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We’re funny (usually), controversial (sometimes) and insightful (always!). Our travel experts share their experiences below in hopes of hearing back from YOU. So read, comment and enjoy!

Posts in ‘Things to do in Vienna’

What’s New On isango! – August 2014

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Well, the travel season has really taken off and isango! has some fine offerings for you to check out.  So pack up your travel bags and come fly with us to a variety of destinations around the world.

Vienna Evening Bike Tour
Vienna has managed to preserve its architectural landmarks that make it such a charming city.  One is swept away to an older elegant time after walking or cycling down its unsullied boulevards.  The beauty of the Ringstrasse, flanked by an unbroken stretch of magnificent buildings including the Burgtheater, is matched by the unhurried flow of water in the Donaukanal or the soaring spires of St. Stephen’s Cathedral.

The Historic Centre is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  Once, the capital of the Hapsburg dynasty, Vienna retains much of the cultural cross pollination of its heyday.  Its imperial past is there for all to see, especially in such fine buildings as the Oper and the Börse.  All these are illuminated in the evening adding to their appeal.

The Singapore Flyer with Free Hop-On Hop-Off ticket
Getting on the Singapore Flyer is really going for the heights.  Till just a short while ago, it was the tallest observation wheel in the world.  It has now achieved the status of a Singapore icon.  With 28 air-conditioned capsules mounted outboard, you enjoy unobstructed views on the entire 32 minute ride.

Singapore Flyer 1

The best time to ride the Flyer is probably around sunset when the light gives the skyscrapers a mystic feel.  The Flyer is the best place to see and get a feel for the beauty of Singapore.  As a bonus you get views of Malaysia and Indonesia. Also, you get a free Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing pass with this tour!

Sydney Harbour Tall Ship “Convict” Cruise
This tour is not what it sounds like.  You don’t sweat it out in the galley.  You get to do it in style with a glass of champagne, wine or beer and a grand buffet lunch while sailing past Sydney’s magnificent skyline in a genuine 1850s tall ship.

Sydney harbour convict cruise

The journey around beautiful Sydney harbour also includes a tour of Goat Island, which witnessed important events in Sydney’s history.  Your guide will give you very entertaining and interesting facts about the history of the convicts.

At the Top: Burj Khalifa
The view of Dubai and the surrounding area is simply spectacular from the 124th floor of the world’s tallest man-made structure.  In conjunction with the other attractions, the Burj Khalifa has put Dubai on the world tourism map.  Even the journey to the top of the building is an adventure.  From the reception you get on to a ‘travelator.’  This 65 metre trip is a history lesson of Dubai.  The ascent to the observation deck is via a high-speed elevator that does funny things to your tummy.

burj khalifa day 1

The Burj is an engineering and urban masterpiece.  Once you are on the observation deck and looking at the vista spread out, you get a real understanding of Dubai’s remarkable vision and achievements.

Lunch at the Berlin TV Tower
One of the really great places to see all of Berlin is from the TV Tower.  The tower (also known as the Berliner Fernsehturm) is the city’s tallest structure at 368 metres.  There is a panoramic viewing level at 203 metres that gives you a fabulous view of Berlin.

Another great and unforgettable experience is to sit down and have a meal at the elegant revolving restaurant.  Located just above the viewing area, the restaurant revolves once every hour – just the right amount of time for you to have your meal and admire Berlin from your table.

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Travellertip: Spittelberg, Vienna

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1070_neubauThis tip is not so much a traveller tip as a tip from a local: Kim Tjia lives in the Spittelberg quarter of Vienna, Austria.

spittelberggasse_marktSpittelberg lies in the 7th district, bustling Bezirk Neubau. Its picturesque buildings and narrow streets almost had to make way for modern architecture in the 1970s, luckily people came to their senses in the 1980s and started renovation works
to save the Baroque town houses.

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The Spittelberg area is full of art galleries, plenty of restaurants and even a theatre. In winter the quarter will be filled with stalls for one of the best Weihnachtsmärkte (Christmas markets) around.  Expect arts and craft stalls for original Christmas gifts and gallons of gluhwein.

doorgang1The neighbourhood has many hidden passages, like the one in the photographs. Behind each archway you often find a little square with little shops and places like a mini village. This one hides gallery-cafe Kandinsky ( see if you can meet its lovely curious owner who we’ve christened “Mr Kandinsky”…)  and don’t leave without picking up some fresh wholemeal bread from the  bakery nearby.

Visit and explore this cultural city with your own audio tour of Vienna
Kim receives an isango! gift-voucher for her tip – For a chance to receive a voucher, send us your Travel Tip at competition@isango.com with Travel Tip in the subject line.

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Record numbers for Vienna marathon

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The Mozart statue in ViennaA record number of participants have signed up to compete in this year’s Vienna Marathon, it has been announced.

With the event set to take place on April 19th, organisers have advised anyone still wishing to run through the historic streets of the Austrian capital that just a few open places remain.

Among those due to take part are Reuben Kosegi, who won gold at the Sydney Olympics and who is making his race debut in Vienna, and Markus Hohenwarter and Gunther Weidlinger, Austrians who will benefit from strong home support.

Aside from the main 26-mile-long race, a number of shorter events will also be taking place across Vienna over the course of the marathon weekend.

These include the Pink Ribbon Run, which will see thousands of participants follow a 2.5 kilometre-long course through the centre of the city with the aim of raising money for the Austrian cancer charity.

Vienna is also well-regarded as a classical music location, with numerous concert venues across the city offering performances of Austrian composers such as Mozart and Johann Strauss to tourists.

Culture and Sightseeing – City Tours – Whichever city you are in these tours will help to ensure you do not miss a thing.ADNFCR-1652-ID-19097136-ADNFCR

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Vienna celebrates Haydn with a fresh look

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Joseph Haydn has been one of those few musicians who became famous and did not fall in disgrace during his lifetime. Both Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Ludwig Van Beethoven list as his pupils. He died in 1809 in Vienna, Austria, where commemorations are planned all year round.

The Vienna Haydn Museum displaying in the author’s residence has reopened last month, where visitors can see his fortepiano and clavichord as well as many manuscripts.

Three major exhibitions are going to be open over the year: at the Musikverein, Haydn in London (march-june), and Haydn and his Princes (october-december), including more than 30 concerts; Haydn, Hasse, Mozart (may-september) a the Mozarthaus.

Haydn room at the Vienna House of Music

Haydn room at the Vienna House of Music

An new exhibition titled Haydn Genius & Music Market describes the Master’s marketing strategies to sell his work in European’s 18th century. This one is held at the Palais Mollard from february to may.

Many other events and concerts are also be planned at the Haydn House in Eisenstadt, the former residence of the Haydn family.

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Romantic Valentine’s Day Adventures: Vienna

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OK folks, this is it. I’ve guided you through Romantic Valentine’s Day Excursion itineraries in Paris and Florence.  Still haven’t found the perfect trip idea?

Perhaps you’ve already been to these cities, or perhaps you are looking for a destination that is less of a Valentine’s Day cliché.

I thus present to you, in my final post of this series, the charming, music-filled city of VIENNA.

Smaller and more manageable than Paris, yet with a cosmopolitan edge that sets it apart from Florence, Vienna is the perfect weekend destination for the young, culture-loving couple! continue reading

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Fancy dress and rowing at Vienna’s Dragonboat Cup

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Two events that don’t always go together – fancy dress and rowing – take place at the Dragonboat Cup in Austria.

Made up of a number of races through June, with the finals taking place on Vienna’s Danube on June 27th and 28th, this is an excellent opportunity to see some great rowing and some fantastic fun.

Earlier rounds take place on the Schwarzl Lake in Graz (June 6th), the Traunsee Lake in Gmunden (June 13th) and the Zell am See’s lake (June 20th).

Teams of up to 20 compete in the races, with men frequently dressed up as women and a whole host of other crazy costumes on display too.

While anyone wanting to row will need to shell out €990 (£845) per team, coming along and watching the rowers get their dresses wet is completely free of charge.

What legendary British Olympic rower Sir Steve Redgrave would make of it is anyone’s guess.

Why not book the City Tour & Boatride in advance?
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Catch some culture at the Vienna Festival

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The city that was the inspiration for some of the greatest and most memorable music in history also has – perhaps unsurprisingly – one of the top annual festivals.

At the Vienna Festival, which runs through May and June, venues across the city are used for a dazzling array of performances.

With 32 productions and 165 performances booked there will be something for everyone, and a truly international flavour is assured with performers hailing from New Zealand to Denmark and South Korea to France.

The festival is an all-encompassing affair, kicking off with a giant free concert in Rathausplatz square, ensuring that even those not lucky enough to get tickets to any shows can still enjoy some fine music.

Highlights include Yvonne, Princess of Burgundy, an opera by Philippe Boesmans based on the play by Witold Gombrowicz, which is to receive its world premiere in Paris this Saturday and will feature at the festival on May 13th.

Why not book tickets to visit Bratislava by bus/boat before you travel?
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Celebrate Easter next to a Viennese palace

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Anyone looking for a trip away during the Easter holidays should consider the Schonbrunn Palace Easter Market in Vienna.

Running from March 28th to April 12th, this is an excellent opportunity to sample Austrian culture in the most opulent of surroundings.

The grounds of the baroque Schonbrunn Palace are the setting for this celebration, which features more Easter decorations than can be imagined.

Every type of Easter egg is in attendance, as well as flower arrangements and palm leaves.

Visitors will be able to sample local foods from Vienna, the provinces and nearby countries, and there will be plenty of trinkets full of cultural nuances to buy as souvenirs, such as straw animals, glassware and ceramics.

The Schonbrunn Palace Easter Market is open daily from 10:00 until 18:30 and on certain days there will be jazz performances, while workshops will be available for children to make Easter decorations of their own.

Why not book tickets to visit Budapest in advance?
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Skate away at the Vienna Ice Dream

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A beautiful, romantic city is never more so than when it is covered in snow and visitors to Vienna can take advantage of all these three things at the Vienna Ice Dream, set in the heart of the city.

Running from January 23rd to March 8th, this event sees the Rathausplatz, or City Hall Square, transformed into an ice rink.

Vienna Ice Dream roughly coincides with the city’s ballroom dancing season so people who have been unable to get a ticket to one of the big events can more than make do here, as they pirouette under the city’s wonderful architecture.

For beginners the afternoon is the best time to go along, as in the evening the really skilled skaters come out – but even people who aren’t experts can still enjoy the show from the sidelines.

All types of music are provided, from rock to salsa, and of course ballroom dancing on ice is also attempted.

Why not book the Danube Valley tour in advance?
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Get Dirty at Vienna motocross show

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Many people may associate Vienna with powdered wigs and harpsichords but the city also knows how to put on a show for those who prefer changing an engine to tinkling on the ivories.

In February, Masters of Dirt comes to the city, sure to wow fans and newcomers alike.

This motocross event features unbelievable, death-defying stunts performed by a handful of motorcycle and BMX riders.

Stars such as Justin Hoyer – who performs backflips on snowmobiles – and Jon Guetter – who does the same on a quad bike – will all be performing their signature moves in the Vienna Stadthalle on February 21st at 19:00 and 22nd at 14:00.

Masters of Dirt is the perfect event for fans of anything on two wheels as well as anyone who thinks that motorbikes were made for flying.

Tickets for the show cost between €28 (£26) and €54 (£50), with children under 12 getting in at half price and children under three for free.

Why not book the Salzburg – Sound of Music tour before you travel?
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