It was a very hot day 33 degrees C with high humidity which makes the simplest task of walking, touring very, very uncomfortable. That was Vienna, beautiful, incomparable, cultural and a vibrant business centre. We visited it with Janko’s Slovak family’s friend Karl, born Austrian. By profession he is a a bus driver and knew the city and all the cultural and historical sights by heart. It was Karl’s advice to use trams, Transit and trains everywhere we go. The first thing to walk was downtown. This proved it is a very busy and crowded place, we saw street entertainers, clowns, musicians, tour guides guiding people through the city. In spite of the unbearable heat we enjoyed this short walking tour around the city. The highlights of the tour were the Opera House and St. Stephen’s Cathedral , some parts of the interior date back to 1434, Gothic by style. It has been a landmark in Vienna for centuries, in it were buried many noble people of that period. Next tour was the Belvedere Palace with its massive grounds and impressive architecture. It also houses a Museum and an Art Gallery as well as interesting book shops and souvenir stalls. We visited them and bought a few Vienna souvenirs. See slide show: “Vienna, Austria”.
Then we proceeded by metro to the Schonbrunn Imperial Palace , it is without a doubt the most visited place in Vienna, it became a symbol of good days of Vienna thanks to a combination of the domestic and political features. There were operatic and theatrical performances in old days. The beautiful gardens and fountains are surrounding the Palace. The fascinating story about Sisy (Elizabeth of Austria) was told to us by Milan Cervenka, a relative of us who later made a copy of movie “Sisy”. We thank him a lot for everything that he organized and had done for us as well as Karl and all our friendly company accompanying us everywhere in Vienna and made that day unforgettable.
To the left is the photo of Francis Joseph I in the formal uniform of an Austrian marshal. Oil painting by Franz Xaver Winterhalter, 1865.
Francis Joseph I. Emperor of Austria, King of Hungary, born on the 18th August, 1830 in Vienna at the castle of Schonbrunn, son of Archduke Francis Charles and of Sophie, Princess of Bavaria, descendant of Emperor Francis II. He ascended to the throne after the abdication of his uncle Ferdinand I on the 2nd of December, 1848. The emperor suffered much personal tribulation: the shooting of his brother Maximilian (Emperor of Mexico). Suicide of his only son Rudolf. The assassination of his wife Elizabeth and his successor to the throne Francis Ferdinand (26.06. 1914 in Saraevo). Marriage to Elizabeth took place on the 24th of April, 1834 in the Augustinerkirche in Vienna.
To the right is the photo of Elizabeth of Austria (Sisy). Oil painting by Franz Xaver Winterhalter, 1865.
Elizabeth. Empress of Austria, Queen of Hungary, born on the 24th of December, 1837 in Munich, Bavaria, daughter of Duke Maximilian of Bavaria and Duchess Ludovica. On the 10th of September, 1898 she was stabbed by an anarchist in Geneva, Switzerland.