Home > Cities traveled > Day 126: Big and crowded, yet surprisingly quiet

Day 126: Big and crowded, yet surprisingly quiet

August 18th, 2011

The thing that strikes me the most about Vienna’s inner city is the quiet that fills the streets and courtyards. The city is alive with people, tourists and non-tourists alike, cars, and activity, but there is a surprising lack of noise. Missing is the honking of cars, the running of idle engines, the chatter of kids, the laughter or loud talking of drunks, the odd bits of music that may drift out of shops. When the tram stops, I only hear the quiet murmur of people’s conversations. Even the street performers are subdued and the audience reserved.

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When I walk around the streets and go to places like Naschmarkt where there are cafes and shops back-to-back, I still only hear muted conversations and the sound of walking. It’s hard to explain. Maybe the enormity of the buildings and city absorbs all the extra noise.

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Nonetheless, it is beautiful. Vienna has kept a lot of pre-WWII historical architecture, unlike many cities in Germany, so there is a unique blend of styles and cultures between western and eastern European people.

My travel mate for the day was Charly, from Argentina. I couldn’t have asked for a more appropriate person with whom to share my day in Vienna. We were both content getting lost in the city streets and walking and watching.

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  1. jason
    August 19th, 2011 at 12:28 | #1

    I like your comment about the muted marketplace sounds. I’ve always wanted to go to Vienna. Alexis went in high school and said it was beautiful. In my mind, it seems to represent some of the best Europe has to offer.

  2. August 20th, 2011 at 20:27 | #2

    Again — beautiful pictures! Also, I loved the music in the first clip.

    • August 21st, 2011 at 07:06 | #3

      Those performers were picture 7 in the set. I don’t know what that triangular stringed instrument is but is does sound beautiful.

  3. from SD
    August 24th, 2011 at 07:48 | #4

    My images of Vienna are classical music, cafes and Wienerwald (Vienna Woods).
    While enjoying your pictures, I was humming “Serenade” – Schubert.
    My friend has told me how beautiful Vienna is, but she didn’t mentioned that it was such a quiet town.
    Thank you for sharing the pictures of their beautiful historical architecture.

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