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Facts about Austria

Austria (Osterreich) is a country noted for its culture and beautiful scenery. It is a highly developed country attracting over 20 million tourists annually and ranked 12th in the world for tourist numbers.

LOCATION: This landlocked country is in the south of Europe.

BORDERED BY: Italy, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Germany, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, and Slovenia.

CAPITAL and LARGEST CITY: Vienna (pop. 2.4 million)

POPULATION of COUNTRY: 8.4 million (92nd in the world)

AREA: 83,855 square kilometres (115th largest country - about the size of the United Arab Emirates)

POPULATION DENSITY: 99 per square kilometre (99th in the world)

INDEPENDENCE: 27th July 1955. INDEPENDENCE DAY: October 26th.

CURRENCY: Euro. Currently about 1.35 euros to the Australian dollar.

CLIMATE: Cool temperate on lowlands, much colder in the Alps.

OFFICIAL LANGUAGE: German. English is spoken by 58 percent.

RELIGION: Christian, 73 percent Roman Catholic. DRIVES ON: right-hand side.

TIME ZONE: Central European Time (GMT + 1 ) PHONE PREFIX: 43

FLAG: Wide horizontal stripes - red, white, red

CUISINE: Austrian cuisine is noted for its fine baked goods and desserts as well as hearty dishes of meat and vegetables.


MUSIC: Most famous Austrian composers are Mozart, Haydn, Strauss and Schubert.




NOTABLE RESTAURANTS: Coffee shops originated in Vienna. They serve coffees, cakes and light meals.

  • The oldest coffee shop still in use, established in 1824, is Café Frauenhuber where Mozart is said to have performed.
  • At Cafe Demel you may view the kitchen through a glass window and see strudel and other delicacies being made.
  • Best schnitzels are said to come from Figlmuller.
  • Great experience: Sacher Rote Bar overlooking the Vienna State Opera in the square outside.

BREAKFAST: (Fréhstéck) rolls, coffee, sausage, even goulash.

SNACKS: Open sandwiches (belegte Brote), wurstsemmel, a roll filled with a sausage, cheese and pickle, available from butchers or delicatessens. Bosna (or Bosner) are available at sausage stands (wérstelstands)

BREAD: Bread shops sell excellent seeded wholemeal bread and rolls

CHEESE: Liptauer

POPULAR DISHES: goulash, wiener schnitzel, strudel, sachertorte, linzertorte

OTHER DISHES: noodles, broiled beef (tafelspitz), dumplings (schéberln), fruit dumplings (zwetchgenknédeln)

PRODUCE: freshwater fish, beef, apples, cabbage, game

NEED TO KNOW: The main meal is usually at lunchtime. more about the food



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