You probably know Vienna as the capital of Austria.
You might also know that Vienna has consistently been voted as having the highest quality of living in the world…
Or that famous composers including Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Joseph Haydn, Ludwig van Beethoven, Gustav Mahler, Robert Stolz, and Johann Strauss II have worked in Vienna.
But did you know Vienna is also home to the world’s oldest Zoo? Or that, every year, over 300 balls take place in Vienna?
The more time we spend in Vienna, the more we fall in love with this magical city, and in today’s blogpost, we’re sharing 10 fascinating facts about Vienna you probably didn’t know.
1. VIENNA INVENTED THE SNOW GLOBE
In 1900, a fine instruments mechanic named Erwin Perzy was trying to improve the brightness of lightbulbs for a surgical lamp. Instead, he accidentally invented a snow globe. Perzy and his brother then opened The Original Vienna Snow Globe shop which is still running to this day.
2. VIENNA HAS THE OLDEST FERRIS WHEEL IN THE WORLD
Constructed in 1897, The Wiener Riesenrad is the oldest operating Ferris wheel in the world. It’s possibly most famous for its part in the 1949 movie ‘The Third Man’ and for many, it is a symbol of the city.
3. VIENNA INVENTED THE CROISSANT
Yes - you read that right! The famous French pastry originated in Vienna. The croissant is based on the Austrian Kipferl (meaning 'crescent' in German) and was introduced to France by Maria Antoinette of Austria when she married King Louis XVI of France.
4. VIENNA IS KNOWN AS "THE CITY OF DREAMS"
Sigmund Freud lived and worked in Vienna for much of his career. During this time, he had a significant impact on the city, making it known as the birthplace of psychotherapy.
5. VIENNA IS A WINE CAPITAL
Vienna is the only capital city to produce significant quantities of wine within its city limits. It's home to over 1,700 acres of vineyards and 320 vintners.
6. VIENNA HAS OVER 450 ANNUAL BALLS
Viennese Ball Season runs from January - March. Some of the most famous balls include the Opernball (held at the Vienna State Opera since 1877), the Philharmonic Ball (which features a performance by the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra), and the Blumenball (famous for its flower arrangements).
7. VIENNA'S CHOCOLATE CAKE IS WORLD-FAMOUS
Sachertorte, also known as Sacher Cake and Eduard Sacher Torte, is a famous chocolate and apricot cake. It was invented in 1832, by 16-year-old pastry chef Franz Sacher.
Nowadays, The Hotel Sacher in Vienna is the only place that produces the 100% authentic Sachertorte. The hotel produces over 270,000 pieces a year.
8. VIENNA HAS THE WORLD'S OLDEST ZOO
The Vienna Zoo is the world’s oldest and only baroque zoo, built in the gardens of Schönbrunn Palace in 1752.
The zoo now boasts over 700 different species of animals and was recently voted the best (and most beautiful!) zoo in Europe.
9. VIENNA CELEBRATES NATIONAL WIENER SCHNITZEL DAY
Austria’s national dish, the Wiener Schnitzel, is celebrated annually on September 9th. Chefs make Wiener Schnitzel by tenderizing a thin slice of veal and then lightly salting and breading it. It is then deep-fried in clarified butter.
10. VIENNA HAS THE EUROPE’S BIGGEST MUSEUM QUARTER
The Vienna Museum Quarter is Europe’s biggest and most impressive museum complex with 60 cultural establishments spread across 645,000 sq. ft.
Escape to Vienna’s Golden Age!
Salute to Vienna is a dazzling performance that evokes a golden age of Viennese music, brimming with energy, merriment, and romance, and is a glorious re-creation of the beloved Neujahrskonzert, the concert that has welcomed the New Year for more than 80 years in Vienna and all over the world.
Led by a witty and charming conductor who is an expert in Viennese music, Salute to Vienna features a cast of singers and dancers that brings to life the music of Johann Strauss. Backed by the Strauss Symphony, the performance is rich with selections from beloved operettas, elegant dances, lively overtures, and the beautiful Blue Danube Waltz.
Start the New Year with Salute to Vienna New Year’s Concert!
Are you coming to celebrate with us? - Click here to buy your ticket now »