Posted by
Member since Jan 2022
1 post

Austria/Hungary/Switzerland advice

My wife and I are looking to go on separate trips to Switzerland and the Austria/Hungary regions.
The Switzerland trip would cover Geneva/Montreux/Zermatt interlaken area (grindenwald and lauterbrunnen)/Lucerne/Zurich.
The Austria/Hungary trip would cover Vienna/Budapest/Hallstatt/Salzburg areas.

Based on the timing, we are looking to do one trip during the early summer time and one in early December. Any advice on what area of the two would be better in summer vs winter? We both are active and like hiking/skiing/outdoor activities/etc. We are also excited about seeing the Christmas/winter scenes in both of those areas. Any recommendations?

Baton Rouge
Member since Jan 2011
370 posts

If you have enough time, consider adding Prague and/or Munich to Austria/Hungary trip. I hit Vienna, Salzburg, Budapest, Munich and Prague on a 10 day trip, but we like to move around.

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New Orleans
Member since Jul 2014
7827 posts

I mentioned this in a thread a few days ago. My advice for skiing is as follows - From Zermatt, take the cable car up the Kline Matterhorn which is the mountain next to and overlooking the Matterhorn. I did not ski but we did spend the day up there and I can tell you it is very popular with the most expert of skiers. And the scenery is the most spectacular I have ever seen.

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Member since May 2008
13120 posts


The Austria/Hungary trip would cover Vienna/Budapest/Hallstatt/Salzburg areas.

If you plan to ski do Innsbruck in December. Great town with easy access to a bunch of different ski areas. Not sure if they still do it but most hotels had a ski bus that would take you up and make a couple of runs back to the hotel.

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H2O Tiger
Dallas, TX
Member since May 2021
3188 posts

I've been to Switzerland (Lucerne) in the Spring and did Austria (Salzburg/Vienna) at Christmas. So I can only speak to those two.

We spent Christmas in Vienna and it may be my favorite city in Europe. We loved exploring the Christmas Markets an walking around town with a mug of mulled wine.

Lucerne is beautiful but there isn't a ton to do there. That probably won't be an issue for you all as it's just a stop on a larger trip.

If you do Austria/Hungary in the winter, fly into Munich and spend a day or two there. Their Christmas market winds through the streets and is a very cool experience. Also, Bratislava is a very easy day trip from Vienna (They have a train every hour or so).

Either way you'll enjoy yourselves!

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Floating Change Up
Houston Astros Fan
Member since Dec 2013
9933 posts

Honestly, there is no wrong answer with your travel dilemma.

But if you ski, it would be very odd to me if you passed an opportunity to ski one of the most iconic ski regions in the world.

I’ve made two ski trips to lauterbrunnen. It will not disappoint.

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Missouri Fan
Dirty STL
Member since Sep 2013
14102 posts

I did Christmas markets in Vienna and Budapest(along with 8 other cities) 3 years ago. Vienna probably had the best Christmas market's out of them all, Budapest was very average. nothing to brag about.

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