Sunday, June 22, 2014

Living like Royalty

The day started out with a lot of dragging feet. The hours of walking and the late nights are starting to catch up with the group. Many of us either skipped breakfast or grabbed some to go, leaving us with even less energy for the day. We left the hotel with our guide Manuela around 10 am and we traveled to Schonbrunn Palace, this palace was the summer home where Emperor Maximilian II would go to hunt. The back yard, which is now a garden, was filled with animals and was large enough for the men to hunt during the summer. The backyard is now a garden. There are many fountains, a maze and even a zoo. The sight of the castle was breath taking, and the inside was even more beautiful. We got to go on a tour of 40 rooms on the first floor of the palace. There were no cameras allowed, but we had an auto guide leading us through each room. We learned about each person that lived there and many small bits of their history. The rooms were so beautiful, and each one had a unique element to them. My favorite room was (of course) the most expensive room in the palace. It was a quaint sized room, not much bigger than my bed room at home. The walls were a rare type of wood and were covered in gold lining around many paintings of the palace’s history. The room itself was a sort of collage, and it was very beautiful.
            Once we were finished with the palace tour, we were free to roam the gardens. There were so many ways to go, but as a group we decided to go to the zoo. The zoo itself wasn’t too large, but it had a lot of new animals there that I’ve never seen before. The two most exciting animals to see were the Koalas and the Pandas. There are only three zoos in the United States that have Pandas, and only 15 other zoos in the world that have pandas. One of those zoos is the one we went to today. We enjoyed our walk around the zoo and ate lunch in the garden. Everything was so beautiful; it made me feel like I never wanted to leave.

            In Vienna, shops are closed on Sundays. We tried to do most of our shopping yesterday, and we will do more tomorrow. Since the shops were closed, we didn’t have much else to do with our day. There were some options to go see some museums around the city, but a lot of those were planned for tomorrow. There are some spots around the city that are available to swim in, and since it was a really hot day, a lot of us decided that that would be a great idea.
            After a dipping our feet in, we went our separate ways and most of us went back to the hotel to take naps. The group met up again for dinner at 8 pm at a restaurant/bar/cafĂ©/lounge, it was a really adorable place that had delicious food. It seems like most of us are really feeling how expensive it is in Vienna. Hopefully we can make it one more day and still get to experience the city.

Stephanie Robinson

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