Vienna Day 3: Belvedere, Karlskirche, Furniture, and More
My third day in Vienna was a grey and sometimes rainy one but what a better excuse to spend a lot of time in some of the Austrian capital's most glorious museums?!
First off was the Belvedere, a palace complex consisting of the Upper and Lower Belvedere plus an orangery and the stables. The palace complex was built for Prince Eugen of Savoy as a summer residence. (Above is the Upper Belvedere.)
I might not be *that* noticeable on the pictures due to the overall grey-ness but Belvedere is gorgeous! Both palaces are now owned by the Austrian state and house art museums. Now, I can tell you that I'm not the most avid art museum visitor as I often find myself overwhelmed by the sheer number of artwork but I really enjoyed these. The Upper Belvedere gives a great selection of art from many different times. On the ground floor you have Medieval Art as well as Expressionism and the Interwar Period; on the first floor there is one entitled "Vienna 1900" which centres around paintings by Gustav Klimt and the other one is entitled "Baroque and early 19th century". On the second floor there is "Neoclassicism, Romanticism, Biedermeier" and "Realism and Impressionism".
Though maybe even greater than the artworks was the architecture. Sadly many of the rooms have changed their appearance since the times of Prince Eugen but the Marble Hall above hasn't. Stunning, non?!The Marble Hall also offers great views over the Baroque garden of Belvedere as well as the whole of Vienna.
...and say 'hi' to the Lower Belvedere located on the opposite side of the garden. At the Lower Belvedere as well as the orangery, there was another more exhibition entitled "Europe in Vienna" centring around the Congress of Vienna 200 years ago.
Not really part of the exhibition itself but quite impressive, the Golden Room. (And yes, that picture is crappy but I only ever take pictures with my phone while I'm in a museum as I like to concentrate on what is actually shown instead of my camera.) I also visited the palace stables which featured a medieval treasury.
Then I wandered around, saw the Russian Orthodox Church of St. Nicholas (above), the Salesianerinnenkirche, the Polish church, a mosque, the Anglican church, loads of embassies and more.
I also ran into (not literally) a rather monumental memorial giving "Eternal Hail to the heroes of the Red Army who fell in battle against the German fascist invaders for the freedom and Independence of the peoples of Europe."
Just behind it is the Palais Schwarzenberg, whose forecourt has been turned into a parking space.
After a little more wandering, I arrived at the Karlskirche, widely considered to be the most outstanding Baroque church in Vienna. And it even had a
little major curiosity...