De "Steffl" is een van de meest charmante gotische kathedralen. De basis is een 12e eeuwse constructie en werd in de gotische stijl gerenoveerd in 1304-1433. De noordelijke toren, van 70 meter hoog, werd herontworpen naar renaissancistische maatstaven in 1579 en het interieur kreeg een barokke tint tijdens de contrareformatie. De klok van de kathedraal van St. Stefan, de "Pummerin," weegt maar liefst 21 ton, en heeft veel brandschade geleden tijdens de Tweede Wereldoorlog. Sindsdien is het gerepareerd en wordt nu tijdens speciale gelegenheden gebruikt, bijvoorbeeld om het nieuwe jaar in te luiden. De lichamelijke resten van ongeveer 11.000 mensen liggen in de catacomben, die door de bezoekers kunnen worden bekeken.
Originally built in 1620, this Baroque-styled Roman Catholic Church is certainly one of Vienna's most ornate in décor. In the early 1700's the Italian architect, Andrea Pozzo, redesigned the church and sculpted it into what you can see today. The pulpit features the Apostle Matthew in amazingly beautiful detail, the sanctuary is decorated with marble columns, intricately carved pews, and a spectacular domed and painted ceiling. This is a must see for all those who adore religious architecture and art!
Designed and built at the end of the 19th Century by Gottfried Semper and Karl Hasenauer, the Kunsthistorisches Museum houses the Habsburg family's art collection, widely regarded to be one of the finest in Europe. The Picture Gallery is literally a Who's Who of the old masters, containing works by the likes of Rubens, Rembrandt, Vermeer, Dürer, Raphael, Titian and Velazquez, as well as a comprehensive collection of paintings by Breugel. One visit is hardly enough to take everything in - lots of people return for a second or third time. The Ephesus Museum - a collection of arms and armour - and the collection of ancient musical instruments in the Imperial Palace also belong to the Kunsthistorisches Museum and are worthy of a visit in their own right.
Schönbrunn Palace in its present form is one of Vienna's most popular tourist attractions, hosting thousands of visitors a week. This Rococo Palace was finished in 1700 under Leopold I and is a smaller version of an imperial project first planned by Johann Fischer von Erlach. The palace was renovated and extended under Maria Theresia, and at that time had 2,000 rooms, a chapel and its own theater. Like all the imperial buildings associated with Maria Theresia, the Schönbrunn complex is today painted in yellow. Napoleon lived here from 1805 to 1809, and Emperor Francis Joseph I, who was born here in 1830, spent the last years of his life in the palace.
In 1752, Francis Stephen Lothringen, the husband of Empress Maria Theresia, founded Vienna's zoo in Schönbrunn. In former times the menagerie served as an entertainment and educational location for the court. Today, one of the main reasons behind the Tiergarten Schönbrunn's popularity is that it is one of the few zoos in the world that houses giant pandas. Some of the baroque style buildings are still used and some new enclosures have also been added. The Imperial Breakfast Pavilion in the historical center of the layout is the starting point for zoo walks. A visit to the zoo is the perfect family entertainment, especially on the weekends.
The magnificent Opernhaus am Ring, famous first and foremost for its annual high society ball, hosts productions of the very highest quality by the likes of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, the State Ballet Company and a host of world famous opera singers and directors. However, the opera house started its days on a less auspicious note, with architect Eduard van der Nüll committing suicide in 1868 because of intense public criticism of his design. The Opera House opened with Mozart's Don Giovanni in 1869, and has been going strong ever since.
The capital of Austria, Vienna flaunts a taste for the finer things in life. The grand architectural legacy of Vienna's imperial past is owed to the Habsburg monarchy, with Hofburg Palace as the crown jewel of a reign that extended over 600 years. Here, the Burgkapelle hosts the Vienna Boys' Choir each Sunday, while the Kaiserappartements showcase the world-renown Imperial collection of fine art. The baroque Schloss Belvedere and neo-Gothic Rathaus are other exceptional excerpts from Vienna's long-standing penchant for outstanding architecture and art. Its museums too are riveting attractions. The contemporary MUMOK is a fitting companion to the classical art on display at the Leopold Museum, while the Naturhistorisches Museum delves into the region's natural history. The city is best known for its musical soul, with grand dames like the Musikverein, Konzerthaus and Staatsoper the cornerstones of an age-old tradition helmed by the likes of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Josef Haydn, Ludwig van Beethoven and Johann Strauss. Culinary delights are aplenty as well, led by Vienna's world-renown coffeehouse culture, while its pubs serve Austrian comfort food at its best. Wine bars are hidden away in vaulted cellars, acclaimed restaurants serving soul-stirring cuisine and Naschmarkt's international flavors mark Vienna as a showstopper of the gourmet world. All this and more make Vienna an uncontested beauty.
Tucked beneath the famed St. Stephen's Cathedral, possibly the most recognizable landmark in all of Vienna lies the Stephansdom Catacombs. An attraction unto themselves, these eerie caverns hold the remains of over 11,000 people, including bishops of the church. Tours take place ever half hour for those brave enough to see what lies beneath this historic city.
De Oostenrijkse hoofdstad is beroemd om haar 'Schmäh', de unieke, vaak hatelijke en macabere humor van de inwoners, die je niet op de laatste plaats bij een 'Schoppen Heurigen', een glas typische, versgeperste wijn, leert kennen. Het symbool van de metropool is de Stephansdom, die met zijn dak van kitscherig-veelkleurige glazen pannen beeldbepalend is voor de stad. Van de K.-u.-k.-monarchie getuigen thans nog het historisch centrum en Schloss Schönbrunn. Charmant is in Wenen ook de beroemde koffiehuiscultuur.