Written by sylvia13 on 30 May, 2006
After a long and cold winter, I suddenly started seeing Graz with different eyes, so I went out with my camera and took many pictures of the city in bloom! It was particularly nice in the Stadtpark, so I did not get much further, as…Read More
After a long and cold winter, I suddenly started seeing Graz with different eyes, so I went out with my camera and took many pictures of the city in bloom! It was particularly nice in the Stadtpark, so I did not get much further, as I found many things to photograph right there!
It is a happy place, with children riding their bikes and roller blades, ducks showing off in the park pond, flower shops displaying their colourful wares, or people just enjoying nature while sitting in the many park benches provided.
Written by sylvia13 on 29 May, 2006
The first time I went to Graz was in September 1989, when I was single and on my way from the Dominican Republic in the Caribbean, to Johannesburg, South Africa. After 12 years I was leaving the Dominican to go and meet Gernot, an Austrian…Read More
The first time I went to Graz was in September 1989, when I was single and on my way from the Dominican Republic in the Caribbean, to Johannesburg, South Africa. After 12 years I was leaving the Dominican to go and meet Gernot, an Austrian I got to know when I visited Australia in 1988. The two of us had agreed to meet in Frankfurt, before flying to Austria to meet his family. It was important that I met his mother, as she was organising everything for our wedding in a few months time! Gernot had a 3 month sabbatical leave from his job and he wanted that I come with him to South Africa. In a way, those 3 months we spent there were like our honeymoon, even though the actual wedding was not to come till later!
Gernot had spoken somewhat negatively about the city where he was born, but I found it to be quite charming. We stayed in a small hotel, which was just across from the Stadtpark and we did a lot of walks there. So I not only got to see ducks swimming in the little pond, but also walked to the top of the Schlossberg, where I got a panoramic view of the city and its surroundings.
It was a short stay, but I liked his mother and although we could not communicate in German, we managed with English, bits of Spanish, and French! Soon it was time for us to fly to Johannesburg and after spending 3 wonderful months there, we returned to Graz once again, but this time to get married, as the wedding was scheduled for January 9th! A few members of my family came to Graz for the occasion, my mother from Canada, my sister Susie from Santo Domingo, and my brother Will from New York City. It was the middle of winter then and on my wedding day the thermometer read -9°C! It was very cold that day! My mother and Will were alright, as they were used to cold climates, but Susie was living in the Caribbean, so she was not! We all survived though and my mother even attempted to walk down the Schöckel, even though it was icy!
I was not to return to Austria again until early 1992, when I already had a baby girl and was living in Australia. The 2 months we spent there were quite an experience, especially in winter and with a baby, but we enjoyed it and my daughter even got christened in Baden, which is close to Vienna.
The next time we came to Graz was when my husband decided to return to Austria with the family to settle in 1993, as he got a good job in the same university where he had studied engineering many years before! Our children started going to kindergarten when they were about 3 and soon learned to speak German. The volkschule (grades 1 to 4) followed and 4 years later they started going to the same gymnasium (grades 5 to 12) where my husband had gone to! For the first time in my life I was living somewhere that had four seasons, as the places where I had lived before only had two: summer and winter (Lima, Brisbane, and Santo Domingo). Unlike other places where I had lived before, there were seldom any power failures in Graz and water was plentiful too! Every season also brought along its own fruit and it was quite an experience to be able to buy fresh strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, apples peaches, apricots, and nuts in the market, although one had to go to the supermarket to get fruit like bananas, papayas and pineapples, as they were imported!
We soon learned that in Austria, activities are related to the season and we have enjoyed swimming when it is warm, skiing, tobogganing and skating when cold, although walking can be fun the whole year round! We also soon discovered that they have thermal waters here and that was a completely different experience, with swimming pools inside and out, with both warm and cold water!
Slowly I have learned to make apple strudel and jams with whatever fruit is in season. I can also do some baking at Chrismas time, although I have learned that what in Austria they call "vanilla kipferl" are none other than the Russian (or Mexican) teacakes from my grandmother’s American cookbook!
My mother in law is now gone, but I am sure she would be proud to know that his son Gernot and his family are now living in what used to be her flat, with views of the Schlossberg across the way. That hill allows me follow the seasons by observing the colours of the leaves on the trees. We had a long and cold winter this year and when Spring finally came in April, feeling just like a tourist I went out with the camera and took many pictures of Graz in bloom! Most tourists just visit Vienna and maybe Salzburg or Innsbruck, but they should also pay attention to Graz, as it is the second largest city in Austria and it was also named Cultural City of Europe in the year 2003! There are no high mountains around here perhaps, but there is the Schöckel not far away, where one can go walking, or ride the Hexenexpress, (fast train for children and adults), in summer and, if there is snow, one can even go skiing there in winter! Just a few kilometres from the city there is also the Weinstrasse, or Styrian Toscana, with its outstanding white wines and schilcher. It only takes about 2 hours to get to Italy from Graz and Slovenia is less than an hour away, with Croatia not much further! There are good plane connections between Graz and Frankfurt or Munich and also direct flights to London with Ryanair. When people fly to Slovenia or Croatia, they should also stop in Graz to have a look at the city! And if they are here in summer, then I would recommend they have an ice-cream in the Temmel shop, as they are excellent! There are only Temmel ice-cream shops in Graz and Los Angeles! Talking about the Californian Governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger was born in Thal, which is a village on the outskirts of Graz!
Written by CoBiPe on 25 Jan, 2004
Our first task was to find the perfect wedding venue. We looked at wineries and at different castles in the immediate vicinity of Graz and ended up at Schloss Stainz (Castle Stainz), an incredible castle with breathtaking views about 20 minutes southwest of Graz (check…Read More
Our first task was to find the perfect wedding venue. We looked at wineries and at different castles in the immediate vicinity of Graz and ended up at Schloss Stainz (Castle Stainz), an incredible castle with breathtaking views about 20 minutes southwest of Graz (check out the website; sorry, it’s in German only). Schloss Stainz and the Catholic Chapel were founded between 1229 and 1250.
Since our wedding guests visited from all over the world the second task was to organize a tour of my hometown. Graz is Austria's second largest city with about 240.000 inhabitants. As one of the best-preserved historic cities in Europe, the old town was declared a World Cultural Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1999. Built around a castle hill, the town developed thanks to its active economy and its commitment to the arts, situated as it is on the cultural and commercial hub of southwestern Europe. From the castle hill (Schlossberg), there is a wonderful view over the red tiled roofs of the old city center. The clock tower (Uhrturm) is the symbol of the city.
There are some other unique examples of architecture built over the 850-year history of the city such as the Gothic double spiral staircase (doppelte Wendeltreppe) in the former imperial palace.
The Armory of Styria (Zeughaus) – The necessary storage space for storing and the procurement of weapons was created with the construction of a five-floor building at the Herrengasse in 1642. The arsenal's contents are still stored just as they were during its active period, so your walkup the stairs will give you a real glimpse of history. To my knowledge they store about 30000 pieces of armory to arm an army of 15000 men and horses dating back to the Turkish wars.
Schloss Eggenberg is a magnificent castle from the 17th century situated in the middle of a beautiful park located at the outskirts of the city and it is easy accessible by public transportation (tram 1 or 7).
Written by Sammy Lagios on 26 Oct, 2010
By my first visit at the city of Graz i desparatelly wanted to see and visit everything that wasincluded inthis amazing city of Steirmark Austria. As i got up in the morning and after taking a vey good shower i decided to visit my friends…Read More
By my first visit at the city of Graz i desparatelly wanted to see and visit everything that wasincluded inthis amazing city of Steirmark Austria. As i got up in the morning and after taking a vey good shower i decided to visit my friends there and ask them where there was the best first place to go and they answered me thatthe War Museum was expecting me to visit it. So i decided to get there to see what was included in that famous in all over Austria Museum which i had never visited at all.Having a nice walk up there i reached the place of the museum which it was built at an old building and not regognised from outside but getting allthe infos from my friends it wasn'tdifficult to find itI entered the museum to see what finally was encrypted there and i had no idea about itand surprisingly with the woman guide i took a whole idea about it looking at the outfits of the crusadors, the old made from iron outfits of the Austrian soldiers or the Germans, theItalian outfits for the war and horses with soldiers ready to tell their war stories coming from other centuries mostly from the medieval. As the soldiers were n their horses you could think that they were ready for another and another battle and all of them were concentrated there in order to show their power and readiness to obey the commands of their generals.I admired all the amazing outfits and i was staring at them all this time like listening nto what they had to tell me and after the end of the guidance i came back to reality wanting to visitother places of Graz as well.I thanked a lot politely the woman and i left the war museum in order to get fresh air and tovisit the clock Tower of the city which is always my favorite place to go and have fun and that's excactly i did. By Graz i'll be there very soon to visit you again. Close
Written by Sammy Lagios on 01 Oct, 2010
At the historic city of Graz in Austria too many things can impress any visitor and one of them is the marvelous clock Tower which gives access to anybody to admire all the citybeing spreaded on his feet.Not once or twice but all the times…Read More
At the historic city of Graz in Austria too many things can impress any visitor and one of them is the marvelous clock Tower which gives access to anybody to admire all the citybeing spreaded on his feet.Not once or twice but all the times that i visited this fabulus city - except of the winter whenthe train doesn't get up to the hill i used to get up there to have a drink and to admire the view. I can't desribe my feelings especilly during the spring when everything is blossom in Graz or anything looks differently during that time. Two of my Austrian friends - who knew well the city were laughing looking at me - showingmy admiration and happiness looking at the huge telescope who is established next to thecafe and going on and on there to look the view closely."But it's marvelous, fabulus, and spectacular to look from above all over the city" i used totell them but again laugh. "Why are you laughing at me since you know me that i get excited pretty easily when i look at something so nice. "Because it's not the first time you come to visit Graz and always your reaction is the same all over again. Think about it aren't we right?" "Yah! you're right but let me enjoy and this time too since you know me."Then they stopped laughing at me and i went ahead all the time long drinking my coffee on the one hand and going to look at the telescope on the other."Tommorow we promise we're gonna go to see the Lippizaner dancing horses but we aren't coming here do you want it? Marlene asked me. "Marlene you're the most incredible friend i get here - i said and i kissed her. "For me there's no kiss? Johan asked me. O.K. and for you i answered him and i did it waiting for the promise they gave me.And the promise became true next day. God bless you guys and thanks a lot because you're precious. Close
Written by Sammy Lagios on 29 Sep, 2010
When the Easter stared knocing the door of Cologne another wind started blowing in the crowdy city and the civilians started moving faster and faster getting out of the winter's prison to wellcome the Easter days.This wind transformed the monotonous city into an energetic one…Read More
When the Easter stared knocing the door of Cologne another wind started blowing in the crowdy city and the civilians started moving faster and faster getting out of the winter's prison to wellcome the Easter days.This wind transformed the monotonous city into an energetic one and the Colognians not losing even a minute or a second started laughing and from the vitrines the winter clothes were vanishing day by day. At the super markets huge amount of flowers rushed to ornament them and everythingturned to become different than before because the heavy and sad winter had gone away and gave its place to happier days - days which flowers and painted eggs or anyother product was wrapped in beautiful and teriffic papers were leading all the marketplaces.Of course, i couldn't resist not to get involved with all the other citizens in this greatparty but i also went out leaving a bit my job and having a break to buy some Easterndecorative staff for my appartement. It was great believe me and the temtation even greater to buy more and more but i resited and i didn't follow the mass. One of these days as i went to the open market to buy fresh fruits and flowers i sawa granny sitting in front of her merchant and she was so sweet and sympathetic and iasked her if she wanted to take her a picture or not. Smilling she told me to take as many as i wanted to and i did it. Close
You can't imagine what i love mostly when i visit Austria. It's my secret but i think thatanybody of you get it and this my love for the small chocolates called MOZARTEUM because the name was given to honor him in many other products.These chocolates…Read More
You can't imagine what i love mostly when i visit Austria. It's my secret but i think thatanybody of you get it and this my love for the small chocolates called MOZARTEUM because the name was given to honor him in many other products.These chocolates have really a special taste and they're great if you try them. One of those mornings having taken my breakfast at my hotel i saw on the table many chocolates with the name of the famous genius musisian and not hesitant at all i took3 small pieces. I tasted them and a sweet melody like Mozart's overwhelmed my mouth and gave me other energy. A kind of sweet energy and strentgh. After trying them i got out of the hotel and i went to a store with sweets. A huge amount of MOZARTEUM chocolates started jumping in front of my eyes and i didn;t know which box or big chocolate to choose. There're so many of them and you could lose your mind only by looking at them. But i didn't lose it because i knew what i wanted and i drag a box with small pieces ofthem in order to take them with me and little by little when i had the appetite to trythem. It didn't cost a lot but i was keeping the box tightly not to be taken by anybody.Out on the streets of Graz walking and admiring the buldings sculpted or ornamented by wood or small sculpted stones or others painted like huge paintings. I was looking at them with all my admiration and i sat on a corner away of public eyes opening my treasure box and i ate the first small chocolate. It was really teriffic. It was enough that morning and i brought back to my hotel in order to eat them slowly day by day no exagerations because they harm the health.From then and on when i visit Austria a treasure box with MOZARTEUM chocolates isnot missing from my drawer. Close
Written by Sabine Lagios on 14 Aug, 2010
I visited Austria quite a lot of times but the city which remained in my mind - because i visited it pretty many times is GRAZ. i would say thebest about this city because its traditional and has a lot to shaw to anyone of…Read More
I visited Austria quite a lot of times but the city which remained in my mind - because i visited it pretty many times is GRAZ. i would say thebest about this city because its traditional and has a lot to shaw to anyone of us. Acity with its own ID and one of the pride of the AUSTROHUNGGARIAN EMPIRE. One can visit the war museum with the famous outfits of the soldiers during the MEDIEVAL PERIOD or to visit the famous TOWER CLOCK - taking the smallair train which leads there to admire the view of all over the city and to enjoy his vienoua kaffee. You can also - if you are a gambler - playroulette at the famous CASINO which exists in the city and then tobuy leather jackets, coats, pants or whatever else you desire in cheap prices. If you want to get out at night you are gonna fine great taverns which serve huge plates of sausages or any kind of food you will choose by looking at them through the glasses being ready to be served. Do not forget also - if you get enough money to stay at the ERZERZOG HOTEL which will remid you how great this empire was and you are gonna get all the comforts you are going to demand.HERR ERZERZOG was the builder of the city during the times of the empire and the luxurius hotel took its name. When you are gonna arrive in Wien it is a lot better to get the train to GRAZ in order to admire the marvelous nature of Austria. Graz is found inthe last part of the country in the state of STERIA. Another unforgetable fact foranybody is to visit the school with the DANCING HORSES which saved the city and all over Austria by the American occupation or the English ones - but not from the German. These horses can dance incredibly all the classical tunes they hear in an admirable rythm. Buy guys another story of mine and i get a lot next time. Great trip to Graz. Close
Written by fizzytom on 31 Mar, 2009
This is one of the two lazy ways (OK three if you cn get a ride up in a car) to get to the top of the castle hill in Graz. There has been a funicular here since 1894 although the one I'm writing about…Read More
This is one of the two lazy ways (OK three if you cn get a ride up in a car) to get to the top of the castle hill in Graz. There has been a funicular here since 1894 although the one I'm writing about is much more recent as you can see from the photographs. If the Kriegsteig - the zig-zagging path is too much for you then let the funicular take the strain. It is fun, cheap and gets you there without getting too breathless. My travelling companion loves funiculars and thoroughly approved of this one. It costs less than 2 Euro per person and has the advantage that it can accommodate wheelchair users and pushchairs. If you have a travelcard then use of the funicular is included. if this is the case you need to show the ticket to the guard and he will open the barrier for you, you can't open it without his key. The huge wide windscreedn also means you can get some good shots on the way up. As you climb and climb more of the city starts to come into view. The gradient is 61% and you climb some 427 metres which is not evident as the car effortlessly glides up the hill.The Schlossbergbahn is open daily from October till May between 10.00 a.m and 10.00 p.m.and from June till September from 09.00 a.m until 11.00 p.m. Close