Mirabell Palace (Schloss Mirabell)
Mirabell Palace offers a romantic history as well as an excellent example of baroque architecture. In 1606, Wolf Dietrich von Raitenau, the Prince Archbishop of Salzburg, had this splendid palace built for his mistress Salome Alt. Another prince archbishop had the palace redesigned by prominent baroque architect Johann Lukas von Hilterbrandt in the 1700s. Today, it’s the official seat of Salzburg’s mayor and is famous for its pristine gardens.
Romantics and architecture lovers alike will want to make the Marble Hall a first stop. The grand room survived a massive fire in 1818 and is regarded as one of the world’s finest wedding venues. Look for the sculptures, by great Austrian artist Georg Raphael Donner, that adorn the marble staircase, which fortunately survived the 1818 fire.
Gardeners and those who appreciate nature will be drawn to the impressive landscaping. The gardens here are a horticultural masterpiece and offer excellent photo opportunities with the palace as a backdrop. Check out the Pegasus Fountain, surrounded by statues by Ottavio Mosto representing the four elements: earth, water, air and fire. At the Dwarf Garden you’ll find sculptures modeled on real-life people from the 1700s.
The palace and its gardens have an important connection to music. Scenes from the 1965 movie The Sound of Music were filmed here, and a young Mozart performed concerts in the Marble Hall with his sister. In spring and summer, you can listen to choirs and orchestras at the Hedge Theater. The Marble Hall hosts the Salzburg Palace Concerts, including performances by the Vienna and Berlin Philharmonic Orchestras.
Mirabell Palace is situated on the eastern banks of the Salzach River, within walking distance of the western side of Kapuzinerberg. From Getreidegasse, cross the pedestrian-only Makartsteg bridge. Public buses stop on the streets surrounding the garden.
The palace and gardens are open daily, except during special events, and have varying opening hours. Note, however, that the Dwarf Garden and Hedge Theater are closed during winter months.