Passau – the city on three rivers

Passau is for sure a different city in Bavaria. Some people already call it an Austrian city and others one of the most bavarian cities of Bavaria. This boarder city of Bavaria is directly on the confluence of three rivers. Already the romans realized it’s strategically location and had a roman fort there to protect their empire from invaders. Nowadays the importance of this strategically position is not that important any more but the town is still important for cruise ships that bring tourists along the Danube and also for traders and companies that export to other countries. The confluence of the three rivers Danube, Inn and Ilz played also for the church an important role, especially when the salt trading on the Inn river was the most important income for the area to the salt-less area of Bohemia (nowadays the Czech Republic). The main church of Passau is even nowadays one of the most impressive church in the area.

Nowadays the city of Passau has habitants and is the second biggest city of the province of East Bavaria.

The biggest threat of Passau still nowadays are the high waters that happened quite often in this area due to the rivers. The last big flooding happened in the year 2013 when most parts of the old town were under water.

Passau nowadays welcomes tourists from all over the world with a friendly manner, historically buildings and the biggest church organ in the world. The city itself kept it’s charming character and does not want to change too much and this makes it even nicer.


Passau is a beautiful town. It will bring you back in time to realize how people lived and settled here. The history of Passau reflect that perfectly: The city of Passau was firstly settled by the celtics and during the time of the romans a small fort was established were nowadays the main chruch is standing. In the 5th century the romans left from Passau and already in the 8th century Passau became a bishop’s city. By the end of the 10th century the bishop received also the power to rule over the city of Passau. In the 12th century during the period in chich the iron production became one of the most important industries the bishop received the title of aprince bishop and therefore had also the possibility to get more influence and becoming a ruler over the area and therefore built a new residence and also the Veste oberhaus (the fortress of Passau), which was used as a defensive building and to store the income of the taxes received from traders and barches along the rivers. This also brought also the liberty to allow the freedom of religion of Passau which started already in the 16th century and allowed since that time all kind of confessions. A right that is still active nowadays.

Due to a lot of fires and floodings the comunity of Passau always were very helpful among each other and outsiders because it is still nowadays expected that if a flooding would happen also outsiders will help them. This is one of the specialities of the people of Passau. Even during the second world war when nearby Passau a branche of the concentration camp of Dachau and Mauthausen had been established and destoryed during the bombings in 1945, Passau immediately became a refugee city for people from Slesia, Bohemia and other areas. The local people of Passau worked together with wthe refugees to rebuild the city and to help refugees to integrate immediately in the daily life as it was expected that refugees needed help but also can helo the population to rebuild the destroyed buildings.

Also in the year 2013 when the biggest flooding since over 500 years happened in Passau, students, people from the areas around and the population of Passau helped all together to clean the city from the water and mud that was in the city center. The students have even been awarded by the ministry of Bavaria for their courageous help and work. In the year 2015 when in Europe the big refugee crisis happened Passau became one of the first entry points into Germany and was another time the proof that the population of Passau works together to help for the arrival and welcomed in the best possible way refugees to be then distributed to all other parts of Germany and Austria.

Passau old town

Passau nowadays reflects the Bavarain culture very well and shows you in many ways how the culture can be included in the architecture, the lifestyle and sights. The old town is on a hill upon the confluence of the rivers Inn and Danube. To both sides there are steep roads and steps to get up to the Dom’s square and the St. Stephan’s cathedral. The style reflects italian architecture and the so called Inn and Salzach style and therefore is also named as the Venice of Bavaria. With it’s baroque and renaissance buildings the town reflects perfectly the Bavarian baroque style and this architecture.

The town is directly on the confluence of the three rivers that reflect also their colors and can be seen in many buildings, art and crafts: green, blue and black. The green color from the Inn that originats in the alps and brings lot of minerals with it, the Danube in a blueish color (the deeper river) and the black color from the soil of the Ilz river. The most important buildings to visit are the main cathedral that has been rebuilt after a big fire in the 17th century, where only the gothic east walls from the 15th century remained and nowadays with the biggest church organ in the world, the Dom’s square with the statue of King Max 1st the first bavarian king with a constitution. Besides that the old town hall is definitely worth seeing, with it’s fresco looking as it would be from the 16th century, but made in the 20th century, a complex of 5 buildings, of which one used to be a brewery. People in the city say that still nowadays the best decision are made after som beers. In Bavaria beer is is not considered an alcoholic beverage but part of the daily food and therefore has no drinking age limit. Just be aware that when you order a double „Maß“, it is normally considered as a 3 litre glass (1 for the beer, 2nd because people are really thirsty and the 3rd for god). Passau also has a brewery in town as a typically example of the bavarian culture. Next to the old town hall is also the biggest glass mueum of Germany with the most famous glass products from bohemia and Germany.

Passau old town with Veste Oberhaus

Passau‘s culture

Passau is nowadays not only a mixture of the Austrian and Bavarian traditions but also a mirror of how people work together through any crisis but also expect to be helped when needed. You will see it through the architecture and also through the style of how people welcome you in the city. Most of the shops will sell you products form the area and reflect also Bavarian hospital with modern technology. Do not miss out to take a walk along the river of Inn where you will find locals walking and enjoying the sun and the strength of the water while watching the two big rivers flowing together and getting new energy by the calmness of the water. Also you can enjoy some nice chocolate with real gold inside of the famous pastry shop of Simon and watch out when you go to the toilet some times later and realize that it is shining of gold. Visit Passau and learn more about this city – history, funny and informative stories about this time, beer and church live – bespecialtours!

Passau city tours and Passau tour

If you want to enjoy some great time in Passau, book a private tour to Passau with B(e)special Tours from Salzburg, or arrive directly in Munich, enjoy a city tour with our comfortable van, enjoy a guided walking tour through the town of Passau and continue a nice drive either through Germany, or Austria. So if you are planning to come to Passau, or if you want to Visit the city of Passau and the beautiful road coming from Salzburg then please do not miss a nice ride with be special tours! It is fun for youngsters and the older ones and you can taste a lot of delicious typical Austrian dishes and of course a lot of Beer! Enjoy the fascinating city of Passau – Passau and history – with fresh ideas, food and a lots of fun – be special tours!



Nürnberg – the capital of ginger bread and toys

Nürnberg takes you back in time. The city of Nürnberg has a very long history dating back tom the time of the 11th century when it became an important city and since that time takes people back into their time: From being a village at the crossroads from north to south and east to west. Already from the beginning the city became the right to hold also markets and this lead also to get the right to print money and charging taxes. From a prosperous city with the right to elect the rulers of Bavaria this city was given over to the population of Nürnberg and even the fortress was sold in the 15th century to the community of Nürnberg. The former ruling house, called the Hohenzoller kept the title of dukes of Nürnberg until the year 1918. Due to the high quality of craftsmanship and the strategically position in the middle of Europe Nürnberg was very much liked by the rulers of the holy roman empire until the 30 years war during which the town was never taken over but due to a lot of damages and fights between the protestants and the catholics the area lost quite a lot of power and wealth. From there it became only a trading city in the middle of Europe. Only in the beginning of the 19th century Nürnberg became officially part of the Bavarian empire, after Napoleon restructured Europe and gave the are to the newly developed empire of Bavaria.

In the 19th.century the city of Nürnberg became the center of industrialization within the area of Bavaria. With the first operative railroad in Germany it strengthened again it’s importance. For the first ride, a British train driver on a British locomotive were used and due to the high risk of brain damage to the people of this high speed of 15mph no passengers were willing to join that ride but instead some beer barrels were used and after their arrival in the neighboring city of Fürth with a proofed taste of the beer the people agreed on building more railroad tracks in Germany. Nowadays Nürnberg is considered one of the biggest railroad centers in Germany for passengers and goods, including also one of the biggest repair center of the national railroad of Germany.

Especially in the second world war Nürnberg plaid a very important role for the Nazis. With the foundation of the zeppelin fields and the nazi party rally grounds the city plaid an important role in the propaganda of the nazi regime. The Nazis chose this area due to the strategically position in the middle go Europe and for the fact that is had the biggest train hub to bring as many people into the area of Nürnberg as possible. Nowadays it had one of the biggest and most important documentation center of Germany. Also the jewish question has been solved int he Nürnberg racial laws,established in the year 1935 in which the openings of new concentration camps and other killing methods were decided.

After the bombings in the second world war in which most of the surrounding area of Nürnberg was destroyed, also the Nazi war trials took place in the courtroom 600 in the court of Nürnberg. It was also the beginning of international war criminal trials and led to the foundation of the criminal trial in Den Haag in the Netherlands.

Nürnberg also took a major role in the German “Wirtschaftswunder” with companies like Siemens, Grundig, AEG, MAN, etc. still nowadays Nürnberg is one of the major industrial city in Bavaria.

Nuremberg old town with castle

Nürnberg is a fascinating city and also a very different one. One one hand you will see a city form the 16th century with huge city walls, old houses and new shops and then you can see the train museum in Nürnberg, as one of the most complex in Germany, can see the German National museum of Nürnberg where the most important artists, writers, etc will be shown and there is for sure to explore also the Toy museum in Nürnberg.

The toys used to play and still nowadays play an important role in Nürnberg since it has the biggest toy fair in Germany and is well known for all toy producers all around the world. Nürnberg’s highlight is definitely to see the toy museum and to explore historically and up to day toys.

Besides that you will see that the city of Nürnberg is at the official capital of ginger breads. Ginger bread can be found everywhere in the center and also most of the factories are around the city center of Nürnberg. The prices vary very much from hand-crafted ones to the very cheap industrial made ones. You will find the ginger bread in all different varieties, such as with sugar, with ginger or no, gluten-free, with different chocolates (dark, white, or milky one), in different forms and variations.

So you will see that there are many ways to explore the city of Nürnberg.

beautiful fountain of Nuremberg

Nürnberg reflect the Bavarian culture very well and offers all of the typically things of Bavaria: From beer halls, to old buildings, to Sausage kitchens and the world famous christmas market, the so called “Christkindlesmarket”, one of the oldest and most traditionally christmas market in Europe. It has nowadays more than 200 different sales stands and is one of the biggest in Bavaria. Each year it attract millions of visitors when a blond angel opens the market and sends a peace message to the world for a quiet and nice christmas time and the time to wait for the arrival of Jesus christ.

In Nürnberg you will find also one of the oldest receipts of the sausages. They even had a legal fight with the town of Regensburg about who has the better and older sausage. The question was solved by the fact that Regensburg had the oldest sausage kitchen and Nürnberg the oldest receipt. But you will have to try bot, to know which ones you prefer. The recipe is form the 15th century and is still made in the same way including the precise length between 7-9cm and a thickness of 15mm and as ingredients only pork meat, salt, marjoram and some other herbs. It is even copywrited nowadays by the european union as a unique item for that region.

main market square Nuremberg

copyright Nuremberg Tourism

Nürnberg heritage

Nürnberg is nowadays dealing very well wit its heritage and its history. The buildings of the second world war are still there and can be visited at any time. At the Nazi party rally grounds are nowadays a documentation center to inform people about what happened, why and making people aware that history should not be repeated. The old town of Nürnberg is also newly renovated and keeps now more and more the old buildings and combine as a perfect match old and new architecture and businesses.  But do not miss out to try one of the red beers and take the time to see also the surrounding city walls and the fortress of Nürnberg, where you can explore how well this city is set in it’s surrounding. Visit Nürnberg and learn a lot of this city – history and fascinating stories of medieval time, christmas and the second world war – Be Special Tours!

Nürnberg city tours and Nürnberg tour

If you want to enjoy some great time in Nürnberg, book a private tour to Nürnberg with B(e)special Tours from Salzburg, or arrive directly in Munich, enjoy a city tour with our comfortable vans, enjoy a guided tour through the town of Nürnberg and continue a nice drive either through Germany, or Austria. So if you are planning to come to Nürnberg, or if you want to visit the city of Nürnberg and the romantic road coming from Salzburg then please do not miss a nice ride with b(e)special tours! It is fun for youngsters and the older ones and you can taste a lot of delicious typical Austrian dishes and of course a lot of Beer! Enjoy the fascinating city of Nürnberg – Nürnberg and history – with fresh ideas, food and a lots of fun – Be Special Tours!

Dürnstein – Wachau

Dürnstein – Wachau

Dürnstein – the pearl of the Wachau Valley

Duernstein brings history alive. Some people say that this city shows a great story and shows the wealth of this region, like no other town. The Wachau valley is part of the UNESCO world heritage listed natural preserve in Europe. It is one of the oldest settlements in Austria, with a history of more than 30.000 years ago, when humans already seddled in this area. The Romans brought the wines to the region and since the end of the 1950ies the Wachau valley, is a protected wine region, with it’s own classifications for the wines. The wines are mostly white wines and are classified in 3 segments: The Steinfeder, Federspiel and the Smaragd (the most precious and most intense wine in this region). The Wachau Valley nowadays welcomes tourists form all over the world wit history, scenic valley and small villages with vineyards to welcome people from all over the world. One of the best ways to explore the valley is to take either one of the river cruises, or explore it in the most comfortable way, on one of our glass roofed vans, or the a bike ride through this valley and make occasionally stops in one of the nice villages. The Wachau valley starts with the beautiful town of Melk and it’s abbey, goes then by the town of Willendorf, where a 4 inch high figure from over 15.000 years ago has been found, to Spitz and to the pearl of the Wachau valley – Duernstein to the town of Krems. On the entry is one of the nicest abbeys – Melk and ends with an even more impressive abbey upon a hill – Göttweig.

In the center is located this highlight town of Dürnstein, with a ruin of a castle on the top of the village and a very impressive church in the center of the village: It is one of the few blue and white churches in Austria and the color comes from a Meissen porcelain color which the emperor wanted to copy.

This village is nowadays characterized by small and narrow streets, nice buildings and a very nice Danube promenade though the Danube curve and from where one of the nicest views of the Village of Dürnstein can be found. The original city wall and the medieval ruin of the castle make this village alive and shows how this village over the centuries developed. Nowadays in the village of Dürnstein some of the finest restaurants in Austria can be found. They make local cuisine and international cuisine into a harmony with the Wachau valley wines to a symphony. And Since the Danube has it’s own masterpiece of Music by Strauss (“on the blue Danube”), it shows how important this river was to the region. Unfortunately you will not find the Danube blue but you can follow Strausses’ footsteps by enjoying one or two bottles of excellent Wine from the Wachau valley and you will see the Danube blue as well.

So please enjoy the village of Dürnstein to the fullest and see how this village combines tradition of winemakers, good food, history and nature into one big symphony of joy and good times.

Dürnstein autmn

Above the city of Dürnstein you will find the ruins of the Dürnstein castle. Once upon a time a famous story has taken place there. Richard the Lionhearted traveled over land due to the fact that his ship was broke and he travelled also through the lands of the Habsburg’s dukes. Unfortunately he tried to pay in a pub with an english coin and his cover did not work any more. He and the duke of Austria were in a fight after Richard offended the Austrian Duke. Therefore he has been held in the castle of Dürnstein by the Habsburg duke of Leopold. He was the king of England and went in the 12century already for the third crusade. He was imprisoned nearby Vienna by Duke Leopold who accused him as being responsible of arranging the murder of his Cousin Conrad of Montferrat. Moreover Richard has personally offended Leopold by casting down his standard from the walls of Acre.

Richard the Lionheart’s helper and singer Blondel, as the legend tells us went through all the castles in the Habsburg’s empire and sang under all of them a song which only Richard the Lionhart and Blondel only knew and Richard the Lionhearted answered to the melody and the text. Due to this legend there is nowadays a hotel and restaurant Blondel in Dürnstein.

It is said that he tried to free his Emperor but only due to a payment of 23 tons of silver Richard the Lionhearted was really free and the money was used by the Duke of the holy roman empire.

It is said that the ransom was used to fortify the city of Vienna and reconstructing the city of Vienna, building the city of Friedberg, Hainburg and founded the mint of Vienna which is still in use, even if nowadays only at printing the Austrian euro coins and euro notes.

Besides those stories you can see this small village with less than 900 residents and the most important historical sights, like the court yard of the city hall. It shows an example of a mideval building, the Kremser gate one of the only existing city wall towers from the 15th century. In the west side you can visit some of the best examples of a medieval city houses and a church from the 13th century. the highlight of the visit will be a visit to the new castle/ palace. Built in the 17th century it is on the west side of the town, has two protective towers and with great windows over the Danube. In the 1960ies it was sold and transformed into a hotel which it is still nowadays with a great restaurant.

Another highlight is the abbey of the clariss, which was founded in the 13th century, until they died out in the 16th century. Nowadays it hosts the hotel Richard the Lionheart.

View within the village of Duernstein

Duernstein is nowadays seen as the “pearl of the Wachau” due to the history and as being in the middle of the Wachau Valley as one of the finest wine regions in Austria. After the second World war, especially within the German speaking area the town of Dürnstein was used to make many so called “home movies”. They were characterized to  see the nice vacation destination and praise the city of Dürnstein as an example of a “problem-free” vacation destination and with good wines, nice girls and nature the perfect relaxing point. This has not changed and is still one of the things that attract tourists from all over the world. The clean and preserved nature, combined with thousand years old vineyards will fascinate you as well and combined with history make this pearl even blessing and blooming and will bring you the Austrian culture of nature, history and wines closer and you will enjoy it to the fullest. Come and find out yourself and let the stress out of the Wachau valley and enjoy the nicest nature, combined with history and a very good glass of wine.

Duernstein view from the Danube

Dürnstein‘s heritage

Dürnstein is nowadays not only the heritage of it’s own history but also part of the UNESCO world heritage listed Wachau valley. You will see also throughout the village lots of history where you will find the story of Richard the Lion’s heart still alive and see what this British influence brought to the town. See the architecture style and the vineyards surrounding this town to see how sometimes a prestigious pice can influence an architecture and being a symbol for the whole region, like this church, being a symbol of this region. Do not miss out to try one of the local vines and take the time to see also the ruins of the castle and the Wachau valley – history and fascinating stories of old times, history, nature and vines – b(e)specialtours!

Dürnstein city tours and Dürnstein tour

If you want to enjoy some great time in Dürnstein, book a private tour to Dünstein with B(e)special Tours from Salzburg, or arrive directly in Vienna, enjoy a city tour with our comfortable vans, enjoy a guided tour through the Wachau valley and continue a nice drive either through the Wachau valley, or Austria and see other castles and monastaries. So if you are planning to come to Dürnstein, or if you want to Visit the city of Dürnstein and the romantic road coming from Salzburg then please do not miss a nice ride with b(e)special tours! It is fun for youngsters and the older ones and you can taste a lot of delicious typical Austrian dishes and of course a lot of Wine! Enjoy the fascinating city of Dürnstein – Dürnstein and history – with fresh ideas, food and a lots of fun – Be Special Tours!

Salzburg 2017: 20 years being part of UNESCO

Salzburg 2017: 20 years being part of UNESCO

Salzburg – For over 20 years Salzburg has been part of the list of the UNESCO world heritage cities

In the year 1997 Salzburg became a UNESCO world culture heritage city. There were three main reasons, why Salzburg as city got this honor:

The regency of arch bishops over centuries (the salt city – their richness and building activities). Salzburg was also the meeting point of Italian and German culture and it is something unique which find its expression of course in the significant and unique architecture of the old town and city of Salzburg and the third criteria was and is the important role of the city in the world of Music. Within the old town of Salzburg fantastic buildings from the romanesque style directly beside the gothic style up to the renaissance and the very ornate baroque style can be found. As a fortune the old town was very well preserved over times, also during the 2nd world war and so it is possible to find beside those old buildings also noble classicism and famous buildings during the period of Art Nouveau in Europe. Concerning the Music – Salzburg is the so called ‘Mozart town’, the birth city of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and also the home of other famous musicians like Johann Michael Haydn is well known all over the world.

Also concerning the music, of course in the 1960′ it became also famous in the english speaking world due to the Sound of Music Movie which was filmed directly in the old town of Salzburg and shows a lovely story about the emigrants to the US, the Van Trapp Family. But for the world cultural heritage this event did not play a major role. In fact over 300.000 people come year by year to see the original locations and hear the music during their trip through Salzburg and the surroundings used in the movie.

As UNESCO world heritage sight you will find the typical old town of Salzburg protected – which means whenever you visit our wonderful town, it may look from the structure in the same way and there is a big recognition value.


mirabell garden and rose garden's corner

To preserve the wonderful architecture the city of Salzburg invests a lot in renovations. So many smaller changes, like road covers in the most important old town foot traffic street ‘Getreidegasse’ and ‘Linzergasse’ was made now barrier-free. Also some other renovations will be done this year, such as the so called ‘Zwergerlgarten’ which is a part of the Mirabell gardens where all the original dwarf figures of stone are going to be adjusted. Other renovations, such as the residence square directly between Mozart’s square and Dom square in the old town will be done.

At the Salzburg Museum there is going to be held a special exhibition (starting with 20th January 2017) concerning the UNESCO Cultural City Salzburg.

view to the old town from Kapuziner Berg

There is a wonderful article at the UNESCO site concerning the city of Salzburg and below you can find a part of their article and of course the link to the original text of the UNESCO in all languages.

‘Outstanding Universal Value’

Salzburg is an outstanding example of an ecclesiastical city-state, peculiar to the Holy Roman Empire, from Prussia to Italy. Most disappeared as political and administrative units in the early 19th century and adopted alternative trajectories of development. No other example of this type of political organism has survived so completely, preserving its urban fabric and individual buildings to such a remarkable degree as Salzburg.

Salzburg is the point where the Italian and German cultures met and which played a crucial role in the exchanges between these two cultures. The result is a Baroque town that has emerged intact from history, and exceptional material testimony of a particular culture and period. The centre of Salzburg owes much of its Baroque appearance to the Italian architects Vincenzo Scamozzi and Santino Solari.

The Salzburg skyline, against a backdrop of mountains, is characterized by its profusion of spires and domes, dominated by the fortress of HohenSalzburg. It contains a number of buildings, both secular and ecclesiastical, of very high quality from periods ranging from the late Middle Ages to the 20th Century.  There is a clear separation, visible on the ground and on the map, between the lands of the Prince-Archbishops and those of the burghers. The former is characterized by its monumental buildings – the Cathedral, the Residence, the Franciscan Abbey, the Abbey of St Peter – and its open spaces, the Domplatz in particular. The burghers’ houses, by contrast, are on small plots and front onto narrow streets, with the only open spaces provided by the three historic markets. Salzburg is rich in buildings from the Gothic period onwards, which combine to create a townscape and urban fabric of great individuality and beauty.

Salzburg is also intimately associated with many important artists and musicians, preeminent among them Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.’


Salzburg view

Salzburg’s heritage
We are looking forward to meet you here in our home town and show you the official site of the city and of course also the secret places of the locals  – Have fun with us Be Special Tours!





Prague – the Capital of the Czech Republic

Prague is one of the most fascinating capital cities in Europe. It is well-known for recent revolutions and for historical people like Charles IV – the most famous ruler of the Bohemian empire. He constructed some of the most famous buildings – the Charle’s Bridge.

He was the one who was the first bohemian king to also become holy roman emperor. Born as Wenceslaus, from the house of Luxembourg, his reign was characterized by a transformation in the nature of the Empire and is remembered as the golden age of Bohemia. He also organized the single states of the empire into peace-keeping confederations. After him is named the Wencelslas’ square, the Charle’s bridge, the Charle’s University, Charle’s square, high gothic Prague castle and part of the St. Vitus Cathedral within the Prague Castle. – Every year on the 14th of May will be celebrated his birthday. Due to the 700th anniversary of Charle’s IV this year many museums make special exhibitions and in the Prague Castle the Crown jewels are exhibited for the whole summer and are only exhibited when a new president is elected or at such a special occasion, like this year.

charle's bridge with prague castle

Prague is a fascinating city. It is also a controversial city. On one hand the history, such as the Prague castle, the lesser town (a former nobel area and nowadays the artist area of Prague), The Charle’s Bridge, the old town (with it’s jewish quarter, the Franz Kafka museum, the Jan Huss monument, the old town hall with it’s astronomical clock) and the new town (with the Wencelsla’s square (location of the velvet revolution), the new city hall, the opera house and the location of the communism museum (located next to a casino and Mc Donald’s)).

Prague is nowadays more famous also among young people as a very vivid and cultural advanced city. People of the Czech republic do not declare their religion (over 70% of the people do not declare their religion) and therefore are very liberal and open-minded and not influenced by the church. Due to the fact that the money status is still lower than in most other EU countries a lot of young people come for the generous food standard and the famous Bohemian beers. Many people come to party, or to do one of the famous beer tours through Prague on the ship and throughout the bars of Prague.

Prague is nowadays to most of the people a very interesting city: full of history, good food and liberal place for artists.

in front of Prague's city hall

Prague is a fascinating city. Some of the most famous sights you will have to see are: The infant of Jesus of Prague with it’s many dresses, the St. Niclas church, the Charle’s bridge, the Prague Castle, the small eiffel towner, the Schönborn Palace and it’s gardens, the Astronomical clock, the powder tower, the new city wall and it’s opera house, the Wenclsle’s square, the national Gallery, stroll through the old town and the jewish quarter, the dancing houses. Learn more about some of the most famous personalities of Prague: Charle’s IV, Rudolph II, Jan Hus,  Franz Kafka and artists of the “Prague Spring”, Antonin Dvorak, Alfons Mucha, Robert and Felix Weltsch, Johannes Kepler and Martina Navratilova.

panoramic view from the prague castle

Prague’s heritage

Prague is nowadays not only the heritage of a more than 1200 years of history but also the city of art, culture and heritage of communism and art. In the national museum of Prague you can find nowadays one of the biggest art gallery of the world with pictures of Czech artists, as well as Monet, Gaugan, etc. Besides that you will have also the possibility to see some of the most outstanding artist of the bohemian crystal cutters, the story of the little mole and you have to taste the typical tchech food in one of the restaurants (in the summer with nice gardens) and get a touch of the Czech culture by walking along the Volga River in Prague and see all different age groups enjoying the city of Prague and enjoying the nature of Prague along the river. Visit Prague and learn a lot of Prague – history and fascinating stories of protest, joy and freedom – be special tours!

Prague city tours and Prague tour

If you want to enjoy some great days in Prague book a private tour to Prague with Be Special Tours from Salzburg, or arrive directly in Prague, enjoy a city tour with our comfortable vans and continue a nice drive either to Vienna or Salzburg and extend it then to Hallstatt. So if you are planning to come to Prague, or if you want to Visit the city of Prague coming from  Salzburg the please do not miss a nice ride with b(e)special tours! It is fun for youngsters and the older ones and you can taste a lot of delicious typical Austrian and Bohemian dishes and of course a lot of Beer! Enjoy the fascinating city of Prague – Prague castle and history – with fresh ideas, food and a lot of fun – be special tours!


The Grossglockner Road

The Grossglockner Road

historical pass road to the Grossglockner

A street to the highest mountain in Austria can be nice and fascinating at the same time. It means a perfect combination of a great nature, an engineering peak to construct this road and a thrill of all the cars driving over that road and to “touch” the biggest glacier of Austria and see the biggest mountain of Austria 12.461ft. above the sea level.

I will not tell you in the following a lot of details concerning the circumstances but I can tell you that it was a great achievement to finish this road. The first car ever driving over this alpine road was in the year 1934. In the year 1935 the road was officially opened.


a fascinating road to the top of the Austrian Alps

This road is not only a fascinating road in the mountains but it is also a symbol of this time before the second world war. In the year of 1930, the time when Hitler became more and more powerful in Germany, Austria was in the middle of a depression, facing still the problems of the first world war and having an unemployment rate of 26%, the Austrian Government and the head of the region of Salzburg took a plan into reality to built an alpine road to give job to 3.200 employees and for the upcoming tourists that will come in the future. It became the symbol for the whole country of Austria, that it is possible to make an alpine road to the highest mountain of Austria and to built the highest mountain road within the Alps to be able to cross with a car. Not only it was also possible to realize this road within short time with limited resources but also it was show to the world that technical advantage is in Austria ad therefore the industry also hoped to get a new order plus.

In the year 1934 already, Mr. Franz Rehrl, the governor of Salzburg, Franz Wallack, the architecture drove with their Steyr 100 over the road, achieving the first alpine crossing in an automobile on a graded road.

The politicians at that time forced very much the automotive industry and therefore pushed as much as possible the construction of such a road and the upcoming automotive industry in the country as an opposite to the regime in the neighbor country of Germany.

In the year 1935, on the 3rd. August the road was officially opened to the public with an international automobile and motorcycle race over the Grossglockner alpine road.

With an initial estimate of 120.000 visitors per year, the planners have been confirmed already in the year of 1938 with a total visitors of 370.000 in 98.000 vehicles brought a new record. It took until the year of 1952 to come back to these numbers, when then 412.000 visitors in 91.000 vehicles passed this road. Nowadays over 1Mio. visitors in almost 300.000vehicles cross this road per year.

But why do the people come to this road and what makes this road so attractive for everyone? The road leads in very short time directly into the fascinating world of alpine culture and nature. Since the year of 1971 the Hochalpenstrasse and the area surrounding it is part of the national park “hohe Tauern” and the park rangers do several controls per day to make sure that the nature is keeping so much in shape so that everyone gets the same possibility to enjoy this nature and the outstanding mountains around this road.

From the Kaiser Franz Josephs height (named after the last Austrian ruler visited this place together with his wife in the year 1896) you can also take a breathtaking view to the Grossglockner, the Kleinglockner and the biggest glacier of Austria: Pasterze.

swarovski viewpoint

In the year 1936 and 1937 over 370 workers had to shuffle out this road. Since the year 1953 the so-called Wallack rotary plows fulfill the job. With 4 plows every year the road is going to be cleared and it is a fascinating event to see while they have to dig their way through 20 – 50 feet of snow covering the area and the road.

After this event in April, the nature slowly slowly awakes from its winter-sleep and the tourists can come. For beginning of May the road opens and the quietness in this area is over, when the mountain goats, the marmots, the flowers, the tourist, the bikers, the cyclists climb up this road and go down.

The road has been used many times in different sport’s events, such as the Giro d’italia and the bicycle mountain race of Austria and the mountain hiking race, the marathon race and different mountain races by bikes, trackers, sport’s cars and historical cars.

The road has also used by Ferdinand Porsche for his first test drives. Also the first VW beetle has been tested in the year 1937/1938 on the Grossglockner Alpine road. For this tradition you will see every year different car producers testing their cars (many times they are still covered to not realize which car is going to be tested) to make sure that also in extreme conditions in the alpine regions and to test the new brake systems on the 47 turns of this alpine road. It gives for these tests the perfect conditions.

If you think that you could always drive this smoothly over this road, I have to disappoint you. The road has only been asphalted in the middle of the 50ies and expanded to over 20ft. of wide. The final stage of finishing the road to nowadays outlook has been done in the year 1973. Since this year no piece of the road is with gravel.

Since the year 2015 the Grossglockner Hochalpenstrasse is also part of the UNESCO world heritage and has to fulfill therefore certain rules and certain conditions.

Every spring and during summer time regular checks of the mountain has to be done in order to avoid rocks falling on the road and to assure a perfect service at the road. Also helpers for cars that are overheating or where the brakes start to malfunction is always provided. It is open everyday from 6am until 8am, in the months of July and August until 9pm.

grossglockner road

Drive with us up to the Grossglockner and learn more about this spectacular place full of nature, engineering achievements and a spectacular nature. We are looking forward to meet you here in Salzburg. Best regards and a good travel Be Special Tours!