VIENNA – beauty on the Danube River!

Vienna is capital and the largest city of Austria, a perfect destination if you are looking for a weekend escape to a city with unique charm and imperial history!

The historic city center is inscribed on the UNESCO List, which is no surprise to me as it’s a really wonderful city. On top Vienna is also city of art and music – it was home to Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert and J. Strauss. Culture and history are strongly embedded around here.

Here is my list of MUST– SEE historical places in Vienna.

  1. Hofburg – until 1918 was the centrum of the Habsburg Empire for many centuries. In the majestic emperor’s palace Hofburg, you can find several museums and one of them is dedicated to the empress Elisabeth (Sisi), the Bavarian pretty wife of Franz Joseph that was murdered in Geneva in 1898. In various rooms, we can observe her entire life, how she used to dress, which jewelry she would choose, where she used to have her bath or even how she applied face masks… those from raw veal took my breath away!
  1. Stephen’s Cathedral (Stephansdom) – the most important Catholic Church in Vienna that was originally built as a Romanesque church in 1147. My tip – you can climb up one of the towers to get an incredible view over the old city.
  1. Schönbrunn Palace – is the most popular sightseeing spot in Vienna and one of the most interesting cultural monuments in the country and beautiful former residence of the imperial family. The Palace is truly huge and includes over 1400 rooms, huge park and amazing gardens. And a surprise there is also nice ZOO inside the area so definitely a full day trip for families.
  1. Albertina – the most impressive place for me is however Albertina, particularly because I love arts! It is not only a gallery but also it has the largest and most valuable graphical collections in the world. Here you can see famous pieces such as “Young Hare” by Albrecht Dürer or “House Among the Roses” by Claude Monet.

Other famous places that are worth the visit if you have bit more time than just a short weekend are Belvedere, Spanish Riding School or Museum of Sigmund Freud – the famous founder of psychoanalysis!

And what to do WHEN you are tired, hungry and thirsty? There is a simple solution in Vienna that has endless number of restaurants and one world-famous specialty – Wiener SCHNITZEL. It’s as simple as that! One can almost travel around the whole world to discover that the largest, juiciest and crispiest schnitzels are always here. They are from veal and they are truly fantastic and I love to have them with local potato salad!

Now, let’s get something sweet as well. The most famous cake is indisputably SACHER TORT which can be tasted in traditional Hotel Sacher (it bakes it since the 19th century) which is always packed with tourists.

GOOD TO KNOW – Vienna is also famous for its coffee culture but most cafés also serve beer, wine and liqueurs! You should not miss a visit of the traditional coffee house and relax here a bit with your friends or just read daily newspaper or your travel guide. Do not ask for take away! My personal tip is Café Central with special recipe Kaisermelange coffee (coffee, milk, egg yolk and cognac).

ANYTHING ELSE? We shall not forget famous CHRISTMAS MARKETS! I’ve heard about them from all friends long time before visiting Vienna and they did not disappoint me at all! Best markets are in Schönbrunn, in Belvedere… but the most visited one is in front of the Town Hall (Rathaus). Here it is! Neat wooden stands offer just about anything you can think of. Wooden carved decorations, painted angels, toys, chocolate, sausages…. And PUNCH (traditional hot drink) which makes one warm during very cold winter days! Very popular are classic spiced hot red wine and tea or coffee with a tablespoon of dark rum. But my favorite drink is hot white chocolate.

MERRY CHRISTMAS

86 Comments

  1. YellowCable

    Wonderful virtual tour of Vienna of those must see and things to do. The place is beautiful,so inviting for a visit. It seems like could take more than a weekend visit to sees and do things around city..

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  2. Dalo 2013

    Such a wonderful post… When I think of the short time I stayed in Vienna, I can not help but smile – the greatest music I have ever heard. People playing such incredible pieces on the corners…and then there is Mozart 🙂

    And then of course, as you mention above: food & coffee. Such a great place to relax, take in history and also make some good memories and friends. Thank you for re-introducing this great city ~ and wish you a very Merry Christmas!

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  3. Bama

    This brings back some fond memories of the city to me, Kamila. Of all the cities I visited during my trip to Europe, by far Vienna is my favorite. I was lucky to be able to visit most of the places you mention in this post. However I’m craving for a return to the Austrian capital one day.

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  4. sweetykannoth

    Kamila I simply loved your post ! All the more so ,because Vienna has been one of my favorite places in Europe along with Paris…. We couldn’t do all the places you have suggested here , but we did do a few like the ‘Sconbrunn palace’ . And I loved the sacher tort or cake suggested to us by a local , at Hotel sacher along with coffee , and it was out of the world !
    Also , wanted to ask if you did the cruise down the Danube river…It was without doubt , one of the highs of our trip …
    I had written a post related to the Danube cruise , in one posts ,as a response to a daily post prompt …Though it isn’t exactly a travelogue or anything , felt I could share it with you :
    http://sweetykannoth.wordpress.com/2014/09/16/the-cruise-down-the-danube-river-back-in-time/

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    1. Kamila Pala

      Thank you very much for kind words 🙂 And must agree with you – Vienna is really beautiful and have the same memories about Sacher Torte in Sacher Hotel! Your tip about cruise trip is really good!!! We can do this adventure – next time :). Have a nice advent Sunday. Bye. Kamila

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Kamila Pala

    Thank you, Joy! I visited Vienna several times…summer time is for example fantastic but I have to say the time before Christmas was different and we enjoyed local specific atmosphere 🙂 Merry Christmas. Bye. Kamila

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  6. An Englishwoman in Italy

    So glad you liked theAlbertina. For me it was like being in heaven. Looking at their drawings, I felt so close to the divine creative power of those great artists. The Kunsthistorischesmuseum (national art gallery) is also a sine qua non for art lovers.

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  7. lolaWi

    wonderful and informative post on Vienna, Kamila. I was there in 2012 🙂 enjoyed a brief visit where we had mass at St Stephen and a tour of schonbrunn palace. your pictures are beautiful. i specially love the ones of your little king 🙂

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  8. Dilip

    Hello Kamila and thank you for taking me back to beautiful Vienna! The lovely palaces, the roasted chestnuts on the cobbled streets and the musicals are nostalgic and unforgettable. The wining experience in nearby Grinzing too was exotic.

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  9. Sartenada

    How wonderful and informative post full of gorgeous photos. I am very happy for this post, because I have not visited Austria / Vienna except once we got lost few kilometers on our road trip in Germany when seeking Eagle Nest (Kehlsteinhaus).

    Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, happy and safe travel!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kamila Pala

      Happy for your warm wishes and words, very kind of you 🙂
      I just came from holidays and look forward to sharing my experiences with others 🙂 Wish you also Happy New Year with beautiful new post!!! Bye. K

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  10. Packing my Suitcase

    Awesome and beautiful post Kamila!!! I love Vienna, but there are still a few things left to visit there that I didnt have the chance to do when I was there.
    Ohhh I also love hot white chocolate!
    I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and an amazing new year’s eve! I wish you lots of travels in 2015!

    Liked by 1 person

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