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!
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.
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!
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.
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!