The capital of Upper Austria—set where the Traun River flows into the Danube—is a fascinating mix of the old and new. On the one hand, Austria's third-largest city has been casting a spell for centuries, thanks to the beautiful old houses on the vast medieval square, its Baroque cathedral with twin towers (and a fine organ over which composer Anton Bruckner once presided), and its unique historic railroad track that leads to the top of the Pöstlingberg. But on the other hand, it's also one of Austria's most modern, cosmopolitan, and cultural cities, with groundbreaking theaters and concert halls, hi-tech museums and galleries, and a dedication to creating a bike-friendly, traffic-free city center. Every September, Linz hosts the internationally renowned Ars Electronica Festival, designed to promote artists, scientists, and the latest technical gadgets. It's just one of many reasons Linz was named a UNESCO City of Media Arts in 2014.
If you plan to see a lot while you're in the city, consider purchasing the Linz Card, available online or at the tourist office. Valid for public transportation and free entry into some museums, including the Ars Electronica Center and the Schlossmuseum, the card also provides discounts on entry to the zoo, botanical gardens, St. Florian's Abbey, and other venues. The card comes in three versions: one day (€16), two day (€27, including a round-trip on the Pöstlingbergbahn), and three day (€35, including the Pöstlingbergbahn and a €5 restaurant voucher).