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Schönbrunn Palace ranks at or close to the top among the landmarks of Vienna. While the palace would certainly be worth seeing just by itself, there is much more to see and do in Schönbrunn. Most people take a walk in the 160 hectare Schönbrunn Park, which besides thousands of beautifully arranged flowers and trees offers many attractions.
Schönbrunn Gardens are probably what attracts the thousands of tourists to Schönbrunn in the first place. Beautiful combinations of flowers, trees, statues, and even Ancient ruins will definitely make your eyes happy. All is being taken care of continuously – it would be hard to find even one little flower growing in other direction than what it’s supposed to.
The giant Neptune fountain is facing the Schönbrunn Palace at the end of the park’s bottom section, halfway to the Gloriette. You can walk all the way around the fountain. Neptune Fountain is the kind of place where you often need to wait a minute before being able to take a picture – it is really very popular with tourists.
Unless you want to take the small Panorama Train, you will need to climb a little in order to get from the Schönbrunn Palace to the Gloriette. It is about 15-20 minutes walk on comfortable paths, though up the hill.
Gloriette is a belvedere. It consists of a central section, formed as a triumphal arch, and two arcaded wings. There are many sculptures and columns – all celebrating the glory of Habsburg emperors.
You can enjoy the spectacular view from the Gloriette’s terrace – you will see the palace, the coloured gardens, and a big part of Vienna in front of you. You can also have a coffee at Café Gloriette.
Schönbrunn Zoo is located inside the Schönbrunn Park just 5 minutes walk to the south-west from the palace. The zoo is not just some little attraction to complement the main landmark. It is in fact quite huge and takes care of many species of animals.
On your way to the Schönbrunn Zoo, you can try to get lost in the maze, which has existed in Schönbrunn since the beginning of 18th century. The new maze was built in 1998 based on the old model. Its total area of 1,715 square metres will surely keep you busy for some time.
The Labyrinth is located just next to the Maze. Regardless of your age, you will find attractions which you’ll like. There are games for children and adults alike in the Labyrinth. You can watch your body from various angles in the big kaleidoscope, try to solve a mathematic riddle, or take on some more physically demanding exercises.
One part of the Labyrinth is the Labyrinthikon, a big playground for young and old made by well-known playground designer Günter Beltzig.
In one of the corners of the Schönbrunn Park (just above the zoo) there is a traditional Tyrol-style wooden house. It operates as a restaurant and serves traditional Austrian dishes. When eating there you get a bit of Alpine feeling without having to leave Vienna. By the way, if you’re not sure if the mountainous Austrian region’s name is Tirol or Tyrol, note that it is Tirol in German and Tyrol in English. See the picture of Schönbrunn Tirol House.
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