A cultural visit to Burgenland: Esterházy Palace & Lake Festival Mörbisch

The Pannonian climate around Lake Neusiedl in Burgenland greets us with a true “Midsummer Night’s Dream”. An evening mood of a kind starts to unfold against the backdrop of the Lake Festival Mörbisch: Glossy white moon in the sky, pastel colours to match, endless views over the wide lake. Northern Burgenland with its powerful red wines, its hot temper and its many cultural treasures, such as the Esterházy Palace or the Lake Festival Mörbisch, is so unlike its southern counterpart. Quiet in demeanour and more playful in nature, the Southern Burgenland district opens up especially to those who travel here with lots of love, attention and time. Up here in the north, it is the imposing lake, the mighty palace, the exquisite cuisine that take centre stage, leaving us rather awestruck at so much high culture.


This begins with the local “Heurigen” wine tavern culture. Our first culinary stop goes by the promising name of “Oleander Romantic Winery”. Pure delight!?

Yes, definitely: Pure delight. It is really worth to travel here and get to know the most exquisite form of “Heurigen” culture in Burgenland. The hosts of the “Oleander Romantic Winery” have created cozy little garden squares, all of them surrounded by oleanders and a desire to make their guests feel welcome. A large selection of hot & cold dishes awaits us here in Trausdorf near Eisenstadt, the location of the Heurigen tavern being quite practical as it is only fifteen minutes away from the Lake Festival Venue Mörbisch. The team is well organized and does not show that well over half of their guests need to leave shortly for the festival: good service coupled with best Burgenland hospitality is always timed in perfect sequence! A place to relax and unwind.

Willkommen, scheint dieser schöne Garten im Oleander Romantik-Heuriger in Trausdorf zu sagen!

Welcome, is what this beautiful garden seems to be saying!


Das Ambiente des Heurigen ist wirklich gepflegt und weist viele liebevoll gestaltete Details auf ...

The Heurigen ambiance is a pure delight and features many little details that meet the eye …


... die Qualität der Speisen überzeugt: Herzhafter Genuss für Monika!

… with the quality of the local dishes truly “heartfelt”: Monika enjoys her bite!


Und gute Aufstrichschmankerl für mich.!

Typical Heurigen meal: Delicious cheese & egg spreads served with home-made bread.


Die Seefestspiele Mörbisch am Neusiedlersee schließlich überwältigen uns schon alleine aufgrund ihrer majestätischen Optik ...

Lake Festival Mörbisch are located right by the famous Burgenland lake Neusiedl, hosting well over 5.000 visitors for its annual festival shows …


... auf dem Festspielplan steht für die heurige Saison das heitere & wortwitzige Musical "Anatevka".

… with this year’s feature being the witty and cheerful musical “Anatevka”.


Die schauspielerischen Leistungen der Dutzendfachen Besatzung bewegen & begeistern uns während des gesamten Stückes immer wieder aufs Neue!

The cast, made up of dozens of talented actors of all ages and walks of life, are a true delight to watch during the performance.


Was für ein Abend hier am Neusiedlersee! Mein Fazit: Die Seefestspiele Mörbisch sind ein Muss im Kultursommer Österreichs - und des Burgenlands, natürlich.

What a night here at Lake Neusiedl! Definitely head out here if you plan to experience the Austrian festival summer – and that of Burgenland, of course.


High culture featuring Haydn & Henrici in the capital of Burgenland: Esterházy Palace tastes best with a visit of the noble Restaurant Henrici.

Eisenstadt is not only the current state capital of Burgenland, but also home to great music history. For decades, the famous composer Joseph Haydn served at the court of the Esterházy noble family and thereby created remarkable works in “glorious seclusion: Free of influences, I can be truly original here”, Joseph Haydn is quoted in the exhibition at Esterházy Palace. Another muse that appeared to me as part of the tour is the former Princess Melinda Ottruby: “I do not like to dance as the others, but as I can …”. The context of her statement may be lost in history, but her words still bear witness to the power, self-confidence and assertiveness of this proud noble family.

Mächtig: Der Anblick des Schloss Esterházy in Eisenstadt.

Quite an imposing view: The inner courtyard of Esterházy Palace in Eisenstadt.


Passend dazu: Der Anblick eines der 10 schönsten Konzertsäle der Welt - akustisch wie visuell!

Its concert hall ranks among the top 10 concert halls in the whole world for its unique acoustics!


Neben der auf klassische Weise beeindruckenden Ausstattung des prachtvollen Schlosses ...

Besides the classic splendour of the palace …


... sowie verspielten kleinen Details wie dieser wunderschönen Stehuhr ...

… as well as its many little details to be found during the tour, such as this beautiful clock …


... gelangen wir beim Besucherrundgang durch das Schloss Esterházy auch "hinter die Kulissen" der Fürstenfamilie und sehen hier, die Kammerzofen & Dienstboten des Fürstenhofes gelebt haben - ein einfaches "Waschzimmer" hier.

… we also get to “look behind the scenes” of the life of the noble family at that of their servants, as exemplified by this small bathroom here. Still quite noble for the time, it was!


Die moderne Ausstellung "Haydn" feiert seit dem Haydn-Gedenkjahr die Werke des berühmten Komponisten auf neuartig-moderne Art und Weise.

The contemporary exhibition “Haydn” celebrates the musical genius in a funny and rather playful kind of way.


Atmosphärischer Blickfang im Innenhof des Schlosses.

One of my favourite views inside the palace courtyard.


Just across from Schloss Esterházy, you will “stumble” upon the delightful Restaurant Henrici. Those who land here though are most certainly conscious of the luxury food that awaits them: The menu entices with fresh, seasonal ingredients and has a truly outstanding, homemade “berry ice dream” to offer (don’t even start counting the calories). We can taste the summer here thanks to fresh avocado & fish, a typical Burgenland cabbage roulade and that very tasty, mouthwateringly delicious “Ice Dream” … my appetite is set for another visit to Burgenland. Yours?

Das Restaurant Henrici ...

Restaurant Henrici …


... befindet sich gleich zu Beginn der schönen Fußgängerzone in der Altstadt Eisenstadts.

… is located right at the entrance to the pedestrian zone in the old town of Eisenstadt.


(Wein)Genuss wird hier im Burgenland groß geschrieben ...

Wine culture is a must here, thanks to the hot Pannonian climate the Burgenland grows lots of full-bodied red wines as well as delightful whites …


... die Qualität der sommerlichen Speisen im Restaurant Henrich ist hervorragend.

… the quality of the food here at Henrici restaurant is simply very good.


Und mindestens so lecker, wie es aussieht, schmeckt es auch: Krautroulade aus dem Burgenland, sommerlich leicht interpretiert.

It does taste as delicious as it looks: Cabbage beef roulade served in a light, summerly version of its more substantial, traditional counterpart.


Feel the need for more? Check out my photo travel tips in this Flickr gallery of Burgenland:


Disclaimer: We have been invited by Burgenland Tourism to travel in the Burgenland for this cultural summer trip. All opinions are my own.

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