Go Encounter: Austria 2020

Austria (German - Österreich) literally means "Eastern realm." Originally established as a district of Bavaria in the 8th century, Austria was soon to emerge as its own power, becoming home to one of Europe's most important and long-standing political dynasties: the Hapsburgs. Their selection of Austria as home was no accident: the beauty of Austria has, for centuries, drawn tourists and political powers alike.

In May 2020, Grace College students will have the opportunity to join me, Pat Loebs, as we experience and participate in that rich history and tour beautiful Austria as part of Grace's Go Encounter program. On this trip, we will spend two weeks exploring the land of strudel and Wiener Melange (Austrian coffee); palaces; museums; cathedrals; alpine hiking; Mozart; and The Sound of Music; while witnessing the cultural and scenic sights of Austria.


For those considering the trip, know what you would be signing up for:

● Walking 10-15 miles though cities and up mountains; sleeping 7-8 hours then walking another 10-15 miles the next day, every day, for two weeks.

● Negotiating unfamiliar public transportation systems.

● Participation in events including museums, galleries, and cultural events, as part of the cultural experience.

● Immersion in the language of the nation, learning some basic German to get by.

● Eating new foods.

● Experiencing different cultural normalities.

● Bicycling 10 miles.

● Swimming.

● At least two 30-hour travel days without the opportunity to shower, change clothes, etc.

● Uncertainty and expected flexibility. Things never go 100% according to plan and all travelers should be ready to go with the flow.

● Amazing people, culture, scenery, and an amazing experience.


While abroad, we will traverse nearly the entire country via train, cable tram, boat, airplane, bus, automobile, and on foot, to experience a broad cross section of Austria's culture and history, from ancient to imperial, through two world wars, and into the modern age. We will interact with Austrian people, enjoy Austrian cuisine, experience Austrian music, and wander the Austrian streets and countrysides while immersing ourselves in the beautiful architecture and alpine scenery. Say Grüß Gott! to Austria and join us for two weeks in this enchanting land.

Cities and places visited:

  • Vienna
  • Salzburg
  • Innsbruck
  • Hallstatt
  • Baden bei Wien
  • Mauthausen concentration camp
  • Burg Aggstein
  • and more!

The 2020 trip will cost approximately $2400 +airfare*. This price includes all travel, food, hotels, entrance to museums, castles, and all other attractions. It also includes several additional special evening outings.

Signups for 2020's excursion will begin in mid-September, 2019. 2020’s student leader is Ethan Roberts. If you have any particular questions about this trip, please email Pat Loebs or talk to/email Ethan.

*Note - $200 of this cost is the Go Encounter administrative fee. All trip details, including cost and itinerary, are subject to change. Prices go up and down, exchange rates change, and businesses close. The information above and elsewhere is as accurate as possible (updated August , 2019).