Christmas Day in Vienna - Sachertorte & Schloss Schönbrunn

On Christmas Day, we unwrapped our present to ourselves, an original Sachertorte from Hotel Sacher!
We got our chocolate, apricot sugar fix and then set out to Schloss Schönbrunn, one of the only attractions in Vienna open on Christmas Day.
After arriving at the closest U-Bahn station, we walked down a stark tree-lined path toward the palace.
We soon arrived at the Christmas Market located at the palace.
This market was the poshest we'd seen in Vienna and featured a range of gifts including fine preserves...
...Wiener Schneekugel (snowglobes were invented in Vienna)...
...hand blown glass ornaments...
...and other holiday decorations.
Once again, the palace made for a sophisticated backdrop to the market stalls.


We checked out a vendor selling all manner of alcoholic punches and piping hot baked potatoes.
We soon added another mug to our collection.
Despite the cold, we wandered around to the palace gardens which are free and open to the public.
Thick brush tamed into neat boundaries framed the area.
We took a close look at the dew drops waiting to fall...
...and the moss covered branches.
A variety of classic sculptures lined the property.
We discovered a slushy fountain that a family of ducks was calling home.
Amidst the usual mallards, we spotted a pair of male and female mandarin ducks.  Their plumage is so striking.  I could watch them for hours.
The ice layer was heavy enough to support the ducks and we could see their footprints running every which way.
We finished up our tour of the gardens with a stop at the base of the Gloriette.  We didn't quite have the energy to make the climb, especially given the cold gray weather.
We complete our circuit of the gardens and headed back to the apartment to while away the rest of the holiday.

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Sidewalk Safari: Christmas Day in Vienna - Sachertorte & Schloss Schönbrunn
Christmas Day in Vienna - Sachertorte & Schloss Schönbrunn
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Sidewalk Safari
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