Some projects find you. Like this one – walking the Wien river from its source until where it meets the city. The city of Vienna (=Wien) has its name from the river Wien. It originates in the Wienerwald just outside Vienna and is about 34km long. After watching a documentary about the river, we decided we wanted to go and see one of its sources, the one from which, legend has it, empress Sissi on a hiking tour through the Wienerwald had taken a sip of water and liked the taste so much, she had her coffee brewed with this water every day. Just the kind of wishes you get granted when you’re an empress… The Wien river has many sources, but this is probably the most famous one.
The well has been encased, you can easily find it in the woods and also have a sip of water from it. It is said that drinking this water will bestow you with inner beauty.
Once we had found the source, the idea to follow the river until it meets the city kind of started as a joke, but after all the whole of this river is not really that long and winds through a nice landscape. So for the last three Sundays, this was our “project”.
Almost the whole of the river is heavily regulated right from the start. Before the river enter Vienna, there is a huge flood retention basin to protect the city from the quick rising waters. Most of the time, the river is tiny and does not carry a lot of water, so it’s hard to imagine it can swell within minutes to a dangerous white water river. That’s why the flood retention basin looks so out of proportion with its concrete and steel structures. It’s really fun to explore.
From Hütteldorf towards the city center the river runs next to the underground U4 and is kept in a concrete/stone bed. Just before Schönbrunn it is lead underground, comes up again and runs along the U4, until it disappears underground in the Stadtpark and then finally flows into the Donaukanal near Urania.
Here’s more info about the river: Wienfluss
All images iPhone 6, processed with Vsco.