travel

[TRAVEL] Salzburg, Austria

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The train ride from Vienna to Salzburg took us around 2 hours and 30 minutes. Our tickets were bought and printed earlier, so we only had to present our copies to the conductor to be ushered into the allocated carriage. We bought all intercity transportation tickets earlier to manage time and expectations. We didn’t want to take the risk of buying on site to avoid unfortunate circumstances ie. sold out tickets, more expensive prices. Better safe than sorry right? You can buy the train tickets from this website.

Because we had a baby with us, we were placed in a special carriage. Which means we didn’t have to fight for seats with others. Plus it was more spacious too. The journey was comfortable as well, and the breathtaking scenery made it more pleasant.

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[TRAVEL] Vienna, Austria

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Vienna was the first stop of our #nzfnzleurope trip. Since Nazeef and I both have not been here, we did a lot of research beforehand to come up with an itinerary. Because we were there only for a day and a half, we wanted to make sure we fully optimize our time in Vienna.

First day in Vienna

We arrived at Flughafen Wien or Vienna International Airport at approximately 11.45AM. After contemplating on the transportation to our apartment, we finally decided on the most hassle-free option which is to take the taxi. It costed us €60, but if you would like to save, there are plenty other options. You can take the bus, or the City Airport Train (CAT) to Wien Westbahnhof (the main train station) which costs €13 per person.

But this also depends on where you are staying, ultimately. We did not stay at the city center, but opted for a place near Wien Westbahnhof because that is where we would need to catch our train to Salzburg.

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We stayed at Alga Apartments am Westbahnhof, which is located literally 7 minutes away from the Wien Westbahnhof Railway Station and  5 minutes away from the Wien Westbahnhof Metro Stop. It’s a lovely apartment – clean, bright and spacious. The owner was also quick to respond to my messages. At first we had a problem with the heater and I quickly dropped the owner a message to inform him. He came by within 10 minutes later and solved the issue. Very prompt.

The street next to the apartment also has tons of halal restaurants (kebab all day errday), so it was easy for us to eat! The only thing that was tricky about the apartment was getting into it… There were so many keys for us to operate with and I think it took us almost 10 minutes to get to our room (they have keys for everything! The front door, the lift, the grill gate, the apartment door).

After resting, we headed out. Our mode of transportation around Vienna was using the Underground Metro. It’s convenient, cheap and you can download the railway app for easy navigation. Some app suggestions I found useful are Qando Vienna and Rome2Rio.

So we took the Metro to the Wiener Rathaus at Rathausplatz, the city hall of Vienna. A majestic state-of-the-art gothic building dated from the late 1800, this building houses the office of the Mayor of Vienna.

Since it was nearing Christmas season,  there were plenty of Christkindlmarkt or Christmas markets in Vienna. There was one located right in front of the Wiener Rathaus, so we went there to look for local delights. The best part about Christmas markets is that you are able to learn more about the culture of the country you are visiting, having to see their handmade products and also local delicacies. I have always loved roaming around Christmas markets, browsing and admiring the stalls.

The time was 5.30PM but it was already dark and also drizzling so we did not manage to walk around much. So we headed back, stopped by a kebab joint to grab dinner, and fell asleep immediately after due to the incorrigible jet lag.

Second day in Vienna

After breakfast we took the Metro towards Schloss Schönbrunn or Schönbrunn Palace. It was previously a summer residence for the imperial, dating back from mid 1500. The palace was impressive, but sort of a minuscule version of Château de Versailles in France (bearing in mind it was only a summer residence). I was mostly attracted to the gardens, especially the Gloriette, which provides panoramic views of the city. 

However, we didn’t go for the tour due to time constraint. To enter the palace you would need to pay for the ticket, but the garden is free of charge. The gardens are located at the side of the palace and also behind it. There are also a few intricately designed mazes that I found fascinating, so it was definitely unmissable!

After the visit to Schloss Schönbrunn, we headed to the city center to hunt for souvenirs and also take photos. We walked around Graben street (the famous shopping street) and of course did what any other tourists would do – shop!

We needed to catch our train to Salzburg at 1.40PM, so we headed back to our apartment to pack.

Like any other European cities, Vienna has a specific charm to it. I have a soft spot for gothic and baroque architecture, and Vienna is made out of those type of buildings… so I am quite biased in that sense. I consider myself a city girl, one who really appreciates buildings, monarchs etc because of the historical values that come with it. I have such an old soul inside me, I know. Because you know, history creates the present and the future. I mean, we wouldn’t even be here if it wasn’t for history!

There are so many other places to visit in Vienna that we did not manage to cover, and I’d most definitely visit it again. However, there aren’t much activities you can do around here, so it’s the perfect city for you to visit to relax and unwind.

So Vienna, checked! On the next post: Salzburg, Austria.

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[FAMILY] 730 days with you

Two years ago on this very date, I married the love of my life.

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His name is Nazeef.

Before I met him, I have always been engulfed in a thick cloak of doubt when it comes to love and relationship.

I have read so many love stories, watched romance movies, heard real life stories about love, and I always wondered, how does it feels like to really, really be in love. Like madly, deeply, truly in love. To the extend you can’t stand the fact of being apart from the person you love. That it actually kills you little by little with every passing moment you are without the person you love. And you notice there’s a deep void inside you, you feel there’s a big piece of you that is missing and there’s this strong longing that actually affects your mood and makes you lose the desire to do anything.

When Nazeef made an appearance in my life, the cloak of doubt dispersed, clearing my vision.

I began to understand what true love really is. The kind that you can only read in fairy tales; the kind that you can only hear from old couples whose eyes still shine whenever they gaze into their partner’s eyes. I never knew I could ever love this much.

It’s an overwhelming feeling that takes control of your body. You feel warmth in your chest, right where your heart is. Your fingers and toes tingle. You get light headed every once in a while. And your cheeks often hurt from smiling too much.

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The thing is, I’ve always pictured love to have a limit. Like happiness. I thought you’d eventually reach a limit to love, and the way you treat the person you love will be just that and it can’t go any better. And I thought the state of happiness I experienced before had reached the limit. I said to myself, well, this is it. This is the limit. There’s no way I can feel any much happier.

But I was wrong. There’s so much love and happiness I have yet to feel, to give and to receive. Especially with him.

730 days on, and here we are, still driving each other crazy. But surviving – definitely surviving, without any signs of surrendering. Nobody said it was ever easy. Nope. Marriage is never easy. It takes a whole lot of time, commitment and effort to make it work.

I don’t care how cliché this sounds, but he is perfectly imperfect for me, as I am to him.

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I love you more than you will ever know. Nobody else in the world understands you the way I do. Nobody else in the world knows you thoroughly inside out and I intend to retain that privilege. Nobody else in the world knows the things you have done for me and the sacrifices you have made.  You are my key to Jannah, and there’s no one else in the world I want to spend the rest of my life with.

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I pray that no matter how hard the challenges are, we will be holding each other’s hands to overcome it together. Nothing and nobody will ever come between us, deal?  Except death. And (maybe) Liverpool. Hehe.

May Allah bless our marriage with barakah, happiness and rezeki endlessly.

Happy two years anniversary sayang. Love you always!

p/s Hmmmm lately ni phone asyik hang la…..

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