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WHY VISIT VIENNA
It is not easy to return to being a capital like many when you have been for 600 years the capital of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The absent-minded tourist forgets this particular too often. The history of Europe has passed through Vienna for many centuries and the signs of the lost Empire are in everything. The sovereigns lived in the Hofburg Royal Palace, moving to the Schonbrunn Castle in the summer, just outside the city. In the St. Stephen’s Cathedral they were crowned (and buried).
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So much grandeur and so much decadence, that in the case of Vienna helped to create further masterpieces. Do not forget that Freud’s psychoanalysis was born in a Vienna apartment where the bearded professor listened to the nightly nightmares of the nobility of the late 1900s. Around the same time, Klimt started the Viennese Secession, the artistic movement that led to the break of the classical schemes of Austrian art. Of that period remain not only The Kiss, but many other works divided between the Belvedere and other Viennese museums.
As we said, Vienna is much less boring than many describe it. Do not forget that the first amusement park in Europe, the Prater, was born here. His Ferris wheel showed the roofs of Vienna to millions of people in more than a century of life.
Today it is overshadowed by more technological attractions, but who would give up a ride even if it is so “Old style”. If you like less tourist fun and want to live like a Viennese, go into a Cafè in the late afternoon and find out how the Viennese love to enjoy their free time, chatting in front of a coffee, a tea and lots of sweets. If it’s spring or summer, they crowd the “Schanigarten“, spaces created with planters, umbrellas, and tables to enjoy the sun.
In short, there is so much to do and see in Austria‘s capital, at any time of the year.
WHAT TO SEE IN VIENNA
Top attractions not to be missed are:
- Schonbrunn Palace
- Imperial Palace (Hofburg)
- Belvedere Palace Museum
- St. Stephen’s Cathedral
- State Hall of the Austrian National Library
- St. Peter’s Church
- Church of the Jesuits
- Dominican Church
- St. Anna’s Church
Following instead some hidden spots of the city that only locals know!
- Hundertwasserhaus quarter
- Anker Uhr (Anker Clock)
- Zentralfriedhof Cemetery
- Freyung Passage
- Kirche am Steinhof
- Secession (Friedrichstr. 12)
- Saturday’s Flea market on Kettenbrückengasse
- Some typical Cafès: Alt Wien Cafè, Café Sperl, Café Savoy
- A skybar: Le Loft (Praterstrasse 1)
WHEN TO GO TO VIENNA
The best period to visit Vienna is from May to September.
Following a list of main events and typical festivals and celebrations of Vienna.
HOW TO REACH AND MOVE IN VIENNA
The main airport is the Vienna International Airport
download the transportation map
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WHAT TO DO IN VIENNA
typical dishes of Vienna are:
- Wiener Schnitzel: a traditional dish, breadcrumbed and fried veal escalope;
- Tafelspitz: boiled beef topside in broth, typically served with horseradish;
- Tiroler Speckknödel: fried bacon and bread dumpling;
- Palatschinken: thin crêpe-like pancakes with savory or sweet fillings;
- Liptauer: a paprika-infused creamy spread made from sheep’s milk cheese;
- Salzburger Nockerln: a baked vanilla soufflé designed to resemble Austria’s snow-capped peaks;
- Sacher Torte: a dense chocolate cake with a layer of apricot preserve, served with a compulsory dollop of whipped cream;
- Apfelstrudel: a dessert consisting of delicate layers of crisp pastry with an apple and raisin filling;
- Stroh: spiced rum available in several variants, ranging from 40% to a whopping 80% alcohol;
- Glühwein: a warming mix of hot red wine blended with sugar, orange, lemon, cloves, and cinnamon stick;
- Obstler: fruit schnapps, usually very strong and relatively cheap;
- Wiener Mélange: a small espresso served with steamed milk and topped with froth;
typical souvenirs of Vienna are:
- Augarten porcelains
- Lobmeyr glassware
- Freywillie jewelry creations
- Sachertorte chocolate cake
- Salzburg’s Mozartkugeln, chocolate bon-bons
- Manner Schnitten, the Neapolitan hazelnut wafers
- white and red wines
- typical Austrian preserves
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