If there's a place in Europe I really want to go back to, it's Vienna. Vienna is one of the most beautiful cities I've ever been to. It combines historical and cultural flavour together with the new and unique modern look of the city. The architecture, great restaurants, museums and palaces were all very wonderful. I have to say that I really enjoyed the atmosphere there; it's very romantic and grandly unforgettable.

I love the fact that one can easily walk around in the city and see beautiful buildings at almost every corner. There are also small parks with exceptional sculptures everywhere you go, so it's always possible to rest along the way or just sit back and relax. Furthermore, the underground is easy to figure out (even in German) and very useful to get around the city.

So I just can't wait to go back to Vienna… And who wants to come with me next time?

The first place I visited in Vienna was the spectacular, enormous yellow Schönbrunn Palace. Schloss Schönbrunn was the summer royal palace of the Habsburgs, Austria's powerful royal family for many centuries until World War I. Some of the grand rooms, which were used for formal state affairs, are truly spectacular both in size and decoration. It just amazed me how far they went to make this place truly one of a kind.

If you have only a short time to visit Vienna, no doubt Schönbrunn Palace is the very first spot to go to. The whole ensemble of Schönbrunn (palace, park and zoo) was placed on the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List in 1996 and deservedly so for sure.

The first and second pictures of this roll show us the Gloriette. It's a graceful structure of arches located in the Schönbrunn Palace Garden. It serves as a lookout point for the garden and for the city of Vienna. Indeed, one can enjoy a great view of the city from the roof of the Gloriette. And if you want to rest a little and have a beverage, you could also find a nice café in it.

In the Parliament of Austria is vested the legislative power of the Republic of Austria.

Vienna's Parliament was constructed in the Greek Classical style so as to reflect the democratic ideals of the new parliamentary government adopted by the city of Vienna. The building was designed to give an illusion of height, with the tall pillars and the second-story level entrance. A statue of Athena was placed in front of the building facing the street, shifting therefore the focus on the Ringstrasse. The Ringstrasse is a circular wide avenue surrounding the old part of the city of Vienna. The Ringstrasse is certainly Vienna in all its grandiose, centuries-old splendour. Most buildings there were built before 1890 and are really beautiful.

On my last day in Vienna, I visited the Donauturm. I went there at sunset just after the rain. The view from the top of it is simply spectacular ; one can clearly see the Danube River, the city and many nearby parks. Indeed, for an exceptional point of view, go there a few hours before sunset and I promise you won't regret it. And for the more sedentary, two revolving restaurants allow to enjoy a fine panorama as well as a nice meal.

The Donauturm is the tallest structure in Austria. It is located quite far from downtown Vienna and most of its sights, so don't expect to see tourist crowds over there. However, I was nonetheless really surprised to find myself all alone at its observation deck. The Donauturm may not be the Eiffel tower, but it's certainly a nice place to visit. I recommend it for watching sunset.

Vienna is also quite photogenic at night. Among my favourite places in the city at night are Vienna's Opera and Vienna's St Charles' Cathedral.

When I visited Vienna, I wasn't very lucky, as far as the weather went: half the time it rained and on top of it, it was very windy. Therefore, I may not have taken the time that I should have to fully enjoy the city. I know now that I've missed many places to see and many things to do in this unforgettable city and its surroundings. So no doubt that I want to go back there. See you soon again Vienna !!!

copyright © 2010 Denis Duchesne