As part of my “One Mum, One baby, The World” travel series , my 5 month and half baby girl and I travelled to the wonderful city of Vienna. Some of you have asked; how can you travel alone with such a young baby? Yes, it is challenging sometimes doing it solo but a positive attitude and a sense of wonder do help a lot. Also, we were guests of The Ritz Carlton so little to nothing could go wrong. In fact it all went better than I expected.
I have always had a thing for Vienna, I studied piano and musical notation for five years and as a teenager my love for classical music made me eager to visit this city. Since then, attending the Vienna New Year’s Concert is in my list of things to do in this life.
There is a lot to see and do in Vienna but in three days you won’t be able to see it all, particularly if you want to visit museums which usually take a good few hours of your day, so I suggest to first of all to have a coffee, enjoy, relax and always be polite when asking locals for directions. A genuine smile makes me wanna be friends with that person so for the three days we were there , we smiled a lot and came back with memories for the book of life . Here are my suggestions based on what I managed to do and see in some very cold April days in the friendly Austrian capital :
- Take the tram and go around the Ringstrasse
- Visit a Viennese “heurige” (wine tavern)
Vienna is one of the very few metropolis in the world that grows wine within its city limits.The Viennese heurige- where only Viennese wines are served- are identified by a bunch of pine branches and by the word “Ausg’steckt” written on a board, which simultaneously shows when the tavern is open.
I visited Vienna at the end of April and it was a bit chilly so I didn’t venture too far plus with the baby on her stroller , I knew I couldn’t really walk around the vineyards too much.I took tram D from the Ringstrasse all the way to Nusdorf, a Viennese suburb. It took about 20 mins for me to get to an authentic “Heurige”. Alba and I were the only tourists there!.
- Visit a famous Coffee House
You can find dozens of traditional cafés in Vienna’s Old City where you will encounter Viennese coffee house culture in its most original form. We visited Demel, the former Imperial and Royal confectionary. By the way, at Demel, the sales and serving personnel have been exclusively female for 200 years. I enjoyed my visit but the place was very touristy and not very comfortable for a mum travelling with her baby on a stroller so didn’t stay too long.I will be back when Alba is no longer on a stroller and she can eat a piece of their famous Sacher torte with a melange just like I did.
- A stroll around the SatdPark
Before I get sentimental let get back to business. From the Stadpark, baby and I took the train straight to Schönbrunn for our visit to Schönbrunn Palace.
- A visit to The Schönbrunn Palace
- The Volksgarten and Burggarten
Alba and I made our pilgrimage to the Mozart statue in the Burggarten. These gardens (“Burggarten”), in the heart of the city, were once the private gardens of Emperor Franz Joseph I, the husband of the Empress Sisi. In 1919, three years after the monarch’s death, the Burggarten was opened to the public. Today it is the location of the only monument to the emperor.This park was perfect to take a break while Alba had her milk . Even though it looks quiet, I was soon surrounded by about 100 tourists from Japan who like myself were there to see the musical genius statue. One of them, was kind enough to take some of these pics.
- The Imperial (Hofburg) Palace
The Imperial Palace now houses various museums and the Spanish Riding School. It provides a view into the daily life of what was once the center of the powerful Hasburg dynasty.
We visited The Imperial Apartments which hold impressive royal furnishings and decorations. We also visited The Sisi Museum which is dedicated to the life of the Empress.
Finally, there is the Imperial Silver Collection, a museum dedicated to the facilities and tableware that were once used by the royal members of this great dynasty.
- Lunch at the Dstrik Steakhouse
As we were staying at the Ritz carlton, we went for lunch to the famous Dstrikt steakhouse. They have the best selection of Austrian meat cooked on a charcoal grill and served with mouthwatering side dishes prepared from local products such as sautéed young spinach or cheese Spaetzle.
I had a “ladies steak” with a side of fries in truffle oil , sprinkled with parmesan cheese. They brought a tray for me to choose my own knife which was a first.
I made sure I had space for dessert as wanted to try what is already known as the best cheesecake in Vienna. It didn’t disappoint, in fact I had a whole cake just for myself which I finished eating that evening after my visit to Schonbrunn.
On Sundays, they serve a very unique “Meat Brunch” so if you ever around on a Sunday and love meat, this is the place to go.Come on, treat yourself!
To travel around Vienna, I had the Vienna city card , this was very useful as it offers unlimited travel on the underground, trams and buses and discounts to main attractions as well as over 21 benefits.
Thanks to The Ritz Carlton, Vienna and the Vienna Tourism office as well as all the spontaneous tourists who took pictures of us. Check out my video on Vienna to see how Alba and I managed this time. I will soon reveal where next in our “One Mum, One Baby, The World” travel series.