by Johana Cernochova, MA student in the Department of International Relations
At the end of September in 2019, I had to pack my luggage and move with dozens of other students from Budapest to Vienna to spend our Winter Term on the new campus in the Favoriten District. I was a bit disappointed that I had to say goodbye to the campus that was located right in the city center of Budapest, next to the Hungarian Parliament, Basilica, and the Danube, and that from now on, I would be studying in the outskirts of Vienna. However, after a while, I realized that even though Favoriten might not be the most beautiful district in Vienna, it certainly belongs among the most special ones. I have since come to appreciate the unique atmosphere of Vienna’s 10th district and I would like to share my favourite spots from Favoriten with you.
Favoriten is Vienna’s most multicultural district and its diversity stretches back long into history. Hundreds of years ago, there were many Czech people, for instance, and nowadays, you can hear all kinds of languages other than German on its streets, mainly Turkish or Serbo-Croatian. The Favoriten District provides you with a great opportunity to make your experience at CEU even more diverse. If you want to learn some Serbo-Croatian phrases, go visit Espresso Reumann, get some not very good beer (sorry, my standards are high, since I come from the Czech Republic) and enjoy the atmosphere of this Balkan bar near Reumannplatz.
If you want to taste some Turkish cuisine, you have lots of options, but try, for example, the salads and desserts at Türkis. You can eat your food on the first floor of the restaurant and watch the bustle on Favoritenstrasse through the window. Just one minute away from Türkis, there is a great market with vegetables and spices where the salesmen loudly shout their offers to attract your attention.
Leibnizgasse, where the market takes place, is the street where you can find another favourite spot of mine – the Leibniz Café. It does not serve very good coffee, but even though the coffee is not very good, nor is it cheap, it is still a very special place. Only one visit was enough for me to gain a really nice memory. It is a café with no guests. When you enter there is no music, nobody chatting, just nobody there, only the owner reading his newspapers so that you are almost afraid to disturb him in his calmness. The whole interior is very retro, but I am sure that the owner did not have to put much effort into creating this retro style. This café just stopped in time. At least, this is my romanticized idea of this peculiar place. I have been there only once, so maybe I am wrong, but you certainly have to visit it to get your own peculiar memory from there.
From Café Leibniz you can continue up the street to visit Eissalon Tichy. This is a place with the best ice cream in the whole Vienna. When the spring comes, do not hesitate to taste the specialty of the salon, its Eismarilenknödles, or just choose from the many flavours of ice cream they have there, grab your cornet, and go to see the beautiful large St. Anton’s church that is just one street above.
And finally, we come closer to the last spot I want to recommend. When you will be packing for your journey to Vienna, do not forget your swimwear, because Favoriten has one of the most beautiful historic swimming pools I have ever seen. It was built in the 1920s and its art deco interior is still very well preserved. You can find Amalienbad just across the square from Eissalon Tichy.
To make the long story short, Favoriten has many things to offer. It is a special district and I am looking forward to exploring it even more during my time at CEU.