When we travel, we don’t go straight from point A to point B; we usually want to see what’s in the middle, so we tend to use the first and the last day for at least a short, half-day trip. This time, when returning from Petzen to Vienna, we’ve decided to visit Graz. My hubby and me have been to Graz many times and know the city quite well. However, the girls have never been there and we didn’t want to pass this opportunity to show it to them.
Graz is really beautiful; it is the capital of Styria and second largest city in Austria. About a decade ago, it was the European capital of culture and around this time many museums, galleries, concert halls, theatres and other cultural institutions were built, re-built or renovated and the cultural life was given a push that lasts until today.
To make a long story short, after an hour ride from Petzen, we’ve reached Graz, managed to find a parking space at a great central location and started our sightseeing tour. So, let me show you what we’ve visited.
Let’s start with the stairway that leads to Schlossberg, the old Habsburg residence. Since it was cloudy, we decided not to go up, because we have feared that the view would not be clear and we do hope to visit Graz again, when the weather is nicer.
As already mentioned, the cultural life is still very much alive in Graz; everywhere you go, there is an exhibition, a concert, a play or a gig. You just have to choose whatever suits your liking.
This is Kastner & Öhler, a legendary department store. It’s been years since I’ve last been to Graz, so I remember is what it used to look like. Now it’s been renovated and the offer is quite different from what it used to be.
This is the Town Hall. It was built in the late nineteenth century on the city’s main square.
And this building is simply called Gemaltes Haus, meaning “coloured” or “painted house”. Its front was painted in 1742 and the house is situated in Herrengasse, right around the corner from the Town Hall.
No matter where we go, our girls insist that we visit each and every Glockenspiel, if there is one, that is. We’ve visited Prague in November and the bells there were one spot that we had to return to several times. After we’ve told the girls that there was something similar in Graz, going to check it out was a must.
Cross-cultural choice for getting drunk; on one side, there’s an American and on the other side of the street a Styrian pub.
Our next stop was the Cathedral, erected by the Emperor Frederick III.
The Schauspielhaus is one of Graz’s many theatres.
Look at those beautiful old plates.
The Murinsel (or Mur Island) was built in 2003 for the purpose of making the city more attractive for its European capital of culture function and it was meant to be temporary. However, it remained on the Mur rived until today and of course we went to see it. Perhaps because of the cold weather, it seemed abandoned (although there were dim lights inside and we could see two or three waiters hanging inside, looking bored). It was a bit too gloomy for us, so we didn’t go inside but instead decided that if we visited Graz some other time, we’d give it another try.
And, last but not least, we’ve had lunch at a great centrally located place (bakery/cafe/restaurant) called Sorger. And no, this is not sponsored :-) ; the food was great, the prices very reasonable and we’ve especially enjoyed the wonderful bakery products. So, I’m saying bye for now with this wonderful Marillekrapfen.
Yes, I know we haven’t visited everything there is to visit in Graz. However, we do hope to visit it again, so please keep your fingers crossed. ;-)
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