Monday, 10 July 2017

Seven Things You Must Do and See in Vienna

Glamour and Drama at the Vienna State Opera

A classy Viennese evening out, the State Opera is a popular evening attraction for locals as well as tourists. Performances vary but are of an extremely high standard, from unbelievably powerful voices and great accoustics to exciting abstract costumes, stage sets and choreography. Not to mention the tasty selection of gateaux on offer during the interval.

Gold Leaf and Romance; Klimt paintings at The Belvedere

The wondrously sumptuous decor of the Belvedere art gallery and prestigious collections of art are a true sight, of which the focal point is the Klimt collection; in all its surreal, romantic, golden glory. My friends and I particularly enjoyed the 'kiss' photo opportunity!

Stunningly Detailed Baroque & Gothic Viennese Architecture 

The architecture of this splendid city is something of its own to admire. From the majestic green and gold domes of the Hofburg palace, to the dazzling pattered roof and gothic detail of the St Stephen's Cathedral, Vienna is visually stunning at every turn, not to mention clean! Windows gleam in the sunlight, and the almost total lack of litter or vandalism is refreshing, giving the city a classy and grand feel. 

Coffee and Gateaux: Classy Cafe Central and Other Traditional Viennese Cafes

Freud's favourite haunt, among other infamous Viennese personalities, this elegant and cafe and its beautiful arched ceiling is the place to be and be seen! Despite the fact that it was stiflingly warm in there - especially with a red faced and edgy baby - I sat and sipped my amazingly creamy and perfect hot chocolate in between various trips to the gateau displays to decide what to have. 

Glitter and Bling at the Swarovski Flagship Store, Vienna 

Three floors of sparkly heaven. The flagship store on Karntner Strasse is my favourite shop in Vienna! From beautiful, shimmering sculptures and floor-to-ceiling displays, to a whole top floor of affordable Swarovski jewellry and gifts, this wonderful three-floor store features all of the fabulous Austrian crystal brand's available items, and what better place to be choosing a little treat to wear to the Vienna state opera, or little decoration for the Chirstmas tree.

Sigmund Freud's House and Therapy Rooms

The Vienna home of Freud and the home of his first therapy practice. Wander the rooms and take in some of the original belongings of this infamous founder of Psychotherapy, as well as some important and historic artwork, documents and articles.

Dumplings, Schnitzel and Strudel: Vienna's Culinary Specialities

Head on over to Hotel Regina's Resturant Roth, on Wahringer Strasse, for delicious and quality Viennese traditional cuisine. Mini spinach dumplings with chicken and mushrooms in a creamy sauce, like a stroganoff. Amazing! We also really enjoyed other local specialities such as the many wiener stands, traditional strudel, and schnitzels, as well as a cheeky kebab on a street corner. Oh yes, even those are classier in Vienna.

Practical Information 

For getting into the city, the 'CAT' city airport train is extremely useful - and easy to find - just look for the bright green signage/branding  at arrivals. It takes just 16 minutes to get into the citycentre. 

Hotel Recommendation: Hotel Baron am Schottentor

This boutique hotel is a great choice for affordable elegance, with a good breakfast, and good location - especially if you want a hotel within easy walking distance of the town centre (around 10 minutes). The hotel is right near the magnificent Votivkirche (church) and a few blocks away from the Sigmund Freud Museum. I loved the historic building and the decor, and the rooms were very clean. 

Restaurant Recommendation: Hotel Regina

The restaurant and hotel across the road from Hotel Baron am Schottentor (on Wahringer Strasse), is a great choice for authentic Viennese cuisine. Staff are friendly and the food is consistently high-quality.  

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