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Europe » Austria » Salzburg » Salzburg November 4th 2013

Packed up by 7.30 am for the last day of our Cosmos tour. Breakfast at the Ramada Salzburg was a rather cramped affair as they were renovating their restaurant. It was the first time we've ever had muesli with choc chips in it! We decided to forego the optional "Sound of Music" Tour and visit some attractions in the Old Centre of Salzburg. After wandering down the cute main "shopping street" we headed for the magnificent Dom (Cathedral) dedicated to Sts Rupert & Virgil. All the churches we've seen in Austria have been very ornate and this was no exception. It was different however, in that it contained an abundance of intricately carved white marble, especially in the archways and on the pillars. Four domes and no less than five organs also contributed to the Salzburg ... read more
Salzburg
Salzburg  Cathedral
Salzburg  Cathedral

Europe » Austria » Lower Austria » Melk November 3rd 2013

When you're embarking on 580 km to your destination in a bus, I guess you'd think the weather wouldn't matter much. However, this part of our journey involved some of the most beautiful scenery of any of our days of travel on this tour, so it was a shame that we had rain for most of the day. Passing from Budapest to well into Austria, it was pretty much flat farmland and reading a book helped to while away the first few hours. We then entered Austria's Wachau Valley, picture-postcard villages and vineyards along a lovely stretch of the Danube, edged along one side by mountains. Even in the rain, in this area you could see why the Danube is referred to as "blue". At lunchtime, we stopped at Melk Abbey, a Benedictine abbey listed as ... read more
Melk Abbey
Melk Abbey
Melk Abbey

Europe » Austria » Vienna » Vienna November 1st 2013

Today many in our tour group headed to the Schonbrunn Palace for an expensive optional excursion. We decided to "do our own thing" and check out some aspects of the Hofburg Palace that we had only glimpsed the day before. It was All Saints Day, a public holiday in many parts of Europe, so we weren't sure what would be open. Luckily the two areas we chose to visit, the Spanish Riding School with its specially bred Lipazzaner Stallions and the Imperial Treasury, were both open. We saw the horses exercising to music...captivating for a while in a pretty amazing building, but not enough action for our taste, so we moved on and had a terrific coffee & strudel in lovely sunshine in the Palace cafe. The Imperial Treasury was something else again! It was full ... read more
Vienna
Vienna
Vienna Imperial Treasury

Europe » Austria » Vienna » Vienna October 31st 2013

Yesterday we "did" Prague in a day...today it's back on the bus bright & early and off to Vienna! It was a pleasant enough drive and we arrived in Vienna around lunchtime. We decided to skip the optional sightseeing bus tour and set off to do a self-guided walking tour to some of the many popular sights. We started at St Stephen's Cathedral then on to the Opera House, St Peter's Church, the Hofburg Palace and the Cappuccin Church. So many sights, so little time! We walked and had a cursory look at these places and enjoyed walking through the beautiful pedestrian-only streets in the city centre. The only place where we spent time was the Cappuccin Church which includes a crypt, the Kaisergruft, which holds the coffins of the Hapsburg Kaisers and their relatives. This ... read more
Vienna
Vienna
Vienna

Europe » Austria » Tyrol » Mayrhofen October 16th 2013

Now Sarah and I both go weak at the knees at the sight of any impressive mountain range, so as you can imagine, we have a love affair with Austria that has actually been ongoing for some time now. We’ve previously visited three times on skiing holidays and just love the place for what is has to offer, we’ve skied at Iggles, Leche, St Anton, Mayrhofen and the Zillertal Valley and have a very good perspective of this place from high up on the mountains in the snow - the aspres ski is great too! However this time we were visiting at the end of summer, and rather than arriving by plane into Innsbruck we were arriving by car from Germany across the border. Well, at least the imaginary border as they don’t seem to monitor ... read more
Mayrhofen
Mayrhofen
Mayrhofen

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Europe » Austria » Tyrol » Innsbruck October 6th 2013

We have arrived in Innsbruck, a town surrounded by the Alps. The scenery is amazing and is it hard to believe that in a few months it will all be covered in a white blanket of snow. It is a very busy place, lots of tourists visiting the shops. Swarovski crystal is made here, there was an exhibition of the crystal and a huge shop where you could some. I debated so much about what I would like, that I talked myself out of buying anything :) Probably not a bad thing! We walked around town and headed back to the hotel for a break. Due to all the bookings we have made, we got a night free accommodation, so we decided to book the Hilton! Really nice. Then it was out to dinner at a ... read more

Europe » Austria » Salzburg September 27th 2013

Hi Guys Finally have internet again. It is amazing how lost you feel without it! Especially, when you are trying to plan your holiday only a few days in advance! We returned to the Oktoberfest grounds on Wednesday morning (had to try beer from another beer tent). We arrived around 12 and the tent we were in was quiet. We had a table to ourselves for a while and then had an American Couple and their parents sit with us. Lunch today was half a chicken and chips, another stein (litre of beer) for Andrew and an interesting chat with the couples next to us. The husband was in the military and posted to Italy. They gave us advice on where to go in and around Italy, which was really appreciated. After the beer was finished, ... read more

Europe » Austria » Salzburg September 26th 2013

Salzlburg is is the "heart of the heart of Europe" and is the city of Mozart, who was born here in 1756. The composer's association with the city continues to draw loads of tourist revenue and tourists, who come to visit this favorite son's birthplace, the Geburtshaus, an old burgher's house. In 1997, Salzburg's Altstadt (Old Town) was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Sit. The Salzach River acts as a natural border to the Old Town, and the Rudolfskai stretches out alongside it. Salzburg's cathedral is main attraction in the Altstadt with two squares, the Residenzplatz where to see open-air concerts during summer and the Kapitelplatz . The nearby Residenz, the "new" Residenz, the Franziskanerkirche (Franciscan church) and the Kollegienkirche(Stiftskirche) . Towering above all these attractions is the Hohensalzburg Fortess on the Monchsberg Mountain. The ... read more
Eastern Europe 1645
Eastern Europe 1653
Eastern Europe 1659

Europe » Austria September 20th 2013

September 19th - 20th: Vienna September 21st: Saturday: Durnstein; Wachau; Melk: September 22nd: Sunday Linz September 19th: Thursday; We arrived in Vienna in the afternoon and had a tour along the Ringstrasse (ring road) to get a glimpse of Vienna’s grand and elegant architecture and St Stephen’s Cathedral. A walk through the city then aafternoon tea of Sacher Torte – a chocolate cake and coffee. After dinner we were driven to the Arsenal Museum (hired by APT and opened for the night) where we were given a private concert. Septtember 20th: Friday: Vienna: We went on a tour with a very good senior aged guide: We walked to the Imperial Crypt below the Capuchin Church and is intended for the members of the Austrian former Habsburg dynasty, who have been laid to rest in ... read more
Austria - Vienna
Austria - Vienna
Austria - Vienna




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