Mozart, Beethoven, Haydn, Strauss, Wagner, Schubert. Many composers lived at least part of their life in Austria. As a result there are many “Mozart lived here!” sort of attractions in Vienna. There’s free entry on Sunday! But after visiting 1 or 2 you realise that it’s just a house to show some of their personal belongings and sell their CDs. In fact, for Beethoven’s house, they write “Beethoven lived here – but not in this apartment, but the one opposite”.
The Schönbrunn Schloß lives up to its name – einen Schön (beautiful) Schloß (palace in this case). The palace in itself is not very exciting, but the story behind it is interesting though messy. A workaholic Franz Josef, an unsatisfied traveller Elisabeth, a suicidal son and a daughter married out to preserve friendly relations with France, only to be guillotined, just to name a few. The view from the Gloriette in the garden is lovely too.
The Danube seems to have changed its course over the years at this certain place along the river. There’s the old Donau, the Donau and the new Donau. A little island has been created in between 2 of them, and on this Sunday many people are out here cycling and walking. Charming. There’s also lots of graffiti along the bridge of the Danube. Some sound like death notes to their girlfriends before they jump, while others are poetic. Many of the artworks would probably make it into the top positions of art competitions.
No trip to Vienna would be complete without an Opera. Since my night train timing prevented me from watching anything at the Staatsoper, I settled for an evening show at the Volksoper, das Land des Lächelns (The Land of Smiles). For the storyline you can check the internet, but imo wasn’t the best of storylines. It was all in German as expected, my €2 standing place put me somewhere where I could not see the English supertitles. So I roughly understood the conversations (of which there was surprisingly a lot of), but could not make out the singing.