Tour to Austria

Vienna, Linz, Salzburg, Melk and Göttweig

10th to 17th September 2009
Wednesday 16th September - Schonbrunn Palace and Chapel / Stadtpark

The day started with the tour of Schonbrunn Palace which was the former Imperial residence. It is one of the most important cultural monuments in the country. Since the 1960s it has been one of the major tourist attractions in Vienna. The palace and gardens illustrate the tastes, interests and aspirations of successive Habsburg monarchs. The tour started with the visit of the state chambers. Michael, the guide, explained well the previous use of each room and asked the choir to perform a cappella in the Banquet Hall. He gave them also the permission to have a choir photo in this hall. Photography is strictly prohibited in this palace. After the so-much interesting tour, the group visited the back gardens on a carriage drawn by two horses. They passed by the zoo, palm houses, roman ruins, near the Gloriette and other major attractions around the enormous gardens. At 12.30pm, the choir participated in the Project issued by the Marketing Tourisms Synergie of Vienna – ‘Voices of the World'. The choir performed a cappella pieces by Elgar, Sullivan and Camilleri. Philip Attard performed also ‘ Snowball on the rocks' (Harvey) on the saxophone. Tourists gathered to listen to the choir and had words of praise for the Gozitan Choir. After the concert, Claudia Werba from the Marketing Group presented a certificate of participation to Stefan Attard. She gave also a badge and a cd by Hayden in occasion on his death anniversary to each member. This was unexpected and truly appreciated by the whole group. At 1pm, the group met Michi Muller who is responsible of the Schlosskapelle (the Schonbrunn Chapel) where restricted admittance is allowed annually. The choir sang various sacred pieces mainly by Portelli and Arcadelt. At around 2pm, the group reached Stadtpark and enjoyed its unique ambience adorned by the beauty of nature featured in the lake with swans and in the beauty of flowers and plants. On visiting Stadtpark, it is a must to have a photo with the golden statue of Strauss, internationally known for the waltzes mostly listed to in New Year. After visiting these two prominent sites, the group had free time for shopping or else of some rest. Some took the opportunity to visit the Musikverein or better the Music Hall where the famous New Year concert takes place annually. In the evening the group joined once more for the last dinner together. They went to the Rauthaus where various food stalls offer traditional or else foreign cuisines. The majority of the group enjoyed a Wienerwurst or Viennese sausage. The last walking tour took them from the Rauthaus to the Hofburg quarter with a stop at Café Mozart near the Albertina for the last Viennese cup of coffee.

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