It’s a little after 9 p.m., and the last rays of sunlight are fading behind the emerald mountain saddles that surround me.
I raise a glass of chilling locally distilled schnapps to the summer solstice – what a spectacular part of the planet to spend the longest day of the year in.
The sky explodes in violets and tangerines with little notice, the Asitz Mountain’s final act of the day.
This actual summit of tranquillity, calming noises, scenery, and reflection had been my home for these last days of spring.
Adriana Franza’s artworks had guided me through towering trees, orchestras had given the music to my mountain hut meditations, and organic vending machines selling local goods such as fruit and yoghurts had offered the flavours to keep climbing to a ‘movie of nature.’
While images of the Austrian Alps conjure up powdery-white panoramas of ski-laden gondolas or frigid days sipping champagne and beers in mountain huts between slopes, the warmer months bring their own set of invites.
Welcome to The Asitz, a sensory mountain.
The Asitz, nestled in the Leogang mountain range and part of the Eastern Alps, is one of the most famous.
Austria, and particularly Salzburg (the state where The Asitz is), have long been known for their strong appreciation of music, art, inventiveness, and all things cultural.
As Mozart’s birthplace, the city has frequently taken the stage for classical music events.
Beyond the church spires and cobblestone alleyways of the city, though, you will find sparkling lakes, craggy peaks, and a slower pace of life in the neighbouring Salzburgerland.
With such a rich and acclaimed cultural heritage coursing through the veins of the region’s population, it’s no surprise that love for the arts has spread outside, and even higher, to mountain summits and soaring heights.
The Asitz is known locally as Berg der Sinne (Mountain of the senses), and the long summer months, from late spring to early October, are the perfect times to come and enjoy an active-cultural getaway.
Unlike some other winter-only places, Austria’s mountains come alive in the summer, and when you say “with the sound of music,” you’d be speaking realities rather than a cinematic cliche.
For those who don’t want multi-day walks or steep grades, the Asitz offers the ideal opportunity to immerse themselves in nature without a gruelling struggle.
Sure, you could take on some of the more difficult hikes in the mountain ranges of Leogang Saalfelden, or you could continue riding the gondola (free with the local tourism card) to the highest point of the mountain to enjoy the art, music, views, and alpine gastronomy without breaking a sweat.
The Asitz genuinely is a summit for all abilities.