Vienna / Wien
Vienna is the largest city and capital of Austria with a population of around 1.7 million. It is located in the east of the country on the banks of the River Danube. Vienna contains many attractions for the visitor including palaces, museums, gardens, river front and plenty of excellent cafes.
The history of Vienna dates back to Roman times but it grew to prominence during the 13 the century when the first Habsberg ruler was established in the city. It became the capital of the Holy Roman Empire from 1558 to 1806. Today it is a modern city with all the facilites of modern life but in a unique historical and cultural setting.
Major tourist attractions include the imperial palaces of the Hofburg and Schönbrunn (also home to the world's oldest zoo, Tiergarten Schönbrunn) and the Riesenrad in the Prater. Cultural highlights include the Burgtheater, the Wiener Staatsoper, the Lipizzaner horses at the Spanische Hofreitschule and the Vienna Boys' Choir, as well as excursions to Vienna's Heurigen district Döbling.
There are also more than 100 art museums, which together attract over eight million visitors per year. The most popular ones are Albertina, Belvedere, Leopold Museum in the Museumsquartier, KunstHausWien, BA-CA Kunstforum, the twin Kunsthistorisches Museum and Naturhistorisches Museum, and the Technisches Museum Wien.
What to see in Vienna
Schönbrunn Palace - the main palace of the Habsburgs with 1441 rooms. Gets very busy.
Hofburg - Also known as the winter palace; it was the base for the Habsburg dynasty (see photo above)
Albertina - museum with an amazing collection of old master paintings and more.
The Wiener Riesenrad - is a Ferris wheel at the entrance of the Prater amusement park in Leopoldstadt.
The Hundertwasser House - is an unusual and colourful apartment house in Vienna, Austria, designed by Austrian artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser.
Natural History Museum
St Stephen's Cathedral (Stephansdom)
The Lainzer Tiergarten is a large wildlife preserve in the southwest corner of Vienna.
Spanish Riding School - home of the famous Lipizzaner stallions.
Classical music - Music is well served in Vienna where classical music, opera and theatres abound; try Staatsoper or Burg theatre to start.
Coffee Houses - lots to chose from; most famous is probably Cafe Sacher, home of the Sacher tort (chocolate cake).
Guide to Europe
|Travel Guide to the European Union 2013|