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The Hofburg

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For than 600 years the Hofburg was the residence of the Habsburgs in Vienna. Since 1945 it is the official residence of the Austrian President. The Hofburg is a building complex that grew over the centuries and stretches from the Heldentor to the Albertina. Many important sights can be found in the Hofburg, like the Emperor apartments and the Sisi apartments, the Austrian National Library, the Treasure Chamber and the art museum Albertina.

Many architectural styles can be found in the Hofburg – the Middle Ages, Renaissance, the Baroque up to the 19th century. The oldest part of the Hofburg is the so-called Schweizertrakt. Here visitors can find the clerical and the secular treasure chamber, that show numerous treasures like the largest emerald in the world or the Imperial Regalia of the Holy Roman Empire including the Imperial Crown from the 10th century and the Holy Lance that after the legends, was used to test whether Jesus had died on the cross.

Next to the so-called Schweizerhof with the Schweizertrakt is the Inner Castle Square. This includes the Imperial Chancellory Wing, the Leopoldine Wing (seat of the Austrian President) and the Amalienburg. To both sides of the nner Castle Square are to one side the Heldenplatz with the Neue Burg Wing and to the other side the St. Michael’s Wing. From the Michealerplatz the Emperor’s and the Sisi apartments as well as the Imperial Riding School can be reached. A well renowned congress center is located at the Festival Hall Wing).

You can take pretty much an entire day to visit the many sights within the Hofburg building complex.

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