In awe of Vienna
Before going to Vienna, I was ready to hit the museums and especially go visit Gustav’s Klimt ‘The Kiss’ at Belvedere. There were many more artists and museums which appealed, however when I arrived in vienna, that objective soon changed. After Budapest, I didn’t think there could be anywhere else that could beat its architecture. Just a few hours in Vienna soon changed that belief and I found myself happy to walk the streets most days taking in the buildings, the size of the centre and the atmosphere around. There were many times I even forgot to take photos as that would have distracted my attention to the detail of the architecture around me.
St Stephen’s Cathedral: This Cathedral is extremely important in Vienna and stands proudly in the centre for visitors and locals to pass by. It played a part in Beethoven realising he was deaf when he couldn’t hear the bells tolling but could see the birds flying out of the tower from the sound of the bells. Inside you can take a tour and see all the chapels and take time for prayer and reflection if you want. You can also climb the tower for a great view of the city.
Jewish museum: There are 2 Jewish museums in Vienna and when you buy the ticket for €12, you have 4 days in which to visit the 2nd museum. You can also get a guided tour for €2. These museums can be found in Dorotheergasse and also in Judenplatz, where you will also find the Holocaust (Shoah) memorial to the 65,000 Austrian Jews killed. In the museums, you will find both temporary and permeant exhibitions which are all interesting offering different perspectives on Jewish lives in Europe and abroad. You can also find the excavation points for the synagogue in the Middle Ages which was destroyed and the Jewish community destroyed. Reading how Jews were not necessarily welcomed back after the war and a lot of those who returned from the concentration camps, moved away again soon after. This is fortunately improving in recent years and now.
Walking the streets: As the weather was so lovely and warm, I was encouraged to walk the streets rather than spend my time in museums. There are so many beautiful buildings which capture your attention as you wander around and lots I didn’t take photos of but will remain with me when I think of Vienna.
Solo traveller tips: I will go to Vienna again, however the next time I will stay closer to the centre as I was at least 20 mins away as I walked in. There was public transport available in the form of trams, however I would have missed seeing so many aspects of Vienna if I hadn’t walked.