Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Days 225 and 226 - Around Vienna – Sun 6 & Mon 7 Oct

Days 225 and 226 - Around Vienna – Sun 6 & Mon 7 Oct
Sunday. Gentle rain on the roof woke us this morning - at least it's keeping extreme cold at bay. Drove to other side of Vienna and booked into caravan park. Even the first glimpse of Vienna the back way into town was enticing, passing a waste plant with gold tiles straight out of Klimt. 

Took bus, then train (good,clean, fast, quiet, on time, spacious....) into city centre - and would you believe - a turnstile ticketed toilet!!! (we have come SO far from SEAsia!!!) Wandered around looking at churches, statues (including Goethe), beautiful old buildings, open air conTENT exhibition setting up balloon tents in front of ornate national gallery. 

Opera touts, buskers, good eateries - kept running out of euros! City is on canal not Danube. 

Stood in awe of St Stephen's Cathedral "Gothic needle at heart of Vienna". Had Wiener Schnitzel for dinner (what else!) Came home easily same way in dark and cold on tender feet. Had to run vehicle for half hour to get battery power up with 2nd day of limited kms and no sun.

Monday. Not too cold a day. Took public bus and train to catch sightseeing bus for 3 hr tour (had 3E all you can eat breakfast by station, all cafés full of morning smokers. Had hard boiled egg in holder - took us back to our childhoods). Passed architectural delights of buildings on the Ringstrasse - opera house, museums, art galleries, parliament and various monuments (they were happy Napolean had been defeated...) Such a pretty leafy city, apparently more than 180 parks.   

Schonbrunn Palace (opulence on a grand scale!) French garden, Tiergarten, orangerie, sun maze, Roman follies and pool, and Gloriette structure on hill. Must be expensive to maintain given the entrance fee and the coin slot on every toilet door... 

Not enough time - GirlRob wants to stay for a week!! Look forward to coming back to take in exhibitions/ concerts/ opera/ ballet, and go see famous Lipizzaner stallions.  Shopping for last of souvenirs and gifts. In evening walked by opera singers, buskers, blind baritone, and were serenaded by an accordion player on train going from compartment to compartment. Bittersweet coming to an end of this new way of life, but excitement building about going home.

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