Off the main tourist roads, you will find the Freyung, a public square in Vienna, located in the Innere Stadt first district of the city. The Freyung is a busy piazza, and has been so for centuries.
In 1155, at the request of Duke Henry II Jasomirgott, Irish monks founded the Schottenstift (Scottish Monastery). They named the surrounding square 'Bei den Schotten' (at the Scots). Its current name, Freyung, comes from the old German word Frey, meaning "free", since originally the monastery was granted the right to give asylum to those who were fleeing.
One of Freyung's central attractions is the Austriabrunnen (Austria Fountain). Designed by German sculptor Ludwig Schwanthaler, the majestic statues above the basin are allegorical representations of the four main rivers of the Habsburg Empire. Another important site is the Schottenstift complex, including its church, the Schottenkirche. Some of the monastery's artwork can be seen in the Museum im Schottenstift.
Finally, the Freyung Passage, sometimes referred to as the Ferstel Passage, is an upscale arcade built by the Austrian architect Heinrich von Ferstel in 1860. At the end of the 1970s, the arcade was thoroughly renovated and over the following decade it came back to life as beautiful as ever.
There are luxury stores lining this gorgeous marble-clad passage with magnificent vaulted ceilings. In the center of the courtyard is a stunning six-meter high fountain. At the top of the fountain is a statue of the Donaunixen (Danube waternymph), with a fish in her hand.