IPSO is pleased to share these Vienna Highlights, which have been curated by IPSO member and Vienna expert, Christine Mrakotsky!
Vienna’s most famous sights are well summarized by the information site of the City of Vienna: https://www.wien.info/en/sightseeing/sights
Not to miss:
- The first district (1. Bezirk; “Innere Stadt”) in the center of the city with the Stephansdom (St. Stephen’s Cathedral- hike up the South tower, see the Pummerin- big bell, or descend to the catacombs), the oldest parts of the city with narrow streets, little taverns, café’s and shops
- The Ringstrasse – encircling the 1st district like a ring (where the old city wall was)- catch a tramway and see a range of the most important buildings and architecture
- Schoenbrunn Palace, with Gloriette and Zoo ( in the 13th district “Hietzing” on the outskirts of Vienna). Summer ‘house’ of the Habsburgs, famous Sisi collection, great fun for kids too
Café’s/Restaurants in Schoenbrunn:
https://www.gloriette-cafe.at/en/ (catch a glimpse of beautiful views of Vienna up on the hill while sipping coffee)
- Wiener Prater (lovingly called “Wurstelprater” by the Viennese) https://www.wien.info/en/sightseeing/prater
Since we are only in walking distance, the historic amusement park is worth to see for those young and young at heart. Even if theme parks are not your thing, take a ride on the Riesenrad (Giant Ferris Wheel, https://wienerriesenrad.com/en/home-2/ , https://www.wien.info/en/sightseeing/prater/giant-ferris-wheel-346994 ), which will give you excellent views of the city of Vienna and its surroundings
For current information on some of the best exhibits go to: https://www.wien.info/en/sightseeing/museums-exhibitions
- Unteres and Oberes Belvedere: beautiful baroque castle with two tracts, each with exhibits and permanent collection (including the famous Klimt paintings).
- Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien: one of the 2 big museums vis-à-vis from each other on the Ringstrasse (close to the Oper), with magnificent art collection
- Naturhistorisches Museum: the other museum at the Ringstrasse- great to visit with kids, but also those who enjoy natural history
- Albertina: famous art collection
- Museumsquartier (including mumok, Leopold Museum, Kunsthalle Wien)- must see if you like modern art
- Kunsthaus Wien – collection and exhibit around the famed Viennese painter & architect Friedensreich Hundertwasser
- Sigmund Freud Museum– must see for any neurologist, psychologist, therapist- Freud’s apartment where he lived and worked- the cradle of psychoanalysis
- Haus der Musik – a gem for all music aficionados and those who still want to become one. Great fun for adults and kids. Where else do you get to conduct the Vienna Philharmonics?
- If you have more time also plan a visit to Mozart’s, Beethoven’s and Schubert’s houses.
- Secession: quintessential Art Nouveau museum, housing Klimt amongst others
- From there don’t miss a culinary trip to the famous Vienna Naschmarkt
- Musikverein: one of the most famous concert halls, unparalleled acoustics, home of the Vienna Philharmonics https://www.wienerphilharmoniker.at/en/ and many more
- Wiener Konzerthaus
The art of the coffee house (Kaffeehaus) was born in Vienna. Some of the best traditional coffee houses can be found here (off the beaten path of Café Sacher, which is a bit too touristy and really a hotel rather than a café- and you can get Sacher Torte in every traditional Kaffeehaus)
City favorites: Café Museum, Café Central, Café Korb, Café Hawelka
Also Café Tirolerhof https://cafetirolerhof.at/en/
For those enjoying Austrian Habsburg tradition the historic (and touristy) Demel: Welcome to DEMEL – K.u.K. Hofzuckerbäcker Wien
And here are some cafes that also provide concerts: https://www.wien.info/en/music-stage-shows/classic/concert-cafes-343570
There are too many to list, but there is something for everyone- recommend checking out the listing at:
The classics: (a few)
Plachutta (both in the city and the original one in Hietzing)- this is were you get the classic Viennese “Tafelspitz” (boiled beef)
Figlmueller Lugeck (if you like Schnitzel, though touristy)
Steirereck (modern, high end, likely also touristy)
Very traditional Viennese:
Gmoarkeller Home – GmoaKeller das Wiener Wirtshaus
Schweizerhaus https://schweizerhaus.at/ (this one is close to the Hilton and a traditional Prater staple- though not if you are vegetarian)
Bistros (and “in” places)
Rooftop bars with a view
Restaurant (docohotel.com) restaurant and bar next to St. Stephen’s
I highly recommend touring this vibrant multicultural market with its culinary delights. Not fancy, but fun!
An absolute must is a trip to the vineyards on the outskirts of Vienna, in the towns of Grinzing, Neustift, Sievering und Nussdorf (among others)
For those more adventurous you can take a day trip along or on the Danube – hop on and off train or ship and experience wine tastings in the Wachau (a part of Lower Austria along the Danube north of Vienna). Best done by guided tour.
By bike for example: https://www.viennaexplorer.com/tours/wachau-valley-winery-bike-tour/
More information about the Danube Bike Path: https://www.niederoesterreich.at/donauradweg