14 Essential Experiences to Have in Vienna

Vienna Insider Guides
by Ana Bulnes Sep 22, 2016

VIENNA IS NOT JUST ITS IMPERIAL PAST. Once you’ve visited every big Baroque palace, explored every garden feeling like Sissi, and given your opinion on whether the Danube looks blue or not, it’s time to discover the other Vienna. Look for signs of Art Nouveau in buildings, fall in love with the 7th district, and let the hours pass in one of the city’s many classic cafés.

1. Fight with perspective trying to get a decent photo of St. Stephen’s Cathedral.

St. Stephen’s Cathedral

Wien, Austria

#history #free #church

2. Wander around the gardens at Belvedere (and check Klimt’s The Kiss inside the palace).

Belvedere Palace

Wien, Austria

Beautiful Baroque palaces (there are two, Upper and Lower), and an impressive garden. You can visit the palaces, go to the museum (it has the world’s largest collection of Klimt’s paintings, Egon Schiele, Kokoschka…), or just go for a wander around the gardens (for free!). #art #garden #palace #gallery #history

3. Eat a real Wiener Schnitzel at Gasthaus Pöschl.

Gasthaus Pöschl

Wien, Austria

Sit out in the church courtyard and enjoy the amazing schnitzel. Also some of the best German style potato salad you taste! #schnitzel

4. Hang out at the MuseumsQuartier and fall in love with Egon Schiele in the Leopold Museum.


Wien, Austria

Some of the city’s best museums are here (Leopold Museum, MUMOK), but it’s also a cool place to just hang out, especially during the summer. #museum #fine-dining #livemusic

5. Take a break from the city in a park.


Wien, Austria

Beautiful rose garden next to the Burgtheater, parliament and city hall. Perfect spot for a break from a city walk. #rosegarden #relax #vienna #breathe

6. Visit one of Vienna’s classic cafés (and have some coffee and cake).

Café Central

Wien, Austria

One of the most exquisite places to have kaffe und kuchen in Vienna. Live piano music as you try not to devour the incredible cakes and Viennese coffee. #coffee #cake #dessert

7. Get lost at one of the world’s largest cemeteries.

Central Cemetery

Wien, Austria

Classical music fans should pilgrim to this cemetery. You can visit Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms, Schoenberg, several Strausses… It’s huge (one of the largest in the world), beautiful, and wonderfully gloomy during the winter. #cemetery #classicalmusic

8. Understand what Stendhal syndrome feels like at the Kunsthistorisches Museum.

Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien

Wien, Austria

Everything in this museum is impressive: the building (outside and inside), its size, and of course their art collection. Rubens, Raphael, Rembrandt, Velazquez,… You’ll need to plan in advance what you want to see or just walk around and see what happens. #art #museum

9. Have some more coffee and cakes.

AIDA Prousek & Co. Chocolaterie & Grosskonditorei

Wien, Austria

Vienna = cake (and coffee, of course). You can easily make an entire day revolve around visiting several cafes, each one boasting its own charm, ambience, history, and assortment of the sweet stuff. Try them all, but if you must narrow it down, don’t pass up AIDA. Pop upstairs, snag a stool at the counter, and order your slice. You’ll feel like a genuine Viennese, mid-century. And to match the sentiment, try the Mozart cake.

#cake #vienna #austria #cafe #culture #coffee #open-late #free-wifi

10. See what’s the weirdest thing you can find at Nashmarkt’s flea market (Saturday morning).


Wien, Austria

A colorful food market (cool to find weird spices, but a bit expensive for everyday groceries), lots of hip restaurants with food from all over the world, and a huge flea market on Saturdays (photo). #market #fleamarket #food #restaurant

11. Explore the alternative 7th, 8th and 9th districts.


Wien, Austria

WUK is a cultural center and almost anything you want it to be. It has food, drinks, live music, conferences, art, workshops… And if your bike is broken, they’ll repair it and teach you how to do it! #livemusic #musicvenue #cheap-eats #bikerepair #culturalcenter

12. Have a different Sunday morning watching an art film at the Top Kino.

TOP kino bar

Wien, Austria

One of my favorite spots in Vienna. Food, drinks and indie films! Their tomato soup is the best I’ve ever had and their schinken-käse toast is simple and perfect. #movies #cheap-eats

13. Attend the Sommernachtskonzert in Schönbrunn to greet the summer with a massive outdoor classical music concert.

Schönbrunn Palace

Wien, Austria

This used to be the summer residence of the Austrian imperial family. You can visit the palace and the gardens, and if you’re in Vienna in May or June, you should attend the Sommernachtskonzert: the Wiener Philharmoniker playing in the garden, for free! #livemusic #history

14. Feel like Orson Welles riding Vienna’s Giant Ferris Wheel.


Wien, Austria

Yes, that’s the Ferris wheel you saw in The Third Man, and you can ride it to get cool views over the city. If you don’t want to pay the rather expensive ticket (€9.50), you can just walk around the Wurstelprater, the oldest amusement park in the world (it opened in 1766). #amusementpark

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