Who hasn’t heard or dreamed about visiting one of the best places on Earth to live? The Austrian city is known for its high quality of life and its people are having one of the best standards of living, so what makes this city so desired? Read along and you will understand exactly why.
Vienna is the capital of Austria, placed on the eastern part of the country, is the 7th largest city in Europe by population and before World War I, it was also the capital of the Austro-Hungarian empire. Known also as the City of Music, for the famous musicians that lived here, probably the most famous ones are Johann Strauss, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and Ludwig van Beethoven, but it is also known as the City of dreams, since here the first psychotherapist Sigmund Freud lived.
In the early time, Viena was also the home of one of Empress Elisabeth of Austria, also knows as Sissi, the Bavarian beauty that stole everyone’s heart, she is often compared with Princess Diana, since both of them were loved by the people but hated the court life. The history of the Austro-Hungarian empire can be learned when visiting the Schonbrunn Palace and Sissi museum.
For visiting this amazing city I strongly recommend wearing VERY comfortable shoes since Vienna is best discovered on foot, the beautiful buildings most of them in the Baroque architecture, will take you back in time. If you want to feel like a royal you can even rent a carriage to take you on a tour of the city center.
Since there are so many must-see attractions, I recommend purchasing the Vienna Pass, this will grant you access to almost all of them, including the Hop On – Hop Off with that you will need to get to the Schonbrunn Palace or to the city panoramic. I purchased the 3-day pass with 110 euros from the official website and collect the pass from their office from Karlsplatz. Using this pass we visited the following attractions: Schonbrunn Palace, Schonbrunn Zoo, Palm House Schönbrunn, Imperial Carriage Museum, Gloriette Schönbrunn viewpoint, Spanish Riding School, Time Travel – Magic Vienna History Tour, Vienna Giant Ferris Wheel, Belvedere Palace, Madame Tussauds, City Cruises Vienna, State Hall of the Austrian National Library, Imperial Treasury Vienna, Museum of Natural History, Museum of Technology, Danube Tower, Sissi Museum and of course the Hop On Hop Off bus.
Some of them were totally worth it, some of them can be skipped, for example, the City Cruises Vienna will take you on a boat ride on the Danube canal, unfortunately, there is nothing to see and we just wasted one hour of our time in the city. Also if you already went to Schonbrunn, the Sissi museum will not bring much over what you already saw. The Imperial Treasury Vienna museum doesn’t hold much in it since all the royal jewelry was lost after the falling of the empire. Madame Tussauds, Museum of Natural History, Museum of Technology don’t bring much over other museums from Europe so you might not want to waste your precious time on them if you’ve already seen something similar.
If you want to get a panoramic view of the city I strongly advise you to visit the Wine Village Panoramic, you get to see their famous vineyards. There are restaurants there so you can also plan to have a glass of wine while looking at the city and the forest. Another way to see the city is by going to the Danube Tower, if you are planning on going in the afternoon you can see the city during twilight, the best time in my opinion. Make sure you also go to the coffee shop or restaurant, since they turn to offer their customers the 360o view.
A mandatory attraction for all the bookworms out there is the State Hall of the Austrian National Library. If you didn’t dream about wandering into a huge library then you are not a genuine book lover, but if you did make sure you put that on the list.
I will not make a case why you should visit Schonbrunn since this is a defining place for Austria, Bavaria, and Hungary. If you are there make sure to visit also Palm House Schönbrunn, Imperial Carriage Museum, and Gloriette Schönbrunn viewpoint.
Even if I am not found of Zoo’s the Schonbrunn Zoo is advertising the fact that they are helping the animals by offering them a safe place to breed and after seeing the leopard and panda pups I am starting to believe they are doing a good job. The only way I agree with keeping animals in cages for display is if it offers the endangered species a place to breed so that we don’t lose these gifts of nature due to the evil of humans. I recommend a visit to this place since all the animals are cared for, have plenty of space and seam good. Also if you love animals, especially horses the Spanish Riding School, is the place for you. Most likely you will only be able to see the morning training, but the Lipizzan horses have a natural beauty that will make you want to book a riding lesson when you get home.
Apart from visiting, Vienna is also a place to relax and enjoy a frappe in the morning, a delicious meal in a restaurant or a glass of wine on a terrace. Not to mention a great ice-creme dessert, you don’t even have to pick, all the places where we eat were chosen randomly and the food was amazing a well-deserved break.
The calm and relaxed atmosphere of the city’s inhabitants can be spotted in the beautiful parks that can be found all around, people walking their dogs, doing yoga, reading in the park, jogging will make you understand why Vienna is one of the best places to live.
I cannot say that it made me change my mind about where I would like to live since to me Spain will always be the best place to live, but I started to understand why the northern countries have such a high standard of living. Vienna is clearly one of the best European cities to visit and it should definitely go on everyone’s bucket list.