Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Vienna - A Weekend Escape

Stephensplatz - crown jewel of Vienna churches

One of the luxuries of living in Sofia is the proximity to other European countries and cultures.  A $120 Austrian Airlines ticket will transport you from downtown Sofia to one of the most beautiful cities in Western Europe.  Vienna is the perfect place to peruse museums, catch up with the Vienna International Film Festival, enjoy a Mozart and Strauss concert and sip the most delicious coffee ever made ... all on the same block!  The city has condensed an amazing amount of architectural wonders into a compact yet spacious downtown core.  Museums, churches, cafes and cultural festivals are all serviced by an efficient and punctual public transportation system.  Elise and I purchased two four-day public transportation passes that ended up being necessary considering the amount of apple strudel and goulash we consumed ... but it would be completely reasonable to walk this entire city if you were able to show better restraint with the local culinary specialties.  Vienna is a city that shouldn't be missed.

I tried to focus on architectural photography this trip.  The first picture in this post is a composite of 3 long exposures taken inside the Stephensplatz church, located at the heart of the downtown core.  The combination of ambient sunlight filtered through the stain glass window combined with the warm glow of the tungsten lights illuminating the alter created the interesting contrast in color temperature.  The HDR combination of the 3 different exposures gave detail to both the highlights and shadows.  Other pictures below were snapped at different locations around the city.  A Vienna weekend is an excellent excursion for anyone wanting that splash of Western European charm that is missing in their lives.


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