Europe travel photos and information at Travel Signposts Day 12: Vienna - Avalon Amsterdam-Budapest river cruise with comments by Helen Page
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The Amsterdam to Budapest River Cruise (Rhine-Main-Danube)

Day 12: Vienna

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DAY 12 Vienna. (Thu.) A guided sightseeing tour includes the lavish Hofburg Palace, the impressive Vienna Opera House, the majestic Ringstrasse and awe-inspiring St. Stephen's Cathedral. Free afternoon to stroll along Karntnerstrasse or sample Vienna's famous pastries. Tonight explore the vibrant Austrian capital on your own, or come along for an optional Mozart and Strauss concert. (FB,L,D)
The Sachertorte (Sacher Cake) at the Hotel Sacher is legendary
The Sachertorte (Sacher Cake) at the
Hotel Sacher is legendary

In Vienna, the boat is moored quite far out of town, however, the metro is quite accessible and an easy trip in, with Prater Park on the way. If you need internet access, there is a shop before you reach the metro and it only costs 1 Euro for 30 minutes compared to a ridiculous price on the boat. This morning's city tour and free time allows you about three hours in the city before the visit to Schönbrunn Palace. Vienna was in preparation for Mozart's 250th birthday celeration and there was scaffolding everywhere.

The Riesenrand (Giant Wheel)
at Prater Park, Vienna
The "Riesenrand" (Giant Wheel)
at Prater Park, Vienna

As we've been to Schönbrunn Palace a couple of times before, we chose to stay in town to take snaps and then to enjoy some Sachertorte at the Hotel Sacher. I think I prefer my chocolate mudcakes from home but Tony prefers the darker chocolate.

Vienna claims to be the capital of classical music and the Viennese take this quite seriously. But not all the time: check out the kitsch Opera Toilet in the vicinity of the Opera House (see our Vienna Opera House album) where classical music plays as you're pleasurably relieving yourself.

A Strauss concert at the Vienna Kursalon
The Mozart and Strauss concert
at the Vienna Kursalon

This evening, the optional was a Mozart and Strauss Concert at the Vienna Kursalon. These performances are put on for tour groups and although the recitals were good, the place lacks the atmosphere of a true concert hall. The price of the ticket includes a drink at interval time.

If classical music is not your cup of tea, and you prefer having dinner at a local restaurant, the Marchfelderhof (photos) is a very unusual and interesting restaurant. Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte dined here in 1809. It's quite a way out of town and it would be wise to get your tour director to try and organize this for you in advance.

After the concert, you return to the ship by coach and in the evening leave Vienna for Bratislava.

Book a day-trip, city tour or even hire a Segway in Vienna

Vienna State Opera website (you can book tickets here)

Marchfelderhof Restaurant website (in German, but amusing to explore, especially if you like listening to Offenbach!).

Photos of Vienna: Vienna Photo Gallery

Next page: Bratislava

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Amsterdam Budapest River Cruise Photo Gallery

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