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Vienna, Austria

For the final leg of our trip Mei Ling and I hopped on a train and traveled from Salzburg, to Vienna.  We’d heard that Vienna is a pretty amazing city, so we were excited to end our trip there.

The best part about Vienna, from our perspective, is that it is where Liz lives!  Liz was another roommate of ours in college, and she’s been all over world since we all graduated.  She’s lived in the Ukraine, in Moscow, in Texas, and now she and her family (!) live in Vienna.  It was great to see her, and Matt, and their little one, Naomi who we got to meet for the first time!  She’s cute as a button.

It rained a bunch while we were in Vienna, but we still got out and did as much as we could.  We climbed up to the top of St. Stephen’s Cathedral to get a view of the city.  Look at the rooftop!  I loved the patterns. Those are ceramic tiles, glazed in all kinds of bright colors.

We visited Schönbrunn Palace, the summer residence of the Habsburg emperors.  It has 1,441 rooms.  Goodness.

We walked through a few of those rooms, but what we liked best was the garden surrounding the palace.  It covers 435 acres and includes hedge mazes, miles and miles of walking paths, a greenhouse filled with tropical plants, an orangerie (for growing oranges, of course) an aviary filled with birds, lots of fountains and pools, and a zoo!  With pandas!

We tried the famous Sacher Torte at Hotel Sacher – Vienna’s special chocolate cake.  Yeah, it was good.

And, we became acquainted with Austria’s favorite soft drink, Almdudler.  It’s similar to ginger ale, but maybe not quite as sweet.  And, it comes in some pretty great bottles.


Salzburg, Austria

If you asked us to name our favorite stop on our trip I think both Mei Ling and I would say that it was Salzurg.  We LOVED it.  Salzburg is a little town just over the border into Austria, in the foothills of the Alps, and it is beautiful!  We loved wandering the little streets and exploring the fortress that sits on the hilltop overlooking the city.

We declared this to be our favorite place in Salzburg…Cafe Tomaselli.  We may have eaten there more than once.

Salzburg is famous for a couple of things.  First of all, it’s the home of that boy genius – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.  That kid sure could play the piano!  We visited his house and learned all about him, and even got to see his piano.  But we weren’t allowed to take any photos.  Sorry.

Second of all, Salzburg is famous for being the town that brought us the Sound of Music!  That’s right!  Apparently, Austrians don’t really get excited about this, but I can tell you that Mei Ling and I did.  We learned that the Sound of Music is a (mostly) true story.  There really was a Captain von Trapp, and he did have seven kids, and they did have a governess named Maria.  The Captain and Maria really did fall in love and get married in real life, but their story wasn’t as dramatic and dangerous as Hollywood made it seem.


We visited some of the places that were used as sites for filming the movie.  This is Mirabell Garden, and you might recognize those steps at the far end of the photo.  Did we hop up and down those steps and sing “Do Re Mi?”  You bet we did.

Remember in the movie when the von Trapps hid behind the headstones when they were running away to escape from the Nazis?  That scene was based on this place, St. Peter’s Cemetery.

Yeah, we kind of got into it.

:: Carrie ::