After my night at the Park Inn, the last prepaid hotel stop on the bike tour, I hopped on the subway and went to Helga's apartment. Helga was a gracious host and a most knowledgeable tour guide of her city.
|Big Dave in a small car|
|Statues in a museum garden|
|Some of Vienna's fine architecture|
|Mozart's grave (photo by Helga)|
|We ate grilled pork leg at the Schweitzerhaus|
No visit to Vienna would be complete without a look at St. Stephen's Cathedral, a splendid example of Gothic architecture dating from about 1350. The interior, which has been recently renovated, was awesome.
|The so called "Giant's Door" of St. Stephen's Cathedral|
|Monster pipe organ|
|Some of the faithful light votary candles|
Below are a few shots of the Schoenbrunn Palace and its grounds. It's Vienna's most famous tourist spot that's also sought out by locals who enjoy its spacious gardens, quiet walkways and leafy bowers. It was occupied by the Habsburgs, rulers of the once powerful Austro-Hungarian Empire from about 1570 until World War I ended in 1918.
|This modest 1441-room home was the seat of Austria's Habsburg Dynasty for hundreds of years|
|Detail of the Sun Fountain at Schoenbrunn|
On my last day she took me to a nice cafeteria that she said most people, especially tourists, don't know about although a Google search for Justizcafe turned up quite a few hits. It's located in the big courthouse, the Wiener Justizpalastes and offers a scenic view of downtown Vienna as well as a helluva fine breakfast:
I spotted this odd looking structure from the Justizcafe and asked Helga about it. There are several of these old towers around the city. They're gun emplacements, remnants of the Nazi era and World War II, she said. I later learned it's one of six flak towers in Vienna that held anti-aircraft guns for use against Allied bombers. The city was bombed 52 times during the war and 20% of its houses destroyed but these reinforced concrete towers survived.
|World War II anti-aircraft battery|
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