22960
Austria
City Walks: Exploring Vienna’s Neighborhoods
Explore the beautiful and historic neighborhoods of Vienna on foot, and venture out to the Vienna Woods Biosphere Reserve to take in the natural surroundings and views of the city.
Rating (5)
Program No. 22960RJ
Length
8 days
Starts at
1,899
Flights start at
850
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8 days
7 nights
12 meals
6 B 4 L 2 D
DAY
1
In Transit to Program
In Flight
DAY
2
Arrive, Check-in, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Vienna
D
Mercure Grand Hotel Biedermeier

Activity note: Check-in available from 3:00 p.m.

Afternoon: 4:00 p.m. orientation. Your Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the program theme, the up-to-date Daily Schedule and any changes, discuss safety guidelines, emergency procedures, roles and responsibilities, and answer any questions you may have. Indicated times are approximate. Program activities, schedules, and personnel may need to change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding. We begin getting to know Austria’s capital city on a motorcoach excursion with commentary along the "Ringstrasse" -- the circular boulevard where city walls once stood around the Innere Stadt (Inner City). Also pass by the UN quarter, and Hundertwasserhaus.

Dinner: Welcome Dinner at the hotel. This dinner is buffet-style. Please note that water is included in the program cost at all meals.

Evening: At leisure. Continue getting to know your fellow participants and get a good night's sleep for the full day tomorrow.

DAY
3
Vienna's Old Town
Vienna
B,L
Mercure Grand Hotel Biedermeier

Activity note: Walk approx. 3.5 miles, 4 hours.

Breakfast: Hotel dining room. On this program, breakfasts will offer a typical European style breakfast buffet with breads, cheeses, cold-cuts, yogurt, fruit, cereals, juice, milk, coffee, tea and water.

Morning: Discover the Old Town of Vienna during your first city walk. Centuries of fascinating history have accumulated in Vienna. We trace the times which saw the arrival of the Romans, the foundation of St. Stephen's Cathedral, the era of Baroque Habsburg splendor, the rise of the "Ringstrasse bourgeoisie," World War II, and the city's rebirth after troubled times. From Albertinaplatz with the Albertina Gallery, we walk to the Imperial Palace, still the government center of Austria; stroll along the exclusive shops of Kohlmarkt and Graben to reach the very heart of Vienna - St. Stephen's Cathedral. Enjoy an expert-led visit of the cathedral. Take a coffee break at the Demel coffeehouse, opened in 1786 and a meeting point for aristocrats and Vienna’s bourgeoisie. While here, explore the Demel Museum. Continue to Hoher Markt, Vienna's oldest square, the center of the Roman camp Vindobona. We cross Rotenturmstrasse to enter the quarter of the Old University with the faculty of Science and the great Baroque Jesuit Church.

Lunch: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Beginning around 2:30 p.m., enjoy a free afternoon. Take this opportunity for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities, which can be found in the first Information Packet. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.

Dinner: Explore local fare on your own.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
4
The Ring - Vienna's Boulevard of Splendor, Concert
Vienna
B,L
Mercure Grand Hotel Biedermeier

Activity note: Walk approx. 4 miles, 4 hours.

Breakfast: Hotel dining room.

Morning: This morning explore the Ring Boulevard around the Old Town on foot. In 1857, Emperor Franz Joseph ordered the demolition of Vienna's medieval fortifications and ramparts to make room for expansion, and from this the idea of an imperial "Boulevard of Splendor" was born! The Ring was to become Vienna's greatest pride, and at the same time, the playground and vanity fair of the upper crust. The resulting magnificent boulevard, officially opened in 1865, was soon lined with mansions of the nobility and wealthy as well as important political and cultural institutions. Today it recalls the glory of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Explore with us its highlights, and hear the stories behind its splendid facades. Start the walk with a visit to the Postsparkasse, an art nouveau building by Otto Wagner, at the Stubenring on the west of the Old Town. Continue along the Boulevard (passing the Academy and Museum of Applied Arts, Schwarzenberg Square, and Stadtpark) and also pass by the Musikverein, the concert hall of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. If there are no rehearsals or concerts happening in the Musikverein, you will be able to go in! Leave the Ring road to stroll along the Naschmarkt, and pass the Vienna Secession Building. Enjoy a short amount of free time here, perhaps for a coffee. Then return to the Boulevard to pass by the Opera House, and follow the Ring to the Imperial Palace and Museum of Fine Arts and New Gothic Town Hall. Walk by the University building and remnants of the Old City walls, with Beethoven's Pasqualittihaus. During the walk, we also pass the Palais Ephrussi, the one-time home of the Ephrussi family of "The Hare with Amber Eyes."

Lunch: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Beginning around 2:30 p.m., enjoy a free afternoon.

Dinner: Explore local fare on your own.

Evening: Transfer via subway to the splendid Kursalon, a music hall located where the City Park and the Ringstrasse meet. Enjoy a concert here, with works by Mozart and Strauss.

DAY
5
From "Shtetl" to the Prater
Vienna
B,L
Mercure Grand Hotel Biedermeier

Activity note: Walk approx. 4 miles, 4 hours.

Breakfast: Hotel dining room.

Morning: Head out for a walk around Leopoldstadt, Vienna's 2nd district. Leopoldstadt was once the hub of Jewish life in Vienna. Some of the town's finest synagogues were to be found there, as well as a wide array of Jewish shops, clubs, theaters and coffee houses, and the Grain Exchange, a focal point of Jewish commercial interests. Leopoldstadt was also a central-European stronghold of Zionism and Chassidism. Sigmund Freud spent his youth there, and composers such as Arnold Schonberg and Oscar Strauss were born there. This Jewish world was brutally destroyed in the Shoah, but new Jewish life is returning. Part of this walk follows the newly-established "Path of Remembrance" commemorating the Jewish victims of the Nazi terror. Meet at Schwedenplatz on the Danube Canal. Start this morning with a talk on the Danube regulation and development of Vienna districts. Cross the bridge to visit the 2nd district, former Jewish Vienna. Follow Praterstrasse to Prater park and enjoy a ride on Vienna's Giant Ferris Wheel, with a great view over the city. You will have a short break, to perhaps enjoy a coffee on your own, before paying a short visit to the new Campus of Vienna University of Economics and Business with its modern architecture.

Lunch: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Beginning around 2:30 p.m., enjoy a free afternoon.

Dinner: Explore local fare on your own.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
6
Schönnbrunn Palace and the surrounding Villas of Hietzing
Vienna
B,L
Mercure Grand Hotel Biedermeier

Activity note: Walk approx. 4.5 miles, 4 hours.

Breakfast: Hotel dining room.

Morning: Travel by public transport to visit the Habsburg Summer Residence this morning, along with the district of Hietzing. Originally, Hietzing was a modest wine-growing village at the foot of the southern Vienna Woods. With the presence of the monarchy at Schönbrunn, imperial summer residence since the 1700s, Hietzing became the coveted summer resort of the nobility and lower gentry - and later the business elite - such as artists Egon Schiele and Gustav Klimt, and whoever else wanted to escape the heat of the city. Walk where Johann Strauss Jr. gave his first concert, where Emperor Franz Joseph put up his guests, where Josef Hoffmann built one of the icons of Modernist architecture, and where Gustav Klimt died and lies buried. Visit Schönbrunn Palace and the Gardens. Have a coffee break in the restaurant before continuing to Hietzing for an expert-led walk along the footsteps of composer Alban Berg and the artists of Vienna 1900, and admire the many art nouveau residences.

Lunch: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Beginning around 2:30 p.m., enjoy a free afternoon.

Dinner: Explore local fare on your own.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
7
Vienna Woods
Vienna
B,D
Mercure Grand Hotel Biedermeier

Activity note: Walk approx. 6 miles, 4.5 hours.

Breakfast: Hotel dining room.

Morning: Free morning. Take this opportunity for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities, which can be found in the first Information Packet. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.

Lunch: Explore local fare on your own.

Afternoon: Enjoy a walk around Vienna Woods, the city's beloved recreation area. In 2005, the Vienna Woods to the west and northwest of Vienna were designated a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. This was an important step in the direction of protecting an area of more than 250,000 acres of woodland for the benefit of man and nature on the periphery of a large city. A world city partially situated in a Biosphere Reserve is considered very unique, even around the world! Its core area comprises 15 conservation areas and 4 nature parks, which makes it a haven for nature lovers, but offers a lot of culture, too. Leave the city by public bus up to Cobenzl Hill. During your walk here, you will learn about the history of the woods and the siege of Vienna by the Turks in 1683. Enjoy a great view of the capital.

Dinner: After a nice afternoon in this world-famous area, you will be welcomed for a Farewell Dinner in a Heuriger - a typical wine tavern.

Evening: Return to Vienna by streetcar.

DAY
8
Departures
In Flight
B

Breakfast: Hotel dining room.

Morning: Transfer to Vienna's Schwechat International airport (VIE) for departures. This concludes our program. Please join our Facebook page and share photos of your program. Visit us at www.facebook.com/rsadventures.






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