Sunday, January 31, 2016

When In Vienna, Don't Forget the Schnitzel

Apart from history books I've read and movies I've watched, I first heard about Vienna when one of my college classmates bid farewell to us one day. She said she will be moving to Austria to continue her education over there. We were sad that a friend is leaving us but at the same time we were happy for her. I haven't heard of her until the internet and social media made the world closer.

After many years, we meet again on Facebook. Looking at my friends photos around Austria made me include this country particularly Vienna in my wish list to visit. The longing to experience Vienna intensified when I accepted this project.

After a good chat with my friend earlier today, I wanted to pack and jump into a plane to Austria even I know in the back of my head that that's a ridiculous plan. Me in Vienna in winter? I always say that my body was designed only for tropical and arid weather as I can't stand the cold. I always have cold hands and feet and I freeze in the slightest touch of damp air in my skin. Well, that's an even ridiculous thought. I know right? Who can resist the beauty of Vienna, I think none.

So, I started day dreaming and researching about Vienna. I watched too many videos including Anthony Bourdains No Reservations episode in Vienna that made him convert his feelings about this magnificent city. In the end, he fell in love with Vienna and wished of many more trips there. I think, I can brave the cold weather if there's ever a slightest chance of going to Vienna now.

My friend told me that it is best to visit Vienna between July and August to September as it is in those months when Vienna is most beautiful and romantic as there are blooms everywhere.

I asked her where will she take me if ever I will be her guest and she gave me random names of food and places I can't even pronounce.

(1.) The first thing I actually want to do when I arrive in Vienna is to eat. Food has always been apart of each country's culture and tradition and to have a good feel of the city is to eat their food.

I don't intend to roam around Vienna with an empty stomach. I would say that it's the sausages I'd like to try first. Käsekrainer (a pork sausage stuffed with cheese), Debreziner (smoked sausages with paprika) and Burenwurst (a coarse cut boiled sausage) with all the sauces and pickles on the side.

(2.) What else follows a good meal but a good dessert  of course. Vienna is famous for its pastry and they say that your trip to this city in never complete without having to try their pastries like the world renowned chocolate cake called Sachertorte.

Wien Tourismus/Peter Rigaud
There are many places to go for the good ol sweets. There's Demel, Sacher, Altmann & Kühne, Mannerschnitten, Aida, and Mozart balls.

Wien Tourismus/Peter Rigaud
In Viennese lifestyle, when in a coffee shop, people relax and talk about intelligent thoughts like what type of cake to order :D In the old times, so many books are written in coffee shops and Vienna take their coffee shops and restaurants seriously.

Wien Tourismus/Karl Thomas
(3.) So as my friend told me, Schönbrunn Palace is one of the most important architectural, cultural and historical monuments in the country. It is a former imperial summer residence and this Baroque palace has 1,441 rooms.

Wien Tourismus/Peter Rigaud
(4) The vast garden of Schönbrunn Palace, the Schlosspark Schönbrunn is also a must see. This place is amazing and huge!!!

Wien Tourismus/Peter Rigaud
(5.) The Hofburg is another palace to visit. It is the former imperial palace in the center of Vienna. Part of the palace forms the official residence and workplace of the President of Austria

Wien Tourismus/Lois Lammerhuber
(6.) As if I have not seen most of Vienna yet in this armchair travel, there is another beautiful place to explore. Burggarten looks so amazing and you all know me, I can't resist a place this green and magical

Wien Tourismus/Lois Lammerhuber
(7.) As a practicing Catholic, I would definitely pay visit to St. Stephen's Cathedral and make a wish. In my country, it is customary to pray and make a wish if it is your first time in a particular church. I wouldn't mind climbing the 350 steps to the roof top of the cathedral just to have a eagle eye view of the city.


(8.) It seems so fancy but also very romatic to ride in a fiaker while in Vienna. If I can afford it, I'll do it.

Wien Tourismus/Peter Rigaud
(9.) There are so many things to do in Vienna and the list can just go on and on. I'd like to see also the Vienna City Hall or Wiener Rathaus. If I have time in my hand, I'd like to go to Salzburg too, the birthplace of Mozart as well as visit a winery and vine yards.

(10.) Lastly, there's still the Schnitzel. :P and I am so not going home without a taste of it. 

After touring all these places which for sure I cannot do in three days, I'll be needing some good unpretentious food to refuel like the schnitzel and of course dessert, more reason to get the taste of the Sachertorte and probably Mozart balls. Learn more about sweet Vienna.

Wow Austria! You are simply amazing and I can't wait to visit you one day.

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