Klagenfurt & Minimundus
It was probably the hottest day of the year. 29°C on a sunny day in May. Who would have known that it could get so hot in the spring in Austria?
My mum and I took a day trip to Klagenfurt to take a break from my wedding preparations (three years ago). On the way to Klagenfurt we admired the view of the mountains and the green lush scenery. But then we reached the Karawanks Tunnel at the Austrian-Slovenian border and lost a lot of our precious time because of the road works. When we finally reached Klagenfurt I already felt exhausted but my spirits lifted when we started to walk around this pretty little town. Actually Klagenfurt is the sixth biggest town in Austria with the population of around 99 000 people and it’s the capital of the Austrian federal state of Carinthia. It’s on the lake Wörthersee and on the Glan river. According to a legend the city was founded after a couple of brave men slained the dragon like creature Lindwurm who fed on virgins. Today you can see the giant Lindwurm fountain at one of the city’s beautiful squares.
So what did we do in Klagenfurt? My mum and I just walked around and admired its many sights. The first thing we came across was the Theater built at the beginning of the 20th century by the famous theater architects Helmer & Fellner. Next to it is the Stadthaus with the flower clock which actually works. How neat! We noticed a lot of hanging flower baskets around the city. Then we saw the parish church and came to the Old Square (Alter Platz) surrounded by the houses from the 16th and 17th century. You can see the Plague Column at the square and the oldest house in Klagenfurt. It dates from 1489 and it’s got a golden goose on its façade above the entrance. Just around the corner is the Landhaus with the Renaissance façade where the Corinthian parliament holds meetings.
It seems that legends and mythical creatures are almost around every corner in Klagenfurt because we soon found the Wörthersee Mandl fountain. It’s a small man with a barrel from the story about the creation of the Wörthersee Lake. Then we reached the New Square ( Neuer Platz) in front of the Town Hall. This is where you can see the dragon like creature of Lindwurm which is the town’s symbol as well as Maria Theresia monument ( the famous Habsburg empress). There were a lot of stalls at the square selling knickknacks at the time of our visit. We continued to walk in the direction of the town market and saw the cathedral too. It was already around 1 pm and the market was more or less closed but we did see another interesting sculpture-according to a legend a fisherman was petrified because he fixed the scale and cheated his customers. Fascinating! You can learn so many stories and legends in Klagenfurt. After our short stop at the town’s market we went back to the Old Square but we also saw something very contemporary. I found out later that I took photos of the Kiki Kogelnik fountain. Who is Kiki Kogelnik? Well, she’s just the most significant Austrian pop artist.
I wish we could have had more time to explore lovely Klagenfurt but it was already time to visit the Minimundus- “The small world on Wörthersee ”. What is Minimundus? It’s a miniature world where you can see 156 models of the most famous/beautiful buildings from around the world. The models are made on the scale of 1:25. So you can see the whole world in under an hour! This is a very popular place for school trips and family outings but it wasn’t crowded at the time of our visit. Yes, it’s not something I’d usually visit but I’ve never done anything like it when I was a kid and I thought that it’d be fun to finally see it. And it was a cool experience 🙂
I decided to follow the path on the map we were given at the entrance. Some models are bigger, some are smaller but they all resemble their original buildings so much. I walked past the Taj Mahal and the Egyptian pyramids, the White House and the Leaning Tower in Pisa, the Tower of London and the Vatican square, the Eiffel tower and the Statue of Liberty, Sydney Opera House and the Angkor Wat temple and many more. There’s even one model from Croatia. And no, it’s not Dubrovnik City Walls or the Zagreb’s cathedral but the Porer lighthouse near Pula. You can actually rent a flat in this 19th century lighthouse and spend your holidays on a tiny island. Of course, the park has all the necessary facilities such as the toilets and cafes and a shop. There are some indoor entertainment features too. We definitely spent a fun afternoon at Minimundus. To find out more about this fun park click here.
What about you? Have you ever visited such a park? Would you like to visit Klagenfurt?