Schönbrunn Palace served as the summer residence of Queen Elizabeth. In addition, Schönbrunn attracts visitors with the Glorit Pavilion and the oldest zoo on Earth.
In 1918, a republic was proclaimed on the territory of Austria, and Schönbrunn deservedly became the main attraction of the capital of the new state.
The palace complex is surrounded by a fanciful lattice, monumental obelisks are located on the sides of the gate at the entrance. In the middle between the gate and the palace is a large courtyard of Ehrenhof. Its total area is 24 thousand square meters. Ehrenhof is surrounded by wonderful fountains. If you look to the left, you can see sculptures representing the Danube, Inn and Enns, and to the right are sculptures representing in an allegorical form Galicia and Transylvania.
For the first time, the buildings on this site are mentioned in manuscripts of the 15th century. On the territory of the present palace complex there was an estate called Kattenburg, it was part of the Klosterneuburg monastery.
Kaiser Matthias came here to hunt and, according to legend, during one of the hunting events in 1612, he found the "Beautiful Spring", in honor of which the future palace was named. Water from the spring was supplied to the imperial court for a long time.
Kaiser Ferdinand II and his wife Eleanor Gonzaga were also hunting lovers. They chose this place for their vacation in the countryside. After the death of her crowned husband in 1637, Eleanor began to live in the castle and gave him the name Schönbrunn.
In 1683, the Turks attacked the overgrown palace complex and the only menagerie that appeared. At this time, the Ottoman army carried out a siege of Vienna. The fires that broke out on the palace grounds destroyed most of the estate.
Kaiser Leopold I engaged in the reconstruction of the palace. In 1696, the architect Johan Bernard Fischer von Erlach launched construction work. The design of the Palace of Versailles was taken as the basis. The main works were completed in 1713, but there were still unfinished objects.
Maria Theresa is a symbol of Schönbrunn
In the years when Maria Theresia ruled the country, the palace complex really bloomed. Here court intrigues wandered, gave balls and received ambassadors from other countries of the world. Schönbrunn became the official residence of the rulers of Austria-Hungary. In 1742-1743 The construction of the palace complex continued. The current view of the palace has not changed much since then.
Maria Theresa was a great lover of art and gave the task to build a theater in the northern part of Schönbrunn. Its discovery took place in 1747. In 1752, by order of Kaiser Franz I, a zoo was founded, which today is the oldest on Earth.
Schönbrunn Palace Complex contains 1,441 rooms of various sizes. Of these, 190 are leased to private entities. Tourists can view only 41 rooms.
The park near the palace complex is notable for its special beauty and grace. Its area is 160 hectares, it was founded in 1705-1706. Jean Trea, taking into account the design decisions of the architect Johan Bernard Fischer von Erlach.
The park is designed in such a way that from the side of the palace you can see geometrically verified straight lines. At the intersection of the alleys of the park there are fountains, which end with park pavilions or palace rooms.
Other palace attractions
The pearl of the palace complex can rightfully be called Glorietta, located in the park. It is made in the style of early classics in 1775. The architect von Hohenberg worked on her project. The rotunda was built in honor of the victory of the Austrian Empire and Maria Theresa over Prussia Frederick II. During the Second World War, Glorietta was partially destroyed, but by 1948 it was restored and it regained its former appearance.
We strongly recommend that you pay attention to:
- Neptune Fountain
- artificially created ruins of ancient Rome that embody the destruction of Carthage
- building with a wonderful source
- an obelisk placed on large figures of turtles, on which you can learn about the history of the ancient Habsburg family.