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The Salzkammergut

The Salzkammergut is a landscape and historical cultural area in Austria, on the northern edge of the Alps. The region extends over the border area of today's provinces of Upper Austria, Salzburg and Styria.

Historically, the Salzkammergut is a region in Upper Austria, the Habsburg private property in around Bad Ischl and Hallstatt, in particular the property administered by the Salt Superior Office of Gmunden was called "Salzkammergut" and included the region of the Inner Salzkammergut and later Ebensee and Gmunden. Today, the term Salzkammergut more generally encompasses a region that stretches from Lake Fuschl, Lake Wolfgang and Lake Mondsee into the Alm Valley, from the Vöckla Valley to the Dachstein and the Grimming. In the west, the Salzkammergut extends to the eastern city limits of Salzburg. 

Geology and Landscape

Geologically, the region is characterized by the Limestone Alps, morphologically by a low mountain range in which numerous lakes are located.

The landscape of the Salzkammergut is characterized by the Traun river system with a total of 76 larger and smaller lakes, the Salzkammergut mountains and the surrounding mountains (Dachstein, Totes Gebirge, Osterhorn group, Traunstein and Höllengebirge). Because of its location at the edge of the Alps, the Salzkammergut has a share in three graded landscape types: the largely flat Alpine foothills in the north, the low mountain range of the flysch zone and the Northern Limestone Alps in the alpine area. The Upper Austrian and Styrian parts of the Salzkammergut are characterized by the ice-age Dachstein glacier.

Culture and Tradition

Die Region ist neben landschaftlichem Reiz auch durch ihre althergebrachten Bräuche und Traditionen bekannt, die nur dort so ausgeübt werden. Gerade diese volkskulturelle Eigenständigkeit hat der Region den Beinamen „zehntes Bundesland Österreichs“ eingebracht. Bekannte Großveranstaltungen im Salzkammergut sind zum Beispiel die Glöcklerläufe und das alljährlich stattfindende Narzissenfest im Ausseerland.

Auch die Tracht hat hier einen hohen Stellenwert, und daher gibt es im Salzkammergut noch alte Handwerksberufe wie Schneider, Schuhmacher oder Lederhosenmacher.

Das Salzkammergut übte mit seiner romantischen Landschaft auf Künstler seit jeher einen besonderen Reiz aus. Die Gegend wurde zum Zufluchtsort städtischer Betriebsamkeit und bot ein ideales Sujet für Künstler, darunter einige der größten österreichischen Maler des 19. und 20. Jahrhunderts.

Bedeutend sind heute außerdem das Lehár Festival Bad Ischl, das Salzkammergut Mozartfestival, die Festwochen Salzkammergut und Heinrich Schiffs Musiktage Mondsee.

Economy

Economically, the Salzkammergut is mainly characterized by tourism. It has a tradition of more than a century as a tourist region, which developed from the tradition of summer resorts. For example, Emperor Franz Joseph I had his summer domicile in Bad Ischl in the emperor's villa there, from where he ruled the entire empire in the warmer seasons.

The region is one of the most touristically developed areas in Austria. Recreational opportunities include swimming and water sports at the many lakes, mountain tourism, cycling and horseback riding vacations, winter sports, cultural events and local and upscale gastronomy. The region owes its reputation as a recreational area not only to its charming landscape with some climatically favorable areas, but also to many spas.

Industrial locations are Ebensee, Gmunden, Laakirchen and Steyrermühl. In addition, the Salzkammergut also benefits from its old tradition of small trade and commerce. In order to strengthen down-to-earth agriculture, traditional foods are increasingly emphasized in tourism. 

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)

Tourist Region Salzkammergut

Today, 63 municipalities are counted to the tourism region Salzkammergut. The largest part belongs to Upper Austria (shares in the district of Gmunden and district of Vöcklabruck), the Ausseerland belongs to Styria (district of Liezen). The smallest part belongs to the province of Salzburg (district of Salzburg-Umgebung).

The Salzkammergut is made up of eight regions:

  • Attersee-Attergau
  • Ausseerland
  • Bad Ischl
  • Dachstein
  • Fuschlsee region
  • Mondsee-Irrsee
  • Traunsee-Almtal
  • Wolfgangsee

This tourism region has been marketing itself since 2002 in the Salzkammergut Tourismus-Marketing GmbH, a holding company of the 63 Salzkammergut communities, which are allowed to use the name "Salzkammergut" as a trademark according to the tourism laws of the three federal states.

Source: Wikipedia