When traveling alone, it can be a little scary. A new place with a different language and culture can make you a little nervous. I would implore you to brace your fears and still go and do it! Get out and explore even if it’s outside of your comfort zone. I’d like to share with you my first solo trip abroad in Vienna. I will mention some challenges and some things that I really enjoyed.
I booked an Airbnb about 20 minutes from the center of Vienna and this proved to be a little bit of a challenge for me since I’m not used to public transportation. I took the wrong train and had to backtrack but eventually I got there. If you have the opportunity to stay in the city center, I would highly recommend it. When I arrived in the city center, I had no agenda and I just started walking and looking around. There were amazing shops and lights and a beautiful cathedral. I was taking pictures of the Cathedral when someone stopped me to offer me concert tickets. My initial reaction is to decline people selling things in the street. Though, we spoke for a minute and he pulled out a map and showed me a bunch if different places to visit. It was extremely helpful and I also ended up purchasing a concert ticket. Honestly, I was intending on going to one while in Vienna anyway so I was excited that I had found one.
My concert wasn’t until later that night so I decided to go into the St. Stephen’s Cathedral. It was free to go inside and its immense size did not disappoint. It was like stepping back in time to see this beautiful place of worship. There were candles everywhere to pay tribute to saints. Many people were in church pews praying with their rosaries and others photographing the beautiful architecture and sculptures. There was a small fee to go up in their north tower and so I took this opportunity to get a better view of the city. It was chilly and overcast but the views were still amazing.
After that, I went to get warm and have lunch. Expect things to be a little more expensive in the Vienna center. My beer and duck entree with potatoes was 20 euros. It was the best meal I had had since being in Europe so it was well worth it to me. When I finished, it was close to 4:30. I headed to the international library and though I didn’t go inside, I did get to see the beautiful architecture. I hear that it is one of the most amazing things in Vienna to go see. I proceeded to go and look at the Queens castle and like the tourist I am, I took a lot of photographs. None could possibly give the city of Vienna justice, for its beauty is far more grand in real life.
I bumped into the same person that had sold me the concert ticket and along with him and a few of his friends, we walked around Vienna further and they acted as my tour guide. It was perfect! We went to this outdoors center that had multiple bars and lots of people. It was decorated for Christmas and had some holographic lights on the roof of the gazebo as well. We all grabbed some mulled wine, or as they like to call it “punch”, and we headed out by the heaters. We talked for a long time and I got to know the city and its inhabitants a bit more. I like that I had given myself a free schedule for this reason. You never know where a day could lead or who you could meet.
My concert was at eight in the evening and so I headed to the Housdermusik. There were multiple different artists during this ensemble. They played classical music with the piano, violin, cello, and base. There was opera, ballet, a cappella and just an amazing combination of artistry all together. They even gave a brief history of all the composers with a bit of a comical twist. I had never seen a concert like this but I could fully appreciate their talent. I, myself, was in choir all throughout school and continue to be a passionate singer. My short weekend trip was not enough to fully explore Vienna but I’m sure I will return. You should visit as well!