A Christmas Card: Hallstatt, Austria

you ever wondered what it’s like to step into a Christmas
card? The traditional ones with village landscapes that are
blanketed white and dotted with chocolate-box houses. That’s what
it’s like to wake up in Hallstatt, Austria’s oldest village.

When the residents ran out of space, houses were built into the
mountain, adding many layers to the alpine landscape. Walking
through the tiny village feels like stepping back in time – if you
can see past the tourists who flock here.

A few steps uphill will land you in the middle of this
picturesque scene, with spectacular views below and beyond. Creamy,
pastel-coloured houses sit right on the water’s edge with
reflections making a perfect glassy mirage; in the distance,
mountains licked by mist immediately make you feel small.

In winter, people sit outside swathed in fur blankets and
warming their insides with a mug of Gl├╝wein. The scent of the hot
mulled wine mixed with fresh mountain air made me stop and feel
grateful for this memory.

Hallstatt is such an iconic place that a replica village has
been made in China. But the original has a magic that is impossible
to simulate.

@kelly_mcallister | www.kellymcallister.co.uk

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