With a break in the hockey action for a week, Andrew and I decided to go to Vienna. Amid my visa permit issues, I decided that if I can’t stay here as long as I’d like, I’d at least want to see all of Austria. So why not start with the best city in the world? (according to some magazine sources)
Following the advice and recommendations of an old friend – who I cannot thank enough – we were able to see most of what makes Vienna so great. Day 1 started with a walk to The Belvedere.
The Belvedere consists of the Upper and Lower Belvedere palaces, the Orangey, and Palace stables. It was built as a summer residence for Prince Eugene of Savory and now hosts museums of Austrian art and special exhibits. I wish I was allowed to take pictures inside these buildings, although I don’t think I would do it justice. From looking at the outside, one can only imagine what it is like on the inside. The Marble Hall in the Upper Belvedere was amazingly beautiful. Aside from the beauty of the building, we were able to see works by Egon Schiele, Oskar Kokoschka, Renoir, Van Gogh, Monet, and the largest collection by Austrian Gustav Klimt, including the famous “The Kiss”.
I was beyond excited, as I love going to any place that involves art, and was in awe of seeing this painting in real life. We explored the gardens (in the rain) and made our way to Karlkirche.
Karlkirche is one of the most outstanding churches from the Baroque era and is famous for its dome.
Andrew and I decided to purchase tickets and go up to see the top of this famous dome and get views of Vienna. I wouldn’t consider myself afraid of heights but my legs couldn’t help but shake as we climbed the wobbly scaffolding. I could only muster enough courage to take my hands off the railings to snap these 2 pictures …
Back on solid ground we had lunch at a pub (with the best burgers I’ve ever tasted) and walked around the city, looking for the Hofburg Palace. It wasn’t hard to miss. The Palace was HUGE and was made up of many different buildings. The Hofburg was the imperial residence for the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation, as well as, the Emperor of Austria (Habsburg Empire). Now it is the official seat of the President of Austria.
There were many different museums and buildings we could see. We decided to look at the Imperial Apartments, Sisi Museum, and the Imperial Silver collection. Again, no pictures were allowed. After that we made our way back to the hotel and got ready for, my favorite, a night at the Vienna State Opera to see the ballet … more to come.