Hello, Kelli here!
I am on my way to Budapest, my last stop before returning to Nottingham! Here’s a little about my time in Vienna, Austria.
On our first day in Vienna, Meghan and I took a free walking tour to get acquainted with the city. We saw many of the buildings that comprise the Hofburg palace and learned about the seat of the Hapsburg empire. After the tour we ate Viennese schnitzel that was bigger than a plate! We were feeling pretty stuffed after that but we still somehow managed to climb 343 steps to the top of the tower in St. Stephens Cathedral where we could look out over the city. That evening we managed to snag €3 standing room tickets for an opera production of Hansel and Gretel at the Staatsoper, widely considered to be the best opera house in the world. This was my first opera, and I had a great time!
We spent day two checking out some museums. In the morning we went to the Albertina where I spent hours admiring works by Monet, Matisse, Picasso, Signac, and Raphael. In the afternoon we went to the Sisi Museum to learn about famous Hapsburg empress Elisabeth. The museum was super crowded that day but we were still able to learn about her.
We got up early on day three to take a day trip to Salzburg, Austria. Once we arrived in the city we went to Mirabell Gardens to see where some scenes from The Sound Of Music were filmed. My favorite part of the day was visiting Mozart’s Birthplace, a museum dedicated to the composer’s life. The museum houses some of Mozart’s original instruments. Next we took the furnicular up to Salzburg Fortress. Unfortunately it was pouring down rain so we couldn’t see the Alps as well as we had hoped, but I still enjoyed learning about the history of the fortress. Our final stop in Salzburg was St. Peter’s Archabbey. We admired the frescoes before heading back to Vienna.
Day four and five were spent admiring more art and learning more about the city’s imperial history. On day four we went to the Kunsthistoriches, an art history museum that houses works collected by the Hapsburg empire, including works by Rubens, Rembrandt, Caravaggio, and Velaźquez. The museum also houses an impressive collection of Egyptian, Greek, and Roman art and artifacts. After leaving the museum we went to the Schönbrunn Palace, summer home of the Hapsburgs. We chose to walk the gardens instead of going inside.
On our last day I enjoyed coffee and brunch at a Viennese coffee house. Vienna’s coffee house culture is recognized as intangible cultural heritage by UNESCO, so this was a fitting way to spend part of our last day. In the afternoon I spent a few hours enjoying works by Egon Schiele, Ferdinand Hodler, Anton Kolig, and Gustav Klimt at the Leopold Museum. That evening Meghan and I went back to the Staatsoper to watch a performance of The Nutcracker. We got standing room tickets again for €3 and enjoyed the ballet.
I’m on my way to Budapest now, and soon it will be time to go back to Nottingham!
All for now,