Traveling tends to magnify all human emotions.
— Peter Hoeg, 1957 -




Once the center of power for the large Austro-Hungarian Empire, Austria was reduced to a small republic after its defeat in World War I. Following annexation by Nazi Germany in 1938 and subsequent occupation by the victorious Allies in 1945, Austria's status remained unclear for a decade. A State Treaty signed in 1955 ended the occupation, recognized Austria's independence, and forbade unification with Germany. A constitutional law that same year declared the country's "perpetual neutrality" as a condition for Soviet military withdrawal. The Soviet Union's collapse in 1991 and Austria's entry into the European Union in 1995 have altered the meaning of this neutrality. A prosperous, democratic country, Austria entered the EU Economic and Monetary Union in 1999.


Austria (German: Österreich, literally "the Eastern Realm" or "Eastern Empire") is a land-locked alpine German speaking country in Central Europe bordering Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the west, Germany and Czech Republic to the north, Slovakia and Hungary to the east and Slovenia and Italy to the south. Austria, along with neighboring Switzerland, is the winter sports capital of Europe. However, it is just as popular for summer tourists who visit its historic cities and villages and hike in the magnificent scenery of the Alps.

Read more about Austria in our Austria travel guide »

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Is the idealism between work and life balance actually exist?

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Euro Trip Trilogy - part 1 (Summer 2006), part 2 (Autumn 2012) and part 3 (Spring 2013)

Sep 2012 - Apr 2013  »  Netherlands | Indonesia | Germany | Switzerland | Belgium | Austria

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Featured hotels in



Haus Nummer 295
Zuers A-6763

Price (US$): $1669 - $2409 / night

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Seasonal hotel: Closed April 10th 2011 to Dec 13th 2011 Ski in, ski out rooms, one of the most exclusive addresses in the Austrian Alps with very personalized service, gourmet halfboard with daily 5 8 course dinners, own sports and leisure instructor with free participation in wide range of programs, indoor swimming pool, sauna, steambath, personal fitness with Mr. Universe Fitness Bernd Osterle, massages, piano bar with daily live entertainment, 24 hour room service, boutique, cafe,… more »

AustriaHagleitner Family Relax Hotel 

Kirchenweg 11
Zell Am See 5700

Price (US$): $391 - $514 / night

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Location. Hagleitner Family Relax Hotel is located near the beach in Zell am See and close to Areitbahn and Zeller See. Additional area points of interest include Schmittenhoehe and Kaprun Ski Resort. Hotel Features. Dining options at Hagleitner Family Relax Hotel include a restaurant, a coffee shop/café, and a snack bar/deli. A beach bar and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel serves a complimentary hot and cold buffet breakfast each… more »

AustriaSofitel Vienna Stephansdom 

Praterstrasse 1
Vienna 1020

Price (US$): $370 - $599 / night

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Location. Sofitel Vienna Stephansdom is a business friendly hotel located in Vienna's Leopoldstadt neighborhood, close to Schwedenplatz, Judenplatz, and Austrian National Library. Additional points of interest include Austrian Parliament Building and Vienna City Hall. Hotel Features. Sofitel Vienna Stephansdom features a coffee shop/café and a bar/lounge. The hotel serves breakfast each morning in the restaurant (surcharges apply). Recreational amenities include a health club and a steam… more »

AustriaGrand Hotel Europa 

Suedtiroler Platz 2
Innsbruck 6020

Price (US$): $245 - $595 / night

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Location. Located in central Innsbruck, Grand Hotel Europa is near the airport and within walking distance of Alpenverein Museum, Tyrolean Provincial Museum, and Galerie im Taxispalais. Nearby points of interest also include Hofkirche and Hofburg. Hotel Features. Grand Hotel Europa's restaurant serves lunch and dinner. A bar/lounge is open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel serves buffet breakfasts each morning in the breakfast area (surcharges apply).… more »

AustriaRomantik Parkhotel Graz 

Leonhardstrasse 8
Graz 8010

Price (US$): $195 - $227 / night

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Location. Romantik Parkhotel Graz is located in central Graz, close to Stadtpark, Graz Cathedral, and Landeszeughaus. Nearby points of interest also include Rathaus and Kunsthaus Graz. Hotel Features. Dining options at Romantik Parkhotel Graz include a restaurant and a coffee shop/café. A bar/lounge is open for drinks. Room service is available during limited hours. The hotel serves buffet breakfasts each morning in the restaurant (surcharges apply). Recreational amenities include an indoor… more »

Browse more hotels in Austria »


Full name
Republic of Austria

Central Europe, north of Italy and Slovenia

Geographic coordinates

47 20 N, 13 20 E

Area comparative

slightly smaller than Maine

Border countries

Czech Republic 362 km, Germany 784 km, Hungary 366 km, Italy 430 km, Liechtenstein 35 km, Slovakia 91 km, Slovenia 330 km, Switzerland 164 km


0 km (landlocked)


temperate; continental, cloudy; cold winters with frequent rain and some snow in lowlands and snow in mountains; moderate summers with occasional showers


in the west and south mostly mountains (Alps); along the eastern and northern margins mostly flat or gently sloping

Lowest point

Neusiedler See 115 m

Highest point

Grossglockner 3,798 m

Natural resources

oil, coal, lignite, timber, iron ore, copper, zinc, antimony, magnesite, tungsten, graphite, salt, hydropower


8,214,160 (July 2010 est.)

Ethnic groups

Austrians 91.1%, former Yugoslavs 4% (includes Croatians, Slovenes, Serbs, and Bosniaks), Turks 1.6%, German 0.9%, other or unspecified 2.4% (2001 census)


Roman Catholic 73.6%, Protestant 4.7%, Muslim 4.2%, other 3.5%, unspecified 2%, none 12% (2001 census)


German (official nationwide) 88.6%, Turkish 2.3%, Serbian 2.2%, Croatian (official in Burgenland) 1.6%, other (includes Slovene, official in Carinthia, and Hungarian, official in Burgenland) 5.3% (2001 census)

Government type

federal republic


12 November 1918 (republic proclaimed); notable earlier dates 976 (Margravate of Austria established); 17 September 1156 (Duchy of Austria founded); 11 August 1804 (Austrian Empire proclaimed)

National holiday

National Day, 26 October (1955); note - commemorates the passage of the law on permanent neutrality

Chief of state

President Heinz FISCHER (SPOe) (since 8 July 2004)

Head of government

Chancellor Werner FAYMANN (SPOe) (since 2 December 2008); Vice Chancellor Josef PROELL (OeVP) (since 2 December 2008)

Internet country code


Internet users

6.143 million (2009)


55 (2010)

Ports and terminals

Enns, Krems, Linz, Vienna

Other countries in the region