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Published: December 20th 2013
First drink of the day at Belvedere Christmas Market, followed by an orangepunsch
I had originally planned to travel to Bratislava for the morning, but found myself fully enjoying my vacation by lying in bed instead. I had another delicious ham breakfast, then found myself heading toward the Belvedere in the southeast portion of Vienna.
There is a Christmas Market there called Weihnachtsmarkt Belvedere and it didn't' disappoint. It is located directly in front of the palace. I got a mug of Baileyspunsch which was pretty strong and strangely, I didn't feel so cold anymore... (The "punsch" is actually hot). I wandered around a bit and found a stall selling christmas ornaments that show Vienna - I figured I would probably return here, but first I got another drink, orangepunsch, and continued wandering. Finally I came back and got the three ornaments for my mom and sisters.
I then decided to maybe give a tour of the palace a shot. But there was an unorganized line and the prices were divided between the different portions of the palace buildings. You could get a ticket for all, but it was like 25 euros. 25 euros!!! For a palace that I really don't know much about and from what I could tell was mainly
One of many delicious punsch stalls
a military headquarters for Prince Eugene of Savoy in the 18th century. It was 11 euros just to visit the upper palace. So, I decided just to check out the gardens. I figured I made the right choice. It was a nice walk from the upper building to the lower, and you could see most of Vienna in the distance.
Then I headed back towards Karlsplatz station because the station I came in was further away. I wandered through the christmas market again and gazed at the church, which started to chime the hour of 1pm. Even though at this point I was exhausted, cold and had to pee, I decided to head to Rathausplatz, where the largest Christmas Market in Vienna takes place. Again, another good decision.
Wiener Adventzauber am Rathausplatz takes place right in front of the Town Hall and it is probably as large as the previous four christmas markets I'd visited put together. I loved the atmosphere - it actually felt very christmas-y. I stopped and got a hot chocolate (no alcohol). I am keeping the mugs because they all denote the place you bought them - each is different and make for good
souvenirs. I bought a few more ornaments and continued wandering around. I am hoping to visit one more time before I leave.
Then I came back to my hotel to get a nap in before starting to get ready for The Nutcracker tonight! I'm so excited! I probably will be a bit overdressed, but this is my Christmas present to myself and the first date I'll have been on in ages. The fact that I'm going by myself is besides the point - I intend to make it a memorable date!
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