Travels of Empress Elisabeth (Sisi) of Austria

Sisi in Corfu - own picture

A seagull I am without a land
Or any shore to call my home
No place can hold me fast
As I fly from wave to wave

Empress Elisabeth of Austria

As you know, Empress Elisabeth of Austria was an intensive traveler
(which I like a lot too).

Empress Elisabeth of Austria - Source picture: Wikipedia

She detested the Habsburg in Vienna and tried much to avoid it.

Hofburg Palace Vienna Wien Austria Sisi
Hofburg in Vienna - Austria

On this page I'll try to make an overview with pictures and a lot of
information about Elisabeth's (Sisi's) travels.

It is my aim to visit all the places where she has stayed.
It will be a huge work which will last at least a few years :-).

Timeline of the life and travels of Sisi

On December 24th. 1837, Empress Elisabeth of Austria was born in
Munich (Bavaria - located in German) at Possenhofen Castle.

Her parents were Maximilian Joseph, Duke in Bavaria and 
Princess Ludovika of Bavaria. Sisi grew up in a place far away from protocol.

Nymphenburg Palace Munich Bavaria Germany Travel
Nymphenburg Palace - Munich - Germany

18 August 1853: the engagement took place between Elisabeth and
Franz Joseph in Bad Ischl (Austria). Later the Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl
was the wedding gift  from Archduchess Sophie to the young couple.

April 21st. 1854: the steamers, who brought the future Empress to Vienna
docked in Passau. Later the ships arrived in Linz, this was the first stop in

April 24th.1854: wedding in the Augustiner Kirche in Vienna.
The young couple spent their honeymoon in Laxenburg Castle,
just outside the Austrian capital.

June 1854: the Emperor and the Empress took their first trip in June
to Moravia and Bohemia (now the Czech Republic).


Empress Elisabeth traveled under the name, Countess of Hohenems, her
38 title in the Court Calendar.

1855: Tyrol and Carinthia in Austria.

Tyrol Austria Travel
Own picture of Tyrol


12 July 1856: birth of Archduchess Gisela, second child of Empress Elisabeth
and Franz Joseph.

7 September 1856: visit from emperor Franz Joseph and Empress Elisabeth
to the Grossglockner. To remember this visit the later Glocknerhaus was built.
At the Glocknerhaus a remembrance plate marked the 'Kaiserin Elisabethruhe'.

In November 1856 the royals traveled to Northern Italy. They lived for
several months in the old royal palaces of Milan and Venice.

1857: Sisi made her first visit to Hungary.
This journey was made by ship. It started in Vienna, via Pressburg to Budapest.

21 August 1858: birth of Crown Prince Rudolf of Austria

24 August 1858: Wedding of Helene, eldest sister of Sisi in
Possenhoven Castle (Bavaria). She married Maximilian Anton Lamoral,
Hereditary Prince of Thurn und Taxis.
Read more about her and the palace she lived in next link.


In July 1860 the difficulties between the emperor en the empress were
so huge that Sisi fled from Vienna to Possenhofen. Her health declined.

In October 1860 a lung specialist advised that the empress should go
to a country with a warmer climate.

Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom made her Royal Yacht the
'Victoria and Albert' (renamed as the Osborne) available to the
young empress.

Sisi boarded in Antwerp (Belgium) and she sailed to  Madeira.


* Cadiz, Seville in Spain and Gibraltar

In May 1861, Franz Joseph and Elisabeth met each other again
in Trieste.

* Corfu.

Corfu Greece Sisi Travel
Corfu - own picture

Sisi really loved Corfu (Which I do too). 
Later she decided to build her summer palace: The Achilleion.
(Later on this page I have a picture of this beautiful building)

See my blogpost about the Achilleion 
outside view link 1
inside view link 2 

* Venice


Several Spa visits like Bad Kissingen in Bavaria (without any stop in

* Possenhofen

18 August 1862: the empress returned to Vienna.


11 February 1865

at Dresden, Karl Theodor, a brother of Sisi, married his first cousin
Princess Sophie of Saxony. Empress Elisabeth went to the wedding.

1 May 1865: inauguration of the Ring Strasse in Vienna.

Late January 1866

The Emperor and the Empress visited Hungary


* Switzerland

8 June 1867: Empress Elisabeth was crowned Queen of
Hungary.  As a present the Hungarian people offered
their new royals the Gödöllö Palace. It became Sisi's favorite place
to stay.

The Austrian Imperial Family in Gödöllo Palace
Source picture: Wikipedia

22 April 1868: Another daughter was born to the imperial pair at the royal
castle in Hungary. The royal castle was located at Often the old name of
Buda. Buda was the capital of the ancient Kingdom of Hungary.


On the night of 7 December 1869, a special train arrived in Rome. Then Sisi
made a short stay of this cultural city. She was a guest in the palazzo of

During her stay in Rome, Sisi also visited Pope Pius IX at Vatican City.

Empress Elisabeth of Austria certainly must have seen this beautiful
Castel Sant' Angelo.

Castel Sant' Angelo - own picture

I made a blog post about the Castle Sant' Angelo, check this link

Quirinal Palace in Rome - own picture taken in 2017

She probably have seen the Quirinal Palace in Rome, check this link


In the fall of 1870, Empress Elisabeth left Vienna to Merano for the Winter.
Merano was located in South Tyrol. Its tourism saw further development after
Sisi started visited it. The Empress Elisabeth Park was named after Sisi. There
is also a statue in her honor.


On 27 June 1871, Sisi and her daughters Gisela and Valerie arrived
at Bad Ischl. (@empressofHaB)

In the Summer, Empress Elisabeth stayed for a long time in Bavaria.

In October 1871, she went again to Merano.


During the spring she made a visit to Hungary.

28 May 1872 Death of Princess Sophie of Bavaria, Archduchess of Austria and
mother-in-law of Sisi.


20 April 1873
: Gisela married to Prince Leopold of Bavaria in
the Augustiner Church in Vienna.

1 May 1873: the Emperor and Empress of Austria opened the
World's exhibition in Vienna. This became a source of pride for Austria.
Emperor William I of Germany, his spouse Augusta,
Czar Alexander II of Russia, King Victor Emmanuel II of Italy
and even the Shah of Persia (Naser al-Din Sha Qajar) visited the Hofburg.
However Sisi cared little about people of her own rank
"Titles mean nothing", she once said.

After the fair Sisi went to Payerbach.
Later she traveled to Bad Ischl.


* visit to a hospital in Munich.
* visit to Possenhofen where she met her new sister in law.
  Her brother Karl Theodor married on 29 April 1874 to Infanta Maria
  Josepha of Portugal

* visit to England
stayed @ Steephill Castle on the Isle of Whight.
visited Queen Victoria in Osborne House and
attended a hunt @ Belvoir Castle.
went riding in Hyde Park in London.


Empress Elisabeth stayed @ the Château de Sassetot-le-Mauconduit
Brittany (France). This is now a luxury hotel.


Empress Elisabeth visited the United Kingdom.
She was at the Towcester-racecourse.

Thank you for the information @in 1876!

In 1876 The Empress met Lord Spencer at Althorp.
George 'Bay' Middleton was asked to be her pilot.

This George 'Bay' Middleton appears as the Empress' lover in
Kenneth MacMillan's ballet Mayerling.


The Tower Castle in London
The Tower Castle in London

On the last day of 1877 the Empress and her son Rudolph arrived in
London. The next day Sisi took the train to Northampton. There she
stayed in Cottesbrook House


Austria took possession of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Empress took
care of the wounded soldiers and providing for the families of those who
were killed.

At the end of January 1878, Sisi went to England again.

In the winter of 1878/1879 Empress Elisabeth of Austria was in Brussels,
Belgium on her way to England. Princess Stephanie and Princess Clementine
of Belgium were introduced to her.


* Silver Wedding of Franz Joseph and Sisi.
* Visit to 'Summerhill'. This was the house of Lord Longford in Ireland.



1/ her mother in Possenhoven Castle
2/ her cousin, King Ludwig II of Bavaria @ Castle Berg on Lake Starnberg.

* visit to Ireland.

* visit to Brussels (Belgium) with the engagement of her son Crown Prince
Rudolph to Princess Stéphanie of Belgium. The visit lasted 4 hours.
Sisi didn't like Belgium at all. The country was created in 1830 and she
didn't like King Leopold II of Belgium, the father-in-law of her beloved son
Crown Prince Rudolph. Besides this fact, she thought the Royal Family of
Belgium were parvenues, though they were members of the
House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.


10 May 1881
: Wedding of Crown Prince Rudolf of Austria with Princess
Stephanie of Belgium at the Augustiner Church in Vienna. This was Sisi 's last
public appearance in Vienna.

Another hunting trip. She found a suitable home at the Combermere Abbey,
located in Cheshire, England.

In 1881, Sisi took a boat on Lake Starnberg to the Rose Island in Bavaria.
On her return she was accompanied by King Ludwig II of Bavaria.

In the summer of 1881 Franz Joseph decided to built the Hermesvilla it
was finished in 1886.


Sisi's last hunting season in Cheshire, England.

Budapest  (@empressofHab)

In September 1882, she accompanied the emperor on an official trip to Trieste.


Empress Elisabeth went to Amsterdam (The Netherlands).

Amsterdam The Netherlands canals Travel

Amsterdam canals - own picture

She explored Zandvoort and the Dutch North Sea Coast.

Sisi visited the Loo Palace and she had diner in Hotel De Keizerskroon.
About De Keizerskroon see my blogpost @ next link

In 1884 / 1885 she visited Heidelberg in Germany

'O'er thee, like thine own sea birds
I'll circle without rest
For me earth holds no corner
To build a lasting nest.'


* Zell am See in Austria. There the Empress ran up the Schmittenhöhe
and she left all her attendants behind her.


On this link I wrote a Royal Destination blog post about this amazing place
on earth.

* Tour around the Greek Islands

Turkey nature travel

* Archaeological Site in Turkey

* Cyprus

* Port Saïd in Egypt.

Egypt travel
* at Kremsier (nowadays Kromeriz in the Czech Republic) a friendly 
conference took place. Emperor Franz Joseph met the Russian Tsar
Alexander III. They talked about the Balkan policies. Rudolph and 
Sisi were present as well. 

* in December 1885, the Emperor and the Empress visited Munich in


10 June 1886: King Ludwig II of Bavaria, cousin of Empress Elisabeth,
was forced to abdicate. He was sent to Schloss Berg near Lake Starnberg
under the care of a physician. 

13 June 1886 King Ludwig II of Bavaria died on a mysterious way. That night his
body was found in the water of Lake Starnberg.

Empress Elisabeth stayed at Feldafing, Bavaria when she heard the news about
King Ludwig II's death.


* On October 19th. & 20th. Emperor Franz Jozeph and Empress Elisabeth of
   Austria went to the Imperial Hunting Lodge of Mayerling for the official

* Hermes villa

* Carmen Sylvia, Queen of Romania in Sinaia

* Hamburg in Germany

* Cromer in England


* Greece

* Corfu

Corfu achilleion sisi travel
Achilleion Corfu Greece 

13 May 1888: unveiling of the Maria Theresa Memorial in Vienna

29 August 1888: at the Tegerensee near Munich in Bavaria, Germany. 
Together with Karl Theodor of Bavaria, his wife Marie José, Archduke
Rudolph and his wife Stéphanie. 

15 November 1888: Duke Maximilian Joseph in Bavaria, Sisi 's father


30 January 1889: Death of Crown Prince Rudolf of Austria.

Cruise around the Mediterranean Sea

* Sicily

Taormina theatre Sicily Travel
Taormina Sicily

* Malta

* Tunis

* Italy - Trauttmansdorff Castle

picture taken by Annette


In February 1890, Gyula Andrássy died. Sisi went to Hungary to visit his

16 May 1890: Sisi went quickly to Regensburg. There her eldest sister,
Duchess Helene in Bavaria died.

31 July 1890: Archduchess Marie Valerie married her second cousin,
Franz Salvator, Duke of Tuscany in Bad Ischl.

Empress Elisabeth also visited:

* Feldafing (Bavaria)

* Corfu

Another cruise with visits to:

* Lisbon in Portugal

Praça do Comércio in Lisbon - Portugal - own picture taken in 2017

Maybe Sisi visited these lovely Royal Destinations in Lisbon.

Sé Cathedral, more on this link.
Jerónimos monastery in Belém, more on this link.
Belém Tower, more on this link
Ribeira Palace, more on this link
São Jorge Castle, more on this link

* Tangier & Oran in North Africa

* Marseilles in France

* Corsica


* Florence

* Capri

* Naples

* ruins of Pompeii


* the Royal Palace in Athens, Greece.

* Corfu


25 January 1892: Princess Ludovika of Bavaria, Sisi 's mother died

* Corfu - Sisi retired in the Achilleion from the death of her mother.


* Territet in Switzerland

* Genoa


* French Riviera

There she stayed in Nice

Nice France

Berner Oberland - Switzerland

* Budapest, Hungary

* Berner Oberland , see this royal destination post on this link

* On 12 December 1894, Empress Elisabeth of Austria visited the city of
Algiers. The Empress found the Arabs very interesting, beautiful and
noble people.


* Corsica  - with Karl Theodor, Duke in Bavaria and two of his daughters:
Sophie and Elisabeth (later Queen Elisabeth of Belgium).

They visited Ajaccio and some places who remebered Napoleon Bonaparte.

* Hermes Villa (May & June)

* Hungarian Spa of Bartfeld also called Bardejov (July)

This took place on July 1st. 1895. Sisi stayed here till July 22nd.
During her stay at the Spa she visited Bardejov. There Empress Elisabeth
signed the book of the Town. (information from @EmpressofHaB via

* Bad Ischl (August)

* Aix-les-Bains

* Territet on Lake Geneva (September)

* Gödöllo (October)

* Vienna (November)

* Cap Martin  (December - February)


March: Cannes, Naples, Sorrento & Corfu

27 August 1896 : Czar Nicholas II of Russia and his wife visited the Imperial
Court in Vienna. This was the only court ceremony that Empress Elisabeth
attended after the death of her son.

1896: Hungary celebrated its 1000th. anniversary. The Empress didn't want to
attend the celebrations but finally she was there and she wore black. It was her
last visit to Hungary and her last appearance on the throne.

Winter of 1897 - 1898

* French Riviera - Cap Martin

4 May 1897: Duchess Sophie Charlotte of Bavaria, the favorite sister of
Empress Elisabeth died in a fire at the Bazar de la Charité in Paris.

Christmas 1897: Empress Elisabeth and her sister Duchess Mathilde Ludovika
in Bavaria (Countess of Trani) spent time together in Paris.


She took her yacht in Marseilles and went to San Remo

* Territet in Switzerland

* Vienna were she met the emperor

* Bad Ischl

* Mannheim in Germany

* July 1898: Munich - Sisi stayed at the Hotel Continental.
There she received visitors inter alia her brother Karl Theodor

9 September 1898

Empress Elisabeth went to Pregny, which was a villa near Lake Geneva.
This villa belonged to the Rothschild family.

*Geneva in Switzerland . In Geneva she used to stay Hotel Beau Rivage.

10 September 1898

Empress Elisabeth of Austria was stabbed by a man, named Lucheni,
with a knife. She died afterwards.

Quotes of Empress Elisabeth of Austria:

Destinations are only desirable because a journey lies in between.
If I arrived somewhere and knew that I would never leave again, even
a sojourn in paradise would turn into a hell for me.

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