War and Reconstruction: An Introduction to Vienna's History Audio Guide

Trace the city's past, from its royal roots to incorporation into Nazi Germany
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1 at US$20
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Audio Guide Details
1 hour
Product Type
Audio Guide
  • Hofburg Palace
  • St Stephen's Cathedral
  • Ringstrasse
  • Parliament exterior
  • Hofburg exterior
  • State Opera
Preview War and Reconstruction: An Introduction to Vienna's History Audio Guide
Start: Tourist-Info Wien + Monument against War and Fascism
Hapsburg family
Photos & Highlights
Audio Guide Description
Vienna and its architecture still show the scars of Austria's past, from its bombing in WWII to Nazi Germany's annexation of the country. On this audio guide tour with historian and Context Travel expert Stephan Turmalin, you'll learn about some of this long and complex history, including an intriguing chapter about the Habsburgs, Austria's former rulers whose hearts rest in a crypt with 54 urns. You'll also hear about Emperor Joseph II, who closed monasteries, repurposing them for societal benefit, and introduced several other reforms during the Enlightenment era.

Starting in front of Tourist Info Wien, opposite the Monument Against War and Fascism, you'll embark on this exploration of Vienna's rich history. From there, you'll pass by the Albertina Museum, once the Habsburg's home, on your way to Josephsplatz. There, you'll see Augustinerkirche (Augustinian Church) which is where the Habsburg weddings and Napoleon's proxy marriage took place. You'll also dive into Vienna's dark past at Hofburg Palace, where the infamous annexation of Austria to the Third Reich (called Anschluss) was announced in 1938. As you make your way through Volksgarten and the Innere Stadt, you'll learn how, during World War II, locals went from passive citizens to active followers and enforcers of Hitler's Nazi Party. 

Stephan will tell you about Ringstraße, a street with buildings less than 150 years old that replaced the old city wall, and about Vienna’s parliamentary system. On your way to Am Hof and Graben, an important shopping and tourist area in the city center, you'll see landmarks like the Burgtheater playhouse, Bank Austria Kunstforum Wien cultural center, and the Plague Column, erected in 1670 after a devastating epidemic. The audio tour ends in front of the impressive and historical St Stephen's Cathedral which was founded in the mid-1200s.

On this Vienna audio guide tour, you'll

• Learn how Austria became a part of Nazi Germany after the 1938 Vienna bombings by the Allies during WWII 
• Discover the degree to which Austria ceased to exist after its annexation and incorporation into Nazi Germany
• Take in the Hofburg, the second largest government building in the EU and the site where the president of Austria has his office
• Get a grasp on the influence the Hapsburg family left on Vienna and why people say that “the Habsburgs don’t rest in peace, they rest in pieces”
• Visit hidden gems like the 300-year-old National Library of Austria to observe its high ceilings and frescoes
• Hear about Princess Elisabeth and the important role she played in striking an agreement with Hungary in 1867 to create the Austro-Hungarian-Empire
• Stand in Heldenplatz, the square in front of the Hofburg Palace, and hear its dark story

By the end of this hour-long audio tour, you’ll have a deeper understanding of Vienna’s captivating blend of history, culture, and architecture.

Although this audio guide tour includes a few cobblestoned areas around the Monument against War and Facism and Josephsplatz, it is wheelchair accessible and can be experienced by travelers of all capabilities. The total distance of the audio guide tour is 1.62 miles.
Meet Your Expert

Stephan is an expert in the political history of Europe and Austria, having studied contemporary history in Vienna and Israel Studies in Beersheba. Stephan graduated with a thesis about the collection policy of an Austrian public museum in the 20th century, and he has had several research visits to Israel, where he also used to live in the past. He writes his dissertation about cultural and museum policies in Austria during the Nazi-regime and has published scientific articles in the same field. Stephan is a bright, joyful and knowledgeable person, enchanting his guests with his stories about the city of Vienna.

How do I access the audio guide and download it for offline use?
Once you complete your purchase, you will receive a voucher code for your Audio Guide. You must download the Voicemap app and enter the code. 
  1. Install VoiceMap from the Apple App Store or Google Play
  2. Create an account
  3. Select Tour Codes from the menu, then select Enter Codes
  4. Enter your Voucher Code
  5. Select Download Now
Is closed captioning (i.e. subtitles) available?
Yes! All of our audio guides have the option to turn on closed captioning should you have difficulty hearing the expert.

How long does each event last?
Our recorded audio guides typically run for 75 minutes.

How can I share this audio guide with friends or family?
You are welcome to listen together with friends or family, but each person listening to the guide on their own device will need to purchase the audio guide individually.

How long does my access to the audio guide last?
Once you purchase an audio guide, you are welcome to listen to it as many times as you would like. Your access to a purchased audio guide does not expire.

What is your cancellation and refund policy?
Sales for recorded audio guides are final upon purchase. Please contact us at digital@contexttravel.com if you have any questions or concerns about your purchase.

Can I purchase a gift card for a friend who is traveling?
Absolutely! Gift cards can be purchased here. Gift cards are good for 365 days from the date of purchase.

(5.0) 2 Reviews

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Amazing. Loved it
I had done an in-person tour with ContextTravel in Berlin and LOVED it, but didn’t know what to expect from the audio version. I ended up being blown away and recommended the same tour to my friends who were traveling to Vienna the next week. I felt like it was enough information to contextualize the city and buildings but not too much to the point where it felt like I was having a Wikipedia article read to me. I also was worried about the self-guided aspect because I probably have the worst sense of direction of anyone I know, but the visual cues were so helpful that I didn’t need to backtrack at all!