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Vienna Travel Blog

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Kunsthistorisches

Wow....simply....wow. Vienna, Austria. 3,711 miles away from Ringgold, GA. My home...I'm far from it. Where I want to go, I can't. Either because, I can't...literally (home) or I can't read German. But I'm making do with what I can.

To recap...quickly, we arrived Wednesday afternoon at our hotel, The Golden Tulip, and had to wait to check in until 2. So...we explored...a lot. We went to the most famous landmark in Vienna, immediately, since we weren't going as a group. Stephansdom Church, aka a church built in celebration of the plague survivors in medieval times. As of right now, this is the biggest church of seen...and the most beautiful. but that might quickly change.

Cool view
For 4 euros, I took an elevator to the top and saw the Vienese skyline...which, of course, was beautiful. Needless to say, I made quick use of my camera...and it got tired quickly :(

To master a subway station, one doesn't need to master the language, only the recognition of names. Like Doraville, North Ave., and Peachtree Center, Stephansplatz, Karlsplatz, Huttledorf, Simmering, and Ottakring mean just about the same thing. For 1,50 euros, you can ride the subway pretty much any time you want to. It's a very very very laid back security system underground, so we, on frequent occasion, just slipped through the unobstructed gates. ;) By the end of our first day, we had the 4 different routes mastered in the U-bahn station. U1-U4. The welcome dinner that night was great.
Venus von Willendorf
 Common pork of Austria ?, apple cobbler, free Coke!!!, and a vegetable goodness that tasted wonderful. Maybe only wonderful because of the plane food we had been forced to stomach for nearly a day.  After, we slept.  All of us...nobody went out...jet lag had killed us. Not that we couldn't sleep on the planes...I, for one, didn't want to. There was so much to do!

Thursday started off with a lecture in the Inter City Hotel which was about 5 blocks away from our hotel. It was an architecture lecture, so it didn't last long. The dispersion began after the lecture...everyone trying their best to get to the Mozart House on time. This elaborate apartment was alright...but nothing spectacular. But, it was Mozart. And that was freakin' cool. Real pamphlets, music sheets, paintings, artifacts, and rooms.
Rock Me, Amadeus Mozart!!
..I was taken back to the 18th century for a while. After this, we dispersed again and ate lunch. Sausage stuffed into a baguette is actually pretty good...but that's what they call a hot dog over here...go figure. The Kunsthistorisches Museum was, by far, the highlight of my day. Just a small taste:
The Return of the Hunters - Pieter Bruegel the Elder
The Artist's Studio - Jan Vermeer
Rembrandt, Titian, Rafael, Monet, Manet, Van Gogh....holy colors! Amazing!!!
The museum was huge...I really can't imagine the Louve being nearly 7 times bigger. We'll see...

After the Kunst., we headed over to the Museumquartier..the big shopping mall. Inside the quarter were the Leopold Museum and the Museum of Modern Art.  The expanse of German shopping looked enticing, but the inconvenience of going from store to store through a restaurant quickly deterred us to quit that.
Secession
The Pizzahaus provided me with some good nourishment (yeah right...a greasy pizza and flat Sprite), then it was back to the hotel to rest up. But I discovered an interesting revelation while at the pizza joint.  I know this is very narrow-minded of me, but it was weird seeing a Japanese lady in an Italian restaurant speaking German.  I guess I never fathomed it being in her capacity for that to be feasible.  Anyways...we went back and rested up...for....not much of anything. A few of us went to a pub and had a round of 'biers' at the "Ottakringer" but nothing exciting. The best part was watching the German natives get completely wasted and speaking in slibbered gubberish (to us).

Friday...LCC lecture...then off to the Albertina.
Karlskirche
Mozart's exhibit was all that was opened, and it wasn't anything too impressive. A few more nice papers, a powdered wig that he wore apparently, and some really nice outfits. Lunch at the fast food chain 'ANKER', which is basically a bagel form of Subway. It was reeeaaalllly good though...and moderately priced. After, we all took the tram to upper Belvedere...which is an art museum that houses mostly Vienese artists. On display today...Gustav Klimt and Egon Schiele. You've seen one of Klimt's, and so have I. And it was awesome. Go to Google images and search "Gustav Klimt+The Kiss". Breathtaking in person...maybe it's all the hype it gets. ??   A few of us traveled across the 3/4 mile long gardens to the lower Belvedere and basically ran through the Medieval and Baroque sections.
Schonbrunn Palace
...nothing spectacular. Though, Jacques Louis David's painting of Napoleon on the horse (forget the name of the painting) was there...that was cool.

After, a few of us went to a bar, a few of us went to the hotel.  We explored parts of Vienna for the evening.  Then, we all came back and just kinda crashed...some a tipsy crash, others a satisfied at shopping crash.  We hadn't all gotten over this jet lag business yet.

But I'm loving it. German is pretty easy to learn. Ya, nein, danke, bitazen, guttentag, guttenmorgen, it's all with endings like strasse, gasse, stadt, dorf, or burg. Puma is really expensive, it takes about 2 minutes to figure out how to flush each toilet, and the alarm clock next to the bed looks like an oven for it (we haven't tried to set it yet, being too scared).
The Prater ferris wheel
And...I will die of second hand smoke before I get to England, beer is almost as cheap as mineral water, street signs are always obeyed by the locals (walk, don't walk), not too many Austrians speak very good English, if any.

Finally, the Saturday.  Schonbrunn Palace....a summer home of the Vienese rulers.  An amazing site to see.  Even more amazing, were the gardens in the 'backyard' and the view from the top of the hill behind the palace.  We all went through the [much quicker] tour, then headed out and about.  Everyone eventually collected at the top...a few of us going to the very top for a nice sum of 1,99 euros.  No biggie, it was definitely worth it.  After taking waty too many pictures (as evidenced on facebook), I started down and went down the side with the zoo.

The food head in the Kunsthistorisches!!
  We were able to take a few animal pictures, and got some last shots of the famed palace.  Off to the Naturhistorisches it was....little did we know...actually we knew all along (if only we listened closer to Sarah and Julie, haha) all that was there was the Venus of Willendorf.  But that was worth the 3,50 euros, just for that priceless artifact in history.  25,000 BC...5 inches tall...in the middle of Europe.  Who'd have thunk it.  It was a site to see, small as it was...an extraordinary piece of art.  But whatever, that's the artist in me coming out.

Back to the hotel for a final evening...to Praterstern!  The amusement park that was soooo messed up.  We definitley saw about 7 haunted houses, a 'Rock Me Amadeus Mozart' ride, and really dangerous rides that they definitely wouldn't offer in the states.

Cool sculptures
  And we got to see the Danube and ride the famous ferris wheel and get our final glimpse of the Vienese skyline.  I love this place.

My first European city has turned out to be a perfect one.  Easy to navigate, easy to speak the language (kinda), and easy to have fun.


Miss you all who are reading this! I'm having a blast and can't wait to get up and get moving. Until Klagenfurt...

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Kunsthistorisches
Kunsthistorisches
Cool view
Cool view
Venus von Willendorf
Venus von Willendorf
Rock Me, Amadeus Mozart!!
Rock Me, Amadeus Mozart!!
Secession
Secession
Karlskirche
Karlskirche
Schonbrunn Palace
Schonbrunn Palace
The Prater ferris wheel
The Prater ferris wheel
The food head in the Kunsthistoris…
The food head in the Kunsthistori…
Cool sculptures
Cool sculptures
Prater Amusement Park oddities
Prater Amusement Park oddities
Bus ride to the Belvedere
Bus ride to the Belvedere
Group 3  :)
Group 3 :)
Walkway at Schonbrunn Palace
Walkway at Schonbrunn Palace
Do not step on trapezoidal plots o…
Do not step on trapezoidal plots …
Me and a cool fountain
Me and a cool fountain
Schonbrunn Palace and grounds
Schonbrunn Palace and grounds
Top of Schonbrunn Palace
Top of Schonbrunn Palace
Me and Schonbrunn Palace
Me and Schonbrunn Palace
Austrian animals...naturally
Austrian animals...naturally
Jan Vermeers Artist in the Studi…
Jan Vermeer's 'Artist in the Stud…
Wiener Derby    hehe
Wiener Derby hehe
Sarah, the tug of war champion
Sarah, the tug of war champion
From the top of the Prater ferris …
From the top of the Prater ferris…
Peddler action
Peddler action
From the top of the Prater ferris …
From the top of the Prater ferris…
The Danube River
The Danube River
Most of Group 3 at the Kunsthistor…
Most of Group 3 at the Kunsthisto…
Upper Belvedere
Upper Belvedere
Part of the group
Part of the group
Vienna Sights & Attractions review
If you're in Vienna one evening and have some time to kill, I recommend going down to the Prater Amusement Park. I don't remember which subway stop t… read entire review
Vienna
photo by: EmyG