While visiting Budapest, Hungary during an European tour in 2019, we stopped in Vienna, Austria. Vienna and Budapest are very close to each other and it is pretty easy to take the road and visit…As the 2 countries belong to the European Union, there are no customs… On our way back to Budapest, we spent half a day in Bratislava, Slovakia – Both of the cities will get a dedicated post for a future reading.
Let’s go back to Vienna. Once settled in our tiny hotel not very close to the city center, we took a cab to get to the city center.
Vienna is absolutely stunning and there is a lot to say about it… my favorite place for our modest visit was the National Library….
Before entering the place, I asked my kids to close their eyes as I knew that we had to climb 2 stairs to reach the library… (please check the second youtube video and you will exactly see the stairs that bring you to the library).
They were holding my hands and were waiting the “open your eyes” from me ! And then, we all became silent… not because no-one should talk in a library … but the beauty and the magnificent hall (Prunksaal) completely stopped us for saying a word… I added my personal pictures from our visit… and will try to share the essence of this place’s history and some anecdotes I found while doing some research.
If you like globes, you will like this place…. We did not have time but next to the hall, there is a map collection that includes the Globe Museum (more than 300 with some from the 16th century) –
It is the only globe museum in the world (this is even more frustrating me that we did not have the time to stop by).
It took me a while to take the picture as I wanted to get the statue in the axis of the ceiling… it was the sport moment of the visit.
The Statue represents the emperor Charles VI from the Habsburg dynasty….
They are 2 interesting facts about this emperor: he died after eating mushrooms and his death triggered the War of the Austrian Succession… the reason of this war is that his daughter inherited the throne (and not a son… as he did not have any…) … and this was taken as an opportunity (for some countries including France) to challenge the Habsburg power in Europe at that time….
The ceiling includes a fresco in the central dome where the image of the emperor is held by Hercules and Appolo ( you can see the coin with the emperor face at the feet of the angel in the center).
The library collects anything related to Austrian authors or works related to Austrians and their culture. Altogether, the library has more than seven million objects, of which approximately three million are printed.
There are also some rare manuscripts dating from the 4th century CE to the present.
All pictures shared were taken during our visit in April 2019. I will let you appreciate the colors and the details.
When you are standing in this Hall, it is very hard to leave the place for its peaceful atmosphere… this is a pleasure for the eyes. If you have 15 minutes of your time, and want to feel it – look at the last video.