“Vienna waits for you,” sang the American musician Billy Joel. Vienna awaits you too: The charming city, situated on the banks of the Blue Danube, is one of the oldest capitals in Europe and has always fascinated visitors from all over the world. This is inevitably due to the cityscape, which is characterized on the one hand by the splendor and glory of the imperial era and on the other hand by the avant-garde currents of modern times.
The city center
There are a number of sights in the Old Town of Vienna. The Kunsthistorisches Museum takes its visitors on an impressive journey through the world of art with works by Vermeer, Brueghel, Velásquez and Raphael, as well as an extensive collection of Egyptian artifacts. In the Belvedere the works of art of the main protagonist of the Vienna Secession, Gustav Klimt, can be admired. The Albertina is another gallery that deserves a visit with its beautiful collection and large temporary exhibitions. From here it is only a stone’s throw to the Vienna Hofburg. Here you get an insight into the private apartments of Emperor Franz Joseph and Empress Sissi. Not far from here is the hall where the Vienna Boys’ Choir performs as well as the Spanish Riding School, whose performances not only enchant horses.
The Schönbrunn Palace and the Gloriette, which belong to the palace complex, are considered emblematic for the Viennese cityscape. While St. Stephen’s Cathedral is the pride of local Gothic architecture.
Opera, music, theater, ballet and dance are cultural offerings that are not lacking in this city and are recognized and appreciated worldwide for their cultural and artistic heritage. Vienna was the place of work of great composers such as Mozart, Hayden, Liszt and Strauss.
The influence of music is still noticeable in Vienna today: in the Austrian capital, more than 150 gala dances are celebrated each year, a tradition that dates back to the time of the Habsburgs.
In Vienna, living well and happily. It is not for nothing that the Mercer study named the city the most liveable city in the world for the tenth time. You can feel this savoir vivre here in every corner: in the beautiful parks, on the Danube Island and at the Heuriger. Here you can relax from the hustle and bustle of the city, enjoy a leisurely stroll through the city and get in touch with the locals.
Families and adrenaline junkies flock to the Prater. The hours fly by in the amusement park. The ride on the Viennese Ferris Wheel should not be missed. The view over the rooftops of Vienna is breathtakingly beautiful.
As the capital of an old empire, the range of good restaurants in Vienna is wide and varied. Viennese Schnitzel, Kaiserschmarrn and Sachertorte are world-famous. You should have tried these Viennese specialties in any case. In the city center you will find many cafes that understand Viennese fine bakery art. Do you have an appetite for something else? From Arabic kebabs to Japanese sushi, Argentinean barbecues to American fast food venues, there is something for every taste and mood in the city. The largest selection can be found in the surroundings of Kärntner Straße.
Moving around the city
Many of the sights of Vienna are located in or around the ring, such as the best museums, the Hofburg and St. Stephen’s Cathedral. Within the ring, these tourist attractions are within walking distance.
To get there or to reach more distant destinations such as Schönbrunn Palace, use the excellent public transport network with metro, trams, buses and trains. Tickets for one trip (2 €), one day (6,70 €), 48 hours (11,70 €), 72 hours (14,50 €) and one week (15 €, valid from Monday to Sunday) are available in kiosks and tobacconists or at vending machines at train stations.
An interesting alternative is the Vienna City Card, which gives you a discount for the price of 29 € 72 hours of unrestricted transport and 210 attractions, cafés and restaurants. The card is available in hotels and tourist information centers.
The Fiaker, two-horse cabs, are an integral part of the cityscape and a very special way to explore Vienna. A 30-minute carriage ride costs about 50 €.
The airport (VIE) (www.viennaairport.com) is located in the suburbs of the city and offers several flights to major European and Austrian cities such as Salzburg and Innsbruck. The fastest connection between the terminals and the city center is the City Airport Transfer (CAT), a train that will take you to your destination in just 16 minutes for € 12. He leaves between 05:38 and 23:35 and drives to the station Wien Mitte. The cheapest way to / from the airport is the S-Bahn line S7, which runs from about 05:00 to midnight. The journey, which takes about 25 minutes, costs only 4 €.
Vienna is very well connected to the largest cities in Central Europe. The services of ÖBB (www.oebb.at) are fast and reliable. Major destinations include Munich (4 hours), Bratislava (1 hour), Salzburg (3 hours), Innsbruck (4 hours) and Budapest (2.5 hours).