Where to go: Austria′s most Visited Places

Without much doubt, the usual suspects of sightseeing spots in Austria are Vienna and Salzburg, followed by Tyrol and the Salzkammergut. Other hot-spots for international visitors are the lakes of Carinthia - and obviously the skiing areas of Vorarlberg, Tyrol and southern Salzburg for winter tourism. Now, being a nerdy person myself with interests in biology, history and literature and fine arts, I used to focus very much on urban tourism in Austria as well as "conventional" sightseeing.

A pretty place between the Alps, Opera and mass graves: AustriaRecently, I had a conversation with a colleague of mine, whose parents own a hotel. He pointed out to me that his hometown was among the top-ten tourist destinations in Austria - to my great surprise. This was simply because it is in the middle of a very popular skiing area; a no-skier like me misses out on this important aspect of the Austrian tourism industry. Therefore, TourMyCountry.com has a few significant gaps.

This made me look up a ranking of the numbers of booking arrangements (total number of nights spent in a place by a tourist) and there were even more surprises to come. The ranking was published by the "Statistik Austria" (Austrian Institute of Statistics, a governmental organisation) and thus I regard it as a rather reliable piece of information.

A fair number of the apparent top-10 paces to go in Austria were towns I didn′t know. Usually skiing destinations or hiking hot-beds. Unsurprisingly, winter and summer seasons show quite different results. The data was collected in 2006, but variations are small and thus representative for other years. Here they are:

Summer Tourism: Where to go

Numbers in Thousands (eg. 720 is 720,000 overnight stays by visitors)

Name Total Foreign Domestic
Vienna 5,456 933 4,512
Salzburg 1,367 314 1,053
St. Kanzian (Carinthia) 719 441 278
Mittelberg (Vorarlberg) 717 9.5 708
Innsbruck 696 152 545
Villach (Carinthia) 617 238 379
Zell am See (Salzburg) 588 73 515
Seefeld (Tyrol) 558 23 535
Eben (Tyrol) 537 42 495
Mayrhofen (Tyrol) 535 50 485

Winter Tourism: Where to go

Numbers in Thousands (eg. 720 is 720,000 overnight stays by visitors)

Name Total Foreign Domestic
Vienna 3,910 3,049 861
Sölden (Tyrol) 1,728 1,663 65
1,392 1,142 250
Ischgl (Tyrol) 1,195 1,111 84.5
St. Anton (Tyrol) 912 828.5 84
Obertauern (Salzburg) 892 667 225.5
Salzburg 868 622.5 245
Lech (Vorarlberg) 833 702.5 130
Mayrhofen 827 788 39
Neustift (Tyrol) 764 747 17


Further Reading

Places to go: Top-111 Sightseeing Attractions

Vienna's Most-visited Attractions

Statistik Austria: Federal Bureau of Statistics

back to "tours & trips"