This is my second time in the Austrian Capital. This second time, although during winter, I felt a “warmer” welcome.
To do and see
- Hop on Tram #2 around “the ring” (2.20 Euros per trip or get a 24 hours pass for 7.60)
- Go to the Albertina Museum (or at least the entrance to get a good view of Vienna)
- Burggarten (park), National Library and Soho Cafe (A New York style Cafe hidden behind the Library)
- The Schönbrunn Palace
- St. Stephen Cathedral
- Votickirche Gothic Church
- Griechenkirche zur heiligen dreifaltigkeit Church (Across from Diglas Cafe on Fleischmarkt- Do not miss your opportunity to try some of the awesome cakes and coffee there)
- Eat a piece of Sacher cake at Sacher Hotel
- Go check out the famous amusement park The Prater
Last summer I loved Salzburg so much I expected the same love at first sight with Vienna. Although I could recognized its beauty on that first visit it seemed “cold” to me, gorgeous but blank. I didn’t catch the energy behind the huge imperial buildings and impotent structures of this city. When I come from a city I loved so much I am full of that energy, when I arrive to the next one I get nostalgic from the prior one and can’t really appreciate what the new city has to offer.
Cold was freezing me up since I started this trip in Ljubljana (you can read the train travel from Rome to Ljubljana, Zagreb and Vienna here) but the moment I stepped out of the bus in Austria, for the second time in my life it hit me… The freezing cold and the Love. Both hit you hard the same anyways…
My face was freezing but with every block I walked the feeling of being at the right place grew more and more. I fell in love at second sight – like usually happens to me-.
Vienna is one of the most beautiful cities in the world, there is no doubt about it. It is also highly important for history, International politics, congress and conventions. Vienna is an “A-list” city. But this feeling I get from it goes beyond all that. Many cities are beautiful, but just some of them have that special something. I think cities are like people, they have their own vibe, energy, aura, whatever name you want to give it. But Vienna… It makes you feel like royalty.
As I walked with the amazement of my new discovered Love for Vienna I started to slowly freeze and found that no coffee shop was open (it was the first of the year). With hands and nose cold and colder I headed back to the Hostel. It was seriously freezing for this Latin chick. I walked behind the cathedral (one of my favorite parts of old town Vienna) on my way to the subway station and then magically… One of the best coffee shops I’ve ever been at appeared in front of me: Diglas Cafe (Fleischmarkt 16, 1010 Wien, Austria – There are two Diglas Cafes in Vienna the other one is on Wollzeile). It was just perfect.
This coffee shop made me feel like in a movie, it is cozy, vintage and with an amazing displays of the best cakes you can imagine.
I ordered a cappuccino and a piece of apple pie and let it warm up my soul.
This time I also visited Vienna’s Palace, which was covered by snow and made it all more special. Just take the subway line U4 until Schöbrunn stop and walk few blocks until the Palace. I didn’t went in this time (you need to buy an entrance ticket) but just the surroundings of it are worth the trip).
The Austrian currency is Euro. Vienna is not an economic city to visit. It is as expensive as Rome. It is not one of the most expensive neither the most affordable one. But you can always find the way to save money by cooking your own meals or staying at hostels.
There are few train stations in Vienna but the main one is Wien Hauptbahnhof, 6 lines of subways and several lines of trams around the city. Most of them take you to “the ring” which surrounds the city center.