Vienna (Wien) was the capital of a multinational empire, and to this day
Vienna remains the cultural capital for central Europe. Because of its pivotal
position on the Danube River, Vienna has been a prize of conquerors for centuries;
every power of any consequence tried to take it, with varying success. The Celts
were here, the Romans (although winters were too cold for Caesar), the Ottomans
of Turkey, but it was the Babenbergs who laid the first formal plans of a city
and it was the Hapsburgs who made it the center of their immense empire for centuries.
In 1815 when the Vienna Congress established European Order for the next century, Vienna with two million souls was the fourth largest city in the world, head
of a multinational realm of 55 million. However by the end of World War I Austria
was a small destitute republic with an overblown capital. What the vagaries of
fortune could not demolish was Vienna's pivotal location and the political acumen
of its leaders. These traits plus the nature of geopolitics seems to ensure the
city's importance. During the Cold War Austria proclaimed neutrality and Vienna
hosted many meetings between warring ideologies, notably the summit between Khrushchev
and Kennedy. The IAEO established itself here in 1957, followed by OPEC in 1965,
UNIDO in 1967, and in 1979 the United Nations Organization made Vienna its third
headquarters, today the only one in an EU capital.
Above all else, Vienna
is an architectural and cultural feast. Take in the Schönbrunn Palace (Schloss
Schönbrunn), St. Stephan's Cathedral (Stephansdom) and the home of Vienna Secession
Museum. There’s the Sigmund Freud Museum, The Museum of Natural History, the Museum
of Fine Arts and much more. And all the stars of classical and romantic music
were here, before Haydn, Beethoven, Brahms, Strauss and Mahler, there was Mozart.
Population: city, 650,000; Time Zone: GMT/UTC +1 or Central
Flight times: Paris-2 hrs., London-2.25 hrs., Los Angeles-12
hrs. NYC-8.5 hrs.
Average temperature: 71°F (22° C) in summer and winter 35°F (2° C), Heaviest
precipitation is November through January.
Average Daily High/Low Temperature:
• March - May: 60°f / 41°f, 16°c / 5°c
• June - Aug.: 76°f / 59°f, 25°c
• Sept. - Nov.: 59°f / 44°f, 15°c / 7°c
• Dec. - Feb.: 37° f/
28°f, 3°c / -2°c
more or less in the center of Europe, Vienna is easily reached by plane, train,
automobile and even riverboat.
Vienna International Airport
11 miles from center city. Telephone: : +43-1-7007-22233 (24 hours) http://english.viennaairport.com/
CAT http://www.cityairporttrain.at/content/home.php In only
16 minutes the CAT, the City Airport Train, takes passengers nonstop from the
City Air Terminal to Vienna International Airport. Daily service is provided from
05:05 to 23:35.
The City Air Terminal is located only ten minutes away from
St. Stephen´s Cathedral at Wien-Mitte traffic-junction, next to Vienna Hilton
Hotel and can be reached by Vienna’s underground system, by bus, tram or by taxi.
Services run from 05:05 to 23:35 7 days a week, 365 days a year. To the City Air
Terminal you can catch the underground, bus or taxi Single-Ticket € 8,00 € 5,00
(child) Round Trip-Ticket € 15,00 € 8,00
Taxi, a trip to and from
the center of Vienna costs approximately 25 euros and takes 35 minutes, depending
on traffic conditions.
The Vienna Metro ("U-Bahn") This is an outstanding
public transit service, modernized 1976, has close to 120 miles (190 km) of tracks
for information go to: http://mailbox.univie.ac.at/~prillih3/metro/english/index.html
Academy of Fine Arts
der Akademie der bildenden Künste) Schillerplatz 3, A-1010 Wien, Website: www.akademiegalerie.at,
Albertinaplatz 1, A-1010, Wien, Tel: 534 830, Website:
www.albertina.at, U-Bahn: Karlsplatz
The Albertina houses over 65,000 drawings
and one million prints in total.
Art House Vienna (KunstHausWien)
Untere Weissgerberstraße 13, A-1030, Wien,
Tel: 712 0495, Website: www.kunsthauswien.at, U-Bahn: Schwedenplatz then tram
N to Radetzkyplatz
This superb museum by Viennese architect Friedensreich Hundertwasser
was opened in 1991. The striking exterior prepares you for the interior designs
and its contemporary collection.
(Österreichische Nationalbibliothek) Josefsplatz 1, A-1010,
Wien, Tel: 534 10, Fax: 534 10 280, Website: www.onb.ac.at, U-Bahn: Karlsplatz
1, A-1070, Wien, Tel: 525 700, Website: www.leopoldmuseum.org,
It encompasses over 5200 paintings and drawings from
the period between 1880 and 1950. Among the paintings on show are those by celebrated
artists Egon Schiele, Gustav Klimt and Oskar Kokoschka
Palace (Schloss Schönbrunn)
A-1130, Wien, Tel: 811130, Website: www.schoenbrunn.at,
As one of the finest and most important historical sights
Schönbrunn Zoo (Schönbrunner Tiergarten)
Maxingstraße 13b, A-1130,
Wien, Tel: 8779 2940, Website: www.zoovienna.at, U-Bahn: Heitzing The zoo is one
of the oldest in the world.
Friedrichstraße 12, A-1010, Wien, Tel: 587 53 07, Website: www.secession.at,
The distinctive Secession building was designed and built
by Josef Maria Olbrich in 1898 as a home for the Association of Visual Artists
Vienna Secession. The Association, which included Gustav Klimt within its membership
were pioneers of Jugendstil/Art Nouveau and their legacy.
Freud Museum (Sigmund-Freud-Museum)
Berggasse 19, A-1090, Wien, Tel: 319 1596,
Website: www.freud.t0.or.at, U-Bahn: Schottentor
The waiting room in the museum
was carefully restored in the early 1990s and is much the same as it would have
been while Freud lived and worked here. Visitors can also view his study and consulting
room which contain numerous photographs and documents.
Riding School (Spanische Reitschule)
Winterreitschule, Josefsplatz, A-1010,
Wien, Website: www.spanische-reitschule.com, U-Bahn: Stephansplatz/Karlsplatz
The Spanish Riding School, which is the oldest equestrian school in the world.
The performances of incredible horsemanship that regularly take place are always
popular, make sure you buy tickets as soon as you arrive.
Stephan's Cathedral (Stephansdom)
Stephansplatz 3, A-1010, Wien, Tel: 51552
3530 Website: www.stephansdom.at, U-Bahn: Stephansplatz
This massive cathedral
dominates the surrounding buildings on Stephansplatz; visit the tallest part of
the structure, the South Tower (or Hochturm) and climb the tower's 343 steps for
superb views of Vienna.