Vienna is the city of the Habsburgs and Freud. It is characterized by undeniable imperial grandeur and impressively stately architecture. By the turn of the nineteenth into the twentieth century, Vienna was arguably Europe's most cosmopolitan city, drawing intellectuals and migrants from all over Central Europe.
Vienna City Guide Introduction
Coffee may not have been invented in Vienna, but café culture was certainly perfected here, and numerous coffeehouses carry on the low-key, enjoyable tradition of a long morning or afternoon spent over the newspaper and a melange (a distinctive Viennese coffee drink, served with a small glass of water.)
Vienna's glorious past can also be witnessed in the city's tradition of opera and other performing arts. Just when you've convinced yourself that Vienna is merely a city of the past, you discover a modern Vienna, epitomized by the playful art and architecture of Friedrich Hundertwasser and the vibrant internationalism spilling over from the city's UN community.