Austria is a landlocked country in Central Europe. It borders Germany and the Czech Republic to the north, Slovakia and Hungary to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the west. Vienna is the capital and largest city. Austria is divided into 9 states, called Bundesländer, these states are then divided into districts and statutory cities. Districts are subdivided into municipalities.
Austria is located in the Alps and is therefore a mountainous country, the highest mountains in Austria Großglockner. Austria is a parliamentary representative democracy, the Federal President as head of state, who is directly elected by popular vote. De Chancellor is chairman of the Federal Government, he is appointed by the President.
Many famous composers in Austria have their hometown, like Joseph Haydn, Franz Schubert, Anton Bruckner, Johann Strauss Sr., Johann Strauss Jr. and Gustav Mahler. Wolfgang Amadeus . Mozart was born in Salzburg and much of Mozart’s career was spent in Vienna.
Austria has many famous castles, palaces, and cemeteries. The most famous castles in Austria, Liechtenstein Castle and Schloss Artstetten. Many of these castles were built during the Hapsburg rule. The Historic Centre of the City of Salzburg was listed as a World Heritage Site in 1996 and in 2001, the Historic Centre of Vienna . Two of the most famous Austrian palaces are the baroque-style Belvedere and in Rococo style Schönbrunn.
Schuhplattler, Ländler, Polka and Waltz are known Austrian folk dances.
Yodeling is a type of throat singing that was developed in the Alps. In Austria, it was called juchazn and featured the use of both no lexical syllables and yells that were used to communicate across mountains.
Switzerland and Austria are the winter capital of Europe and in the summer is just as popular for tourists who wish to visit historic towns and villages and hiking in the beautiful scenery of the Alps.
Prominent sports in Austria are: alpine skiing, snowboarding and ski jumping, which are good to practice by the mountainous terrain. Bobsleigh is also popular events with a permanent track located in Igls, which hosted bobsleigh competitions for the 1964 and 1976 Winter Olympics held in Innsbruck. The first Winter Youth Olympics in 2012 will be held in Innsbruck as well. A popular team sport in Austria is football.
Typical Austrian dishes include Wiener Schnitzel, a thin slice of meat coated in breadcrumbs and fried. Schweinsbraten, Kaiserschmarren, Knödel, Sachertorte and Tafelspitz(boiled beef). Also apple strudel and Kärntner Kasnudeln, a boiled dough-bag filled with cottage cheese and spearmint are popular.
European Community passport holders do not need a visa to visit Austria, for a stay less than 3 months. Visitors from other countries can request a visa at the Austrian Embassy or Consulate.