I just booked my next trip to Vienna. Why do I find that city so charming? The inner city, the part that tourists see, is like a fairy-tale version of what a European city should be–clean, walkable, quirky, with a history going back centuries. Yet the city feels vital and utterly modern.
It is very common to see visiting musical groups gather and burst into spontaneous song. Passersby stop to listen to a few minutes of enchantment, then move on. This choir group was waiting outside the 12th-century Stephansdom to perform in one of the many musical programs that take place there. The Stephansdom still functions as a parish church, too. Many VIennese stop in for a quick prayer or moment of contemplation on their daily travels about the city. In the background is the postmodern Haas Haus, which Viennese deplored when it was built in 1990. Yet now it is a treasured part of the city landscape. Day and night, the glass surfaces of Haas Haus reflect the medieval flourishes of the ancient cathedral.
I can’t wait to return to Vienna! Join me next time for more explorations in the art and history of Europe!