Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Vienna - Wien

Saturday (23.04.) noon we drove to Vienna. A short 70 km ride. First we stopped and Schloss Schönbrunn. Many tourists, but an astonishing palace! Great views from the hill and some superb gardens. The Habsburger had some good taste :)
Then we went through the southern part of the city center, sighting Museums Quarter, Kunsthistorisches Museum, Old and new Hofburg... next we met up with our host from Couchsurfing, Zuli - an outgoing girl from Peru who lives in Vienna since 4 years. We joined a picnic at Kaiserwasser, a lake close to the UN-district, and she introduced us to some of her friends... later we partied at her place - got totally stoned :P Next morning we recovered and after some huge lunch we entered walked through all the city center. The buildings in Vienna are huge, appearing literally pompous, a representation of Habsburger's huge power in former centuries. Anywhere you look there are buildings in pompous Barok or playful Jugendstil. If you enjoy architecture, art or classic music, then Vienna is a must see! I'm pretty impressed :)
At evening we met Mailin, our second host from Couchsurfing. A German girl living in Vienna and somehow feeling harassed by Austrians. But probably difficulties arise as Germans rather see Austria as 17th federal state, while they see us abusing their special rules^^ Oh and "Austria was the first victim of Nazi-regime" - a statement only uneducated might acknowledge :P
Vienna is not really the place to go clubbing as prices are intense. But it is the first place I saw where more guys than girls were attracted to the dance floor^^ After some good sleep we visited Schloss Belvedere and enjoyed a good view over Vienna again as the finish of our trip. The road led us back home, where we arrived close to midnight.
All in all Vienna impressed me, my prejudice about it being a city for old people is washed away :)

Palace Schönbrunn

Church next to Schönbrunn's gardens

Naturhistorisches Museum

Vienna Townhall

National library

Karl's church

Palace Belvedere

Garden of Belvedere

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Devin and Bratislava

Danny, Benni and I started our Easter holidays by driving from Dresden (4 am) to Devin, Slovakia (11 am) on Friday, 22.04. Devin is a village close to Bratislava, housing an old Roman castle at the Donau. We arrived with the greatest spring weather, >20 °C and a blue sky :D The right place to enjoy some history, the flowering nature and lie in the sun between dandelions.
Devin castle

Awesome place to enjoy the weather :D
Next we drove to Bratislava and arrived about 1 pm. It is a quiet and charming city, with a pleasant old town on one side of the Donau and a kinda 21st century part on the other :)
A young city with beautiful girls. Besides some nice sights, the city offers good and cheap beer :D Looking forward to visit Bratislava again^^

View from Bratislava castle

overlooking the "new town"

Bratislava Castle

Church of holy Trinity

Next to Michael Tower

Primate's Palace

Sunset over Bratislava castle and the old town

Monday, 4 April 2011

Bonn - German Society of Cell Biology meeting

On 30.03 we (our workgroup) went to Bonn to visit the German Society of Cell Biology Meeting. After a smooth 5h drive we checked into Mercedes Hotel, very near the Bonn University.
Right at the beginning Bonn surprised me in a very positive way. The University is situated within an old palace with a nice park in front.  The old city center is small, but charming. Especially the churches, above all the Münster Basilica.
After listening some interesting talks at the meeting we enjoyed the city at the evenings.
On Saturday morning we appreciated the spring weather to take a walk along the Rhine-promenade towards the former governments quarter. Walking along a river front with superb weather and spotting some great architecture was quite a good morning and made us fit to carefully listen the last talks before heading home. On the way home we stopped at the home of our boss and met his adorable wife and son, who provided us an overwhelming dinner :D

Bonn University within former palace

discovering the old city centre

enjoying cocktails :D

Münster Basilica

social event at friday evening

Konrad Adenauer @ former government quarter

Rhine promenade