Starting now with the second part of my impressions of Vienna. Hope you enjoyed the first routine. I was very tired after the walking through the city on the first day. So decided to call it an early day.
The next morning, the skies looked ominous and tried to put the idiomatic damper on my spirits. But I just borrowed an umbrella from the Pension and decided to make a trip to the famous Schoenbrunn Palace. It was a little far from the city center and so, I had to take a train. While waiting, I often find myself looking at advertisements at the underground stations when I am visiting a city and try to get an idea about what’s new. I don’t know if the locals ever pay any attention to the posters!
Finally on reaching the palace, I found an Easter Market set up in the grounds despite the overcast skies.
The Schoenbrunn Palace looked quite impressive in yellow color and as it was drizzling a bit, I decided to take a tour of the rooms inside the palace first instead of looking at the gardens.
The rooms were interesting and as the rest of Vienna, had most stories about Maria Theresa and Sisi. Interesting to know was how much effort Sisi put in maintaining her figure (exercises and dieting) and ankle length hair (a full day every week dedicated to cleaning and conditioning the tresses).
After coming out, I wandered a bit into the gardens which looked quite pretty to stroll in but it was drizzling and the wind was too strong to keep the umbrella open. So I decided to move on.
Now, I was getting hungry and I had heard about the Naschmarkt. So I headed towards it. By the time I got out of the train at the stop nearest to the market, it was pouring. I managed to reach there and looked through the shops and restaurants but didn’t find anything that I could eat. So I searched for an Indian restaurant around as that is usually a safe bet if one is looking for a warm, vegetarian and gluten-free meal. And as luck would have it, I found myself at a restaurant whose owners were from the same part of India as I am! On the menu were two delicacies that I love but haven’t had in a really long time and so quite naturally, I asked for those two items. It was serendipity at work again :-). I was not disappointed. The owner and I chatted away for some time about life back home and abroad. Looking out of the window, I found that it was hailing. So I stayed for some more time before venturing out again.
I went to the central railway station to get myself the tickets for the next day and then proceeded towards the Opera. Walking towards the Opera, I came across a beautiful church – Karlskirche. It was not possible to get inside as it was getting ready for a concert.
Moving on, upon reaching the Opera, I found an impressive 19th century building. Initially it was the place for royalty but then in 1920, after the removal of the Hofburg dynasty, it was named the State Opera. I wasn’t particularly interested in watching the performance (it was Parsifal by Wagner that evening). But I had read that one could get a chance to stand and watch for as little as 3 Euros. So I tried my luck but even the standing tickets were sold out. The lady at the counter told me that I could try again for a ticket post break and the break was at after 90 minutes. Since I was tired anyway of all the walking, I went to the adjoining Opera Cafe and ordered myself a coffee.
When I came out to try getting the ticket, I found that it was again sold out! So much for the waiting. Then I came out of another exit. And what do I see there? A big screen showing the performance from inside! There were also chairs. Why didn’t I come out earlier?
Anyway, I didn’t find it engaging so I moved on. It was getting darker and the square was lit up.
It was much more interesting to listen to the street musicians than watching the Opera. After spending some time listening to them and then having some dinner, I decided to call it a day.