Vienna, Austria’s capital. It is the city of culture and the city of empire. An overwhelming sense of centuries-old grandeur, royalty and baroque decadence still clings to this city, while the strong presence of Gustav Klimt and his Secessionist and Art Nouveau colleagues reminds us that this was the center of a certain universe of great thinkers, writers, artists and musicians until well into the 20th Century. Imposing and opulent Hapsburg palaces and their vast gardens which were once home to Empress Maria Theresa and the child Marie Antoinette. The ornate interiors of dark coffee houses where even today everybody is well dressed and conversation competes with classical music, unchanged since the days they were filled with the likes of Freud and Trotsky. Today, as you walk around the bustling city in the brisk autumn air and watch the locals waft through their streets in the tailored coats and perfectly draped scarves, pausing here for a coffee and there for a slice of cake, it’s hard to see how this would ever change.
An ornate building corner with a statue of a women in the World Heritage listed Vienna city center; Local businessmen in suits walk down the narrow streets surrounding Stephansplatz at the end of the day.
The busy, crowded shopping street of Graben, with its ornate buildings and baroque Pestsäule, a plague memorial column.
Old multi-storey pale stone buildings in the streets of Vienna.
To keep them warm in the chill autumn air a man puts blankets on some of the horses waiting to give carriage rides outside Stephansdom; The Austrian and Viennese seals on the famous colourfully tiled roof of Stephansdom.
A group take a photo on the pond steps outside Karlskirche, or St Charles’s Church, with its dome and bas relief columns; Two motorbikes with Vienna numberplates parked in the street, in front of an ornate fountain.
Three young men have breakfast inside the ornate and opulent Cafe Central coffeehouse, which in the 19th and early 20th Centuries was patroned by the likes of Sigmund Freud and Leon Trotsky; Two hot mugs of glühwein waiting to be drunk at a standing-only cafe stall in the streets, to warm against the crisp autumn air.
A relief sculpture on the outside of Stephansdom, centuries of soot and air pollution turns the pale limestone exterior of the Cathedral black; A woman poses for a tourist photo in Stephansplatz.
A man strides across leafy Karlsplatz in front of Karlskirche.
A flower shop in Stephansplatz, in the shade of Stephansdom; Crowds of people walk through the autumn streets of Vienna, with the ornate Hofburg Palace looming large.
The hands of a man scooping roasted chestnuts into a paper cone at a street stall which also sells rough cut hot potatoes, perfect for an autumn afternoon.
A young crowd of tourists circle around a guide outside Stephansdom and listen in the pale light of an autumn afternoon; Two women but rough cut hot potatoes in a paper cone from a street stall.
A man reads a book sitting in his carriage amongst the horses and carriages waiting for passengers outside the Hofburg Palace and the Spanish Riding School.
A sculpture of St Joseph on the Josefsbrunnen fountain on Graben, a pigeon sitting on the mans head and in the boys arms; An old man and a young woman sit on a bench seat and look at a map outside the massive white buildings that is the Hofburg Palace.
The hand and arm of a muscular marble fountain sculpture on the wall of the Hofburg Palace reaches out towards a Smart Car parked on the street.
A classical sculpture fountain in Maria-Theresien_Platz with a man reading outside the Kunsthistorisches Museum; Bicycles parked inside the ornate domed entrance to the Hofburg Palace.
A bronze horseman on a large statue honouring Empress Maria Theresa with the ornate domed 19th Century Kunsthistorisches Museum behind.
Two young women stroll in the gardens of the Belvedere Palace with it’s sculpted hedge trees and lawns, the 18th Century building houses a large and impressive collection of Austrian paintings including the largest collection of Gustav Klimt’s work.
A bench seat and hedge with the beginnings of fallen autumn leaves in the gardens of Belvedere Palace, a couple walking in the background.
From the hill top within the grounds of Schönbrunn Palace people look out over a view of Vienna.
Looking through flowers planted in the red and white stripes of the Austrian flag up the hill towards the Schönbrunn Gloriette, a grand and ornate pavilion within the Palace gardens which now houses a cafe.
In front of the large yellow and cream World Heritage listed Schönbrunn Palace a family of three look at a map of the gardens.
The ornate architecture of Viennese apartment buildings, including the ceramic tiled Majolikhaus building designed by Otto Wagner, a member of the Secession; Looking past a pond, sculpture and immaculately straight hedge trees towards Schönbrunn Palace, the 17th Century Baroque imperial summer palace.
Couples walk among the tree avenues within the gardens of Schönbrunn Palace, it’s early autumn and the air is crisp, the sun warm and a few yellowed leaves are beginning to fall.An old Strassenbahn tram turns a corner outside the Austrian Parliament Building with the long shadows of autumn afternoon light.
Two horses with blankets to keep them warm wait to give carriage rides on the cobblestones outside the Hofburg Palace; The setting sun reflects golden on wall and lamps of a very old narrow street.
In Austria, even in the capital of Vienna, it only takes a short drive to be out in the green countryside, here we look through the trees on a mountain top down onto a small village nestled in the rolling hills.
Two men walk along a dirt road in the mountainous woods near Grünbach Am Schneeberg in the golden light at the end of the day.
Up in the hills, signs on a tree trunk point to hiking trails and huts; An orange sunset over the hilltops.
To see more photos of the world’s great cities go to New York NY , Chicago IL or San Francisco CA. Or to see more photos from Austria go to Salzburg AUSTRIA, Innsbruck AUSTRIA, Hallstatt AUSTRIA or Alps AUSTRIA.