Ride Around the World: 10 things about Austria

This week's "Ride Around the World" Horse was the Haflinger, which originated in Austria. Let's take a quick peek at Austria!

10 things about Austria

1. Republik Österreich

The official name of Austria is Republik Österreich.

Austrian flag

Austrian flag

2. Austrians speak German

Although Croatian, Hungarian, Slovenian, Turkish, and other languages are spoken by the various minority groups, nearly all people in Austria speak German. The dialect of German spoken in Austria, except in the west, is Bavarian, sometimes called Austro-Bavarian. 

3. Austria is known for its contributions to music

Vienna boasts natives such as composers Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Joseph Haydn, Franz Schubert, Anton Bruckner, Gustav Mahler, and Hugo Wolf.

4.  Outdoor winter sports are a favorite pastime

Austria’s situation in the Alps means that outdoor winter sports are a favorite pastime. Known as the birthplace of downhill skiing, the country is littered with ski areas. 

5. Bears, eagles, buzzards - oh my!

Protected animals in Austria include brown bears, eagles, buzzards, falcons, owls, cranes, swans, and storks.

Brown bear

Brown bear

6. The hills are alive with the sound of music

The Sound of Music was based on the real life story of the Von Trapp Family singers of Austria. Portions of the movie were filmed across Austria, including Salzburg.

7. Austria is landlocked between seven countries

Surrounding Austria are Germany, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Italy, and Switzerland. 

8. They use euros

As a member of the European Union, Austria uses the euro as currency. Currently the exchange rate is €1 = $1.18, which means that a gourmet cup of coffee for $5 will cost €4.24 in Austria.

9. Schönbrunn Palace, the summer palace of the Habsburgs, has no less than 1,440 rooms.

The House of Habsburg, also called House of Hapsburg, or House of Austria, was one of the most influential and outstanding royal houses of Europe. The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs between 1438 and 1740.

Schönbrunn Palace

Schönbrunn Palace

10. Home to the Haflinger

Peterbilt is a Haflinger

Peterbilt is a Haflinger

CJ BankheadRidefest, Event