Friday, August 23, 2013

Exploring the Second City of Austria: Graz


Graz




Although Graz is Austria’s second largest city, it is often overlooked by tourists planning to spend their holidays in favour of Vienna, Salzburg or the skiing resorts of the Tirol. This is a great shame, as this historic city, located to the far south-east of the country, has such a lot to offer.  

Take its ‘Old Town’, which is often considered to be one of the best-preserved city centres in Europe and recently designated UNESCO World Heritage status. Here visitors will discover many of its historical landmarks, to include the architecturally impressive Rathaus (Town Hall), the gothic Dom Cathedral and Uhrturm clocktower, the city’s most identifiable landmark, which dominates the city skyline, high upon the steep Schlosberg hill.

Graz was proudly named the European Capital of Culture in 2003, a fact which is reflected in its wonderfully diverse collection of museums and galleries. If you only have the time to visit just a handful, I would highly recommend the Schloss Eggenberg Art Gallery, the city’s Natural History Museum and the Kunsthaus: a visually stunning modern building which houses an impressive exhibition of contemporary art. 

It may come as surprise to many visitors to discover that due to the city’s unique geographical location, it enjoys Austria’s mildest and driest climate. The city also boasts more sunshine hours than both Vienna and Salzburg. This means that the plant life to be found in the city’s numerous parks and open spaces are uniquely more akin to that of the Mediterranean, rather than that of the rest of Austria.

So, if you fancy discovering all that Graz has to offer, why not check-out the following official website address: http://www.graz.at/EN