Young Travel Writers 2015

Jessica, 13

Last updated 20th July 2022


Author: Jessica
Age: 13

Our family loves going on holiday – an unsurprising fact! However, what might be surprising is that we all want different things from our time abroad: while my brother Robert loves adventure, my dad just want to relax, and while my mum likes learning about the past in museums, I like finding out about current culture. It is normally difficult to find a holiday that suits all of us.

This is precisely the reason why our week-long holiday to Lake Wofgangsee in Austria was so fantastic. We stayed in a quaint hotel in Strobl, which is a tiny town at the edge of the lake. The snow-topped mountains stretched up into the clouds, the sky was blue, the grass was green and the water was as clear as a mirror – what a change from grey London…

We have been to many other stunning locations before, but I think the reason this holiday was so special was that there was something for everyone. Mum loved the museums and fabulous views atop the mountains, my brother Robert had fun tobogganing and sliding down a salt mine, I loved the Austrian delicacies at the hotel and dad got to relax by taking walks and going in the pool. What could be better?

This was a cycling holiday, meaning that we were given bikes and could cycle as much or little as we liked; a wonderful arrangement considering that our cycling knowledge before this was limited to short sessions in the park. We cycled to the village of Saint Wolfgang and to Saint Gilgen and took the bus to Bad Ischl, Hallstatt and Salzburg, which was only an hour away.

I have two highlights of the trip – taking the railway atop a mountain and walking around Salzburg:

The cog railway in Saint Wolfgang goes to the top of a mountain, which was simply fantastic. The summit was 1,783m high and the views were the best I had seen in my life. The 360º views of the lakes were phenomenal, and everything just seemed so tiny and surreal.

Our day in Salzburg was also lots of fun, especially taking a walking tour where we saw churches, statues and locations from where The Sound of Music was filme. Salzburg is full of stunning Baroque architecture, and my favourite was the church where Mozart was baptised. It was beautiful, and the walls had lovely black and white decorations.

Before we left, we visited the trick water gardens at the Hellbrun Palace. Hundreds of years ago, the Archbishop loved inviting friends to his palace, but always tried to liven up their visits. By placing surprising fountains around the gardens, he would shock them and get them soaking wet! We got absolutely drenched walking around, and it was such fun.

Overall, visiting Strobl in Austria was an incredible trip – there was something for everyone, and I gained memories to last a lifetime.