There is a word which exists only in German; it describes the basic mentality of all people from the Alps pretty well: ‘Gemütlichkeit’. This term is so unique that there exists no direct translation in English – you should ask some Austrians if they are able to explain it in English for you. Austrians are actually similar to the cliché of Germans in Hollywood movies. Especially on the countryside, it is a must for Austrian boys and girls to wear Lederhosen and Dirndl when we celebrate a Fest - it is mostly a Bierfest ;-).

We speak a unique German dialect, similar to Bavarian and it is varying from one valley to another. Everyone likes to show where he/she comes from and, despite the fact of the small size of this country, identification of the proper province is mostly more important than being Austrian itself. Untypically for European music, the typical Austrian folk music has mostly a happy sound and text; the songs are mostly about the beauty of mountains and women.

Another part of our cultural identity is the so-called Viennese coffee house and salon culture. This culture started in the late 19th century; people from all provinces of the Habsburg Empire came there and brought the town to a cultural and economical boom phase. Vienna became world's capital of music and a central trading point to all European areas. In these coffee salons history was made, intellectuals from all over Europe where discussing and created ideas. There are still many traditional cafés throughout Austria which can offer you this atmosphere. You should check them out – there is no Starbuck’s in Linz anyways ;-).