The City Escape – Vol. 2
Living in a city like Vienna is my personal dream. I love everything a city has to offer on a daily basis. I love the convenience of having everything in close proximity. I love the restaurants and delivery options. I love the hustle and bustle on the street when I step outside our apartment. However, on the weekends Mike and I like to escape the city every once in a while. Especially during Summer.
Austria is such a beautiful country, that during the warmer months of the year, we usually don’t fly far away on vacation but make use of what our surroundings have to offer. The wine regions, the beautiful Wachau (known for it’s apricots during Summer) and the endless country roads are usually our destinations of choice. And that is how we ended up at the stunning Grafenegg, situated between Vienna and the Wachau valley. Grafenegg has risen to be a festival venue of international renown within just a few years , impressing people from all over the world season by season with its unique atmosphere. In the middle of the enchanting castle park stands the impressive Wolkenturm (translates to Pillar of Clouds) open-air arena, rated one of the best outdoor stages in the world for its acoustics.
When I first heard about Grafenegg and saw pictures, I felt like I had discovered a modern-day fairytale. The historic castle is met by the impressive modern design of the Wolkenturm concert arena. Sound meets Scenery. You can have a picnic in the castle’s 32 hectare park prepared by the famous chef Toni Mörwald or dine at his “Schlosstaverne” before the concert. When you wander the grounds, it feels like you have entered a different time and it is hard to believe that this place is only a 50-minute drive away from Vienna.
Our perfect afternoon at Grafenegg? We left Vienna around 2:30 and took a longer, scenic route to Grafenegg in order to explore the regions around it a bit. Located at the intersection of Wachau, Kamptal and Wagram, the area has so much to offer.
When we arrived at Grafenegg around 4pm, it instantly felt like we walked right into a fairy tale. After exploring the grounds a bit, we headed to the beautiful castle park and picked a spot on a quiet meadow with view of the castle for our picnic before the concert.
During Summer, the concerts are always held at the impressive Wolkenturm, the outdoor-venue. However, thanks to the auditorium on site, there is always a bad weather back-up plan. We got lucky with sunshine and were able to enjoy the St. Petersburg Philharmonic under the open sky on the first weekend of the Grafenegg Festival, which celebrates it’s 11th season this year. It doesn’t get much more beautiful than that on a warm Summer Sunday evening…
*in friendly collaboration with Grafenegg