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A Quick Stop in Vienna

- Marty Way

sunny 22 °C
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Where possible, we include a walking tour or bicycle tour into our itinerary when we land at a new destination.
Pedal Power Tours has a Vienna city tour that is downloadable to a smartphone. They rent you a bike (six Euros per hour) and and off you go to visit the 36 points of interest on the tour. Arrive at the point of interest, hit the button shown on your phone and presto!; listen to the commentary about that point of interest.
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Peter, from PedalPower, described how the districts of Vienna are arranged from number one, in the centre (the horse shit zone because of the many horse-drawn carriages) then spiralling outwards, from zones two to six, toward the suburbs. He recommended a few sites that aren’t on the tour like an concrete tower built by the Nazi’s; thought to be for anti-aircraft guns.28683E06-3567-4456-B202-06227E796672.jpeg What’s city to do if an evil, occupying regime builds a gun tower in your public park? The citizens of Vienna have kept it as a weird juxtaposition to the tranquility of the Augarten park. (It’s too bad it wasn’t erected on a golf course, because then it would make perfect sense. A gun-tower, incorporated into a few holes, could torment golfers in wicked ways. They love that. But I digress…)
Jona and I got through the first 20 points of interest, or so, figured we needed to stop for coffee, then we deviated and made our own tour…and after three hours or so, decided to return the bikes and get onto the next adventure.

The Majesty of the Sacher Torte

The Sacher Torte is constructed of a chocolate sponge cake with a layer of apricot jam, then a glossy chocolate icing covers the torte. According to folklore, Frank Sacher created the dessert in 1832 under duress, because he was the chef responsible for creating the dessert for a dinner to be attended by Prince Klemens von Metternich. The Prince declared the torte his favourite dessert…then everyone wanted to try it. The torte was proclaimed a Viennese delicacy and glided, for 102 years on the grease of royal acclaim.
In 1934, Sacher’s son, Edward brought the original recipe and sole distributorship rights to Demel Cafe. Subsequently there was a falling out and legal battles raged between Demel and Cafe Sacher over the trademark and title. In 1963, an out-of-court settlement gave Cafe Sacher the rights to the phrase, ‘Original Sacher Torte,’ and Demel to use a decorative triangular seal reading ‘Eduard Sacher-Torte.’
Until two days ago I knew none of this but my wife did. Did we go to the Sacher Hotel to sample the authentic Sacher Torte? Yes we did…and it’s a fine dessert. Did Cafe Sacher make a handsome profit on the transaction? Oh yes.6FDFDBCD-5BC0-46E9-ADC4-E324CA586CFE.jpeg

Mozart, Haydn And Beethoven

Vienna, of course, is famous for being the stomping ground of many classical music composers. There are concerts every night at various venues around Vienna and tickets are available and affordable.AC804E6B-D80F-42B4-A9E9-87EB8B37DD1D.jpeg
We attended a concert at St. Anna Church, featuring selected works by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Joseph Haydn and Ludwig van Beethoven as performed by a string quartet.

We managed to work in a tour of Shoenbrunn Palace and its adjacent gardens, but we didn’t allow enough time in this itinerary for Vienna. Two and half days is not enough. 86A6566A-3630-41FD-8D3A-B3A08447676D.jpegEF8D4359-99ED-4795-A13E-56F1D58E4F71.jpeg3C400F2B-C48F-413A-8B54-3101903F1444

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We will have to come back to Vienna on a future European trip.

Posted by WayWayFar 14:19 Archived in Austria

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