Christmas in Vienna!

Trip Start Dec 16, 2012
Trip End Mar 18, 2013

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Wombat's: The Place

Flag of Austria  , Vienna,
Monday, December 24, 2012

Although it's a couple of days late, Merry Christmas from Vienna! We arrived in Vienna on Christmas Eve, just in time to check into our hostel and make our way to Midnight Mass. This was very different for me (Jessie), because I've never attended a midnight mass, let alone a midnight mass given in German! We attended mass at Saint Stephen's Cathedral, and after waiting in line outside for about an hour in the cold, we found that it was breath-takingly beautiful inside. Because we arrived around 10pm, we were towards the front of the line, so we were some of the lucky few that actually got to sit down during the service! There were definately over 500 people attending, so the space filled up quickly. It was a beautful service, and it helped that they not only said parts of it in German, but also in Italian, French, and English! When we left around 1:30am, we were sure we'd be walking the 5 miles back to the hostel since the train stopped running at 12:45. But by some Christmas MIRACLE, it was still running!! We were beyond excited for this and so glad we didn't have to walk back in the freezing cold!

For Christmas morning, we decided that our gift to ourselves would be to sleep in, which felt so good! In the afternoon, we made our way to the Opera to see a matinee, which felt like the perfect Christmas day activity! We saw Hansel and Grethel which was in German, at the Volksoper theater. We got super lucky because we bought standing room tickets which are extremely cheap, but the room didn't fill up, so we got to sit the entire time! We figured this was our Christmas miracle #2 because it definitely made the Opera experience more relaxing and enjoyable. It was a great opera, the theater was beautiful, and it got us all in the Christmas spirit. 

Christmas evening was spent walking around the center of Vienna, and having a true Christmas Feast! We all wanted traditional Venitian food, which we learned was mostly Weiner Schnitzel (Fried Veal) and Pork Spare Ribs. We found a restaurant that was serving 3 course meals. We all got different things to try each others! Robyn got the Schnitzel, Matt got the Ribs, and I got a seafood dish, which was grilled Pike with Truffle Rizotto, and they were all delicious! We also drank Venition beer, of course. We were so stuffed after the meal that we decided to walk it off before heading back to the hostel. We all went to bed that night feeling satisfied and very happy with our Christmas in Vienna.

The next day was dedicated to really seeing the city. We started by making our way to the famous Vienna Palace, called Schonbrunn Palace. This was a beautiful and huge palace, with a wonderful Christmas market outside of it, where we finally got the big soft pretzels we had been wanting since Berlin! Through a large garden and up the hill, we made our way to Vienna's famous gate, the Laureate Gate. We had a blast there trying to get a picture of us jumping in the air in front of it. We probably tried 50 times and got one almost success, the picture is attached. Lets just say Robyn and I were out of breath from both jumping and laughing, and it was well worth the effort just because it was hilarious. 

From the Palace, we made our way to the Musuem Quarters of the city, where we spent hours roaming the Natural History Museum. Although they had some pretty wonderful exhibits, the best part was the building itself. It was huge, historic and simply beautiful. In the square outside was one last Christmas market, which makes 8 Christmas markets total that we saw in Europe! They just love Christmas markets here! We finished the evening by seeing Mozart's house, and had a few beers at our hostel bar. We had to go to bed early because the next day we were up by 4:30am to start our long day of travels to Venice! 

Hope you all had a Merry Christmas, and we'll see you again in Venice!
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Scott on

I'm gaining weight just by looking at the food & beer pictures!

What great pictures-absoulutely beautiful cities.

Peggy on

thank you Jessie, you ARE an angel to post such a wonderful update :) although....I would think that an angel would be able to jump a bit higher! I can see that you are having a wonderful time and that you are not starving OR becoming thirsty on the trip. Keep us posted.

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