So, you are visiting Vienna and you are obviously on the look-out for the best fun things to do in Vienna?
First of all, welcome! The capital of Austria and the capital of the old Austria-Hungarian Empire, Vienna has an awesome mix of history, culture, modern and quirky attractions, and has plenty to offer, no matter where your interests lie.
As an ex-pat living in Vienna, I have loved exploring the city and experiencing everything it has to offer.
In detail, here are 18 of my recommendations, what I think are the best things to do while you visit Vienna, to get that true, Viennese experience.
1. Have a coffee at one of the traditional Viennese coffeehouses
Perhaps the most famous cultural aspect of Vienna (in the eyes of locals at least, and forgetting opera for just one second), are the various coffeehouses of Vienna.
These are located throughout the city, but most of them can be found in the 1st District (the old town of Vienna), with some dating back a few hundred years.
The main draw of these places these days is the atmosphere – sit back, enjoy a coffee surrounded by the grandeur of the old Austria-Hungarian Empire, and feel like a Kaiser whilst sitting under chandeliers and rooftop mosaics.
There are many to choose from. Perhaps the most famous is Café Central, and while it is worth a visit, be prepared to wait in line for some time.
My personal favorite is Café Hawelka – situated down a quiet alley, the dark, wooden interior brings feelings of late 1800’s Vienna, which is often a welcome respite from the busy streets outside.
When you take in this experience, don’t feel rushed – the coffeehouses of Vienna have no concerns over time.
So, stay as long as you want: read a newspaper or simply relax those feet, knowing that the waiters won’t bother you unless you bother them for another coffee order.
Vienna also has a number of rooftop bars, which are perfect for a calm, mild summer evening. You can also go on an evening food tour if you like.
My personal favorite is the 25 Hours Bar, located in between Museums Quartier and Parlament.
A trendy lounge bar with ambient electronic music pulsing in the background, this bar is perfect for catching up with friends in a chilled environment. It has stunning views toward Rathaus, which is beautiful as the sun goes down and the lights come on.
For those who want to carry on after their moody rooftop drink, Vienna has plenty of clubbing options,.
You can, of course, party until the sun comes up.
Try Pratersauna, a converted pool and sauna complex in the Prater park, offering afternoon/evening beach vibes in the summer around their fully operational pool, with deep techno beats in multiple rooms after dark.
Also, you can try Volksgarten, an upmarket club. It is right next to Museumsquartier and Parlament. Volksgarten plays a mix of pop and retro music with a great outdoor party area in the summer.
Finally, for those interested in a darker and more eclectic style of music, go to Flex – located on the banks of the Donaukanal near Schottenring. It plays a mixture of
I have to be honest before I moved to Austria I thought its’ traditional drink was beer.
While this is true in western parts of Austria (and whilst still acknowledging that there are some decent local brews). It may come as a surprise that Vienna is actually smacked bang in the middle of the wine country.
The vineyards actually extend right up to the city boundary and are accessible by the public in many directions. These wineries in the summer open up small shops within the vineyards. People pop in after or during a day walking the green hills, taking in the beautiful views of Vienna in the distance over a glass of wine.
Austrians love ‘spritzer’, a combination of white wine and sparkling water, which makes your drink just that little more refreshing. My personal favorite is Mayer am Nussberg, about a 20-minute hike/stroll from Grinzing. You can access via the 38 tram and 38A bus from Shottenring.