The Lost Garden of Schloss Schonbrunn - Atlas Obscura

The Lost Garden of Schloss Schonbrunn

The topiary maze at the Habsburg hunting lodge. 


Schloss Schonbrunn, in Vienna, is the ridiculously resplendent former hunting lodge and summer palace of the Habsburgs. The palace is, of course, massive and ornate. But one of the most delightful features is surely the Irrgarten, or “lost garden,” otherwise known as a topiary maze.

The original maze was demolished in 1892, for courtiers, royalty and various ladies of the court were meeting in the center of the maze and “disreputable encounters” were taking place. It was rebuilt in 1999 following the design of the original maze from 1686, and is surprisingly challenging to navigate.

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