Day 4 : Stephansdom area
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bedankt voor uw bezoek en tot nog eens.
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Seeing the Lipizzaner Stallions at the Spanish Riding School in Vienna. Always something I wanted to do. I felt it was worth it but realise that if you don't pay for a full show, just going in the mornings, is exercise only. Odds are you aren't going to see much spectaular movements in the training. Most is basic dressage to condition and strengthen the horses. However just to see the interior of the Winter Stables is impressive. Nicer than most people's houses. I super enjoyed it but unless you are a horse fan, you will likely be bored. Most people don't last the entire two hours of training time. There are several sets of horses that train for 20-30 minutes each in the arena. After that you can go through the museum which is fun and educational with some great photos, paintings and film at the end.
The Spanish Riding School is located near the Hofburg and is well worth a visit. Unfortunately as we were there in January, there were no performances (they start in March) and so we were in two minds about whether or not we wanted go. And we were quite glad we did!
Even in winter we had to make reservations a day in advance, as the tour spaces was limited. The tour lasted about an hour and a half and during that time we went into the stables and saw the beautiful horses, toured the stable and looked at all sort of interesting stuff (I know absolutely next to nothing about horses and horse-riding, so can't give you full details about what was explained to us!). Finally we went into the theatre where the performances take place... a truly beautiful setting. We could only imagine how wonderful it would be to watch the horses in action.
Although it is not certain, it is thought that the Spanish School was founded in 1572 and that it was learning the "Haute Ecole" of horsemanship. The Habsburgs bred and trained horses from Spain - thus forming the "Spanische Reitschule". The Winter Riding School building was commissioned by Karl VI. It was built between 1729 -1735 designed by Josef Emanuel Fischer von Erlach. It is in this building that the show tales place. The Lippizzaner horses are trained from the age of three years. There is also a Lipizzaner museum across the road from the school.
All my photos are old - I will make more on my next visit.
Seems like we have a knack for being able to get tickets for sites at the last minute. We wanted to see the Lippizaner stallions but didn’t have any tickets. As we approached the site we found people selling standing room tickets and before long we were standing in the Spanische Reitschule.
While tickets for the shows need to be made 6 months in advance if you wish an assigned chair, standing room tickets can be had on the day of the show if you are there early enough.
The school occupies a white, crystal-chandeliered ballroom in an 18th-century building. There you can really appreciate the skill and beauty of these Lippizaner stallions as their trainers put them through their paces in a show that hasn't changed for 4 centuries. These are the world’s most famous, classically styled equine performers. It’s one thing to watch them on TV but to watch the Lipizzaner prance to the music of Johann Strauss or a Chopin polonaise in their home setting is a pleasure you shouldn't miss. What we recognize today as the Spanish Riding School was created at the beginning of the 19th century: the Empire uniforms of the riders: the golden braided bicorne, coffee brown tail coat, yellow toned buckskin trousers and high black polished boots; redgold saddlecloths and the narrow golden.
The Spanish Riding School is the oldest and last Riding School in the world where classic dressage is still practised in its purest form. It was founded in 1572. The Lipizzaner stallion is the oldest classic horse race in Europe. The horses have been bred in Lipizza in Slovenia. Tody, there is a stud in Piber, close to Graz. Young Lipizzaner are born jet-black and only turn white when reaching maturity. They need to undergoe elaborate training before they are able to perform their prancing Renaissance ballet to the sound of classical music. The Riders of the Spanish Riding School train the horses and perform in the Winter Riding School in the Vienna Hofburg (Imperial Palace) in a Baroque hall built by Josef Emanuel Fischer von Erlach between 1729 and 1735. The presentations of classical dressage have been open to the public since 1920.
The shows are often booked for months in advance, but you can also go in and watch them practice for a fraction of the price. In July and August the white horses enjoy their well-deserved summer break.
The lipizzaner horse is one of the symbols synonymous with Vienna and Austria. If you are wandering around the city at the moment you will see some of these horses standing around as a new advertising idea.
The Spanish riding school is the place to see these horses either in their morning rehearsals or during a proper performance. To discover the history of the Riding School and learn some really interesting facts about the horses and their training have a look at their website and click on the links.
The Spanish Riding School, founded in 1572, is the oldest riding school in the world. And it is probably the best known. A visit to the school in the 300-year-old Hofburg imperial palace is one of the highlights of any visit to Vienna. The Lippizaner horses perform feats of equestrian elegance that amaze and delight visitors. And if after the performance you fancy buying a Lippizaner, you'd better have 15000 dollars ready.
The Spanish Riding School occupies a number of buildings on the Michaelerplatz and the Josefsplatz by the Hofburg in central Vienna. Performances of beautiful snow-white Lipizzaner horses dancing take place in the Winter Riding School, shown in the photo above. The riding hall looks like an elegant ballroom--and, in fact, it has hosted royal balls and other fancy-dress events during its nearly 300-year history. You can book tickets online and itýs better to do so in advance, since 1 hour and 20 minutes long shows are sold out weeks before the actual performance.
Spanish Riding School - this is where the famous Lippizaner horses train and perform dressage. The oldest and last Riding School in the world where classic dressage is still practised in its purest form.
This Institute was founded in 1572. Be sure you book well in advance and don't arrive during the summer holidays like we did - the horses were on holiday too.
I know, there are quite a few of them around and they seem to be providing excellent photo opportunities for visitors... I won't take photos of them all but this one with the little girl having a look at the horse (in such nice colours) had to be added to my Vienna collection! If you take a horse picture whilst you are in the city on holiday, let me know!!
The lipizzaner horse is one of the famous symbols of Vienna along with the Riesenrad and Mannerschnitten chocolate wafers. In the summer of 2003 a new initiative of advertising using lipizzaner horses has hit the city centre. Shops buy white horse statues and then decorate them with their logo or a theme with the help of a local artist or in some cases a group of school children. The proceeds go to the Spanish Riding School and brighten up the centre of Vienna at the same time! Have a look around the first district especially the Graben and Karntnerstrasse to find this new breed of lipizzaner. (Please don't climb on them but they are good for photos!)
You've got to get around to the Spanish Riding school in Vienna, it's really great fun! The Spanish Riding School is home to the famous Lipizzaner stallions known worldwide. No matter what kind of showing you get, it'll be nice. I got to see a training session, and it only cost me 2USD to get in, because of a $6 student ID discount! There are normal, complete performances, with music, that cost a ton more money and are very much more upscale. You've got to get reservations before you even go to Europe probably, maybe before getting to Vienna, but be safe anyway. The place to see the shows are in the Stallburg on Sunday mornings and Wednesday evenings.
The Spanish Riding School of Vienna
It is the oldest and last Riding School in the world where classic dressage is still practised in its purest form. This Institute was founded in 1572 and its very name gives away the fact that the horses were of Spanish origin.
If you can't see the actual Lippenzer show at the Spanish Riding School (Weds. and Sun.), buy a combo ticket at the Museum office (across street from Riding School) for the Museum which includes admission to the 10 a.m. practice. Cost of combo-ticket is $140 ATS (approx. US$10).