Wien, Wien, nur du allein… goes the refrain from a nostalgic old waltz-like tune, long a favorite of the Viennese. It means “Vienna, Vienna, just you alone,” but “alone” encompasses more than just the city — its heart lies also in the villages of the Wienerwald, the mountains, the lakes, the Blue Danube itself. It would be a shame to visit the metropolis and not enjoy these as well. Come along and discover all that the capital and its surroundings have to offer in the pages of this digital guide.
Vienna & Beyond: A Travel Guide can be used in two different ways, both as structured self-guided tours and as individual attractions from drop-down lists.
The guide is divided into twelve do-it-yourself tours of discovery, each of which can comfortably be completed in a few hours — or perhaps a little bit longer. The tour descriptions guide you step-by-step along carefully plotted routes, which you can follow on the maps provided. As you come to each attraction, be it an historic site or a welcome café, you need only touch its name on the screen and a full description opens up, complete with links to its website, opening hours, prices, and much, much more.
The attractions cover a wide variety of interests, from the imperial splendor of bygone days to the cutting edges of today’s creativity; from mountain hikes to river cruises; from renowned temples of gastronomy to quaint wine taverns; and from grand opera to places of quiet contemplation.
Many of the sites covered have yet to be discovered by mass tourism, yet are not difficult to reach. These include such treats as the house in which Beethoven wrote his profound Testament, one of the world’s great “junk” shops where unwanted treasures are unloaded, a small-town museum of Austrian-Jewish heritage, a Benedictine abbey towering high above the Danube, a lake that’s sometimes not there, a cog-wheel steam-train ride up a snow-capped mountain, and a museum devoted solely to clocks. But that’s just the beginning.
All of the tours can be taken by inexpensive public transportation — trains, buses, boats, subways, cable cars, whatever — so a private car is not necessary.
Exploring most of the destinations is made easier by the inclusion of specially-created Diagram Maps, which along with the street maps and photos are always available in full, even without a WiFi or cell connection.
As one recent reviewer put it, "Essentially, it's aiming to be a tour guide, but a tour guide that you can control to an extent. Plus it's pretty darn hard to find a tour guide willing to work for $2.99!" (Jennifer Allen, 148Apps.com, March 18, 2011).
★ About the Author ★
Earl Steinbicker, creator of and principal writer for the Daytrips series of guidebooks since 1983, celebrates his Austrian heritage with this new concept in digital guides for Apple's i-Pad, i-Phone, and i-Pod Touch devices. He believes that travel should be a joy, not an endurance test, and has been refining his carefree style of personal exploration for over 40 years.
★ About Sutro Media ★
This guide is published in partnership with Sutro Media. By enabling local writers to share their expertise on mobile phones, Sutro Media is making it easier and more fun to explore the world!
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