dear vienna

Happy Friday! I’ve learned that writing blog posts on the train between countries is the fastest way to pass the time, especially because it doesn’t require Wifi, just a Word Doc. As I’m writing this (and on my way to Brussels!), I’m listening to Ben Howard on Spotify and listening to a relationship between two strangers bloom a row behind me. Let’s continue on with my travel recap!

After Prague, my family and I took a train to Vienna, Austria. My parents had already been to Vienna a few months before and said it was their absolute favorite, so I was pretty excited. When we got off the train, we realized it was really hot, like a dry wind kind of hot. We checked in at the Stars Inn hotel near the train station (they opened in July 2017 so it’s really new!). My sister and I had our own room to ourselves.

My sister and I were pretty hungry after traveling, so we went to Akakiko, an Asian-fusion restaurant right around the corner of our hotel. We were craving ramen so I ordered the duck ramen and she ordered the seafood ramen. It truly satisfied our cravings – I would recommend this restaurant if you want some Asian food!

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Our first stop for the day was the Schloss Belvedere, which is a baroque castle that was built as a summer residence for a prince back in the day. It was really beautiful: there’s a huge lawn and then a large fountain in front of the actual castle, which were all very well-kept. When you walk around to the back of the castle, there’s another garden-type thing. Talk about a backyard! My sister and I walked to the back where there were more trees and sat down on a bench and just talked about deep life topics that I won’t disclose here 😉

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After the Schloss Belvedere, we ate dinner at an authentic Austrian restaurant (omg I don’t remember the name, I’m so sorry!), but it wasn’t memorable anyway and we didn’t have the best experience because it was probably 90 degrees outside and the restaurant didn’t turn on the air conditioning so we were all sweating while eating our meal.

The next morning, we grabbed a delicious coffee & pastry kind of breakfast at our closest Felber. Our main stop today was the Schonbrunn Palace. On the way there, we took the train and it was a struggle because we lost my mom in the process and had to backtrack to get her. With a few bumps here and there, we finally got there! The Schonbrunn is a huge palace, with a museum inside and horses with carriages towing people from one area of the grounds to the next. There’s a lavish garden/maze that was free to walk through, and we walked uphill to the top and took in the view.

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We had an early dinner and ate at Ribs of Vienna, which is a really cool, centuries-old restaurant in a cellar-type setting. It’s super dim in there just because there’s no natural lighting, but I didn’t mind much. I’m not much of a ribs gal, but they were actually the best ribs I’ve ever had. And the customer service was great! They stayed past closing time to serve us. After our meal, we walked around the outside of Hofburg Wein for a few hours, which was pretty but not particularly memorable for me.

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My favorite part of Vienna? Going to Café Central for dessert! The interior was gorgeous and there was even a pianist playing inside. The dessert was so delicious – I already want to go back! After that, we walked around some more but didn’t have anything else on our to-see list, so we headed back to the hotel for an early night in.

All in all, we didn’t spend too much time in Vienna because my parents had already been, but I don’t think I needed more than 24 hours in Vienna. It’s a pretty city, but definitely a lot quieter than the ones I’ve been to, like Paris and Barcelona. I don’t think I would go back (maybe for the ribs though!). I wish I had gone to Salzburg or Halstatt, really, but I have some fond memories with my family in Vienna for sure.

Ta ta for now!

Jen

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