Graz – Austria
Being a fan of Arnold Schwarzenegger I wanted to go to Graz to check out the area where he grew up, although he actually lived in a small village close by. It was also on the way to Zagreb, so it seemed to make sense.
I had heard that there was an Arnold museum in the city but alas I wasn’t able to find it and anyone I asked just looked at me blankly. In hindsight I should have done my research better, a lesson for the future.
The train journey took a little over 2.5 hours, through some very picturesque countryside and quaint Austrian villages. The hostel was ok but I felt it had a clinical, unfriendly vibe to it, especially when compared to Hütteldorf in Vienna. It was also next to a busy road and even with my earplugs it was difficult to sleep. I was only there for 1 night so it sufficed, just about.
Once I checked in I needed to eat so off I went towards the town centre. I tried a few places before I finally found somewhere that would do a gluten free meal. The barman in this particular place was a celiac so he knew exactly when I could and couldn’t eat.
In the evening I went to find a somewhere to have a drink and ended up in a Mexican bar. I had some kind of cocktail, which went straight to my head. Was really nice though.
A 24 hour tram ticket in Graz set me back 5 Euros which was pretty good and took the pressure off my weary feet!
I didn’t find that there was a huge amount to see in the city, so in the morning I rode the tram into town and walked up castle hill to the clock tower for a delightful view over Graz.
The inhabitants of Graz certainly like their cycling, there were bikes everywhere and proper cycle tracks to cater for them. It was also nice to see just trams in the town centre and no buses clogging up the roads.
The people seemed friendlier in Graz than in Vienna and even though it’s Austria’s 2nd city, it seemed very small. I couldn’t imagine spending longer than a day there.
I’m not really sure what to make of Graz. It’s a stopping point on the way to Zagreb, not too touristy which I suppose is a good thing but there just didn’t seem to be much to see or do other than drinking coffee and relaxing.
Now I’m looking forward to heading south into Croatia and to the capital Zagreb. After than it’s over to the Adriatic coastline.
It’s time to find some sunshine and crystal clear water to swim in. It’s getting late in the season but the water will still be warmer than the UK in the summer!