Friday, May 30, 2014

Day 14 - Friday

Today was a big day, and we are tired! We got up early to catch the train to Vienna, Austria. Traveling by train in Europe is something we've always wanted to do. 
Many beautiful fields in the countryside.
(Through my water bottle) haha

We made it! Once we got off the train, we had no idea where to go! We went to the information/tourism desk and the man there definitely would not win a customer service award. He said the only way to get downtown was by metro. We needed to exchange our money to Euros to do that, but unlike Budapest, there were no currency exchanges anywhere around there. So after being completely bewildered, we set off on foot in the chilly breeze. We went into a couple banks to see if we could exchange money, but no. Finally we found a post office on our walk who helped us. We definitely noticed a difference... In Budapest everything is written in Hungarian and English. In Vienna, it's only German. My very small amount of German didn't get us far. :-) After consulting our map numerous times, we found a hop-on hop-off bus tour. Yay! That was a life saver! 

(For my sister!)

Funny, and slightly creepy! Lol

Opera House

Horrible photo, but towards the right is a small brown church with a steeple. It was built in the 700s. Not 1700s! Wow!

(The 4th house is where Beethoven lived!)

I can't remember what all these buildings were. We were mostly interested in getting to the palace. 

(More opera house)

Made it to the Schonbrunn Palace!  The most visited sight in Austria.
Street performer Mozart.
Another selfie.

We did an indoor tour too, but weren't allowed to take photos. We got to stand in the room where a young Mozart played piano for Emperess Maria Theresa. Amazing to think of! This city is SO rich in musical culture. We would love to come back some day to spend more time exploring.

We caught a taxi back to the train station... We weren't sure if our tour bus would get back in time. The train departures sign said "canceled" under the Budapest destination.  We thought we might have to spend the night there! We went to our lovely info desk guy again  and asked what was going on. Apparently our train was not going to be going through that particular station. He said to get on the metro across the street and take it to a different train station. :-) We were nervous we might not make it before the train left! We ran through the terminal, outside, to the metro, took the metro to the other station, ran through to the train platforms, and found our train. It was delayed a couple of minutes due to the change. Thank God! Haha 

The 3 hours back "home" to Budapest was thankfully uneventful! 

Our friends flew out to the States today and will be back in Boise in a couple of hours! 

Looking forward to our Saturday plans. Stay tuned. :-)

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