I woke up today to this beautiful sunny day with a view to the snowy mountains. Is there any better way to wake up?
I was dreading going to breakfast because I knew that we had to have the talk with the guy in charge who let us wait for 10 minutes and placed us next to the sick old lady coughing in my breakfast yesterday morning. By the way, I think I caught her cold because I am fighting with runny nose since yesterday.
As we were exiting the lift to my surprise, the lady at the reception instantly greeted us with a huge smile on her face. As we entered the restaurant, the guy in charge appeared at once and as I said my name, he immediately showed us to our usual table. I stayed far away as my bf whispered to him and he immediately looked around and showed us to another table. I felt like in the twilight zone since the staff was behaving completely different, so friendly and helpful, definitely not what I experienced yesterday.
As we sat down at the other table and the guy in charge brought plates and cups and cutlery, everybody around us stopped and was looking directly at us. I pretended not to notice and after some time the people went back to their breakfast and we also enjoyed our breakfast more than yesterday.
The weather today is heavenly and instead of spending such a lovely day in the hotel or in the gym, I decided to take the lift and go to the top of the mountain and enjoy the fresh air and sun.
We went through the park on the way to the lift and these poor ducklings gathered as they heard our voice. I think they were hungry and were hoping for some crumbs but i didn’t have anything with me.
The park took us next to the cross country skiing slopes where I usually ski (unfortunately I will have to skip it on this trip, so much to do and so little time) and this view of the creek. Have I mentioned how much I love the mountains and this city? It’s so beautiful!
By the time I got to the top of the mountain, the sun disappeared and dark clouds appeared instead. It got colder and windy. Obviously my first stop was at the bar for a hot mulled wine.
Usually this place and the mountains and the slopes are full with people but apparently it’s still too early in the season because everything is so empty but that is just better for us!
Before you ask, I am not a skiing person. I enjoy the mountains, the fresh air, the sun but I do not ski, well not really ski, if you don’t count cross country skiing, which I like mainly because the slope is not too steep and fast.
Why I don’t ski, that’s a whole different story.
About 10 years ago, I had my first skiing experience with rented skies which were not really set up for me and I had absolutely no knowledge about how to ski or brake. I simply put on the skies and started to go down. Young and stupid, you know?
By the time I got to the bottom and almost reached the woods, I shouted back to my friends, who were still up cheering for me, how can I stop. None of them knew, we were all newbies. So I did what everybody would do in this situation, I made myself fall down, which is the right decision, unless you fall so bad that you twist your legs completely, which I did, but the worst part was that the skies didn’t fall off so I think I seriously injured myself (I didn’t go to the doctor to have it checked out. Young and stupid, remember?).
My friends came to my rescue and helped me out of my skies and to get up but I spent the rest of my vacation in the cottage with ice on my ankes and knees. I have pains and problems with my ankles and knees ever since.
Fast forward to 6-7 years ago, when I first came to the mountains in Austria, feeling super motivated to try skiing again. I took lessons but the group was too big and while most of them advanced quickly to ski on the actual slopes after only 1-2 days, I stayed on the beginners slope for 5 days.
Back then I blamed the trainers and the big group, but in reality it was my fear of the speed and I worried that I won’t be able to break on time, just like during my first time. At the end of the vacation, I mastered the beginners slope and ended up loving skiing, I even woke up at 7 am after New Year’s Eve to be the first on the beginner slope but I still didn’t dare to go on the real slopes.
I ended the trip and my vacation feeling happy and excited to come back skiing again soon, which we did lots of times afterwards but instead of my skiing technique improving, it got worst. I tried different skies, different beginner slopes, different ski schools, different trainers but I was never that good again.
I started ski schools every time excited, being the best in the group (obviously since I did the first exercises hundreds of times with the other schools), but when it got serious and we had to go up on the mountain and on the real slope, I froze and quit.
Anyways, I eventually decided a few years ago to stop trying completely and focus on other winter sports that are less dangerous, like ice skating and cross country skiing.
Nevertheless if I would be trying skiing for the first time again, I would definitely do it differently. This is something that should not be taken lightly, like I did, and should be learnt properly to avoid injuries and other kinds of trauma.
Although a lot of people I talk to don’t quite understand, I still come to the mountains often but I don’t have to ski to enjoy my vacation. There are so many other things I can do, ice skating or x-country skiing or going to the spa or enjoying the cakes and coffees, and also so many other things that I would like to try, snow hiking is for example high on my list!
OK, enough with the sad stories, let’s get back to today and enjoy this beautiful scenery.
I usually spend the day on the top of the mountain but today wasn’t so sunny and warm so I had to cut it short.
Since this is our last day here and tomorrow we’ll be heading back, I’ve saved the best for last:
Afternoon coffee and cake at Cafe Schwaiger, my all-time favorite!
Dinner at Salzburgerhof, we’ve been here so often that the staff already knows us and we always get the same table!
To my surprise, Salzburgerhof has new owners and they changed a lot with the hotel and restaurant.
My favorite waiter is no longer here and instead of his friendly face I had 4 nervous young waiters around us constantly, it was annoying me at the end.
Even though the restaurant stayed pretty much the same, rustical with wood everywhere, the table setting got too fancy now for my taste, I had at least 15 pieces of cutlery and a bunch of glasses and stuff on the table, most of which I didn’t even need and these were then slowly taken away as we ordered.
It took 30 minutes till they finally took our order, because first we ordered drinks and they took away the glasses, then they offered bread and butter, then more bread, then they finally took our order but then took away most of the cutlery because we ordered a main course only, and all this was done by 4 different unorganized people! I feel like they ruined my favorite restaurant!
If I would come here for the first time and I would see the table setup, I would not come in. I want simple and traditional, if I come to the mountains. I usually don’t even bring fancy clothes for such fancy restaurants.
The food was really good though so we might give them a second chance when we come back next time in a few months.
I had the veal Wiener Schnitzel and my bf had the steak. Both were delicious!
Hamplplatz 5, Bad Hofgastein
Kaiser-Franz-Platz 1 II A-5630 Bad Hofgastein
Today is a travel day, we’re driving back and from tomorrow we get back to our normal routine.
We left early and luckily caught no traffic jams. There are not so many people traveling today. This is good also because we have time for my secret plan to stop at the Ingolstadt Village outlet to do a bit of shopping. We also need to get back to the city early enough before the stores close to get some groceries.
More pictures here.