I was especially keen to spend Easter in Vienna. Just prior to the Easter weekend, we had been in Hungary and briefly in Slovakia, where Easter didn’t seem particularly “Eastery”- type countries. So we then hot-footed it from Budapest to Bratislava for lunch, followed by another long drive to just over the border of Austria, near Vienna. Nat and Ben were in tow, going via an alternate and longer route.
We intended to wild camp on the outskirts of Vienna, as it is easier to do so outside of a city. We drove through a thunderstorm to get to our spot; which was still unknown. Off the freeway, we headed straight towards the mountains, getting stuck in one way streets in the pouring rain. The worst thing about being a passenger is having to get out and direct in the rain! But by this stage I was feeling bad about making everybody drive for so long to satisfy my desire for an Austrian Easter.
Eventually we entered a very authentic little village called Siegenfeld, further south from Baden and Vienna. We were fairly desperate at this stage to find somewhere to stay, so Dave ended up sending me into a Gasthof to ask very politely in German whether they would mind us camping overnight in their carpark. Their carpark was at the end of a dead-end street with fields of tall, bright yellow rapeseed. The chef of the Gasthof said that it would be OK, as long as for only one night. So we camped up, put dinner on and settled in for the night with Nat and Ben. A great spot in the end (phew)!
Next morning we awoke to Easter Sunday and the Osterhase had been. We had an Easter egg hunt through the long, wet grass of our “campsite”. Abbie ended up collecting 2 slugs on her hunt along with dozens of eggs.
After bacon and egg butties for breakfast, we caught the bus and the U-bahn into Stephans-Platz, which was extremely easy from where we parked our vans. We arrived to an amazing atmosphere from the word go , alive with people, exquisite monuments and buildings, cafes, restaurants, shops and CHOCOLATE! And after all of that rain, the weather was perfect.
We walked for quite a way, past trotting horses and carts though to the other side of the large gardens to 2 bustling Easter Markets each with different food, drink, handicrafts and egg decoration stalls. In amongst all of the kerfuffle of the markets, we somehow bumped into one of the former teachers from Sydney Distance Education Primary School, who happens to be very good friends with Abbie’s teacher, Amanda Evans. Now, what are the chances of that?
After much walking and eating, it was time to rest our weary legs for a soothing ale in the midst of the markets.
Drinks during the day are never a good idea when you have plans for more walking and exploration, so after a coffee to wake us up, we headed back to our vans for a delicious spag bol, made by Nat and of course more Easter eggs! A delightful way to end a week on the road with our new and dear buddies. And so glad to have spent Easter Sunday in beautiful Vienna. ( I had to pinch myself several times.)