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Traveling Austria as a person who is blind

My name is Gayle. My husband and I have traveled quite a bit both for work and pleasure. I am totally blind. We are both going to a trade show in Frankfort in the middle of May. We have been offered the use of an apartment in Vienna for four nights. We are thinking we will take the train from Frankfort to Vienna. We are looking for things to do in Vienna including music, food, museums where I might get to touch things, and interesting places to walk.

Next we are planning a bit more than a week to explore other places. We could fly out of Frankfort or somewhere else if that works better. I would like suggestions of places we could go by train and really submerge ourselves into the area.

Posted by
545 posts

I'm moving this back to top in hopes of someone being able to help Gayle. I've never been to Vienna, otherwise I would answer. :)

Posted by
2936 posts

Gayle , Try to get tickets for a performance at The Vienna State Opera or a concert at The Musikverein ( Vienna Philharmonic ) or even better , both !! A lovely place to walk and have dinner would be in one of the villages up in the Wienerwald ( Vienna Woods ) . This is the area filled with Heurigen , wine taverns amidst the vineyards and forests . There are several villages in this area slightly north of the city proper , and any one would be worthwhile . One of my favorites is Grinzing . Although it is somewhat popular with tour groups , it was not overrun with them when we visited last September . As I am a classical musician , making a pilgrimage to visit the grave of the composer Gustav Mahler , buried in Grinzing cemetery , was important to me . The number 38 tram will take you there in under a half hour from the Schottentor tram stop on the Ringstrasse . The last book of memoirs of the writer Elias Canetti includes a section about Grinzing as he experienced it in the 1930's . One of our favorite Konditorei in Vienna was at Himmelstrasse 7 , just around the corner from the tram stop at the end of the line in Grinzing . Vienna will charm you ! P.S. Sorry , the name of the Konditorei is Hubert Nobauer , great Esterhazy Torte !!

Posted by
4073 posts

The following link has some ideas:

http://www.wien.info/en/travel-info/accessible-vienna/accessible-museums

Most attractions offer free or heavily discounted admission for the blind.

You also might want to consider the Haus der Musik, an interactive "sound museum" that highlights some of Vienna's music history:

http://www.hausdermusik.at/en

You also might want to contact the following organization in Vienna which provides local support for visually-impaired individuals. They may have some additional ideas.

http://www.hilfsgemeinschaft.at/index.php?id=264

Have a great trip.

Posted by
17 posts

Please keep the information coming. I am collecting all your replies. In some ways I enjoy the research as much as the trip. The more I know, the more I can see in my mind's eye. I can even help my sighted husband see things he would possibly miss.

Posted by
2936 posts

Gayle , another thought . If you are in town over the weekend , Café Braunerhof at Stallburgasse 2 just beyond Michaelerplatz ,has a piano trio ( violin , cello , and piano ) playing during Saturday and Sunday afternoons . They perform Viennese dance music ; waltzes , polkas and the like by the Strauss family , Lanner , Ziehrer , Kalman , etc. It is a wonderful accompaniment to an afternoon " Jause " . I had an unexpected treat one afternoon ; They began to play a particular waltz , which I had known for fifty years , having first heard it as an adolescent . After all that time , one of the musicians kindly gave me the title . Lifelong mystery solved !! ( " Weaner Maedl'n " or " Vienna Girls " by Karl Michael Ziehrer , one of the greats of the Viennese Waltz , unfortunately , now largely forgotten ) . The music was used in the 1948 film directed by Max Ophuls " Letter from an Unknown Woman " , a heartbreaker set in Fin De Siecle Vienna .