"Let's have coffee." That's what you'll be saying -- that's what everyone's saying -- in Vienna. Despite incursions by foreign imports like Starbucks and Italian-style espresso places, Kaffeehauskultur, or coffee served at traditional Viennese coffee houses with cakes piled high with impossibly thin layers -- that is still the right way to drink a cup of coffee, read the newspaper, meet friends, or fall in love in Vienna.
Vienna's historic centre, once the center of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, is now a UNESCO world heritage site. It features beautiful Baroque castles and 19th-century grand buildings along the Ringstrasse. But Vienna is also a dynamic young city, famous for its electronic music scene with independent labels, cult-status underground record stores, a vibrant Monday through Sunday club scene, and multitudes of street performers.
Starting in November, Vienna's outdoors Christmas market, the Christkindlmarkt, sells any number of charming, handmade gifts: beeswax candles, wooden toys, and glass candles to start. Nibbles served at the market include cream-filled pastries, candied fruit, and roasted chestnuts -- and don't forget to try the spiced Christmas wine!
One of the less well-known quirks of the Viennese personality is their singular fascination with death. Because of this facination, the Zentralfriedhof (Central Cemetery), where there are more graves than living residents in Vienna, has become very popular as a strolling location.