How can I enjoy my last day in Vienna?!

Vienna Travel Blog

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Chris!! =)
Last night Christopher called at 9pm to meet for dinner - Europeans eat SO LATE!! we went to one of his favorite places in one of the trendier neighborhoods in Vienna (Wien) a few blocks away from the Volkstheatre. I don' tknow the name but the food was absolutely DELICIOUS. I ordered the only thing I knew - a schnitzel! I haven't had a schnitzel since my trip to Aruba and man this one was like 3 times the size of the one I had in Aruba! But the ringer, the absolute delight of the tastebuds tonight was a "dumpling" (knudle) dish that Chris recommended. Dumplings in Germanic countries are completely unaffiliated with the Asian concept of dumplings - these are made with bread, stuffed with something and look like large meatballs.
OMG, I could eat Knudle every day!
But made of bread. and there is a sauce over it - this one was this strange grey-colored substance. But then you eat it and it's like.. an amazing gorgonzola concoction. I would've probably eaten my shoe dipped in this delicious stuff, but the "knudle" was amazing as well. YUMMMM!

But the funniest memory I have of eating out with Chris - a proper Austrian - is the pronunciation of Austrian dishes. I'm laughing just thinking about it, but to have someone look you in the eye and offer you "a schnitzel" with a straight face or perhaps "a knudle" I about busted out right then and there and still have tears in my eyes retelling it 6 months later. There is something oddly inappropriate sounding when it comes to their food! Everything sounded like a pick-up line!!! What does one do when being offered A KNOODLE!? Tell me!! Because I couldn't keep a straight face at ALL.
The beautiful Hofsburg Palace
Oh please don't tell me any more names of food I might disappear under the table dissolved in giggles!

Having gotten home at around 1am last night and for some reason not sleeping well, today was a very, very late start. I think the lack of caffeine starts to show on day 2 despite me not noticing anything except the sheer lethargy in the mornings! I get ready by around 11am and manage to get my butt oudoors just before noon. I'm turning over in my mind what I might be destined to do today. So many options - I spent the night drawing on my Ubahn map where stuff was in case I needed to make last minute decisions. Here are the things that I would have liked to get accomplished today: Kaiserapartments in Hofberg, Schoenbrunn Palace and gardens, Nacshmarket to see the food/bustle, Mariahilfer Strasse to do some real shopping, UNO City to visit my 3rd UN HQ in the last 2 years =), Hotel Sacher to get my hands on a chocolate torte and finally the Prater and Ferris Wheel with Chris.
hmm, this room doesn't look too bad on me...
WOW.

I threw up my hands and blew this popsicle stand. I had 6 hours and was so exhausted by the thought of all there was I almost stayed in the hotel entirely. I thought it might have been better to go to Prague so that I wouldn't have to deal with the disappointment of not seeing everything. Made my way to the most important - the Kaiserapartments, first.
Finally - something close to the U-Bahn! The Hofberg palace is basically right above the U-bahn at Herengasse station, YAY! Considering these places take hours to walk through, it helps when you don't expend so much energy FINDING the actual place! =)

This is a pretty cool exhibition and I'm sure there is plenty more to this place, I didn't even see the gardens outside I was in that much of a rush to get all that stuff done today.
when no one was looking, I was able to actually use the viewfinder for this one!
Kinda wanted a guided tour of the apartments but they are only 1x a day at 2pm! Wow.. that's kind of outrageous. But for 9.50 Euro you get a ticket with complimentary audioguide and are somewhat forced through the Silver collection (yay, bowls and utensils! I totally ran through this section, vroosh!), the Sissi museum (really? I have to look at all her syringes and her absurdly uncomfortable-looking narrow/small shoes?), before you get to see the Royal Apartments which are BEAUTIFUL! =) I learned the proper names of a bunch of textiles and furniture styles - I feel so edumacated now! =) And my absolute FAVORITE part of this museum, is that you're basically led through the outer perimeter of all the rooms, and each one has this absolutely perfectly placed huge mirror.
UNO City. that's about as much of it as I got to see =(
So basically I went through all the rooms turned towards the mirror rather than the room itself to kind of .. check out how I would have looked in such a royal palace had it been moi and not some Hapsburg princess! ;) It's a fun little game, I highly recommend you try it yourself =) Too bad no photographs are allowed so every photo that you see here is INTERDIT!

Afterwards had to decide what to do.. really wanted to go to the shopping area but was getting increasingly tired and the thought of lugging all the souvenirs around made me cringe. =(

Went to UNO city in Vienna since it was a few stops past the hotel so I would get back and rest easily. Chris told me it was a bunch of buildings dedicated to the UN. Yay, I wanted to go and see and maybe take a tour! I've been to and toured the NY and Geneva UN offices - whoo! Vienna is the 3rd most importand HQ and I think the 4th is in Nairobi.
more Danube River
Oh and of course there's the PAM office in Rome which I haven't seen the inside of but I think it's off limits to visitors.

I arrive at 2:08pm and the lady tells me there are only 2 tours a day - one at 11 and one at 2pm. WOW.. I wasn't devastated or anything, just really like.. wow Europeans just are constantly proving how little they like to work! I believe the NY office has a tour every 15 minutes, and if you're about 5 minutes late for the tour they will literally have someone walk with you to the guide. Same with Geneva. But in Vienna, no, just 2 a day and if you're like 7 minutes late you're out of luck. So fine, I go to the gift shop desk (it's literally one circular desk with stuff in cases. It's quiet and nobody is staffing it. I wander over to the UN committee of women desk to ask if they're gone for the day, they assure me that someone is there - probably in the bathroom or something.
Schoenbrunn Palace
So I putter around, drink a coffee, eat some lunch, RIGHT NEXT TO the gift shop. And nobody ever shows up. So I get a little T shirt at the women's committee desk and blow that popsicle stand. So a small warning - DESPITE the fact that the gift shop sign says open 10am to 4pm, there is apparently a 1 hour break or something at 2pm. Maybe the gift shop person is also the tour guide? Who knows.. but wow what a sucky HQ experience =(

On the way to UNO City, the stop before (Donauinsel) was aboveground and I caught a glimpse of a beautiful river-looking thing. I thought I'd stop off and take a couple of pictures. Is this the Danube?! I think it might be, there is some funky story of the Danube being cut and therefore creating this island. Poor River! =( But it's a very pretty blue and there seems to be a carnival-like atmosphere on the shores, not to mention a freaking suspended bridge between the two strips of land that you can walk across.
huge gardens with the Glorietta on the hill.
Wow, too bad I was hot and tired, I would've liked to touch the Danube River before I left Vienna =) Famous bodies of water I dipped a toe in: Black Sea - check, Danube River - not quite!

After this, I went home and petered out. I really wanted to go to the Naschmarket and another shopping district and the Hotel Sacher to get that chocolate Tort and also the Schoenbrunn and then finish off at the Prater amusement park but I am sooo exhausted!! My legs hurt, my skin allergies are bad in this climate for some reason (it's very very hot today) and I just want to REST!

After another unrestful nap just flipping about, I decided to man up and make my way into the city again. Alright, time to start part 2 of my day. Rushed out at around 7:30 to catch the Schoenbrun gardens before they closed the gates at 9pm.
On the way there, noticed the sign for Naschmarket right above the metro stop and thought about getting off there first, but decided to head straight to the Palace and check out the market afterwards. Definitely made the right decision.

Schoenbrunn Palace is also a collection of buildings and if at all possible has even BIGGER gardens than the rest of the palaces in Vienna. And there are these old statues there that have been there for god knows how long. And then in the distance, the crowning glory on a hill - the Glorietta. I literally got to the Palace about 22 minutes before it closed and I could have made it halfway to the Glorietta but as with MANY freaking palaces and parks in Vienna - THESE PEOPLE like to freaking LINE THEIR WALKWAYS WITH GRAVEL! I'm a sandal-wearer, and every single step I took, all these sharp pieces of gravel would get into my sandals and I felt like some poor masochist walking down a path of fire.
The famous Ferris Wheel
It hurt so much I was tempted to take OFF my sandals and JUST WALK ON THE GRAVEL. But that would probably be worse although the thought was comforting. So remember, when you go to any palace in Vienna - wear sneakers or close-toed shoes. If you wear sandals or heels - you will be really effed.

So I go hobbling along, stopping every 4 steps to clear out my sandals, and I'm getting angry on top of it being super hot today so I'm close to tears I'm so uncomfortable. It takes me like 15 minutes to get to the damn palace and I'm so afraid to take another step as it's so painful that I return walking basically pressed along the hedge where the gravel is thinner and not as easily kicked up. Sorry for the small collection of Schoenbrunn photos, but I paid in blood for these!

Afterwards, stopped off at the Nachtmarket but everything had closed, and was headed back to the hotel to call Chris when I got the sudden urge to eat a BIG WEINER with SAUERKRAUT.
Danube Channel at night
Oh my god, I was dying of hunger it was 9:30 by now and I had barely eaten, and I wanted fair-food IMMEDIATELY! Got in touch with Chris, called a taxi due to my poor feet and headed straight to the Prater in search of some weiners!! So sad, I find out Austrians do NOT put sauerkraut on hotdogs! This must be an American thing, but WHY, it tastes so GOOD like that!! so it's boring mustard and ketchup and I ate way too much way too quickly but it more or less hit the spot. I tried to get a couple of stands that sold ice cream to make me an ice-cream float but one lady yelled at me and then ignored me, and the other one was just like "no, we can't do that." Bizarre considering you have ALL the ingredients RIGHT THERE. Yeah, I'm going to enjoy going back to America for a couple reasons, I have to admit.
hehe! Caught them when they weren't looking!
..

Then Chris and his beautiful girlfriend Lioba take me to the Danube Channel where there is an underground club that is also really chill. Just across the river is another club called the "Tel Aviv" that was JAMMING. There's definitely a very interesting cultural mix in Vienna. Chris tried to convince me to delay my flight a FOURTH time to return and see more of Vienna, and Pearly is asking me to come to Budapest since it is so close to Vienna.. I am soooo tempted, but I think it's time to go home and be a responsible adult... Yes, I think it's time.
jenn79 says:
yes, except the grand total for changing tickets will then be one thousand dollars! It's been a great run though =)
Posted on: Jun 19, 2009
hirondellenhi says:
responsible is a life time. i'm the devil here. just delay once more! school out!!!
Posted on: Jun 19, 2009
TRE69 says:
Wow you did a whole lot in just what 6 hours?!!!
Posted on: Jun 19, 2009
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Chris!! =)
Chris!! =)
OMG, I could eat Knudle every day!
OMG, I could eat Knudle every day!
The beautiful Hofsburg Palace
The beautiful Hofsburg Palace
hmm, this room doesnt look too ba…
hmm, this room doesn't look too b…
when no one was looking, I was abl…
when no one was looking, I was ab…
UNO City. thats about as much of …
UNO City. that's about as much of…
more Danube River
more Danube River
Schoenbrunn Palace
Schoenbrunn Palace
huge gardens with the Glorietta on…
huge gardens with the Glorietta o…
The famous Ferris Wheel
The famous Ferris Wheel
Danube Channel at night
Danube Channel at night
hehe! Caught them when they weren…
hehe! Caught them when they weren…
Danube Channel at night
Danube Channel at night
Tel Aviv nightclub
Tel Aviv nightclub
The Danube River!!
The Danube River!!
view outside the Hofsburg
view outside the Hofsburg
lots of gold stuffs
lots of gold stuffs
up close gold stuffs
up close gold stuffs
..this one either..
..this one either..
Look at the Royal Crest sewed ONTO…
Look at the Royal Crest sewed ONT…
quick ninja photo of the dressing …
quick ninja photo of the dressing…
my Empress/Queen Elisabeth postcar…
my Empress/Queen Elisabeth postca…
Merry go Round at the Prater
Merry go Round at the Prater
Prater amusement park
Prater amusement park
more amusement
more amusement
Haunted house type thing!
Haunted house type thing!
statues along the whole front of t…
statues along the whole front of …
my darling, youre missing a nose!
my darling, you're missing a nose!
my darling, Im a wee bit taller t…
my darling, I'm a wee bit taller …
beautiful building on the street i…
beautiful building on the street …
Volkstheatre
Volkstheatre
The Schnitzel wasnt half bad eith…
The Schnitzel wasn't half bad eit…
Vienna
photo by: EmyG