Hellbrunner Berg Hill

The Hellbrunner Berg is a hill in the south of Salzburg and entirely within the premises of Schloss Hellbrunn Palace. The Hellbrunner Berg is 515 Metres high and thanks to the Baroque leisure palace, popular among tourists and locals alike. The hill has several attractions: Palace, gardens and park of Schloss Hellbrunn are nestled to the northern part; the Hellbrunn Trick Fountains even utilise the landscape shaped by the flanks of the hill.

The Steintheater is a Baroque open-air theatre built in a former quarry and thus literally into the Hellbrunner Berg. It was used for performances for the court of the Prince Archbishop and famous all over Europe as a unique venue. The zoo of Salzburg was derived from a deer enclosure started in the late Middle Ages. When Schloss Hellbrunn was built in its current shape by Prince Archbishop Markus Sittikus in 1612, the facility was extended into a proper menagerie, which ended with the Napoleonic Wars when a frog general named Jean-Victor Moreau shot everything that moved in the zoo. It was re-founded only after World War II.

The Monatsschlössl is a Baroque villa on the northern ridge of the Hellbrunner Berg. It was built in the early 17th century, supposedly within a month. Between 1920 and 1924, the biologist Eduard Paul Tratz ran an ornithological museum at the Monatsschlössl; this museum was later developed into the Haus der Natur. Today, the Monatsschlössl is run as a branch of the Salzburg Museum and houses and exhibition on local folk culture. There was another small villa, the Schlösschen Belvedere, on the southern side of the Hellbrunner Berg.

The oldest traces of settlements on the Hellbrunner Berg pre-date the Baroque period significantly, though: They originate from a town that existed here in Neolithic days after a community moved here from the Rainberg Hill. There are still foundations and terraces visible in the forests of the Hellbrunner Berg that date back to this settlement.

Biologists appreciate the Hellbrunner Berg as an ecosystem full of rare species, especially fungi. This is due to its role as a hunting enclosure, where no forestry was applied and species with certain needs could flourish. It is questionable to what extent this will persist these days, in which the woods of the Hellbrunner Berg are managed.

Further Reading

Wikipedia on the Hellbrunner Berg

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