Again…minimal words, mostly pic’s. Just comment if you want/need more information.
The Michaelerplatz which houses the Spanish Riding School – details in the next post.
The Vienna subway system or the U-Bahn, is very efficient, runs on time(!), and is well laid out.
Finding coffee to go is a bit of a challenge…my favorite chain was called Ströck. Kind of the Viennese equivalent to a Dunkin’ Donuts. Order a melange or a kaffe mit milsch…and it’s coffee mixed with frothed milk…perfect.
I visit zoos wherever I go. It’s a thing about me. With good weather, I went straight to the Tiergarten near the Schönbrunn Palace.
Fabulous white-faced gibbons who were very happy and did many monkey things, like swing in the branches, jump up and down and poke each other.
I don’t think I had ever seen a cassowary…at least not one of this size. Apparently they can get to 130 lbs…and unlike the ostrich, their legs and feet look thick and bulky. After a quick google search…they are commonly referred to as the most dangerous bird in the world. They kick and charge.
I really enjoyed the zoo, and one thing that struck me the most was the general ‘happiness’ and wellbeing of the animals. I realize I’m anthropomorphizing here, but all of the animals were active and engaged in typical [insert animal type here] behavior…and appeared happy. The elephants and keepers were running through their morning routine, which involved a bath, some commands, a treat or two and a breakfast of hay. I watched them for almost an hour!
The rhinos were having a bit of a tussle, quite exciting!
Then I came upon the goats. Baby goats. The ones below are about a week old.
And this mama goat had *literally* just given birth to these two tiny babies and was still in labor with at least one more still in the womb. I tried to hang around long enough to see it, but she just continued to labor and look quite uncomfortable.
Just a week old, these guys already want to play king of the mountain!
Next up, Schönbrunn Palace which is just a 1400-room imperial summer residence of the Habsburg monarchs. I toured the inside…but no photos allowed.
Just as I headed through the doors, there was a storm-a-brewin’. Intense winds and light rains became heavy rain, and I was glad to be inside.
This is the view out the back of the palace looking out into the extensive gardens and up towards the Gloriette.
Some tired feet called for some computer time in the hotel bar with a glass of wine.
We headed out to dinner to Meinl Wine Bar.
Woody had the Grüner Veltliner and I went with the Reisling…both good, but I won!
Woody ordered Beef Tartar with quail egg.
I ordered butterschnitzel…wouldn’t you…? It was better than expected. Three medallions of veal perfectly browned and topped with shaved black truffle accompanied by perfectly bright veggies and amazingly smooth mashed potatoes brûléed with a bit of cream. C’est parfait! (I have no idea how you would say such a thing in German!)
There is music everywhere in Vienna.
And our hotel. Woody found it through expedia…and I can’t say enough good things about the place…it was a perfect home base for a week in Vienna!