Papa Haydn's Stomping Ground

Trip Start Mar 12, 2010
Trip End Mar 21, 2010

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Flag of Austria  , Burgenland,
Thursday, March 18, 2010

Thursday March 18,    Eisenstadt – Vienna

If this is Thursday it must be Prague… No, wait. That was this morning. We are in Austria now, heading for the town of Eisenstadt, home of the Esterhazy family and Palace of the same name. We liked Eisenstadt because after six days we finally were able to enjoy a decent lunch without having to dash off in the middle of it.

The Esterhazy family has owned their Palace since 1649. It has two claims to fame that were of interest to us. First, it houses one of the most beautiful and acoustically perfect concert halls in the world, so it is said. And second, Joseph Haydn spent forty years there in the employ of the family. Many of his best works were written and premiered here.

It was pre-season in Eisenstadt when we visited, but Cultours had arranged for us to be able to tour the Castle with a couple of local guides. The castle used to have a moat and thick outer walls, but it more resembles a really big house these days. The moat has been filled in and the heavy walls have been incorporated into the interior of the building. The tour was sort of interesting, taking us through a dozen or so of the castle rooms which were rich with inlayed wood, fancy furniture, lots of paintings and decorative wall paper.

We came to sing, however, and soon the choir assembled in the Haydnstaal to let loose with a couple tunes. Then we took off for Vienna.
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