Lange Nacht der Museen! This past Saturday was Vienna’s annual “Long Night of the Museums,” where over 100 Vienna museums kept their doors open until 1:00 a.m. Sunday morning. A single admission ticket was good for any and all of the museums, as well as regular public transportation and the special “Long Night” bus lines that moved the expected 200,000 people directly between museums. The weather on Saturday could not have been nicer, either, so all 200,000 museum goers were out in force.
Of course we had a plan. I primed the family early in the week to be ready to leave the house in time to buy our tickets, grab street food for dinner, and be waiting at the Vienna Opera House for the tour. No problems accomplishing the first two requests: the city even pulled out its vintage trams (and vintage ticket takers!) to promote the event.
Jack had his fortune told…
From the Albertina pavilion we had a most enchanting view of the Opera House.
See how enchanted the children are?
The one-price-for-all ticket gave us the opportunity visit museums that we might not otherwise. On our way to the Hofburg Palace we passed the Fantasy Art Museum. We thought it meant Lord of the Rings kind of fantasy, but with few exceptions the art really seemed more like soft core porn.
We thought the evening lights at the Hofburg lent a far more fantastical air than the museum.
Feeling a little bummed, we walked by Demel in the hopes that we could tour the Imperial Bakery. Demel had E-ticket-ride-at-Disney style lines, so we regrouped over coffee and a WeinerWurfel at the Meinl am Graben.
Arms and Armor received the most votes for the next museum to see, inside the gorgeously lit NeueBurg Palace (National Library)
Our curiosity was piqued by the Museum of Chimney Sweepers and its exhibition on the American Indian. Housed in the 4th District Museum, this exhibit turned out to be one of the more interesting of the evening.
Believe it or not, this was a rare moment when the museum was empty! Half of the museum is devoted to the history of chimney sweeping in Vienna, while the other half is devoted to the cult fanclub of a series of “Westerns” filmed in Austria in the 1960s that were (or still are?) hugely popular. Who knew?
And more! The 4th district is home to the Naschmarkt, the city’s oldest market, and the museum had a well done historical perspective on the market. Note this 1912 photo of the dog (with its muzzle!) walking through the market. How progressive.