“If you start to take Vienna, take Vienna”

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Schloss Schönbrunn
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Schloss Schönbrunn
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Panoramic view of the front of the palace

Napoleon invaded Vienna twice, in 1805 and 1809. Both times he used the opulent Schloss Schönbrunn as his headquarters. I guess he was fond of the place. Empress Maria Theresia was also fond of Baroque palace and made it the center of her court during her 40-year reign from 1740-1780. It was at Schönbrunn that a 5-year-old Mozart gave his first imperial performance. The Schönbrunn sits on the site of a royal hunting lodge that was destroyed during the Turkish siege of Vienna in 1683, paving the way for construction of the palace you see today, which commenced three years later in 1686 at Leopold I’s command.

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A night shot of the palace, lit up for Christmas
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I call this the peasant view.
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Fountain in the Schönbrunn courtyard
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Schönbrunn Christmas Market
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Waffle at the Christmas Market – that’s Nutella and vanilla sauce.
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Schönbrunn Christmas Market

The Schönbrunn complex is huge, including the palace with the royal apartments, a children’s museum, the palace gardens and even a zoo (where I have it on good authority you can see kangaroos in Austria). I attended a dinner and concert at the palace on my first visit to Vienna in 2010, so I did not go inside on this visit, but I did take a ramble through the gardens and the Christmas Market.

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Statue in the Schönbrunn gardens
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Schönbrunn gardens
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Statues in the Schönbrunn gardens
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Schönbrunn gardens
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Schönbrunn gardens
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Statues in the Schönbrunn gardens
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Schönbrunn gardens

 

Title quote: Napoleon Bonaparte

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Statue in the Schönbrunn gardens
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Fun little gazebo in the Schönbrunn gardens
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Statues in the Schönbrunn gardens
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Guard station at Schönbrunn
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Statue in the Schönbrunn gardens
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Neptune statue and fountain at Schönbrunn
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Statue in the Schönbrunn gardens
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Schönbrunn gardens

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