The Palace and Gardens of Schönbrunn comprise an 18th century Baroque Gesamtkunstwerk
and symbol of Habsburg power.
Schönbrunn Palace is the former Habsburg summer residence. In 1695 Fischer von Erlach sr. was asked to design a palace that could match Versailles. His plan turned out to be too costly, so Schönbrunn was constructed a bit more sober initially.
Empress Maria Theresia choose Schönbrunn as her main residence. She added the theatre and the garden to make her stay more enjoyable. And inside, she refurbished the rooms in baroque and rococo style.
In the palace garden there are several other interesting buildings. One of those is the green steel Palm House, constructed in 1882 in the tradition of Eiffel. Or the Neptune-fountain, with its group of Greek-Roman statues. It also includes the first zoo in the world.
Visit February 2004
Although completely off-season, there were quite a number of other tourists around in Schönbrunn. Walking from room to room caught between two Spanish tourgroups is no fun.
However, I experienced that the best things are to be seen outside anyway. Starting with the formidable yellow palace building itself. The colour of the buildings to the left and right is a shade darker, and shiny in the February sun. We spent quite some time walking in the huge garden, climbing to the pavillion Gloriette. Here you can have some coffe and enjoy the view of the palace.
After visiting the Palm House, we concluded our visit at the Wagenburg. Old carriages are shown here: little ones for the princes and princesses, and big black ones used at funerals. Until 1918, the carriages were in frequent use by the royals. The oldest in the collection even dates from the 1760s.
More photos can be found in the Picture Gallery
|Laura Barber (USA):|
Schonbrunn Palace was a great experience. We were able to travel there by train and when you first view it from the outside; I think it looks a bit tired. Once you start exploring and touring, your opinion changes. The garden was nice but not overly done. the yellow of the palace gives it a different appearance in different light. The interior was beautifully decorated. It is definitely a place to visit when in vienna.
| Date posted: November 2011|
|Ava ( Australia) (Australia):|
Last year in december our family went to the palace and gardens of Schonnbrunn.
IT WAS AMAZING!!! There where so many rooms and gorgeos paintung and features , its hard to describe. Once we finished seeing the palace we moved onto the gardens and they where beautiful! It was like a garden fantasy! It was snowing which made it even more prettty (but cold). We also saw the little markets in the court yard! With the giant Christmas tree with preety fairy lights all over it.It was like a fairy market. We also saw the winter palace it was just as beautiful1. If i could go back to Austria i would definatly see the palace and garden again.
Well thats it.
Cya Ava oxox
| Date posted: May 2008|
I remember one winter afternoon when I went for a walk in the gardens of Schoenbrunn with my then boyfriend, my sister and her boyfriend and we started throwing snowballs at each other. It was so much fun and I wondered, if the Habsburgs ever had such fun here.
| Date posted: April 2006|
|David Berlanda (Italy / Czech Republic):|
I have been once to the Schönbrunn castle, summer residence of the Habsburg emperors from the 18th century to 1918, a Rococo masterpiece projected by Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach and situated in a quarter of Vienna, Hietzing (on the right bank of the river Wien), that was at the time a forest zone. Nicola Pacassi projected the yellow fronts for the empress Mary Theresa. The castle was reconstructed by J. Aman and then damaged in the second war. It was also the residence of Napoleon in Austria and there took place the Congress of Vienna and some of meetings of Kennedy and Kruscev. From the main entrance formed by two obelisks and an iron fence you pass to the court, where are two fountains and low buildings; between them is the theatre, projected by Pacassi. Above all there is the main front, 175 m long, with a lot of columns and windows. In the castle there are a lot of royal rooms, divided in many parts (of Mary Theresa, of Francis Joseph, of Joseph II, of Francis Charles and Sophie of Bavaria and Bergl Rooms) with original furniture and frescos; the nicest rooms are the Great Gallery, the Million Room and the chapel. To the castle belong also the coach houses, the stables, the Physician House and the longest Orangery (186m) in the world, used for cultivation of exotic plants and for special events. The park is 120 hectares large and have everywhere perspective avenues, statues and fountains; it starts with two private imperial gardens. The Great Parterre has a lot of geometric flower beds, statues and alignments of trees and brings to the beautiful Neptune fountain and behind it, to the Gloriette, a neo-classical colonnade on a hill with a vast meadow. Near that is the Fasan Garden and the labyrinth. On the lateral avenues there are the Naiad Fountain, the Nice Fountain, that gives name to the castle, and two false remains constructed in romantic style: the Roman Ruin and the Egyptian Obelisk. In the botanical garden there are two beautiful monuments: the Great Palm House (114 m long), made by glass and iron, and the Sundial House. Near that is the first zoo in the world, founded in 1752 by Francis Stephen, with a nice pavilion and twelve original animal houses around it.
The castle is one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen because of the beauty of the architecture, its rooms and its park. It's absolutely worth to be visited also because it is the most beautiful castle and park in Austria and justifies the inscription also because its historical importance.
Photo: Vienna - Schönbrunn castle
| Date posted: February 2006|
|Ben Pastore (USA):|
Vienna was a stop on my honeymoon, and the highlight of our visit was Schonnbrun Palace. The impressive gardens, ornate decor, and charming zoo made for a wonderful day and served as a reminder that it truly is good to be the king.
|Klaus Freisinger (Austria):|
There are plenty of comments on the history and culture of Schönbrunn already, so just a few words on this great attraction: first of all, some people seem to believe that Schönbrunn is far outside Vienna; while this was true a few centuries ago, when the area was a hunting ground for the imperial family, it´s in the midle of town nowadays and very easy to reach by subway. Second, it cannot (or should not) be done in a short time. Sure, there are bus tours that whisk you through the palace in 30 minutes, but to really appreciate the whole complex, the better part of a day is necessary. The zoo alone, the world´s oldest, is very well worth a visit, as are the Gloriette monument (but no need to pay the extra fee as the view from the very top is only marginally superior), the Palm House, the Maze, and the Gardens (great landscaping, and for free, plus a few hidden gems like the small fountain after which the whole area was named - "beautiful fountain"). The palace itself is an architectural masterpiece, but suffers a lot from overcrowding - it is Austria´s most popular tourist attraction with over 2 million visitors last year. Especially busy in summer and December (weekends and time between Christmas and New Year), it makes sense to either reserve tickets, buy a ticket combination pass that gives you the privilege to skip the queues, or simply to come at less busy times of day, which means before 10 am or usually anytime in the afternoon. It seems 80% of visitors come between 10 and 1 o´clock. Seeing Schönbrunn in all its majesty on a sunny day (especially early in the morning) is one of Europe´s great moments, but the place has charm even in winter, when the atmospheric Christmas market is held in the palace courtyard. No visit to Vienna would be complete without going to Schönbrunn.
|Graeme Ramshaw (UK/US):|
During the summer of 1999, I had the pleasure of spending several days in Vienna, staying with acquaintances very near to Schoenbrunn Palace. Although busy most of the time, I and some friends made a sidetrip to see the palace, originally a hunting lodge for the royal family but transformed during the reign of Maria-Theresa into a grandiose Rococo residence. One could easily be forgiven for calling this Austria's Versailles, as the gardens were originally designed by a pupil of Le Notre and the palace exhibits the same passion for the ostentatious and the sublime. Yet, it is this profligacy that lends Schoenbrunn its beauty and its character. Royal families during the 18th century were an industry in and of themselves, and there is no more telling example than the palaces they inhabited, each larger and more fabulously decorated than the next. During Maria-Theresa's reign and just beyond the Austrian empire arguably reached the heights of its influence, both upon the politics and the art of Europe. Schoenbrunn is the monument to their ascendancy.
The complex is close to the centre city and is easy to reach via underground or even walking. Regarding tickets, there are numerous options that combine various elements of the site. A relatively all-inclusive ticket costs 13 euro for students.
|Ian Cade (England):|
A dwindling budget and long summer queues meant I didn’t get to go inside, which I was a little disappointed by at the time. However the outside was impressive anyway, and at the start of summer the flowers were in bloom and the fountains all cascading. This made for a really rewarding walk around the grounds. I really enjoyed the ramble up-to, and view from the Colonnade, as it enabled me to see the lay out of the grounds and provided a nice view over Vienna. This site is worth the short trip out from central Vienna, even if you don’t want to pay to see the interior.
i visited this palace 3 time in different season it's a very beautiful palace and has a lot of rooms in different style from very plain to very rich decorate that call rococo style I think the best thing of this palace is the wooden masaic floor that i never seen like this before even in Versaille. the colour of palace is yellow this made the palace itself look bright and mystery in the winter, the garden is nice but versailles is better but the view from the hill behind the palace garden is magnificent you can see the palace and the whole city of vienna
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