Throughout the ages, Austria has been at the crossroads of civilizations. Located within Central Europe, this mountainous country found within the Alps region is teeming with deep valleys and crystal clear lakes. Quaint mountainous towns dot the verdant hillsides with life moving at a slower pace.
In the low lying plains of the eastern part of the country, cities appeared and cultures began to flourish. Austria was included in empires such as the Roman Empire, however, began to be its own ruling empire with the emergence of the Habsburg Dynasty. Austria tours with Adventures Abroad are sure to include a stop at Hofburg Palace in Vienna, the showpiece of the all-conquering Habsburg dynasty which controlled much of Europe for over 600 years. Despite the ravages of time, its cultural gems endure: monumental edifices line the city centre, world-class museums burst with historical and artistic treasures, and internationally established orchestras perform in lavish concert halls.
During the Middle Ages, the Habsburgs accumulated power as far north as the Netherlands and through marriage as far as west as Spain. Throughout the centuries, the influence from their far reaching kingdom became apparent in the wide variety of architectural styles. From Gothic, Renaissance, baroque, rococo and classical, all are located in the former imperial capital of Vienna.
Around 1900, Vienna was a city of vibrant, stimulating, intellectual life, a dynamic capital of elites that did pioneering work in many fields. Otto Wagner remarked in 1905 that "in spite of unfavourable conditions, Vienna is marching at the head of cultural nations". In a similar vein, international critics noted that Vienna was virtually unsurpassed in the sheer wealth of modern architecture that it had to offer at the time.
In modern times, Austria has been at the centre of conflicts, however, has been able to remain relatively unscathed. Despite being a part of the chain reaction of the breakout of WWI and being unified with Nazi Germany during WWII, the vast majority of historic sites remain unharmed.
Those who join us on Austria tours will find Vienna remains a true cosmopolitan center, where different tribes and nationalities have, for centuries, fused their cultural identities to produce the intriguing Viennese.
Music for centuries has been a dominant force in Austrian culture. Within the guilded concert halls, famed composers from Austria have included Mozart, Strauss, Mahler, Haydn and Schubert. At the age of 21, Ludwig van Beethoven moved to Vienna to be inspired in creating some of the worldâ??s best compositions of music. Our Austria tours allow everyone the opportunity to enjoy their evening at leisure, perhaps to attend one of the many beautiful concert venues, or even take in an opera.
Whether wandering the cobblestone streets within the imperial capital enjoying the architecture and arts scene, or riding the rails to glacial-capped peaks and meadow filled valleys to the alpine regions, Austria is a country not to miss.
Combining some of the greatest cultural history and architecture in the world with spectacular landscapes and sights of natural wonder, Austria lies landlocked in central Europe, snugly nestled between the borders of eight other European nations. Its past is as distinct and fascinating as any country worldwide and nowhere is this better illustrated than through its marvellous architecture and splendid historical monuments.
What sets this country apart, however, is the fact that it is one of the few tour destinations that boasts a wealth of activities regardless of season and that due to the sheer scope and diversity of attractions, even the most discerning of travellers will find something to pique their interest.
Austria deservedly gains recognition as one of the world's top winter sports destinations, with the towering, snow-crowned peaks of the Alps having few equals when it comes to offering the utmost gratification in both vista and activity. Travellers the globe across flock to the pistes, either to partake in some of the innumerable snow-pastimes or simply to enjoy the breathtaking views, but the allure of the country is not limited to the magnificent slopes alone.