Hello lovelies! I write this with a runny nose, a head that feels as large as a balloon and a nasty, sore throat. Is it just me or does anyone else get sick every time the seasons begin to change?? Anyway, focusing on the positive here! Did you know that Vienna was named the number one city in the world, to live in by the Guardian?! I thought that was kind of a big deal, so in honor of this prestigous award I have crafted a list of my favorite things about living in this glorious city. I hope that this also works as an ad for all of my lovely friends and family to come visit me. So, here we go as to why I love living in Vienna:
1. I love it's unique beauty.
Gorgeous historic architecture. Quaint cobble stone streets. Palaces and parks. Statues and monuments. Flower filled gardens throughout the city. Castles on castles on castles on castles. There's just something so magical in the air!
2. I love the coffee- café culture.
I love that it is acceptable and even promoted to sit in a comfy café for hours with your hot melange (Viennese specialty coffee drink), pastry and book in hand. It's one of my favourite things to do on any given day! When I first got here I went hammmmmmer on cafés and pastries galore; nutella-filled crossaints, cibattas, marmelade- filled krapfen, semmel, sacher tortes, really all the Austrian pastries. My hips don't lie. I went hard. Trying to real it all back a touch, to live a more balances life *cough I just drank an espresso with a side croissant*.
2. I love that dese streets are full of street meats.
Kaserkrainers (cheese stuffed weiners), doner kebaps (lamb, chicken and duck sandwiches), frankfurters (do yourself a favor and eat the Bosna), asian takeout (my cousin swears by the lomein), pizzas of all sorts, falafels and boreks. You can have a meal for under 4 euros. Is it convenient and filling? Yes. Is it unhealthy? Yes. But is it delicious? YES! All options are perfect for a super active, budget-conscious traveler.
3. I love the bike friendly streets.
It was always a dream of mine to live in a city where I could bike everywhere. And unless I was at the Beltline, I would be killed if I decided to go for a ride on da skreets of Atlanta. Which is why I appreciate living in Vienna so much. I can safely ride in the bike lanes and go anywhere; to the market, my job, the city center, a cafe or to the gym.
If you don't have your own bike, Vienna has 'City Bikes' which is an extremely cheap, bike sharing opportunity, if you want to explore Vienna above ground. If you register for free at any of the 120 kiosks around Vienna or online, you can rent a bike for free for up to an hour, 1€ for the second hour, 2€ for the third, etc. But if you just return is to any open kiosk, before your hour is up, then you're riding for free my friend!
4. I love that PDA is okay.
I love to see other people openly showing affection to their loved ones. I'm a creep for that, I know but I don't care. It's nice that people don't mind who's around and can freely express themselves without being bothered by dirty looks. Except for the couple who hard core made-out the ENTIRE bus ride from Vienna to Munich right in front of me. Those two crossed the line, and yet were still not bothered by the dirty looks they received.
However, I did not take pictures of unbeknownst couples being lovey dovey with one another, because that's a little too creepy even for me.
5. I love the public transportation.
It is always on point, day and night and night and day. It's pretty reliable, on time and safe. I can get to any place in the city, just outside the city, whenever I want. And its affordable! For me, it was smarter to get a year pass, good for all modes of transportation for 364 euros.
For visitors a week pass, is only 16 euros. That's good to get you on any bus, tram, train as many times as you want! And most of the time it's clean, doesn't smell and isn't too packed that you feel claustrophobic. I've only walked through urine two times in the past year and I've never been pushed in the doors like below! That's a win in my book folks!
6. It's an international city.
I love that I get to see people from Turkey, Nigeria, Poland, Italy, and China walking around the city and living in my neighbourhood. Being in the smack dab middle of Europe, Vienna is full of people from other nations, bringing their culture and traditions along with them. And I love that I get to experience a little bit of their culture while being submerged in the Viennese lifestyle.
7. It's home.
This is where we got married, got our first place, started adulting and began our life together! Regardless of all of the other reasons Vienna is amazing, this one makes it the most special! It is now and will forever be a special city for me.