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Sweet, classic, and artsy: this is Vienna... And visitors can take a piece of it back home. From Mozart Balls to Conchita-memorabilia, we’ve compiled an (almost) kitsch-free souvenir shopping list – all made in Austria. Kangaroos included.
As the Viennese grudgingly admit, Austria’s most famous candy comes from Salzburg. However, you can still buy them at every supermarket in Vienna (even though they’re slightly different than the originals sold in Salzburg) and they make an excellent present for your friends at home who want to get a taste of the chocolate that commemorates the famous composer.
Now this is the sweetest deal you’ll take home from Vienna. Proudly displaying Saint Stephens on the package, the hazelnut goodness on the inside might just be the best wafer on the planet. It’s hard to tell why they are so darn good but considering their century-long success and exports to countless other countries, Mannerschnitten are always a safe bet.
Vienna’s iconic dessert has unfortunately become a tourist must-have and in many cases tends to be dry and is nothing special compared to all the other excellent cakes out there. That being said, there are some special ones which can be purchased in top pastry shops, unequalled and to die for. At the Sacher Hotel it’s sold in fancy wooden box and sealed for freshness, which ensures safe transport to surprise your family at home. You can shop for it at the airport as well.
Conchita Wurst’s victory at the Song Contest in 2015 flooded the city with a wave of LGBT sympathy. The movement culminated in a redesign of some of the city’s traffic lights, which now display red and green same-sex couples. And the design didn’t stop there; they have been printed on T-shirts, coffee mugs and towels. They are great souvenirs of the city that exemplifies tolerance and love for LGBT rights.
Apparently being confused with Australia is a thing that happens to Austria on the worldwide scale. While this has never been an issue of any relevance domestically, it still makes a good t-shirt (which no Austrian would actually be caught dead wearing). If you appreciate the wordplay or just like kangaroos and/or Austria, you’ll find them at souvenir shops all over town.
The year of Modernism is 2018 and it’s a chance to see the mark left all over the city by Klimt, one of Vienna’s most famous modernist painters. If you are a millionaire you can even try your luck in purchasing one of his original works of art. For everyone else, replicas can be found in most souvenir shops and aren’t limited to frame-worthy prints.
You guessed it: the inventor of the snow globe was Austrian. Today, snow globes are a popular souvenir all over the planet. However, once you’ve seen the real Vienna snow globes that have been made here since 1900 by a family-run business, you won’t go back to the cheaply made imitations.
The good thing about gin is that even if it falls out of trendiness, the hype for this boozy evergreen will definitely come back in a few years. Only recently, a Viennese distillery attempted to compete with big international brands and has thrown a local version of the juniper berry liquor into the mix. It’s been greeted with great enthusiasm by locals and visitors alike.
The nightmare of every Austrian kid’s birthday celebration is dinner being served on his grandmother’s expensive Augarten china. Breaking one of these treasures would set the pocket money counter back to zero for a long time. Augarten Porcelain is a precious thing to come by, and they produce some of the finest dinner sets out there which will definitely class up your next dinner party (just keep a steady hand!). Want to buy just a tea cup? You can go straight to Café Am Hof and have a gourmet coffee while pondering your purchases.
Austria’s contribution to the toy market, Matador, has produced well-crafted wooden bibelots for children for 115 years. The material used in the production process is hard wood from domestic forests and the toys are designed to encourage a child’s creativity. A beautiful souvenir for everyone with munchkins eagerly awaiting a present back home.