The last day of our stay in Semmering was spent visiting Austria’s capital, Vienna, an hour away from Semmering by motorway. The excursion was somewhat spoilt by the cold and the drizzle on this Tuesday December 4th though it did enable the visitors – a total of three busloads including one bus containing the participants from Senigallia – to discover some features of this city steeped in history. The Stephansdom, the Heldenplatz, the Schwedenplatz, the Sacher hotel famous throughout the world for its Sachertorte. And then, naturally, an Austrian meal in the Prater pleasure gardens at the ‘Bierinsel’, a welcome stop after a rather chilly morning.
The afternoon was spent visiting Schönbrunn, the castle which was the residence of Franz Josef and his wife Sissi, to name but two. In the castle courtyard was the Christmas market with its varied and well-stocked covered stalls, some selling Glühwein (mulled wine) which attracted some of our number. Given the weather no-one really wanted to stay around and at the agreed time everyone was there to catch the bus for a trouble-free return to Semmering.
Welcome to Vienna!
Visit to the Stephansdom, Vienna’s cathedral
A welcome break at the Bierinsel (beer island)
Schönbrunn Castle and its Christmas market