Amazing places to visit when teaching English in Austria
Teaching English in Austria might not be as mainstream as hitting the classroom in Thailand, or even Europe’s own Italy and France, but there’s still room for TEFL grads to come to the erstwhile epicentre of the Habsburg empire. There are loads of reasons you might be magnetized to this corner of the continent, whether by grand palaces and mysterious coffee lounges, or world-class ski fields and stunning mountain vistas. Let’s take a look…
Vienna – of course
There’s really no better place to begin your new life in Austria than in the pulsing capital of Vienna. A cityscape of rattling trams and cobbled lanes, of coffee houses where Freud once munched on strudels, and great Gothic churches, it hits a zenith at the Hofburg Palace – the home of the Habsburgs. Anyone teaching English in Austria with a penchant for culture certainly won’t be disappointed by that, and it’s the same story over at the Schönbrunn and the Kunsthistorisches Museum, where European masterworks by Raphael, Caravaggio, and Brueghel await.
The Ötztal Valley
Hiker, climber, skier – there’s hardly an active person who’s not catered for in the great valley of Ötztal. One of the jewels of the Tyrol, it’s all cute mountain towns topped by spiky church steeples and strewn with rhododendron blooms. Of course, the colder months change things, with Solden and Obergurgl opening their gondolas to ridges that gaze across the Italian Dolomites. Other draws include the spine-tingling prehistory of Ötzi Village, where the tale of the mummified ancient Iceman of the Alps is told.
Set in a dramatic basin of snow-capped Alps and wooded slopes just on the cusp of Germany, Salzburg is famed as the filming spot for The Sound of Music, and as the home of the maestro Mozart. More than anything, it’s a gorgeous place to be. Stone-clad lanes wiggle around the Salzach River, while white-painted castles that were raised by salt barons crown the mountains overhead. Just grabbing a coffee and enjoying the view is usually enough for most.
The Zillertal Valley
The wide Zillertal Valley is another of the great ski and alpine sports destinations that splinters into the high Alps south of the country’s main divide. When the snows fall, folk teaching English in Austria can head here to conquer the cloud-splintering runs that weave and wiggle down from the 3,250-meter high glaciers of Hintertux. Alternatively, you can stay lower and pull 360s on the halfpipes of Mayrhofen’s famous trick park. When spring pops back into action, edelweiss and daisies grace the hillsides, and 100s of miles of trekking beckons around pretty towns like Fugen and Finkenberg.
Zell am See
A paradise shrouded by the Alps of the Saalbach-Hinterglemm, Zell am See is up there with the most handsome countryside retreats in Europe, surely. Anchoring the town itself is a green-blue lake – frozen in winter and dusted in snow; sparkling in summer and beckoning wild swimmers. High above is the glacier resort of Kaprun, with challenging black runs and jaw-dropping views across to the Grossglockner – Austria’s highest peak.
Arty, cool, and cutting-edge, Linz offers anyone teaching English in Austria a vibrant weekend break. A big tech and university hub, it is positively brimming with energy – you’ll see that on Friday nights in the riverside beer halls. It’s also blessed with a beautiful Baroque-era Old Town, where it’s a downright pleasure to get lost amid the electronic arts centers, the soaring church steeples, and the flying buttresses of the 19th-century New Cathedral.
Are you tempted by the amazing destinations above? Want to visit them while you’re teaching English in Austria? Get started with TEFL by heading over to our courses page. Or, if you’re a veteran of teaching English in Austria, we’d love to hear any additions you have to this list in the comments below…