Monday, August 8, 2016

Trick Fountains! What a Way to Cool Off! - Day 3 con't 5/28/16

Continuing on the Hop on Hop off Bus tour, the next stop we had on our list to visit was the Hellbrunn Palace. We weren't really sure what this would be all about, but I kept reading descriptions of trick fountains and who doesn't want to see trick fountains right?  We arrived, and purchased our tickets and on the outside, everything looked like pretty much your everyday far as palaces go!

We had a bit of time before our tour began so we walked around the park area a bit. We came across yet another Sound of Music bit of history!

Look familiar? 

After walking around the park a bit, it was time for our tour...we walked back up the drive to the Palace towards the entrance.

We went into the courtyard area with our group and walked back into the grounds of the Palace.  We realized then, that the tour would be of the outside areas of the palace.

I think the Hellbrunn Palace website explains it best, Hellbrunn Palace is 

"The passion of Markus Sittikus. Imagine a man who is simultaneously a prince and an archbishop; a man of power with a wealth of gold and salt. His name: Markus Sittikus. His vision: to create such a place that had never previously existed. The power of Markus Sittikus reached far beyond Salzburg. He ruled a region from Carinthia in the south to Regensburg in the north. But why did he have Hellbrunn built in only three years…? Well, it was simply his love of life. You can still feel this passion today: Hellbrunn is more than a summer palace with a park and the unique Trick fountains – Hellbrunn is a love of life.

In 1613 prince-archbishop Markus Sittikus assigned the construction of Hellbrunn. His vision: to create a place that is beyond believe. The palace,  the extensive park and even the Trick fountains of Hellbrunn are a gorgeous jewel on the outskirts of Salzburg.

This was not a residence but a place for celebrations, a location for summer fun and recuperation. This spirit can be felt now just as much as 400 years ago: Whether you stroll through the expansive park or get a tour of the Trick fountains.

Visitors to Hellbrunn are drawn particularly by the Trick fountains. They can enjoy the water automats, grottoes, fountains and other water-operated tricks – nothing else in the world can match their forms and variety.  One thing is certain: all guests can look forward to a refreshing, fun experience for young and old. The water sprays from all spouts and tubes, it trickles and ripples – and sometimes it even gets someone wet. Surprises are guaranteed!"

So, first thing, we all sit down behind this table and our guide tells us how Markus Sittikus would invite his guests over and have them sit at this table and when they'd all be sitting there, the fountains would turn on and they'd get soaked.  What fun for them!  Then fountains came on everywhere!  You can see them around the sides and coming out of the chairs.  This guy had quite the sense of humor...we wondered what would be next!

Then we started walking along the pathway towards the palace

We went inside and found the decor to be quite interesting, at least in this section!

Yes, it does look like a cave...

We went outside and lookout!

You just never know what's going to come out of a deer nose or antlers!

Then all along this little stream were these little figurines. The water automats they're called. They are powered by the stream, and they're a bit interesting as well!

Next is a mechanical theater with over 200 water driven figures that move to the beat of an organ piece, also driven by the end, the guests watching it are surprised by some more water.  You'd think it was going to come from the theater but it catches you off guard coming from an unexpected source. Which I'm not giving away in case anyone makes their way there!

This thing was huge - you can get a better idea here with the people in front of it

Next we went into a room called the Grottos

This water rose up from the floor with this cone on top...

and of course to exit the Grotto....

Alex and I had a blast here.  It was a hot day and the fountains were cool, and very unexpected. You never knew where one would pop up. It was a totally unique place! Outside of the tour area was the garden area and we spent some time walking around. The grounds were beautiful! Many people were just sitting there enjoying it or picnicking.

So far, we were very happy we had hopped off at this stop! And there was still much more to see here!...

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