside and it was gorgeous in the early morning light.

Taking a similar path as the evening before, we wandered through the Residenzplatz again. It was easier to see this as the area where Maria splashes in the fountain during I Have Confidence but all the Christmas huts, people and the covered fountain didn't help. I admired the arches between the Residenzplatz and the plaza in front of the Domkirche, cause you know, Maria walks through them.

As with Innsbruck, Anne and I bought the Salzburg card, good for admission to almost all the attractions in Salzburg, most which are Sound of Music attractions. Though it took more effort than in Innsbruck to make sure we went to enough places where the admission totals would exceed the cost of the card, we made it worth the price and overall the cards make buying tickets smoother in general as well. A neat little place included in the card we decided to stop in was the Panorama Museum. Its simple inside, just a giant panorama painting of the city of Salzburg. There are a couple other Salzburg history items, but the center of the single room is the panorama, which from the outside looks like a giant cylinder. There's a door you enter through and the painting is enormous but fantabulous! A perfect 360 degree view of Salzburg as seen from the top of the Fortress. I loved it so much and a poster of the painting was only $10 so I got my souvenir!

bus stop!
Next, we explored the plaza on the other side of the church where Maria boarded the bus to the VonTrapps and we boaded the tram to the Fortress. The fortress is a castle, one of the largest medieval ones in Europe, that sits atop a large hill. Included in the admission to the fortress is a required audio tour where they take you through all the open to the public rooms and overlooks. It was really spectacular and the audio guide was very helpful. From one side, we had the perfect view of the Untersberg, the mountain which I hadn't seen the day before due to the bad weather. It is Maria's mountain, the mountain which she was brought up on, and the mountain where they filmed the final scene of the movie with the family hiking into "Switzerland." One of the factual errors of the movie, if you hiked over the Untersberg you'd really hike into Germany and come into contact with Hitler's "Eagle's Nest."
Schloss Leopoldskron from the Fortress

Salzburg and the Untersberg in all its glory

From the other side of the fortress, the view we'd just seen in the Panorama museum stood before me. It was gorgeous and really cool to see how nothing had really changed about this old city. If I compare my picture I took with my camera to the poster I now have hanging on my wall, I bet little would be different.

The Executioner's House - no one wants to be his neighbor

After the fortress tour ended, we took the hike down the steep slope leading from the castle and it's really amazing looking back up at the fortress how delicately balanced and built it is on top of the hill. The walkway we end up on is the one that leads to Nonnberg Abbey, so off we went to the church that started it all.

Recognizable because of its red onion dome, Nonnberg Abbey was founded way back in 714 and is the Abbey where Maria VonTrapp was a former novice, and where the movie was able to shoot a few exterior scenes. The production originally wanted to film inside the Abbey as well, but the Mother Abbess wouldn't allow it. Instead they built interiors in the Salzburg movie studio and shot those scenes on rainy days during production. The exterior gate and inner garden were used for shooting though. And it was fangirl heaven to be at the gate where Julie Andrews says "when God closes a door, somewhere he opens a window" right before she begins singing I Have Confidence.

We entered the inner garden from a separate entrance than the movie gate, so I was initially confused, but when we got to the door to the church and I turned to the left and saw the gate, I knew we were in the right place. The biggest dissapointment for me, which is quite pathetic if you really think about it, is that the bell rope they attached for the movie, and the nuns asked to leave up, wasn't there anymore. I was really looking forward to pulling the rope. But maybe too many fans had that same wish and broke it. I pretended to pull it anyway cause I'm a dork and was completely geeking out. Anne probably wished she didn't come with me.

Inside, the sanctuary was small and very dark and the coolest bit was that under the altar stairs you could see a basement room with candles lit. Eerie for sure. Back outside, I gawked at the gate some more, took even more pictures and then took a look out over the city from this side. It was then I realized how through editing the movie made it look like Nonnberg overlooked the downtown section of the city, not the other side of the hill. Very interesting, indeed. 

geeking out with the gate

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