Willkommen to Austria. In German the country is called Österreich (pronouced “oo-stir-eye-ck”)
This is the Austrian flag
In the 1700’s and 1800’s, Austria was one of the most powerful countries in Europe called the Hapsburg ( or Austro- Hungarian) Empire.
The north of the country is flat and farmers grow crops. The Danube river flows through this part.
We enjoyed cycling along the river
Lots of tour boats sail up and down the river showing the people the beautiful scenery and lovely towns.
The south of Austria is mountainous. The mountain range is called the Alps. In the summer the mountains are a popular place for people to walk up.
The mountains also have lots of cows on. The farmers put cowbells on the cows so they can hear where the cows are. It would not be easy to spot a cow on a mountain but you can hear it very easily. Sometimes, yodelling can be heard. See if you can find out about yodelling.
In the winter, the Alps get a lot of snow. Then the hills are used for skiing and snowboarding.
Austrian sportswomen and men are very good at skiing and win lots of international competitions.
What clothes would we need to pack if we were going skiing?
The mountains are also used in lots of films. The most famous is ‘the sound of music’. Have you seen this film? We havn’t, but will watch it when we get back to England.
Austria has sometimes been called “the land of music.”
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756–91), lived in Salzburg, and is one of the world’s greatest composers.
Learn about Mozart’s famous theme and variations on Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star. twinkle twinkle game
Another Austrian Composer Franz Joseph Haydn is known as the father of the symphony. A symphony is a piece of music written for an orchestra to play. Here is a website that shows the instruments that make up an orchestra. orchestra for kids
Do you play any instruments? What instruments are in your classroom?
Johann Strauss the Younger is known as the Waltz King because of the many waltzes he wrote. We love watching ‘strictly come dancing’ and seeing the contestants dance the waltz.
Visit the Waltz History page to hear the famous Strauss waltz, “The Blue Danube,” and other Strauss music. waltz page
The Danube is the river we have been cycling along. Sometimes the river banks are built up to stop the river flooding the land. Sometimes the river is surrounded by huge rocky mountains covered by trees. The river does look very blue and magical. Can you listen to Strauss’s Blue Danube?
The Danube took us to the capital city called Vienna (Wien in German).
We saw lots of amazing buildings but our favourite was the huge park called the Prater. This was given to the public by Emperor Joseph II in 1766 to be used for people to enjoy. Coffee shops and cafe’s were built along with a huge ferris wheel! The ferris wheel is still there and is made out of iron with lots of nuts and bolts. It had to be rebuilt after the war.
The Prater has grown to be a huge funfair, with lots of different rides. Can you design your own funfair. What would you put in it?
This was the fairground ride we went on…
Well it’s time for us to go…just like our Austrian friends…
Lots of roars,
Dino and Lion