If Sisi ticket is purchased, do you have to see all 3 sites in one day or can you spread it out over a few days?
The ticket is actually good for one year ( one visit to each covered site ) . In any event , trying to see all of them in one day would be like trying to listen to all nine Mahler symphonies in one sitting ! Whew !
Can you buy your ricket in advance?n is there any advantage to that? Shorter lines? What about other sites and museums in Venice, purchase tickets ahead or not? We will be there in Sept. On a My Way tour.
@ Patricia , You can buy the ticket online , but I don't think it affords you any particular benefit . We visited in late September and didn't encounter any crowds at the Hofburg , Schonbrunn was busier . As far as other museums , did you mean Vienna ,or really Venice ?
Vienna, that was a typo.
@ Patricia , I thought it was , but you never know . During the height of the season , advance tickets might help in some cases , but when we were last there we really did not encounter any lines . If you go early in the day , you will also benefit from those visitors who sleep in , and you will also get more for your time . Needless to say , with over 150 museums in this wonderful place , your choices are infinite , but major museums like the Kunsthistoriches , Belevedere ( BOTH upper and lower palaces ) , Leopold , MAK and several others should rightly be at the top of your list . If your time is limited and you have to make a choice between the Hofburg and Schonbrunn , see Schonbrunn . The interiors are better and the setting better conveys the history of nineteenth and early twentieth century Vienna . While I liked the Hofburg , many visitors find that the porcelain collection goes on too long ( I liked it a great deal ) and the Sisi museum overplays the story , in my opinion . The Hofburg complex , however is an architectural masterpiece , and certainly worth time there . Of course , the city itself is a grand work of art , and there is never enough time for it ( Like Paris ! )
@Steven--I'll be in Vienna very soon and opted for Schonbrunn over the Hofburg for the reasons you list. As it is I have 10 museums on my must-see list in Austria alone, and probably 4 more in Budapest.
@ Christa , I hope you are reading James' wonderful posts about Budapest . Having read his input helped make Budapest sparkle for us !
We are in Vienna 5 days, but 1 day in Melk and Danube cruise. What would you suggest for those 5 days. We want to have music Ina church on Sunday morning.
@Patricia , As far as church music in Vienna , I would look into St. Peters , Karlskirche , St. Stephens and St. Anna to name a few . Find the details on the web ( dates , times , and programming ) . I'm sure there is much more , but those would be good places to start . As far as the remainder of your time . In addition to the museums listed above , walking through the city at a leisurely pace and enjoying your surroundings ( flanerie , as the French would say ) is wonderful there . Visit a Viennese coffee house or two , or three ( the more , the better ) , Braunerhof , Sperl , Centrale , are but a few examples ( each has its own distinctive character ) . The city's many parks are not to be missed , and wandering the Ringstrasse , you will flow seamlessly from beautiful nineteenth century architecture to lush and gentle parkland and back . One or two more ideas ( I do realize your time is limited ) ; A visit to the Zentralfriedhof ( central cemetery ) was fascinating for me , the resting places of the great composers , writers ,and other well known figures was time well spent . One , slightly off the beaten path , which is at the top of my list ( again , if time permits , and you are interested ) is the Kirche am Steinhof ( Steinhof Church ) on Baumgartner Hohe at the northwestern edge of town . This a magnificent Viennese art nouveau church built in 1907 by the famed architect Otto Wagner . It is on the grounds of a state psychiatric hospital and absolutely one of the most stunning Secession era works to be seen . If you do go , check for hours ( I believe it is open to the public weekends only ) . The story of the hospital itself is interesting and informative as well .
One other quick little bit of fun - If you watch Wes Anderson's recent film " The Grand Budapest Hotel " you will encounter many references to a konditorei by the name of Mendl's and a very fancy pastry ( fictional ) called a " Courtesan au Chocolat " . This is a thinly veiled reference to the Viennese institution named Demel's on Kohlmarkt just outside the entrance to the Hofburg at Michaelerplatz The window displays are certainly worth a look ! The film is based on the work of the Viennese author , Stefan Zweig . Another fine film ( you can find it on Youtube ) , watch it before you go , is Max Ophuls rendering of Zweig's story " Letter from an Unknown Woman " ( 1948 ) . A beautiful story of fin de siècle Vienna , make sure you have plenty of Kleenex handy .
Thanks so much for the help and the ideas!