Mirabell Palace and Mirabell Gardens
Garden Palace in the Heart of the Old Town
Taking a Stroll in Marvellous Gardens
When prince-archbishop Wolf Dietrich von Raitenau built the palace in 1606 it was supposed to be a present for his beloved Salome Alt. The smaller version of today's magnificent building used to be called Altenau Castle and was located south-east of the rose garden. Today one of Salzburg's landmarks can be found in its place, the baroque Mirabell Palace with its Mirabell Gardens.
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Wolf Dietrich's successor Markus Sittikus, who never really lived at the palace, named it Mirabell. Prince-archbishop Franz Anton Prince of Harrach had the Mirabell Palace renewed by the famous baroque master builder Lukas von Hildebrandt between 1721 and 1727; it was then that it became this huge palace with gardens. During the big town fire in the right side of the old town in 1818 the palace got severely damaged, the big marble staircase and the famous marble room remained unharmed. During the reconstruction between 1822 and 1824 with construction plans by Peter de Nobile, Mirabell Palace was given its bald, classical style that can still be seen today.
Today's Mirabell Palace
Today Mirabell Palace accommodates the mayor's offices and the city administration. The marble room, once the archbishop's ballroom where father Leopold Mozart performed with his children Wolfgang and Nannerl, is one of the world's most beautiful wedding venues. It is here where conferences, investitures and concerts (e.g. the Salzburg Castle Concerts) regularly take place.
The marble staircase by Georg Raphael Donner, which connects the marble room with the inner courtyard, and the palace chapel are also worth a visit.
One of Salzburg's most popular photo motives, a garden design gem and a marvellous scenery for weddings: that is Mirabell Gardens. The baroque gardens that surround the palace were redesigned around 1690 under the direction of prince-archbishop Johann Ernst Graf von Thun according to plans by Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach. In 1730 major changes were made by Franz Anton Danreiter. Since 1913 the Pegasus Fountain has embellished the Mirabell Gardens. The four group of figures around the fountain came from Ottavio Mosto (1690) and symbolise the 4 elements: fire, air, earth and water. In the west wing of the Mirabell Gardens you will find a hedge theatre that was built between 1704 and 1718 and is considered to be the oldest of its kind north of the Alps.
In the gardens you will find the unique “Zwergelgarten”, a garden gnome garden, where lately only 16 of the original 28 garden gnomes can be seen.
Marble Room (free entry):
- Monday, Wednesday, Thursday: ca. 8am-4pm
- Tuesday and Friday: 1pm-4pm
The Marble Room is sometimes closed for special events.
Baroque staircase and Engelsstiege (angel staircase):
- Daily ca. 8am-6pm
- Daily from ca. 6am to nightfall
Hedge Theatre: closed during the winter
Orangery: open all year round, daily from 9am-4pm, free entry.
Friendly rooms in a quiet area are available at Kolping Hostel Salzburg – a hostel almost like a hotel and close to the old town. Ask for a quote for your room for your preferred travel date or book your accommodation for your Salzburg trip online!