Last Day in Vienna.

Since there was nothing much else open on Sunday we spent our last full day seeing touristy things.

First stop, Schonbrunn Palace.

Originally a hunting lodge, these people clearly had no idea when to stop renovating. Believe it or not this is the back door. Actually… I’m not sure. The front and the back look the same.

I’ve come to realise, in the last week, how little I know about European history. I know a tiny amount about the last century (there were two big wars, apparently?), a fact or two about English history and pretty much nothing forward from Attila the Hun when it comes to Central Europe. For example, I had simple no idea that a family called the Hapsburgs ruled most of Europe for many centuries. They were the heads of the Roman Empire as well as Archdukes and Duchesses of Austria. As far as I can ascertain Marie Antoinette was also one of them.

But you’re not here for a history lesson – which is just as well, because I’ve forgotten most of what I heard. All I really remember is that they were stinking rich and one of them had seriously long hair. Unfortunately no photos are allowed inside the extremely well-preserved palace but there’s some on the website.

The day before we went was cloudy and cold and Luke had left his sunglasses in Krumlov so neither of us went prepared for the retina-burning glare that is Schonbrunn Palace in sunny weather. We sort of half-saw the garden through our mostly-closed eyes. What we saw was pretty nice though.

The Gloriette – no idea what the purpose of this building used to be, probably a room where they just sat and looked at the view,  but now it’s a cafe and we went up some stairs to the roof to admire the view of the Hapsburg’s backyard.

The view from the top of the Gloriette over the gardens to the palace.

After the palace we went into the city and looked through the Treasury. There were many shiny things and some very heavy and scratchy looking tabards and cloaks and whatnot. Quite a good collection. There was also a piece of the one true cross… or so they said.

After the Treasury our feet were killing us, so we spent most of the rest of the day eating and drinking at the Kafka Cafe and looking forward immensely to not having to sleep in a hostel in Budapest. I’m almost excited about the prospect of only hearing one person snoring. Hostels, it must be said, are starting to lose their charm. I’m not sure why, but there’s something about them that causes young men to want to whistle, shout and knock loudly late at night. God knows why.

 

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