Belvedere Palace in Vienna, Austria
Austria,  Europe,  Travel

Grandiose Vienna

I spent less than a week in Vienna, a quick visit before flying back to Barcelona for my flight to Chicago (the horror, the anxiety!). Originally, I wanted to spend two weeks in Austria, hiking in the west before heading east. Snow and cold weather changed my plans and I shortened my visit to just Vienna, excited to see some of the famous art galleries. Austria is expensive and luckily for me, my Aunt has a friend who lives in the city. After a few arrangements, I was on the bus, headed to Zana’s house!

The Kiss by Gustav Klint.
‘The Kiss’ by Gustav Klint.

I arrived in the afternoon and was greeted by Zana. Funnily enough, I had actually stayed with Zana’s parents in Macedonia, so I already knew a lot about the family. We got along great and she invited me to her ski team meeting at a pizzeria. After the meeting, she gave me a nighttime tour of downtown Vienna. That night I slept great, my first private room in a long time. The next day was a Saturday and she invited me on a hike around the outskirts of the city, providing me with an opportunity to see a less touristy part of Vienna. It was nice to get moving and we even took a bike ride that same day around the lake near her house. For dinner, I was invited to a traditional Austrian fall dish, goose! It was delicious with amazing company.

Back of Hofburg Palace during the day.
Hofburg Palace in the day.

My next few days were complete turisteando. Austria is full of amazing art galleries where I got to see paintings I had only seen in books. Along with museums, architecture is also super impressive. I imagine France looks quite similar in some aspects but since I have never been I was blown away by how old-fashioned and fancy everything looked. Being from the US, Europe seems so old in comparison. I got the opportunity to go to the ballet in the opera house one night and was entranced by all of the ballrooms. I felt like I had been plopped in the middle of a Jane Austen novel. Funny the things that still make me amazed after so much traveling!

Royal Opera House in Vienna, Austria.
Opera house.
St. Michael's Cathedral in Vienna, Austria.
St. Michael’s. Tiles reminded me of Budapest!

For one rainy day I took the train to Bratislava, two hours away. I walked around the whole day and loved it – the only issue being that it was wet the whole time! I will have to go back and spend more time there when I can. The streets were adorable and the vibe was much chiller and less touristy than Budapest or Vienna.

Man walking down Bratislava streets in the rain.
Bratislava streets.

After an amazing few days I reluctantly boarded my flight back to Barcelona to spend a week with my friends there before going home for a visit. Excited to see my Catalanas again!

xoxo, T