Vienna, voted the best city to live in for the 2nd year in a row (2019, 2018). A city full of contrasting architecture, beautiful palaces, green spaces, rose gardens, music and dance. Take a walk in the old city and you will come across the former homes of Mozart and Beethoven. Next to the Hofburg, you’ll pass the Hofmusikkapelle, a venue for regular Sunday performances of the Vienna Boys Choir.
A scenic ride around the Ring reveals many magnificent buildings built in the era of Emperor Franz Joseph – the glorious days of the Hapsburgs. Start at the Opera House, before heading past the Art and History Museums, the Hofburg, Parliament, parks such as the Burggarten and Volksgarten, the Rathaus (Town Hall), the Burgtheatre, the Votivkirche, the Danube Canal and of course Stadtpark (City park) with the famous Straus monument.
For Ballroom dancers Johan Strauss II is one of Vienna’s most famous sons, composer of the Blue Danube, an enchanting Viennese Waltz. The river Danube itself certainly is not blue and doesn’t run through the centre of Vienna – that’s the Danube Canal. However, you can take a cruise on the River Danube – located on the outskirts of the city. For the more adventurous why not try a river cruise. There are plenty of options starting point from Amsterdam, before joining the Danube in Germany, alternatively going through to its culmination at the Black Sea.
If you’d like to try a Viennese Waltz, then the Opera Ball has to be on your wish list – held each year on the Thursday preceding Ash Wednesday. However, during the Ball season Vienna hosts more than 300 balls each year. A great Ball for the tourist to attend is the Johann Strauss Ball, held each year in February at the Kursalon – concert venue of the composer himself.
Head to the outskirts of Vienna and you can visit several of Beethoven’s apartments. Did you know he lived in a total of 60 different houses/apartments in Vienna (although some sources say that figure could be as high as 80)?
Alternatively, a trip to Schonbrunn, summer palace of the Hapsburgs will allow you to visit the Hall of Mirrors, where the 6-year-old Mozart performed for Empress Maria Theresa. Head to the Grand Hall and you can just picture yourself dancing in times gone by.
The attractions of Vienna for lovers of music and dance are endless. For us, the love affair with Vienna started on Valentine’s Day 2001, with our Viennese honeymoon. The city reaffirmed our ideas of how the blending of music and dance into one incredible journey are timeless.
In reality the origins of music and dance started much earlier. In our next blog we will share with you the foundations of music.