Vienna, the picturesque capital of Austria, is just a few hours away from Nuremberg via the high-speed train, ICE. With its stunning architecture, rich history, and vibrant culture, Vienna makes for an ideal weekend getaway for those living in Nuremberg. The city boasts a plethora of attractions, including world-class museums, iconic landmarks, and trendy cafes, making it a popular destination for travellers seeking to explore the best of European culture. In this article, we will delve into the top things to do and see in Vienna for a perfect weekend trip from Nuremberg.
Her Majesty Vienna
Daintiness, aristocracy, charm, the sound of hooves on the cobbled streets, the heady smell of Viennese melange coffee with apple strudel or Sacher cake, and the blue Danube—how else could you characterise this artistic city? Palaces, museums, and architectural monuments bring us to the Habsburg Empire. In this city lived famous artists and composers who created their masterpieces. This is also where the founder of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud, resided and worked.
Nowadays, Vienna occupies the top position as a city with a high quality of life; it was named the world’s most liveable city in 2022 by The Economist and topped the Mercer’s Quality of Living city ranking for the 10th year running in 2019. International organisations such as OPEC: Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries; OSCE: Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe; UN: United Nations; and IAEA: International Atomic Energy Agency are based here, as is one of the oldest newspapers, The Wiener Zeitung, which has been in print since 1703. Moreover, Vienna is the birthplace of croissants; they were baked in honour of the victory over the Turks. For someone who wants to be surrounded by the atmosphere of a fairy tale, there is an opportunity to visit one of the Viennese Balls. You can also enjoy a city panorama from the Ferris wheel, which was constructed more than 100 years ago!
Vienna’s Culture and History
However, if you are more interested in historical places, then welcome to Hofburg—the winter residence of the Habsburg dynasty, one of the largest palace complexes in the world. The sprawling complex includes: the President’s office, churches, museums, the National Library, the Imperial Treasury, Imperial Apartments, Burgtheater, Imperial Stables, Spanish Riding School, and many others. What about deepening into royal life, exploring the Sisi Museum – dedicated to the beautiful and beloved Empress, where you can admire her personal belongings, and find out about her lifestyle and daily routine.
On the other hand, if you want to feel like you are at the imperial court, just go for a walk at Schönbrunn Palace—the summer baroque residence of emperors, where you can visit one of the oldest zoos in the world, take a walk in the park and enjoy views of gardens, fountains, monuments, the Roman Ruins, and the Gloriette. Once upon a time, little Mozart performed in front of Maria Theresia in this palace. Here the last Emperor Charles I issued a proclamation that meant the end of the Habsburg era and the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1918.
For art lovers, here is a unique opportunity to visit Albertina, a museum which represents a collection of paintings, sculptures, photography, and one of the biggest world graphics collections, along with the richly decorated state rooms. You can have a look at masterpieces of famous artists, such as Dürer, Picasso, Monet, Modigliani, Rubens, and Warhol.
Belvedere, the former residence of Prince Eugen von Sovoyen, where the declaration of Austrian independence was signed in 1955, exhibits art from the Middle Ages till modern day. You can also enjoy the works of 19th century artists like Van Gogh, Kokoschka, as well as the world’s largest collection of Gustav Klimt alongside baroque gardens and architecture. Guests can also visit the Gold Cabinet, the Hall of Mirrors, dining room, and bedroom. The palace is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.