Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Mid-Europe, Day 2, 3 & 4: Vienna

After our day exploring Budapest, we headed over to Vienna by train. It was relatively cheap, about 30 euros, to travel between the cities. We arrived at our hostel and grabbed something to eat:

Dessert on Sunday, of course. 

Outside Schloss Schonbrunn,
or Schonbrunn Palace. 

Schonbrunn Palace
When Schonbrunn married Princess Sisi, he gave this palace to her as a gift. 
Who wouldn't want a man like that?!

We went through the palace rooms with an audioguide but weren't allowed to take pictures. I'm pretty bad at remembering things without a picture to trigger memories, so I don't have much info on Schonbrunn.


Naschmarkt
This place was fabulous! The shops let you try some food from their booths and move on. 
I tried so much dried fruit! So yummy!

Naschmarkt is a farmers' market opened in 1780. The name comes from "asch", meaning "milking pail".

I've never had filafel before, but this was fabulous! With some yummy hummus, of course. 

I really don't know what this is. We walked past it and I snapped a photo. Hopefully it's not just a super decorative toilet. 

The Vienna Opera House. 

Outside the opera house, we got snagged by some ticket sellers and bought tickets to a show for about 15 euros per person. When we got to the opera, I thought it was a ripoff, but mostly because the room was so small, the stage minuscule and the seats close to empty. Otherwise, it was great!



Schmetterling Haus
A botanical garden with butterflies. 


After exploring a bit, we headed over to the Sisi museum. She's, apparently, quite popular from a TV show that was based on her. It was a children's (cartoon?) show so they skipped over some of her life story. She starved herself pretty frequently and was considered the most beautiful woman in Austria. She obsessively tried to keep this image.

Apparently, how they fold the napkins is a closely guarded secret. Only one man knows how today. 

Just some dinnerware, made from solid gold!

Police building, I think. 

Rathaus. 
And this means parliament building. The German language is wonderful, calling a kettle black. 

While walking around, we ran into some sort of protest. I'm sure I could translate what the signs say, but mostly I found it funny (and typical) of Europe.


A church. 

I'm pretty sure all of that is solid gold. 

Saint Stephen's Church
The side here is actually under construction, so the arches on the building are just representations of what it looks like underneath the dropcloth. 

The oldest ferris wheel in Europe at Madame Tussauds. 

On our last full day in Vienna, before the train to Salzburg, we just walked around and explored the area. Here are some of the beautiful buildings and sights we found:



A memorial for War Heroes. 


Oberes Belvedere

The gardens at Belvedere, facing the lower Belvedere from Oberes (or upper). 


Belvedere, lower. 

And the next day we were off to Salzburg by train (about 25 euro, if I remember correctly). It was nice to finally be in a country that spoke German, which I studied for two and a half years... but can barely remember. It is an easy language, though. It sticks to the rules and hardly ever breaks them, I just don't remember much vocabulary.

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