I am pleased to present a new Solo Travel Destination Post from Simon, a member of the Solo Travel Society on Facebook as well as our Business Manager. Simon is from Canada, and submitted the following report about his trip to Graz. Do you have a solo travel destination that you would like to recommend? Submit your description here, along with a few photos, and share it with fellow travelers!
Solo Travel Rating: 1.5 (1 is easiest, 3 is most difficult. Please see chart below)
Languages Spoken: German, some English
Costs at Destination: Reasonable (local transportation, dining, tours, events, and attractions)
Reasons to Visit Graz
Graz, the second city of Austria, is comfortable and stimulating especially in the ways that visitors enjoy. It has not been subjected to overtourism. With a population of about 300,000, one can get around the city quite easily. Its devotion to the arts is clear wherever you go, most notably in the remarkable, modern Kunsthaus Graz.
Graz is a modern city. It hosts concerts and other events of all kinds, but it has also preserved its heritage, which is evident in numerous ways in the Old Town built around the River Mur.
I was attending a conference sponsored by Graz Tourism and the Graz Tourist Office. I stayed at the Grand Hotel Wiesler, a cozy, modernized version of the original 1909 hotel, located right in the heart of the Old Town on the River Mur.
So much is within easy walking distance. I went to the Schlossberg, the tree-covered hill, where a fortress looked down on the city. I wandered the old city streets and new ones, dropping into galleries and shops. I went to the Murinsel, a turtle-shaped, man-made, steel object stuck smack in the middle of the river. Quite an odd and wonderful thing it is, used for concerts and events.
I found several wonderful restaurants – Ginko, where my vegan and gluten-free diet was easily satisfied, and the Cafe Erde, from where you can watch the city going by. Graz is a foodie city just as much as it is an official European City of Culture (2003) and a UNESCO City of Design (2011). One notable thing, there are many vantage points from which you can get a beautiful panorama of the Old Town. Most local people will be able to direct you to them.