So let’s return to proper chronological order here…. and to a town I have always longed to visit, VIENNA! The Grandparents flew into Munich on a Saturday (1.5 hour drive from Salzburg), and the whole clan departed the next day for a trip to Vienna. We stopped in Melk, Austria on the way (see here) and on Monday we completed a whirlwind walking tour of Old Town Vienna. Only a tad bit reminiscent of the Griswalds, the 4 adults and toddler really had a full day.
The Mize Clan in “Wien” Austria!
Only off the subway for minutes, I am immediately approached my Mozart himself, selling concert tickets.
First stop off the U-Bahn, St. Stephen’s Cathedral, an icon of Old Town Vienna…
Stephanplatz- a huge pedestrian walk in the heart of Old Town, here you see the side view of the vast St. Stephen’s Cathedral, under renovation
After making our way to the Tourist Info for train tips, we really start our walking tour near the Opera and Albertina Platz.
Home of the Albertina Museum,missed by these Griswalds.
We did skip the chocolate indulgence a the Sacher Cafe (another Vienna ‘tourist-must-do’ )…but thanks to Rick Steves we did stop at tasteful and thought provoking Statues…
Monument against War and Fascism sits on an old concentration camp site.This was a tasteful and moving corner of town, well worth a visit.
Reminds us of the consequences of not keeping a government on track.
Next up on our self-guided tour, Kaisergruft.
Kaisergruft: This old church houses a CRYPT- the remains of the Hapsburgs (the Imperial family)
Historical note- the Hapsburgs ruled Austria from 1273 to 1818.
Nothing like a good crypt to perk up your morning.
Across the street is the fountain of the four rivers, my opening pic of the Mize-Clan (photography by Reed Humphrey). By now, hunger prevailed so we sought refuge in one of Vienna’s many outdoor restaurants.
Besides, Vienna is known for its cafes, a good reason to have more espresso….
We made our way through further massive pedestrian mall with contemporary retail shops to GRABEN strasse (‘ditch’ street). Originally a moat for a Roman military camp, it now houses the Plague Monument.
Graben- the plague monument on the left called The Trinity Column.
The Trinity Column (no, for you pagans not Larry, Mo and Curly but the Father, Son and Holy Spirit) was erected as a bribe or ‘thank-you’ to God from the remaining 2/3’s population of Vienna that survived the plague in 1690.
The Trinity Column- see the old naked woman (symbolizes the plague) being tossed into the Abyss. Thanks again, Rick Steves.
We turn off Graben and make our way down Kohlmarkt toward Hofsburg Palace.
Because this blog simply does not have enough palaces, here is an attempt to capture the Imperial Hofsburg Palace.
Hofsburg, quite massive, here is a shot of nearing the entrance.
The grand entrance. I personally love the road biker smiling at me, nice ride!
And ANOTHER fountain, this time in front of Hofsburg.
Raise your hand if you’re sure…
We entered Hofburg, but didn’t do the whole scene. It is pretty massive and we wanted to save our feet for the Hapsburg’s summer palace the next day.
Across from the dripping-with-baroque architecture palace is a simple building AND Roman ruins!
Turns out, an architect, Adolf Loos was a revolutionary dude who protested the ornate Greek-ish facades by building stripped down ‘less-is-more’ functional structures. Apparently this building (among others) was considered shocking in it’s day as an anti-art nouveau statement. These roman ruins appear at first as if the corner is left under constant renovation. Instead, it is a bit of Roman-Vienna left as a museum.
Inside Hofburg, here one of the oldest gates.
Hofburg encompasses 640 years of architecture: 13th Century to 1913. Here, In der Burg.
Note the statue of Emperor Franz II, and tower behind with 3 types of clocks.
One of the clocks shows the phases of the moon
Another view from with In der Burg
I just think this Lion belongs on a cover of a Lonely Plant travel book.
We exit the Hofburg and near the Museum Quarter. First, this little library…
Hofbibliothek. The National Library
Enter, Museum Quartier
But, Eliot fell asleep in the stroller and we all had tired feet, so we just sat here and relaxed outside of the Leopold Collection of Austrian Art.
So, a great day of sight-seeing, but it didn’t end there! Since our lil guy slept so well while we lounged in Museum Quartier…we decided to visit Prater Park…the Amusement park in Vienna. However, those pic will have to wait for another day. This has been one long post…but Vienna is just like that.
Yours in Crypts and Cafes,