Vienna (German: Wien) is the capital of the Republic of Austria. It is by far the largest city in Austria (pop. 1.7m), as well as its cultural, economic, and political centre. As the former home of the Habsburg court and its various empires, the city still has the trappings of the imperial capital it once was, and the historic city centre is inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The low-lying Danube plain in and around what is now Vienna has had a human population since at least the late Paleolithic: one of the city's most famous artifacts, the 24,000-year-old Venus of Willendorf, now in Vienna's Natural History Museum, was found nearby. Vienna's own recorded history began with the Romans, who founded it in the 1st Century CE as Vindobona, one of a line of Roman defensive outposts against Germanic tribes. Vindobona's central garrison was on the site of what is now the Hoher Markt (the "High Market" due to its relative height over the Danube), and you can still see the excavations of its foundations there today.
Vienna hosted the Habsburg court for several centuries, first as the Imperial seat of the Holy Roman Empire, then the capital of the Austrian Empire, and later of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, which finally fell in 1918 with the abdication of the last Emperor Karl I. The court tremendously influenced the culture that exists here even today: Vienna's residents are often overly formal, with small doses of courtliness, polite forms of address, and formal dress attire. One of the many paradoxes of the quirky city is that its residents can be equally modern and progressive as they are extremely old-fashioned.
The empires also served to make Vienna a very metropolitan city at an early time, and especially so through the years of industrialization and fall of the Austro-Hungarian Empire at the turn of the 20th century. Imperial Austria and Austro-Hungary were multi-lingual, multi-ethnic empires and although the German-speakers normally played the dominate roll in Vienna there has long been ethnic and lingual diversity in the city. Proof of Jews in the city dates back to 10th century . After World War Two many of the city's minorities had been exiled or killed and much of the city lay in ruin. When Austria was given souvernity after the post World War Two occupation, it was eventually established that Austria was going the way of the West and not that of the Eastern Block. So the city became more isolated from its previous ties to its Slavic and Hungarian neighbors; the east of Austria was surounded by the Iron Curtain. Vienna had gone from being the well estabilished metropolitan city of Central Europe to the capital of small a predominately German-speaking nation of states with strong regional identities.
Since the formation of the first Austrian Republic and the first mayoral election 1919 the Socail-Democratic Party of Austria has had the majority of represenatives on the common council and controlled the mayoral seat. During the early years, the socialist Red Vienna ("Rote Wien") revolutionized the city, improving the extreme counditions that the industrial revolution and rapid urbanization had created. Most famously the city built many housing projects (housing estates or "Gemeindebauten"), and they also began to offer many social services and made improvements across the board in quality of life. The public housing that was built at that time is now famous for its distinctive style. To this day the city continues to build public housing and about a third of the city's residents live in it, some 600,000 people! Obviously through this high precentage, the quality, and the integration of public housing across the city have kept it from becomming as stigmatized as in most cities. The Viennese are used to having the city government in their lives, and of course have a love-hate relationship with it. Vienna functions own its own as a federal state in the Austrian system (along with 8 other states) and the sense of local pride and home is more of being Viennese than being Austrian, many say.
Spring starts sometime in late March, normally it is very breif and summer-like weather sets in before the trees have had time to grow back their leaves.
Summer in Vienna is usually warm. Weather in June and July is moderate and sunny with a light summer windy breeze. In August, there are some hot and humid days where it reaches 34°C (93°F), but overall, summer in Vienna is pleasant.
Autumn starts around September and it gets colder as it approaches November. A main disadvantage of the Viennese climate is that it is rather windy and usually overcast during these months.
Winter in Vienna can be just above 0°C (32°F) and drizzeling for days on end, or just below with dustings of snow that manage to melt again quickly. There is the occasional cold-snap where it will stay below freezing for a week or two at a time. Due to Vienna's relative easterly position in the Central European Time Zone its daylight hours (if its not too gray outside entirely) are relatively early during the winter.
Traditional Vienna is but one of the many façades of this city, the downtown area of which is a UNESCO world heritage site and sometimes begrudgingly compared to an open air museum. But Vienna is also a dynamic young city, famous for its (electronic) music scene with independent labels, cult-status underground record stores, a vibrant club scene, multitudes of street performers, and a government that seems overly obsessed with complicated paperwork. However, people are willing to go out of their way or bend the rules a little if they feel they can do someone a favor.
The Viennese have a singular fascination with death, hence the popularity of the Zentralfriedhof (Central Cemetery), where there are more graves than living residents in Vienna, as a strolling location and of Schrammelmusik - highly sentimental music with lyrics pertaining to death. Old-fashioned Sterbevereine (funeral insurance societies-literally translated "death clubs") provide members with the opportunity to save up for a nice funeral throughout the course of their lives. This service does not exist solely to save their children the hassle and expense - it is considered absolutely mandatory to provide for an adequate burial. Vienna even has the "Bestattungsmuseum", a museum devoted to coffins and mortuary science. The country’s morbid obsession may be correlated with its higher suicide rate when compared with the rest of Europe. Here too, the socialist Vienna has its hand, the city also offers a socialized undertaking service , with hearses branded in the same department of public works logo as the subway cars, and a link to the transit-planner on their website.
Vienna is also famous for its coffee culture. "Let's have a coffee" is a very commonly heard phrase, because despite incursions by Starbucks and Italian-style espresso bars, the Kaffeehauskultur is still the traditional way to drink a cup of coffee, read the newspaper, meet friends, or fall in love.
Addresses in this articles are written with the district number preceding the street name, the same as street signs in Vienna. So 9., Badgasse 26 is Badgasse #26 in the 9th district. Hence you can also always tell what district you are in by the first number on street signs. Districts can also be made into a postal code by substituting the XX in A-1XX0 Vienna (0X for districts below 10), for instance A-1090 Vienna for the 9th district and A-1200 the 20th, and are sometimes referred to as such.
Common points of reference are often used in Vienna in addition to districts, most noteablly public transportation stops. Reference to U1/U4 Schwedeplatz or Schwedenplatz (U1, U4) means that something is near to the Schwedenplatz stop on the underground lines 1 and 4. Normally if the place is not directly at the subway stop you can ask around and find it easily.
The Vienna Tourist Board operates information and booking booths at the airport Arrival Hall, 7AM-11PM and in the center at 1., Albertinaplatz/Maysedergasse. Information and free maps are also avialible from the ÖBB InfoPoints and offices at train stations.
Vienna has 23 districts or wards know singularly as Bezirk in Austrian German. These function subordinatly to the city as decentralized adminstrative branches of the commune, as well as making local decisions. They vary immensely in size and each has its own flair.
The city has a very centralized layout radiating from the historic first district, or Inner-City with the Stephansdom and Stephansplatz at the centre of a bullseye. It is encircled by the Ringstraße (Ring Road), a grand boulevard constructed along the old city walls, which were torn down at the end of the 19th century. Along the Ringstraße are many famous and grand buildings, including the Rathaus (City Hall), the Austrian Parliament, the Hofburg Palace, the Natural History Museum, the Museum of Art History (Kunsthistorisches Museum), and the State Opera House.
Districts 2-9 are considered the core districts and are gathered within the Gürtel (Belt Road), which encircles the core districts as an outer ring parellel to the Ring around the first district, with the noteable exception of Leopoldstart (District 2).
Leopoldstadt (the 2nd District) is the southern half of the island that is formed between the Danube and the Danube Canal. It streches from the more wild forests of the Prater in the south up through the point where the Prater becomes a more formal park and amusement park where the transportation hub Praterstern is located. Going onward to the North are several neighborhoods from the Gründerzeit with dense housing including impressive Neo-Baroque buildings. Towards the north of the district along the Danube Canal across from Schwedenplatz is the Karmaliterviertel (Karmaliter Quarter) which was once a Jewish ghetto and today is the hub of Jewish life in Vienna. This area is indeed quite diverse across the board and is becomming gentrified. At the edge of that area is the Augarten. The area past that has been hand-picked for an intense development project that will turn several former freight yards into entire new neighborhoods. Along the Danube are numerous massive housing projects from the twenties onward.
Landstraße (District 3) is a rather large district to the southeast of the center seperated more or less by the Wien River (which is partially underground and otherwise chanellized. Streching from the station Wien Mitte and the surrounding business and financial district where the lively shopping Landerstraßer Haupstraße shopping street begins over quiet residential areas where the Hundertwasser Haus is located all the way to the industrial hinterlands and the bus station at Erdberg in southeast to through neighborhoods countaining examples of public housing like the Rabenhof and many embassies to the Belvedere Palace and the Soviet Memorial at Schwarzenbergplatz.
Wieden (District 4) and Margareten (District 5) run from the area around the Opera south to where a the gigantic new central station is being built, with energetic pockets of businesses and squares to be discovered from the University of Technology to artsy galleries to a cluster of hair-cutting salons to even Vienna's miniture version of a Chinatown. This districts are bordered by the Wien River to the north.
Mariahilf (Distric 6) contrasts between the more raw areas around the Wien River where the Naschmarkt covers neighborhoods of bars and other popular bohemian and queer haunts along the Gumpfendorfer Straße, and it borders Neubau along Vienna's most popular shopping street the Mariahilferstraße up the the hill from the Gumpfendorfer Straße.
Neubau (District 7) starts with the aclaimed MuseumsQuartier next to the center and spreads across popular hip areas to the Westbahnhof (Western Railway Station).
Josefstadt (District 8) is the smallest district. Alsergrund (District 9) is known to be more affluent and also includes much of the University of Vienna several cozy business districts.
The outer 14 districts are largely less urban but are equally as diverse streching from Floridsdorf (21st District) which radiates from its own town center in the northeast on the eastern bank of the Danube and Donaustadt (22nd District) which includes a mix of farms, suburbia, soviet-style housing blocks, villages, the United Nations Headquarters and the Donauturn (Danube Tower) and includes the largest development project in Central Europe at Aspern, through tarditional worker-oriented districts like Simmering (11th District) and Favoriten (10th District) in the south to more mixed urban areas with much immigrant culture like Rüdolfsheim-Fünfhausen (15th District) and Ottakring (16th District) in the West and Briggitenau (20th District) in the northeast. Don't miss Schönbrunn Palace to the West along the Wien River in Hietzing (13th district).
Most European airlines and a significant number of international airlines have direct connections to Vienna from their respective hubs. It is noteable that only Austrian Airlines fly to the Americas (New York, Toronto, Washington and Punta Cana) and AirTransat seasonally from Canada, there is no service to Northern England, Africa (aside from Egypt, Libiya and Tunisia), or Geneva making alternative airports more attractive from these origins.
There are numerous companies offering airport transportation just past customs. There are two very small monitors displaying all the next trains and the buses departing, to the right and left respecitvly at the back of the space where people recieve travellers. By preference:
S-Bahn (regular train) , 5:00-24:00, underneath terminal, The normal S-Bahn (commuter railway) S7 (and less-frequent S2 and RSB7) go to Wien-Mitte, as well as stopping at other useful hub stations including direct connection to every subway line in the city and numerous trams and trains. Taking between 18 and 27 minutes to reach Wien-Mitte, these are the cheapest and nearly the fastest option. Take any train headed towards 'Florisdorf' or 'Südbahnhof (Ost)'. For 'Südbahnhod' or 'Meidling' transfer at 'Rennweg' to a train in the opposite direction (S7 trains make 50 minute loop before arriving in Südbahnhof). One level below arrivals. Follow signs, seperate platform near the CAT. You need a Vienna Zone 100 ticket (€1.80 and including all connecting transit in Vienna, day/week/etc. passes are also valid) + one extra 'VOR' zone (
Vienna AirportLines Bus , 5:00-24:00, outside arrivals, Direct buses drive frequently between Vienna International Airport and assorted points in Vienna. Operated by Postbus, tickets can be purchased with cash from the operator.
Morzinplatz/Schwedenplatz line goes to the city center (District 1). Buses every 30 minutes, the trip takes 20 minutes. At Schwedenplatz there is a connection to the underground lines U1 and U4 as well as buses and trams. St. Stephans Cathedral (the very center of Vienna) is a five-minute walk away.
Miedling/Westbahnhof line is the railway connector, departing every 20-30 minutes and stopping at Miedling Railway Station(30 min.) and Westbahnhof/West Railway Station(45 min.). (Not to be confused with the Mödling line to Lower Austria.)
Kaisermühlen VIC/Kagran line goes to Vienna International Center/the UN and serves hotels in the eastern part of Vienna. Runs hourly and takes 20-45 min. depending upon destination.
City Airport Train (CAT) , underneath terminal, Over-advertised, non-stop to Wien-Mitte Station (Landstraße) in 16 minutes. Departs at :05 and :35 past the every hour. The return departs Wien-Mitte at :08 and :38 past the hour. The CAT is only useful if it is the next train departing (otherwise take the S-Bahn, as it runs the same route) and you are heading to Wien-Mitte area (otherwise consider a more direct train or bus). Star Alliance and Air Berlin/Niki offer check-in (including baggage) at Wien-Mitte (Landstraße) Station. Alternatively, consider luggage lockers and the regular train. City check-in may be denied from 90 minutes before departure.
Shuttle provided by hotel, Select Vienna hotels offer guests shuttle service to and from the airport, usually for a fee that's cheaper than a taxi, though sometimes you will share the shuttle with guests from your own or nearby hotels.
, Cab fare is not set, so agree before getting in; to anywhere for €25-€30. If you don't care to negotiate or your destination is at the northern or western edge of the city a pre-booked flat-rate transfer is likely cheaper and easier. There are several offices at arrivals. *Airport Service Wien* (43 676 351 64 20; call Mon-Fri 8am-6pm; taxi works 5:45am-9:30pm) €27 (max. 3 people) to/from any destination address within Vienna, *Rosenov Airport Transfers* +43-1-485 77 77 , Mo-Fr 9am-6pm offers flat-rate to Vienna for €29.
Vienna airport has a giant duty free shopping area (70 shops, operated by Travel Value). Even for a cursory tour, plan at least 1 hour. Shopping area is just after ticket control counters--so you only need to checkin before getting to shops, not pass security check nor passport control.
Refer to the brouschure for locations and tips. Your best bet for receiving tax refund is to find a refund office in the city. Otherwise, indicate that you need to receive tax refund at check-in. You then take any checked luggage containing tax-free purchases to a customs office (right in the check-in area) to get a stamp and drop off the checked luggage; then visit a nearby refund office.
Customs officers don't normally ask you to actually unpack and show your purchases. You will be asked if any applicable purchases are in your hand luggage. Although it is illegal, you may be encouraged to lie to agents, saying that everything is in your checked luggage even if it isn't. This is due to an otherwise tideous process; you have to visit yet another office by the gates. (At the C Gates you will have to ring for an officer, wait to be picked up by bus and taken to the a refund office and back to your departure--allow 1 hour for the whole procedure.) Alternatively, you can visit a refund office on arrival in your home country--provided that you visited customs and had your recipeits stamped in Vienna. Additional commission or unfavourable exchange rate can apply if refunding in other country.
Bratislava Airport (ICAO : LZIB, IATA : BTS) is located ca. 54 km (34 miles) from Vienna International Airport across the Slovak border. The airport is the largest in the Slovak Republic and the home base of Danube Wings , though the budget airline Ryanair has the most flights. Transfer options:
Train , Bratislava public bus 61 to final stop, Hlavná stanica/Main Station (buy bus ticket at yellow machine before boarding and stamp in the bus). Buy ticket to Vienna and take the train to Wien Süd (or the occasional train Wien West, Wien Florisdorf or Wien Parstern). Takes about two hours, if things go well.
Late arriving flights:, Should an evening flight arrive late, after 22:30 you can bargain for a cab or spend the night. There is no longer a late train service as of 2010.
Early departing flights: , Take a cab, spend the night at a hostel or at the airport, otherwise a slew of trains run between Wien Südbahnhof (aka Ostbahnhof) and Bratislava Petezalka Station. Get a cab from there or bus 96 runs between the airport and Prokofievova, a few blocks from that station, you may need a map or to ask for directions. The station exit that you are looking for is an underpass next to a big road, not the main exit. It is possible to catch 8AM flights this way.
There are a number of other smaller airports within two hours of Vienna which are served by budget airlines; it is therefore often cheaper to fly to a nearby city and connect by train or bus. Ryanair flies to Linz (2 hours by train), Graz (2 1/2 hours by train), and Brno (2 1/2 hours by train or bus).
Budapest and Munich Airports are 4-5 hour journeys but can mean substatial savings on intercontinental trips. There is a thrice daily direct albet not so speedy shuttle from Budapest Ferihegy Airport to Vienna Schwechat Airport . € 30. It is also possible to transfer via bus or train from Budapest city which can be reached easily from Ferihegy. From Munich International Airport you should take the commuter train into the city and transfer to a high-speed train (ICE, RailJet) to Vienna at Munich's main station. The ÖBB (Austrian Railways) sell tickets directly from that airport to Vienna from €29.
The station names of all stops in Vienna start with its German name "Wien". This is internationally recognized and helpful for buying tickets. The railways are managed by the ÖBB (Austrian Federal Railways). Read more about train travel within Austria and reaching Austria by train.
Until 2010 Vienna had several large train stations (Südbahnhof, Westbahnhof, Nord, Mitte). Currently Südbahnhof (South Station) has been closed for construction of a main station and the others are working but under construction. Many trains that used South Station now stop or terminate at the station Wien Miedling. Be sure to check scheduals and it is advised to take extra time when departing from these stations as the temporary provisions are not always easy to navigate.
It can be puzzling to understanding where trains depart and arrive, i.e. trains heading East often leave from West Station. It is best to check the scheduals online and plug in the exact train, subway or tram stop you are going to/departing from, this will give you the quickest solution. Railway agents are likely to give you an easy answer where the most train to somewhere leave from, you may not be told about certain trains that don't fit the regular pattern.
Ticket offices are noramlly open during all departure hours at Wien Miedling and Wien West (around 5AM-11PM). It has come to light that with more trains leaving from stations like Wien Praterstern, trains depart outside of ticket office hours. If this is the case you can buy the ticket on-board from the conductor, they are only able to sell regular as well as certain discounted tickets (cash only), so it is best to buy ahead if possible.
There are very frequent trains for all neighboring regions and countries. Night trains and quicker Euro-City trains arrive from virtually every city in Central Europe. High-speed ICE, RailJet, and Pendilino trains arrive from places like Munich, Budapest, Zurich, and Prague. There are frequent (at least hourly) regional trains to Czech, Slovak and Hungarian border regions.
When buying tickets always consider two domestic tickets instead of one international one, as it is often cheaper. Tickets used to only be sold this way and can normally still be purchased to the border and then from the next conductor from there to your destination, sometimes you can even buy both tickets before departure. No, you don't actually have to change trains!
From Czech border towns and as far as Brno you can buy "Wien Spezial" discount ticket. Consider buying it conjunction with a domestic ticket if comming from elsewhere like Prague, they should be able to sell you both tickets.
The ÖBB sell one-way 'SparScheine' to Brno(€12) and Prague(€29). Its cheaper to just get this to Brno and buy an onward domest ticket to Prague(€10), and there is better availibilty than with the single Prague ticket.
EURegio tickets are valid from Vienna to cities near to the border and tourist towns, including the return ticket with-in four days; Znojmo €15, Mikulov €18, České Budějovice (Budweis) €27 or Český Krumlov €27, and Plzeň €29 (children half-price, weekly and monthy tickets availible).
From Budapest East/Kelti pu buy a discounted round-trip ticket, "kirandulójegy" (excursion or 4-day ticket) for €31. It includes the return with-in 4 days and is valid for all public transportation in Vienna for 4 days. So its a deal even if you don't need a return ticket to Budapest. There are limited amount of SparSchiene tickets each day for €13. All tickets are valid in all trains (including the high-speed RailJet). Trains confusingly depart Budapest East (Kelti pu) and arrive at Vienna West Station (Wien West). Direct trains run every two hours or more. Otherwise transfer at Győr.
to Hungary the ÖBB offers tickets from €19 to Budapest as well as the EURegio ticket (Vienna to Hungary and return with 4 days); Mosonmagyaróvár €12, Győr €19, Tatabánya €25, Fertöszentmiklós €19, and Szombathely € 22 (children half-price, weekly and monthy tickets availible).
From Bratislava a standard one-way ticket costs €9.
to Bratislava the ÖBB offers an EURegio ticket for €14 valid for a same-day return and on the public transportation in Bratislava.
A one-way ticket costs the same as EURegio but doesn't include public transportation in Bratislava. If you are headed to Bratislava Main Station (Hlavná stanica) you'll need a ticket from the edge of Vienna: 'Stadtgrenze' Wien-Erzherog-Karl-Str (given you have a valid public transit ticket) to the border at Marchegg (€5) from there to Bratislava is about €2 from the Slovakian coductor, if she makes it to you. Heading to Bratislava Petrzalka you can buy a ticket to the border at Kitsee, its only 2 km (€0.27) from Bratislava.
Each railway has an independent partnership with others, so tickets can be much cheaper to (or from) neighboring countries. A common type is the so called CityStar ticket that is valid for return and can be sold any station in both of the participating countries. Sopron in Hungary is near to Vienna (€14, hourly trains) for tickets on MÁV Hungarian Railways at that train station (operated by the Raaberbahn Railway ). Hungarian prices . Bratislava in Slovakia is another nearby alternative. Most tickets need to be purchased 3 days in advance, possibly meaning an extra trip to the border to buy the ticket in advance.
Greece CityStar tickets are sold between anywhere in Greece and Hungary.
Turkey Buy a ticket to the border at Kapikule (€5 from Istanbul), get a ticket from Bulgarian Railways.
Serbia Serbian Railways sell the so called Wien Sepzial for €70 return from Belgrade, but a cheaper connection can be made through Budapest, buying the Budapest-Vienna portion in Hungary (€56 return).
Car ownership is common in Vienna and about 1/3 of the trips taken with-in the city are by car. However driving can be confusing and expensive espeacially if you are not familiar with the city.
Most Austrian highways ("Autobahn") terminate/originate in Vienna. See the Austran article for more information about driving in Austria.
Avoid the A23 Südosttangente at rush hour. Traffic jams are almost guaranteed there as well as throughout the city streets at rush hour.
Parking anywhere within distircts 1-9 and in specially marked areas is restricted to 120 minutes (between nine and 22 hours, M-F) and subject to a fee of €1.20 per hour unless you have a resident permit. Payment is made by marking the time of arrival on a ticket ("Parkschein"), which can be bought at tobacco shops. Therefore, if you wish to leave your car in the central districts for the period of your stay, you cannot simply park it on the street. You must either book a hotel that offers parking or leave it at a commercial car park (Parkhaus, Parkgarage). These can be very expensive (for instance, €32 per day in the Parkgarage Freyung). A cheaper alternative is Park and Ride, normally available at U Bahn stations in the city periphery, for example at U3 Erdberg station (€2.70 per day), or to leave it on the street in one of the outer districts.
Most international busses (the following unless noted) leave from the Vienna International Busterminal (VIB) located adjacent to the subway stop Erdberg (U3), many also stop at the Airport or Südtirolerplatz(U1) where there is a bus depot in the southwest corner called "Waldmanngründen." Timetables .
It is safe to assume that discounts are avialible (about 10% from Eurolines affiliates, about 15% on independent carriers) for those under 26 and over 60 on walk-up fares but not on discounted advanced purchase ("promo") tickets.
Eurolines AT/Blaguss manages many buses. Their own vehicles have assured quality but this is not the case of all of their international partners. Always check the web-pages of both the arrival and departure countries' Eurolines affiliated operator for the best price.
There are no sheerly private domestic inter-city lines in Austria. There are several regional services from Vienna operated by a mix of the federal government, the states of Lower Austria and Burgenland, local governments and coach operators. Sometimes the cash-price for these is marginally lower than the train, otherwise the normal VOR public transport rates apply. They are most useful in traveling to the countryside although timing and different departure locations in Vienna also can make them attractive in certain cases for inter-city travel. All routes are operated with high-quality coaches and regional buses.
Dr. Richard , Operates routes to southern Lower Austria, Burgenland and Styria. Although it makes numerous regional stops it is possible to take route *G1* all the way to Graz in about the same amount of time as the train. Up to 4 daily buses departing from Karlsplatz (Friedrichstraße 7 across from the Secession Building), free wifi.
If you are travelling to the Balkans there are plenty of buses daily. Some may not be advertized and tickets are often not for sale at the ticket counter, rather from the bus driver or attendant. Ask around, most of them leave in the afternoon. Buses from some non-EU countries allow smoking in part of the bus and may be subject to higher scrutiny at the border. For example a round-trip ticket to Belgrade can be found for €50. Many operators smuggle or transport goods to supplement thier low fares and the Hungarian border gaurds are not afraid partaking in bribery with non-EU operators, you will never be asked to participate monetarily, although a bus driver may ask to put a carton of cigaretts above your seat or in your luggage, you wont get in any troble for that but it is also okay to decline.
Ecolines , direct to Sofia. Arrives at Südtirolerplatz.
Croatiabus , 2x daily direct from Zagreb. Arrives at Südtirolerplatz.
Autobusni promet d.d. Varaždin , up to 3x daily direct from Zagreb. Arrives at Südtirolerplatz.
SRBIJATRANSPORT, Pozarevac via Belgrade to VIB daily.
Shuttlebus , Is a direct van service to Český Krumlov that will pick you up at your door, and regularly departs from several hostels. Has at least one daily run schedualed. It takes just 3.5 hours compared to the train which is infrequent, requires changing trains twice and takes at least 4.5 hours total, but the round-trip shuttle costs 3x as much as a EURegio round-trip train ticket: more pratical for one-way trips.
Bohemian Lines , +420 416 810 054, +420 416 810 054, Daily 8AM-8PM, Runs twice a week or more from nearby Brno. Its a cheap solution with no advanced purchase requirement, you just have to get yourself to Brno on another bus company (€5-€8 from Vienna). €61+€5/€107+€10rt.
Eurolines CZ/Touring Bohemia, s. r. o. , Includes free newspapers, magazines and bottled water. Requires two seperate tickets: Copenhagen-Prague from €40/€69rt, Prague-Vienna from €7/€14rt. Prices only availible for advance bookings.
Gullivers , You can book yourself in advance for a much lower price on the same buses that Eurolines puts you on as two seperate tickets one from Copenhagen to Berlin (from €19) and one from Berlin to Vienna (from €33), you may want to leave extra time as change is your responsibility.
Orangeways , Low cost. Departs from Südtirolerplatz (U1) daily. Calling at Nuremberg, Frankfurt Airport, Frankfurt, Cologne, Düsseldorf and continuing onward to the Netherlands. More expensive at peak times. Free hot drinks, movies, headphones, sometimes wifi. Also 2x daily from the Bratislava bus depot to Berlin for €27, cheaper Viennese options and on a fast highway. The following five companies opperate a daily joint service to Dresden and Berlin, and less regular service and cooperation to other cities across Germany. Check each as ticket prices vary:
Jordan , run in conjunction with Veolia Eurolines Polska. Discounted tickets (the cheapest to Poland) on their Polish booking site : Krakow €30, Katowice €30, Lodz €33, Warsaw €35.
It can be cheaper, faster and the buses can be more frequent if you change buses in Budapest, for instance on Eurolines HU/Volanzbus or Orangeways, depending upon your destination in Romania.
Postbus/Slovak Lines (Bus) , 19 daily buses from Bratislava Petrzalka (Einsteinova ul.) and Bratislava main bus depot to Südtirolerplatz(Subway U1). Intermediate stop at Vienna Airport, some at Erdberg (subway U3). Nitra, Košice and the rest of Slovakia: There are more frequent buses if you change buses in Bratislava, for instance on SlovakLines.
eurobus, a. s. , Has frequent buses traveling across Slovakia from their Košice base to across Europe via Vienna. Booking online is possible via their **homebuy** service albet only in Slovak. This service also is the best overview of buses between Slovakia and Vienna since it includes all scheduals.
Oz-Bus , stops in on its epic journey to Sydney. Tickets should be pre-booked and visas may need to be arranged before departure. Approximately monthly.
LOD , run a fast hydrofoil between Vienna and Bratislava May-October with up to two daily departures. The dock is in the 2nd District on the Danube proper (U1 Vorgartenstraße, Dock 6 on the Danube). Sailing time 1:30 downstream 1:45 upstream.
Twin City Liner , Is a fast catamaran between Vienna and Bratislava March-December with up to four daily departures. The dock is in the 1st District at Schwedenplatz. Sailing time 1:15 downstream 1:30 upstream.
Mahart Passnave , operate a fast hydrofoil between Vienna and Budapest May-October with daily departures during the peak season. The dock is in the 2nd District on the Danube proper (U1 Vorgartenstraße, dock on the Danube). Sailing time 5:30 downstream 6:30 upstream. The boat only moors Bratislava and Visegrád if pre-arranged.
Donauschiffahrt Wurm + Köck , operate ships between Vienna and Linz. Sailing is slow and expensive but the ships travel through the famous Wachau river valley. Combine tickets including return via train are availible at reasonable prices.
Several stations have more than one name. Get the idea the city and the railways have a tense history?
Wien Mitte - Landstraße
Wien Miedling - Philadelphiabrücke
Wien Nord - Praterstern
Vienna has a good public transport system , which includes rail, commuter rail, underground, trams (trolleys), and buses. The subway/underground is very efficient and will take you to within a few minutes walk of anywhere you are likely to want to visit. The subway alone has the second highest per-capita ridership in the world, and that is not accounting for the 27 tram lines, dozens of train lines or numerous buses.
Public transportation with-in the city proper, including most everywhere you are likely to visit (the entire subway and tram network) is a single zone (Kernzone 100). Any transportation can be used: subway, any train--even high-speed ones as long as you are traveling between two Vienna stations, trams, buses, night buses, and an inter-urban railway (the Wiener Lokalbahn) with-in the city limits.
You must validate (stamp) your ticket if the time and date is not printed on it before entering the subway platform or train, or as soon as you get on a bus or tram. If in doubt stamp it once. You do not need to show your ticket to the bus or tram operator. The system is proof-of-payment, although there are not many spot-checks, the fee for traveling without a ticket is €70.
Tickets are availible at machines (Visa, MC accepted) and from counters at subway and rail stations as well as at tabacco shops (Tabak "Trafik").
Single Trip Ticket €1.80 A single direction uniterrupted trip to anywhere, with as many transfers as needed. (Children, Bikes, Dogs €0.90) Single Trip Tickets can also be purchased in trams and buses but cost €2.20 full fare, €1.10 reduced.
Shopping ticket/Einkaufskarte €4.60 Valid workdays from 8 AM to 8 PM
24-hour ticket €5.70 Valid from time stamped.
48-hour ticket €10.00 Valid from time stamped.
72-hour ticket €13.60 Valid from time stamped.
Week ticket/Wochenkarte €14.00 Valid Monday through Sunday only.
Monthly ticket/Monatskarte €49.50 Valid from the first of the month through the second of the fallowing month.
8-day Climate Ticket €28.80 Valid for an entire day until 1 AM the fallowing day, each day you stamp the ticket (fold it and stamp a new box as needed). It is possible stamp the ticket multiple times for multiple people on a single day if traveling in a group. (Could be used for four people for two seperate days, but four sections must be stamped each day.)
Note that children (up to 14 years) do not need a ticket on Sundays, holidays and during Austrian school vacations. Children (15-19 years) also do not, if they are enrolled in school in Austria.
If you're staying for a few days and hope to do tons of sightseeing and/or shopping, the Vienna Card (Wien Karte) is a good deal. It costs €18.50 and is good for 72 hours of unlimited public transit within Vienna. The card also gets you discounts (typically €1 or €2 at the major museums and art galleries) to many attractions and shops. You can buy it at the airport, hotels, and underground stops.
See the airport section for details on transfer to/from the airport.
The best rail (heavy rail and underground) transport map is displayed at all ÖBB stations. There are so many lines that maps are normally very simplifed and maps of the tram network are not even published. It can pay to ask or check the best connection ahead of time . Major stations are well signed and connections are schedualed to match-up if service isn't frequent.
Vienna's rail network is often overlooked by tourists. The S-Bahn are trains running frequently outside of the core of Vienna and to nearby suburban areas and towns. You can also take regular trains with-in Vienna, for instance a high-speed train bound for Hungary from Wien Westbahnhof to Wien Miedling.
The most important rail streches:
Stammstrecke trains (i.e. S2, RSB7, R35, REX759) run every 2-5 minutes (confusingly the left platform goes northbound and viceversa--the opposite of a road). Most important stations: Miedling-Südtirolerplatz-Südbahnhof-Rennweg-Mitte-Praterstern-Florisdorf. Ask other passengers if you are unsure which train.
S45 runs in the northwest of the city every 5-10 minutes along a beatiful railway built by architect Otto Wagner.
Rail trips past the edge of Vienna (in Vienna all rail stations start with "Wien") require an extra ticket. These are avaible as zones in VOR (Austria's Eastern Transit Region) or as point to point tickets from the railways. It is easiest to buy extra zones from the edge of the city. If you have a Vorteilscard a railway ticket will be cheaper; if you are planning to transfer to a bus the VOR-ticket is also valid for it, with-in the same zone.
The five U-bahn lines (i.e. U1) are the most common way of getting around Vienna. These underground, metro or subway lines have trains every 2-7 minutes and cover most of the important parts of the city and sights.
Tram(Bim, Straßenbahn) lines have just a plain number or letter (i.e. O,1). There are 27 lines which stop locally, useful for taking things a bit slower and seing more of the city.
The famous Ring lines were recently changed: there is a tourist tram around the ring, or you can take tram 1 (bound for Prater-Hauptalle) from Oper to Schwedenplatz and take tram 2 (bound for Ottakring) from Schwedenplatz back to Oper.
The Wiener Lokalbahn (WLB) also referd to as the Badener-Bahn is an interurban railway traveling from the Opera running as a tram on-street southwest through Vienna to Miedling station where it becomes a railway continuing onwards through the 23rd District and through suburbs and the rolling wine hills in Lower Austria to Baden.
Bus lines are denoted by a number that ends in letter (i.e. 3A, 80B). You are unlikely to need to take a bus, but it is safe to assume if you see one that you can get on and it will take you to some higher form of transportation like the U-Bahn. Cheaper tickets (€1) are availible for most 'B' buses; regular tickets and passes are also valid.
The regular trams, trains and buses run until about 00:30 (just past midnight). Most of the commuter rail is shut between 1 AM and 4 AM. Luckily, a dense network of night buses is available for those who have a rather nocturnal approach to tourism. Regular tickets are valid. Most buses terminate at "Kärntner Ring, Oper", which allows for easy interchange. Intervals are usually 30 minutes, with some busier lines (especially on Friday and Saturday night) traveling more frequently. Normal service resumes at 5 AM. From summer 2010 all U-Bahn lines will 24 hours on Friday and Saturday.
Taxis are plentiful and can normally be hailed on the street or found at a taxi-stand. Fares are technically set to a meter price but if you prefer you can negotiate a fare. Always negotiate when traveling to the Airport or outside of the city limits as fares are not set. Pedicabs, horse-drawn coaches and the like are also availible.
Avoid driving a car within the central ring if possible. While cars are allowed on many of the streets there, the streets are narrow and mostly one-way. They can be confusing for a visitor and parking is extremely limited (and restricted during the day). Due to the comprehensiveness of the transit system, you most likely will not need a car within Vienna, except for excursions elsewhere.
Furthermore, it might be a good idea to leave your car at home during rush hours. Vienna's streets can become a little clogged in the mornings and early evenings and the drivers are not really known for being especially polite and friendly.
Pedestrians have the right of way in crossing all roads at a crosswalk where there is no pedestrian signal present. If there is such a pedestrian crossing on an otherwise straight section of the road, there will be a warning sign – you are required to yield to any pedestrian on this crossing! Austrians accustomed to experienced local drivers will step out with little thought and force you to stop, so slow down here and be careful! When driving in a neighborhood this "right of way to pedestrians" is an understood rule at every intersection, although pedestrians will be more careful before they step out. Again, be on the lookout for this – if you see a pedestrian waiting to cross, you should stop at the intersection for him or her.
Cycling is another option for travelling within Vienna, although it is still seen more as a lesiure activity in Vienna. Vienna's compact size makes cycling attractive. On a bicycle you can reach most places of interest within half an hour. There are many bicycle paths and lanes along major streets, in parks, and by the rivers. However, it can be complicated to cross town because the lanes follow illogical routes. One major complaint is that bicycle facilites were an afterthought and this is very appearant, many stop lights and intersections are dangerously or annoyingly set for bicyclists and paths are very illogical: they are sometimes on-street sometimes off, sometimes shared with pedestrians, sometimes not, and can vary or end out of nowhere. You are required by law to use a bike lane or path if there is one, unless it is blocked, otherwise regular traffic laws apply. Lights are required at night as are independently functioning brakes.
If your destination is in the outer suburbs, or you want to take a relaxed ride to the countryside, you may consider taking your bike on the U-Bahn (prohibited at rush hour, and always in buses and trams) or on a train. You need a reduced (children's) ticket for your bike.
CityBike the city's pet advertizing company a short-term shared bike system. There are many stations in the inner districts and you can register to borrow a bike with your credit card (€1/to register) or obtain a Touristcard (€2/day). The first hour is free, the next €1, the third €2, etc. So always return your bike right away, 15 minutes after you return it, the system restarts counting with a new free hour, etc.
Walking can also be very pleasant. The inner ring is quite compact with lots of pleasant cobblestoned and paved streets. It can be crossed in about 20 minutes.
Bring a comfortable pair of walking shoes as this is the most common way of getting around.
Museumsquartier (MQ: The Museum District) has served as a cultural district of Vienna since 2001. Though many museums and cultural institutions are situated there, it is not only a place for art. It is also an urban living space and people go there to spend some time, sitting in one of the cafés or perhaps playing boccia. It is also popular to meet freinds for a BYOB evening here. The Leopold Museum and the MUMOK are situated there. If you are interested in visiting a couple of these museums, combination tickets available at the MQ entrance will be cheaper than buying them individually at museum entrances. Note that MUMOK and Leopold has a strict policy of not allowing big bags inside the museum. Even your cameras (unless they can be tucked inside a small carry bag) will have to be deposited outside. MUMOK has a self service locker, which you might want to use when visiting Leopold, since Leopold charges €1 per person for the "cloak room" service. You can use free wifi at MQ provided by Quintessenz .
Kunsthistorisches Museum (Museum of Fine Arts) , €10 (students €7.50 / map €0.50) – Picture Gallery daily except Monday 10AM–6PM, Thursday 10AM–9PM, U2/U3 Volkstheater; tram D, 1, 2, 46, 49 bus 2A, 57A: Burgring Maria-Theresien-Platz (entrance), phone 525 24 0. One of the world's greatest art museums and in a palace that's a work of art itself. Like the Louvre, serious art fans may wish to devote more than a day to its treasures. The mother of all Austrian museums – there is no other word to describe the "Kunst" other than mind boggling. It contains a world-class exhibit of the Habsburgs' art collection, including Raphael, Titian, Caravaggio, Bosch, and Brueghel. Its, at the very least, a full day’s worth of sightseeing, if you intend to go through it thoroughly and attempt to ponder the importance of each major work. The better approach here is to break up sections of the museum and visit them over a series of days, or if that’s not an option, pick one section and concentrate on it alone. Beginning with another section of the museum, it’s possible to have a lunch or light dinner in the café and then continue through the Picture Gallery until closing time (especially on Thursdays, because the Picture Gallery is open until 9PM). The Museum has an excellent collection of ancient Egyptian, Greek, and Roman art. The coin & medals collection is also exhaustive in its scope. The Museum cafe is a bit pricey, but good, and in a beautiful setting. Like the Louvre, hand-held photography is permitted to help store and recall the numerous mind-boggling beautiful works of art at the Kunst.
Schatzkammer (Imperial Treasury) €7 (as a combined ticket with the Museum of Fine Arts) – Located in the Neue Hofburg, the Schatzkammer (also known as the Secular and Ecclesiastical Treasures) is the best part of the Hofburg and an absolute must on any tour of Vienna. It contains the Habsburgs' collection of jewels, crowns, and other valuables — perhaps the best on the Continent. Second only to a tour of the Kunsthistorisches Museum itself, of which the Schatzkammer is officially a part, there are 20 rooms of priceless treasures that give a fairly accurate feel for Habsburg court life over the centuries.
The New Palace (Neue Hofburg) – The New Palace is the newest and largest section of the Imperial Palace. It contains the Ethnological Museum and three branches of the Museum of Fine Arts. The Ephesus Museum contains classical art from Asia Minor. The Collection of Historical Musical Instruments is self-explanatory, but the jewel of the New Palace is the Collection of Arms. This collection, second largest in the world, houses an immense and exhaustive representation of weaponry from past centuries.
Albertina (State Apartments) €9.50 – Once a palace, it is now the most popular exhibition space in Vienna, mainly for traditional modern art. The building itself is an experience as well. It is home to a valuable drawing collection, including many works of the German Renaissance painter, Dürer.
The Belvedere , +43 1 79 557 0, +43 1 79 557 0, Open daily 10AM–6PM, 3, Prinz Eugen-Straße 27, Tram D, stop Belvedere, €13.50 (Upper and Lower) - Intended as a summer residence for Prince Eugene of Savoy, the Belvedere was located outside the city walls. Its two palace segments, the Upper and Lower Belvedere, later became the permanent home of the Austrian Gallery. The Oberes Belvedere (Upper) contains recent Austrian and international art from the past two centuries. Viennese art from the early twentieth century is well-represented in the permanent collection
The Imperial Furniture Collection – Vienna Furniture Museum,7, Andreasgasse 7, phone: +43 1 52433570. Opening Hours: Tu–Su 10AM–6PM. Wheelchair-accessible. The museum houses the largest furniture collection in the world. It's located just off bustling Mariahilfer Strasse. Take the orange underground line U3 (alight at Zieglergasse, take the Andreasgasse exit). The exhibit displays furniture for all the Austrian emperors since Charles VI (the father of Maria Theresa), furniture by the Thonet Brothers, Jugendstil, and the Viennese Modernist movement. In addition, they show other contemporary Austrian architects and designers, such as E.A. Plischke, Margarete Schütte-Lihotzky, Luigi Blau, and Franz West. Besides the permanent furniture collection, the museum also hosts two to three temporary special exhibitions on furniture design and photography each year. You can purchase a single ticket or a "Sisi Ticket," which allows you entrance to the Schönbrunn Palace, the Imperial Apartments, Sisi Museum, and the Imperial Silver Collection in the Hofburg.
MAK - Austrian Museum of Applied Arts / Contemporary Art , 1, Stubenring 5, phone: +43 1711360, open: Tu 10AM-midnight (MAK - NITE(c)), W-SU 10AM-6PM. Closed Monday. Free admission on Saturday. The museum has the MAK Design Shop and a study collection. The museum exhibits contemporary art, design, and architecture. To get there take the Subway U3, Tram 1, 2, bus 1A, 74A to Stubentor, and U4 to Landstrasser Hauptstrasse, City Airport Train from the airport to Bahnhof Wien Mitte. Also part of the MAK is the Depot of Contemporary Art (Gefechtsturm Arenbergpark) in the 3rd district Dannebergplatz/Barmherzigengasse. To get there take bus 74A to Hintzerstrasse or U3 to Rochusgasse. Open every Sunday from May 4 – November 30, 2PM-6PM. Exhibited works include spatial interventions and objects by international artists specifically developed for the MAK. A lovely addition to a visit to MAK is popping over the road for a coffee at the 100-year old Cafe Pruekel.
KunstHausWien (Vienna House of the Arts) , Untere Weißgerberstrasse 13, open daily 10AM–7PM (Every Monday regular admission is half off), Tel: +43-1-712 04 91. To get there, take the street Tram O/N and get off at Radetzkyplatz. €6 - Even an avowed hater of modern art can appreciate the KunstHausWien, Hundertwasser's (born Friedrich Stowasser in 1928) major contribution to the Viennese art world. In a time when artists often try to shock the public or merely impress other members of the rarefied gallery subculture, Hundertwasser's manifesto rings out as an utterly reasonable plea: The architecture of KunstHausWien would be a bastion against the dictatorship of the straight line, the ruler and T-square, a bridgehead against the grid system and the chaos of the absurd. Starting with the façade of the building, adapted from its prior life as a furniture factory, there is a Gaudi-in-Barcelona feel to the place. Windows peek out like eyes from curvy, rounded plaster and colorful paint. It's a Disneyland for grownups! Do not miss the Hundertwasserhaus and the shopping village situated about 300m from KunstHausWien. Very similar to Gaudi.
Pathologisch-anatomisches Bundesmuseum Wien (Pathological and Anatomical State Museum) Open Wednesday 3PM–6PM and Thursday 8AM-11AM. On top of restricted hours, the Narrenturm can be hard to find. Housed in a squat tower, which once was an insane asylum (the "Narrenturm" ("Fool's Tower"), this museum contains some of the dustier corners of the annals of medicine. You'll find preserved hydrocephalic infants, wax castings of tertiary syphilis, antique medical devices, and even a laryngeal tuberculous ulcer. The gift shop sells postcards depicting the best of these. Of similar character is the Josephinum , take trams 37-38, 40-42.
Technical Museum – This newly renovated museum near the Schoenbrunn Palace exhibits machines, transportations, electronic equipment, and the like from their first design up to their current form. It also depicts the development of Vienna as a city, on all its technical aspects (recycling, power, sewage, etc). The museum is huge (22,000 square meters) and requires at least two hours to go through. Take trams 10, 52, 58, stop Penzinger Strasse.
Natural History Museum – This museum was erected as a mirror to its twin museum, Kunsthistorisches Museum (Museum of Fine Arts). It exhibits various minerals (e.g. a collection of meteorites), fossils, stuffed animals, and skeleton reconstructions (among others, dinosaurs' skeletons). It also includes an anthropological section, where you can see the beautiful Venus of Willendorf which is 25,000 years old!
Haus der Musik (The Music House) This relatively new museum is a special museum, in that it attributes great value to interactive learning experience. It covers the history of the Vienne Philharmonic Orchestra, the history of Vienna as a centre of music making (Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, Mahler, Schubert and others are documented). In addition there are the more experimental sections of futuristic composition (The Brain Opera) and sound experiences. Highly recommended! Look for the happy hour. Take U1, U2, U4, trams 1,2, 62,65, J and D, stop Karlsplatz/Opernring. Closes at 9pm.
Liechtenstein Museum – A private collection of the Prince of Liechtenstein, it is exhibited in his once Viennese Residence. The richly decorated picture gallery mainly exhibits Baroque paintings, with a nice portion of Rubens. You can get there either with tram line D, stop at Seegasse or about 10 minutes by foot from U2 subway stop Schottentor.
Gemäldegalerie (Gallery of the Academy of Fine Arts) ; only in German) – A gallery owned by the Academy of Fine Arts, to which Hitler applied to before he decided to change to politics. It offers some paintings of Rubens and Bosch. Most interesting are the Renaissance and medieval exponents.
Freud Museum , +43 1 3191596, +43 1 3191596, Daily from 9AM–5PM, Berggasse 19, U2 Schottentor: 10 minute walk, or take tram D to **Schlickgasse**, This small museum is situated in Freud's historic flat where he practiced psychoanalysis for almost his whole life. However, the collection is limited mostly to documents of various kinds relating to Freud's life. Almost all of the flat's contents, including the famous original couch, went along with Freud to London when he fled the Nazis in 1939 and are now in the Freud Museum there.
Otto Wagner is the most prominent Viennese architect from the turn of the 20th Century. Two museums are dedicated to his work. At the Wagner Villa, ; only in German) you can see his private lodging in a very eccentric design. The villa is also beautifully located in the woods. In the rooms some paintings of Fuchs are exhibited, a painter who bought the house from the Wagner family. His painting were surprisingly influenced by the style of the villa. You can get there with tram number 49 (last stop). Another museum is the Otto Wagner Museum is located at the post office of his original design. At this museum you can see the more serious aspect of his artistic enterprise, that of public life. At the museum you can see some of the original furniture as well as his plans. Near the Schwedenplatz U1 stop (trams 1,2, 21, N).
Museum of Military History – A huge museum near the southern railway station featuring weapons and military maps from different periods. You can also see the open-top car in which Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the last Austrian prince, was shot in Sarajevo. His death triggered World War I and the eventual downfall of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. In the same room as this is the visibly blood-stained jacket he was wearing at the time of his assassination. Near the Southern Railway (Südbahnhof), trams 18, D, O.
Jewish Museum – A museum documenting Vienna's rich Jewish residents including Zweig, Freud, Herzl, Mahler, and Schoenberg. Three sites are available for one combined ticket: two museum sites and the main synagogue. Attached to the museum at Judenplatz are the archaeological remains of a medieval synagogue. The Stadttempel, the only historical synagogue in Vienna to have survived World War II, is accessible on through the guided tour. Call ahead for times.
If you are looking for exhibitions of modern art apart from the MUMOK and MAK there are several other places you could visit: MOYA – The Artists' House – The House of the Arts (see Hundertwasser above) – Atelier Augarten (a branch of the Belvedere) – Kunsthalle (Exhibition Hall) - there are two of them, both branches of the Museum District (MQ) and the Generali Foundation – Essl Collectionin Klosterneuburg (see below).
Mozart House (Mozarthaus Vienna) , +43 1 512 17 91, +43 1 512 17 91, Open daily from 10AM–7PM, Domgasse 5, U1/U3 Stephansplatz. The Mozarthaus is located east of the cathedral, This is the Viennese residence of Austria's most famous composer, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and a branch of the Vienna Museum.
Small Museums – There are plenty of small museums that follow special interests and are operated privately by the districts or societies. They range from a museum on abortion to the world's only museum on heating systems.
Karlskirche , , M-F from 09.00-12.30 and 13.00-18.00. Sunday and holidays: 12.00-17.45, Kreuzherrengasse 2, Largest Baroque cathedral north of the Alps, designed by the famous architect Bernhard Fischer von Erlach. Frescos done by Michael Rottmayr and paintings from the Italian Baroque painters Sebastiano Ricci and Giuseppe Antonio Pellegrini, and the Austrian painter Daniel Gran.
Kapuzinerkirche , daily 10.00 to 18.00, 1 and 2 November closed, 1010 Wien, Tegetthoffstraße 2, Notable mainly as the site of the *Kaisergruft*, a mausoleum housing the tombs of generations of Habsburg royalty.
Jesuitenkirche, 5125232, 7.00-18.30 daily, 1010 Wien Dr-Ignaz-Seipel-Platz 1, Has one of the most elaborate Baroque interiors in Europe.
Augustinian Friars' Church (Augustinerkirche), Josefsplatz 1, Facing the sculpture in the center of the square, the entrance is small and easy to miss – it's on the left hand wall of the square. Yet another example of the gruesome divide-and-conquer burial strategy of the Habsburg dynasty. It's said that other dynasties waged countless wars to acquire new lands, but
Stephansdom (St. Stephen's Cathedral) , +43/ (0)1/ 515 52-3526, High Mass: Sun and public holidays 10:15AM, in Jul and Aug 9:30AM, Guided tours of the Cathedral in English: Mon-Sat 3:45PM, Catacombs (only with guided tours): Mon-Sat 10AM-11:30AM and 1:30PM-16:30PM; Sun and public holidays 1:30PM - 6:30PM; North Tower (great bell): Nov-Mar 8:30AM-5PM, Apr-Jun and Sep—Oct 9AM-6PM, Jul and Aug 9AM-18:30 p.m. South Tower: daily 9AM-5:30PM, Stephansplatz, U1, U3: Stephansplatz, Yet another patchwork of architectural styles, but predominantly Gothic. None of the original construction remains—the oldest extant sections are the thirteenth century Giant Gate (Riesentor) and Towers of the Heathens (Heidentürme), both of which are Romanesque. The 448 ft South Tower (Südturm), often known by its Viennese diminutive Steffl (also a nickname for the entire cathedral), was finished in 1433. This is where the Pummerin, a huge bell cast from melted-down Turkish cannons, hangs. Steffl's intended twin, the North Tower (Nordturm), was never finished. In 1511, building in Gothic style ceased due to being out of fashion. Over fifty years later, in 1579, a Renaissance spire was added to the Nordturm to make it look less like the builders had stormed off the job. The main altar has a Baroque panel showing St. Stephen, Christianity’s first martyr. The organized tour is worth it, since some of the finest works of art in the cathedral can only be seen with a guide, such as Emperor Frederick III's red marble sepulchre and the immense Gothic carved Altar of Wiener Neustadt. The aborted North Tower has an observation deck with an amazing view of downtown Vienna. Nearby is the entrance to the catacombs, where legions of bishops and Habsburg body parts are buried (the intestines, specifically).
Votivkirche , +4314061192, 1090 Wien, Rooseveltplatz 8, U2 Schottentor, One of the most important Neo-Gothic religious architectural sites in the world (constructed between 1856 and 1879), the Votivkirche stands on a large square just outside the Ringstrasse boulevard, close to the University of Vienna. This church was erected on the location where an unsuccessful attempt to assessinate Emperor Franz Joseph took place in 1853. The plans were established by Heinrich von Ferstel (1828-1883), who chose to build the cathedral in the neo-Gothic style, borrowing heavily from the architecture of Gothic French cathedrals. The Votivkirche is made out of white sandstone, similar to the Stephansdom, which is very vulnerable to air-pollution and acid rain an therefore makes frequent renovations necessary.
The Wotruba Church — A beautiful cubist church on the top of a hill overlooking the woods. There is also an open air planetarium next to the church. To reach the church, take tram 60 to the Maurer Lange Gasse stop and then follow Maurer Lange Gasse up the hill until you see the green signs which point the way to the church. The walk is about ten minutes.
Kirche am Steinhof (Otto Wagner Kirche) , (+43 1) 910 60/11007, Saturday 3PM, all year round, 1140 Wien, Baumgartner Höhe 1, A special church constructed by the Viennese master architect, Otto Wagner. It is situated in a psychiatric hospital on the hills near the wood overlooking Vienna. Very beautiful! There are more ways to get there: from U4 station „Unter St.Veit“ take Bus 47A up to „Psychiatrisches Zentrum“ or at „Dr. Karl Renner Ring“ take Bus 48A to „Psych. Zentrum“ (that takes 35 minutes) or from U3 finalstation „Ottakring“ take Bus 48A to „Psychiatrisches Zentrum“. You have to enter the area of
The Old Synagogue — Underneath the Judenplatz (The Jewish Square), you'll find this underground medieval synagogue excavation. Amazingly, the synagogue was destroyed centuries ago, but its existence was remembered by the area's inhabitants up to the 20th Century. If you are interested in Vienna's Jewish side you can buy a combined ticket with the Jewish Museum and the Stadttempel, a well preserved 19th Century synagogue, which is being used as the main city's synagogue by the current growing Viennese Jewish community.
English places of worship If you are looking for more than just a religious building and, while on holiday, would like to worship in English, you will find many English-spaking churches in and around Vienna. You might like to try , , ,
Austrian National Library (Österreichische Nationalbibliothek) , 01/53410-348, Josefsplatz 1, Card catalogs may be an anachronism in today’s digitized world, but the Austrian National Library had the first one in existence, invented by the Habsburg court librarian. Unlike the printed library catalogs of the past, bound into book form, the card catalog could be rapidly updated and the library kept up-to-date. This well-ordered reader’s paradise has a collection that outshines many museums, thanks to its long association with the Habsburg imperial family. It gained an impressive collection when Emperor Josef II dissolved all the empire's monasteries – 300 manuscripts, 3,000 printed books, and 5000 diplomata. The library’s collection is approximately six million items strong and is the largest in Austria. It is a pioneer in digitalizing and placing its collection online. The oldest book in the collection is a fifteenth century Holy Gospels manuscript with scenes representing the four Evangelists (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) containing the coats of arms of the House of Austria, Styria, Tirol, and Carinthia, then ruled by Albrecht III, the book’s owner.
Chapel of the Imperial Palace (Burgkapelle) — The original chapel of the Palace, built in Gothic style 1447-1449, was made over in Baroque style. On Sundays and Catholic holidays (of which the Austrians celebrate many), the Court Musicians perform here. This group is made up of members from the Vienna Boys Choir, as well as performers from the orchestra and choir of the Vienna State Opera.
Opera House (Wiener Staatsoper) — The Opera House is probably the most-beloved symbol of Viennese arts, and one of the first buildings to be rebuilt in the postwar era. It was built from 1861-1869 under the direction of architects Eduard van der Nüll and August von Siccardsburg for then-emperor Franz Josef I. The first performance was Don Giovanni, an opera by Austrian native Mozart, on 25 May 1869. Though now as well-loved as any member of the family, the architecture of the Opera was barely tolerated by the picky Viennese when it opened. Van der Nüll did not take these criticisms of his work lightly and committed suicide. A few weeks later, von Siccardsburg died of a heart attack. Doubly cursed, the Opera building succumbed to bombs less than 100 years later, during WWII. After ten years of Allied control after the end of the war, many cultural institutions reopened to celebrate the birth of the new Austrian state. This time the Opera opened with an adopted son of Vienna's work: Beethoven's Fidelio. The lush curtains and overall elegance contribute to the atmosphere of the Opera (even the nosebleed seats, so steeply pitched and close to the ceiling a nosebleed becomes a distinct possibility). Inexpensive standing room tickets are made available for every performance and sold the day of the performance. The line forms about 2 hours prior to the performance. Post-performance, have some torte at the nearby Sacher Hotel (see entry). Guided tours in a number of languages are offered throughout the desk. The line at the front side door forms about 1/2 hour before the tour.
Prater (Park) including the Giant Ferris Wheel, , 729 54 30, May-Sep 9AM-midnight, U1, tram O, 5, 21: Praterstern, S1-S3, S7, S15: Wien Nord, The Prater Park began its life, as so many European parks did, as a carriage-riding area for the nobility. It is still a popular place to spend a weekend afternoon with family. An English engineering firm (Walter Basset) built the Giant Ferris Wheel (**Riesenrad**) from 1896-97. Others of the same era, built for world exhibitions and other parks in Chicago, London, Paris, etc. have long since been torn down. The Riesenrad has become a well-known symbol of Vienna, featured in many movies (most famously **The Third Man;** also **Before Sunrise** and **Ethan Hawke**) and picture postcards. It has 15 gondolas, some of which are incredibly ornate and large enough to host an extended family inside, offering a spectacular panorama of the city. The weirdest attraction in the Prater, though, is the **Kugelmugel** , a spherical house (diameter 7.68m) that, after failing to get a planning permit, declared independence from Austria. Originally built elsewhere, it was forcibly carted off to the Prater by Austrian authorities and now sits uninhabited and fenced off with barbed wire.
Secession Building , Friedrichstraße 12 (U-Bahn U1, U2, U4 (Karlsplatz)), Tel. 587 53 07-0, Tu-Fr 10-18, Tue-Sun 10AM-6PM, Thurs 10AM-8PM, Guided Tours Sat 3PM and Sun 11AM and by appointment. Architect Josef Maria Olbrich built this Jugendstil (German-style Art Nouveau) building 1897-98 as a display space for artists working in the new Secession artistic movement. It is topped by a giant, frothy golden ball, lovingly called "Krauthappel" by the Viennese, but the building was definitely not loved when it first opened. Notice a reactionary Viennese pattern here? The Opera building too was hated at first, but at least it wasn't called a "temple for bullfrogs" or "a bastard begot of temple and warehouse" as the Viennese Secession building was. The entryway features the motto of the Secessionist movement: Der Zeit ihre Kunst, der Kunst ihre Freiheit (To the time, its art, to the art, its freedom). Olbrich's mentor Otto Wagner, and also Gustav Klimt, whose astounding Beethoven Frieze is partially preserved in the basement, inspired the building’s design. The ceremonial front entrance is separate from the functional glass and steel exhibit hall in back. Entrance fee included with entrance to Belvedere Palace.
The Schmetterlinghaus Hofburg Wien 1010 tel 01/5338570 or 01 5332018 fax 01 5322872 email firstname.lastname@example.org April - October : Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday 10 - 16.45 Saturday Sunday & all public holidays 10 - 18.15 November - March: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday 10 - 15.45 Saturday Sunday & all public holidays 10 - 15:45 Adults €5:50 Seniors €5 Students with ID €4:50 Children 3 - 16 years €3 , a tropical greenhouse with an amazing collection of live butterflies, will delight both children and adults.
Spanish Riding School - Spanische Hofreitschule was first mentioned in a document dated 1572 and is the only equestrian institute in the world which follows a Renaissance model of classical schooling. Eleves, or students, begin their training immediately after completion of Austrian primary education (age 15 or 16), and are expected to be both sporty and clever. The school takes its name from a Spanish breed of horse first mentioned in Roman writings. In 1562, Emperor Maximilian II brought some of these Spanish horses to Austria to found a royal stud farm in Kladrub (Bohemia), housing them for a time in the "Stallburg" (oldest section of the Imperial Palace). The present school location was built in 1572. In 1580, Maximilian's brother, Archduke Karl, founded the stud farm in Lipizza near Trieste (now Slovenia). Interest in elegant riding had been growing for about fifty years at that point. During Renaissance times, powerful gentlemen who had already conquered the worlds of finance and politics looked to the writings of antiquity for new learning and an educated lifestyle to which they could aspire. Horsemanship which followed the ancient models described by Socrates and others became the fashion. Xenophon (430 – 354 BC) wrote "Men who understand the art of horsemanship, in truth, look magnificent." Who wouldn't want that? In the new Winter Riding School (built 1729-35), tournaments, masked balls, and other entertainment was held, but this would soon draw to a close – the royal stud farms at Lipizza were threatened by Napoleon several times and twice the precious stud horses were evacuated to Hungary. No photos or video taping allowed.
The Ring. The Ringstrasse, or Ring Street, circles the very heart of Vienna. Built on the location of the original city walls, its size is a good indication of how much the city has expanded since medieval times, but more importantly it is the most posh area of downtown. Elegant individuals stroll down the street (there really is no other way to move when walking along the Ring) and play the fashion-do/fashion don’t game under their breath before pausing at one of the innumerable cafes lining the way. A traditional Jause (morning coffee break, around 10AM) and then back to the business at hand, seeing and being seen: Vienna’s favorite pastime.
Gasometer , (Directly at subway station U3 Gasometer, 8 minutes away from town-center and St. Stephens Cathedral). If you are interested in the combination of new modern with old historic architecture, take a trip to the gasometers that has been revitalized from gas-tanks to new multi-functional buildings. The gasometers are four former gas tanks, built as part of the Vienna municipal gas works Gaswerk Simmering in 1896-1899. They are located in the 11th district called Simmering. They were used from 1899 to 1984 as gas storage tanks. After the changeover from town gas to natural gas they were no longer used and were shut down. In the time between 1984 and 1997 the gasometers were used as a film location (James Bond: The Living Daylights) and as the location for raves known as Gazometer-Raves. They were revitalized from 1999 to 2001 by the architects Jean Nouvel, Coop Himmelblau, Manfred Wehdorn, and Wilhelm Holzbauer. Each gasometer was divided into several zones for living, shopping and entertainment. The historic outside wall was conserved. Several other facilities including a music hall, cinema, student accommodation, municipal archive, etc. are located inside the Gasometers. There are special guided tours with experts available for visitors.
Zentralfriedhof (Central Cemetery), Simmeringer Hauptstrasse 234, phone 760 41. Graves of honor of Beethoven, Mozart, Schubert, Brahms, Strauss, Schönberg and others. Nov-Feb 8AM-5PM, March-April, Sept-Oct 7AM-6PM, May-Aug 7AM-7PM. Take tram 71 from the city center (Schwarzenburgplatz) which was specially retrofitted during the wars to carry corpses (there's even a Viennese expression "taking the #71 tram" as a euphemism for death). For a quicker route take the U3 to Simmering and then tram 71 or 6 from there. The tram stops are named after the cemetery gate next to it, "Zentralfriedhof 1. Tor" is where the old Jewish section is, "Zentralfriedhof 2. Tor" is the main gate. There bus route 106 (€0.60 or regular ticket) runs in the cemetary connecting all of the gates and areas. Mozart, Beethoven and other luminaries of the musical world (Schubert, Brahms, Strauss) are buried, or at least memorialized, here. Mozart's body is in a mass grave (as required by the law at that time) in another cemetery – but his memorial is located here with the others. The graves of the composers and other "Ehregräber" (graves of honor) are located in section 32C, near the main road leading from the church. The cemetery has served as a giant park for weekend ramblings since its creation. There are immense monuments shaped like 10ft tall iron canopy beds (within eye shot of the musicians memorial) and other unique shapes. Though it takes some time to get out to the Zentralfriedhof (25 to 30 Minutes total from Stephansplatz), it is worth the trip.
Lainzer Tiergarten — It's a beautiful natural reserve at Vienna's border with the woods. This reserve used to be the Emperor's private hunting wood with the fancy "Hermesvilla" - the favorite mansion of Empress Sisi in Vienna. Nowadays, the major part of the park is closed in the winter time, but in summer you can see wild pigs, deer, and many Viennese families. For the easiest park entrance take tram 49 to its last stop. Then you need to walk for about 5 minutes until you reach the Nikolaitor. However in Winter or when you want to visit the mansion you have to take tram 60 or 62 to Hermesstrasse station and then change to bus 60B (Note: this bus goes only every half hour during the week). Take the bus to the final stop - just a 5 minute ride - to reach the "Lainzertor" (actually the main gate of Lainzer Tiergarten, which also features a small visitors center). The park is usually open from 8 until dusk (precise opening timetables are posted at each entrance) but all gates - except Lainzertor - are closed for a winter break from mid-November until mid-February.
Hietzing — A residential area which used to be a village once, but gained importance as the Schönbrunn Palace, was erected nearby. A very beautiful area for a stroll among old villas. Stop - Hietzing (U4, trams 10, 58 and 60), then walk.
Türkenschanzpark — A very beautiful park commemorating the Austrian victory on the Turks near the city boundary. Nowadays, a tranquil resort in the heart of a nice cluster of villas. Take tram 41 or bus 10A, get off at Türkenschanzpark.
The Danube Island , only in German — Home to Europe's biggest Rock festival. In Summer, this is a very nice park with a lot of Viennese bathers. There are also floating pubs on the Danube. A nice experience! Take U1, stop Donauinsel.
Karl Marx' Court is a socialist building complex from the beginning of the 20th Century and is fascinating for people interested in architecture. Take tram D or U4 to Heilgenstadt.
Soviet Victory Monument — An imposing Soviet style monument near Karlsplatz commemorates the Soviet victory in Vienna over the Nazi army. Take trams 1, 2, 71, D, J stop at Schwarzenbergplatz.
Ball Season: One thing you should not miss when you visit Vienna during the carneval season is to attend one of the many glamourous balls in the city, some of them in wonderful elegant locations like the Vienna Hofburg or the City Hall (Rathaus). The most widely known and elegant balls are the Opera Ball in the State Opera or the ball of the Wiener Philharmoniker. Many professional guilds have their own ball like e.g. the Kaffeesiederball by the Vienna Coffee house owners. The ball calendar can be found on the pages of the
The Naschmarkt, right at the U4 subway station "Kettenbrueckengasse", is the biggest of Vienna's 22 market places and provides a unique blend of typical Vienna costumely and oriental flair. Stroll through the market and be part of the amazing ambiance. If you like to cook, you will find all the spices you could possibly want at the Naschmarkt. The side of the Secession tends to be more touristy (and thus more expensive) than the side of the "Kettenbrueckengasse". Remember that it is illegal to export antiquities outside of Austria, even if you legally buy them at a market. A nice part of the Naschmarkt are the small restaurants with fresh Italian, Japanese, Greek, and Turkish food. In the summer, they have nice open-air gardens.
Vienna Boys Choir (Wiener Sängerknaben) , . The Vienna Boys Choir was founded at the pleasure of the Habsburgs. On 20 July 1498, Emperor Maximilian decided to hire six singing boys, the first permanent boys choir attached to the court. He also made arrangements for their education – fringe benefits that are difficult to get from a modern employer. The choir served the monarchy until its demise at the beginning of the first World War. The last Imperial Chaplain, Monsignor Josef Schnitt reestablished the Boys Choir as the
River and Canal tours — The Canal tours are horrible. All you see are trees and industrial buildings. It's a waste of money and time.
In the summer, it's just wonderful to hang out in Museumsquartier in the evenings. The big yard is filled with large fiberglass sofas you can use for free. Optionally, you can buy drinks at the open air bars there. Just ask for a glass you can take away so you can use the sofas. During the day, a visit to Burggarten is highly recommended if you are looking for a more alternative, young crowd. Buy something to eat and drink at a supermarket and join the others on the grass.
In July and August, there's an opera film festival on the Rathausplatz. Each day, weather permitting, you can watch an opera on a huge open-air screen. On another part of the Square, there are plenty of food stalls (maybe a little overpriced) who offer Viennese, as well as international food. On pleasant summer evenings, the atmosphere can be quite relaxing.
There are also a lot of other open-air-film festivals in summer, e.g. at the Augarten, the Vienna Turf Krieau, the Prater, and Schloss Neugebäude.
The Lainzer Tiergarten (not Tiergarten at Schönbrunn) has several 2-10 km hiking trails, as well as a variety of wildlife. You can see the animals get fed at 2PM every day. Ask any park attendant where the location is.
Football has a long and vivid history in Vienna. Until about 40 years ago, Austrian football was dominated by a large number of Viennese clubs. Since then, their strength has faded, reflecting the overall decline of Austrian football compared to other European football. Today, only two Viennese clubs are left in the Austrian top football division: Rapid Vienna and Austria Magna. Rapid have won the Austrian league 31 times, more than any other club. They are known as the people's club, having working class roots and regularly attracting fairly big crowds of around 15,000. Home fixtures are played at the Gerhard-Hanappi-Stadion in the 14th district, right next to the subway station "Hütteldorf" (U4). Season usually starts in late July and ends in May, with a break in winter from early December until late February (due to cold weather). Tickets are available at the stadium, at various tobacco shops (Trafik) around town and also on the internet at Skrapid (no English section available!). Ticket prices for league matches range from €18 to €26. Ladies, students, and children will receive considerable discounts. For a schedule of fixtures in English go to Soccerassociation , click "Austria" and "Bundesliga".
ActiLingua Academy , , . One of the leading schools for German as a foreign language located in the heart of Vienna. ActiLingua Academy offers year-round German courses for adults(16+) and summer school for teens aged 12-17 years. Further information online including free online German lessons for beginners and advanced learners, price calculator, brochure download, etc.
Viennese restaurant menus offer a bewildering variety of terms for dishes, most of which the visitor will never have heard of and many of which aren't in the brief lists of menu terms included in phrase books. However restaurants that have any foreign patrons at all usually have an English menu, though you may have to ask for it: the phrase "English menu" usually will be understood even by wait staff who don't speak English. A small bilingual dictionary will be useful for trying to decipher menu listings: at least it will enable you usually to determine what sort of food (chicken, beef, potato, etc.) is concerned, even if you can't tell how it's prepared. Note that not only savoury but also sweet main dishes are common in Austria.
Viennese restaurant portions tend to be large. Recently many restaurants are including more vegetarian options. Most restaurants have daily specials listed on a chalk board or sometimes on a printed insert in the regular menu. These are usually the best bet, though they may not be on the English menu, so you may have to ask to have them explained or try to translate them yourself.
Smoking is ubiquitous in Vienna restaurants. A small red sticker on the door means no-smoking a green means smoking, both mean there is a seperate non-smoking section. Even at outdoor tables, neighbors' smoke may be bothersome. It is polite to ask tablemates permission before lighting up after a meal.
Bread in Viennese restaurants is usually charged as an extra; if there is a basket of it on the table, you'll usually be charged by the piece only if you take some.
Tipping customs are similar to those in Europe and America though tips are slightly smaller; ten percent is usually sufficient in restaurants. Traditionally the way to tip a waiter is to mention the amount of the bill plus tip when you pay; for instance, if the bill is €15.50 you could give the waiter a €20 note and say "siebzehn (seventeen)," meaning he is to take out €15.50 for the bill, €1.50 for the tip, and so give you only €3 change. In this situation English numbers will usually be understood. Sometimes in less formal restaurants you can alternatively drop the tip into the money pouch the waiter usually carries.
Credit cards aren't quite as commonly used in restaurants in Vienna as in Northern European countries, so ask if it's important to know before hand.
The traditional Viennese fast food is sausage in all shapes and sizes. You can buy hot sausages and hot dogs at snack bars called "Würstlstand" all over the town. The famous Wiener Würstel is known as "Frankfurter" in Vienna, but many inhabitants prefer Bosna (with onions and curry), Burenwurst, and Käsekrainer or "Eitrige" (with melted cheese inside).
In addition to this, the local snack culture also includes more ex-Yugoslavian and Turkish varieties of fast food, such as the Döner Kebap, sandwiches of Greek and Turkish origin with roasted meat, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and yogurt and/or hot sauce. Places that sell kebap often sell take-away slices of pizza too.
Good kebaps can be bought at the Naschmarkt. The lower end of the Naschmarkt (further away from Karlsplatz or city centre) is cheaper than the upper end (closer to Karlsplatz), and the right lane (facing away from the city centre) is reserved for mostly sit-down eateries. Another good place to find snacks (especially while going out) is Schwedenplatz, also on the U4 and U1 line.
By far the cheapest way to get a fast food meal in Austria (and probably the only meal available for just over €1) is buying an Austrian sandwich (sliced brown bread + ham/cheese + gherkin) from a supermarket. Supermarkets with a deli counter (Feinkostabteilung) will prepare sandwiches to take away at no extra charge. You only pay for the ingredients. There is usually a large selection of meat products, cheese, and bread rolls available here, too. You point at the combination you want, can also mention the max total you can pay, and then pay at the cash register. Freshness and quality are normally better than at a sandwich stand on the street.
Esterházykeller , 01/533-3482, 1., Haarhof 1, Atmospheric old (since 1683) cellar restaurant serving good, cheap, wine, beer, and simple traditional food. Prices budget to moderate. A good place to go if you just want a drink and some grub, but still want to enjoy some local color.
Vegetasia , 01/ 713 8 33 2 and 523 1 091, Open daily 11:30AM-3PM and 5:30PM-11PM, 3., Ungargasse 57 and 7., Kaiserstrasse 45, Chain of vegetarian restaurants. Serves a huge variety of Taiwanese Buddhist vegetarian food (most of it vegan, many meat imitations).
Vego, 01/522 59 07, Open daily 11:30AM - 3PM & 6:00PM - 11PM, 7., Neubaugasse 81, Indian Vegetarian Restaurant that serves set meals from as low as €5,90. The food is absolutely delicious and you can also have mango lassi.
Kent cafe restaurant (Eat like the locals - eat Turkish!), 16., Brunnengasse 67, At first approach, this looks like a greasy kebab joint strictly for Turks, but struggle past the first room and you will find a large garden and huge restaurant serving moderately priced food with an infinite supply of free Turkish bread! Good for veggies and meat eaters alike. Also try the Turkish breakfast.
Maschu Maschu 1 , 01/533 29 04, So-Mi 11:30AM-midnight, Do, Fri, and Sat until 4PM., 1., Rabensteig 8 directions=, Good for veggies and meat eaters alike. Maschu Maschu is an Israeli fast food joint that serves some of the best falafel in the world. A healthy and gut busting falafel and beer should cost around €7 and leave you set up for the day (they also serve a wide range of other Middle Eastern meals).
Maschu Maschu 2 , 01/990 47 13, 9:30AM-midnight, 7., Neubaugasse 20/Ecke Lindengasse 41, close to Neubaugasse undergroundstation, Much the same as the other Maschu Maschu, Maschu Maschu 2 is a trendy hang out place in the art student area of the city, and so it has a unique vibe of its own.
Mensa at the NIG , 1., Universitätsstrasse 7, 7ht floor, near the University of Vienna (Dr. Karl Lueger Ring 1), (NIG is the Neues Institutsgebäude - a University of Vienna building) During the summer you can sit outside and enjoy the sun. You have a nice view over the roofs of Vienna.
Pizzeria Mafioso, 15., Reindorfgasse 15., The cheapest (but really good) pizza in town.
Natsu I, +43 1 5812700, 6., Gumpendorfer Straße 45,, Cheap but still decent sushi. Sets from €3, get stuffed for €6.
Natsu II, +43 1 5221903, 7., Burggasse 71, Cheap but still decent sushi. Sets from €3, get stuffed for €6.
Chattanooga, 9251185, 1., Graben 29A, close to Stephansplatz, Fast food versions of local food. Not bad if you are on a budget and do not have much time to spare.
Wiener Deewan, 533500, 9., Liechtensteinstraße 10, Close to Schottentor subway station, Young, urban Pakistani restaurant:
The Highlander , 9., Sobieskiplatz 4, Offers own beer and a nice variety of dishes (including vegetarian dishes) at a small square inside the 9th district. Might not be one of the cheapest in the cheap section, but definitely worth the price.
Schnitzelwirt Schmidt, , 7., Neubaugasse 52, Listed in nearly every Vienna guidebook and for good reason. The traditional Viennese food is excellent and served in truly prodigious portions, yet fairly cheap by Vienna standards (€5-€15 for a full meal). The Bauernschmaus (
If you're staying inside the Ring or to its south, you're best bet for dinner is to walk to the Naschmarkt: there are 15-20 restaurants there ignoring the city's imperial interiors, and most are absolutely mid-range (i.e. with mains averaging €8-15). Most of them are smoker-friendly and packed-and-loud in the evening.
Otherwise, consider some picks in the city:
Akakiko , 1., Singerstrasse 4, Part of a local chain; the branch on Singerstrasse, just off the Graben, is conveniently located for visitors and is non-smoking. Informal and popular place serving authentic, reasonably priced Japanese and Korean dishes. The menu has a vegetarian section. Quick service by efficient waiters.
Brezl-Gwölb , +43/1/533 88 11, +43/1/533 88 11, 1., Ledererhof 9, close to Am Hof and Judenplatz, between Färbergasse and Drahtgasse, a bit hidden, Daily 11:30AM-1AM. A very nice restaurant with a cellar dating back to the 17th century and the furniture consists of parts from three centuries. A place that deserves the label
Diglas (cafe and restaurant) , +43 1 51257650, +43 1 51257650, daily 7AM-12AM, 1., Wollzeile 10, Famous traditional coffeehouse, and equally place for having a meal. Menu (not linked from the web site): .
Figlmüller , 512 61 77, Daily 11AM-10:30PM, 1., Wollzeile, Famous for Wienerschnitzel. They claim to have the biggest schnitzel in the world. If you are not really hungry, one may easily be enough for two people (just ask for a second plate). Traditionally, you would want a potato salad with that.
Immervoll, 01 5135288, 12pm-11pm, Weihburggasse 17, Small and cozy, comfortable to non-smokers--but very packed at peak hours. Credit cards not accepted.
Inigo , 01 512-7451, 01 512-7451, Mon-Sat 9:30AM-12AM; Sun and holidays closed, 1010, Bäckerstraße 18, Modern, affordable and diverse cuisine; not crowded but most visitors are local; charming modern interior instead of imperial chic--overall, a rare combination of features in the center of Vienna. Menu is equal paritet between vegetarian and meat-eating. Friendly to families with toddlers. (Almost) non-smoking. Staff speaks only basic English. Great **bulgur** here.
Koi, 208 08 61, 1AM-12AM, Schwarzenbergstraße 8/1, Asian cuisine; arguably a delicious change to traditional Austrian fare. Great ambience, lounge music, has non-smoking area.
Kuishimbo (im Majolkahaus), 0699/1194.06.73, 6., Linke Wienzeile 40, U4 Kettenbrückengasse, The smallest Japanese restaurant in town. All the dishes are home made. Owners claim that they pay attention to a proper balance of ingredients. Being full can also be healthy! The place is so small that there is no bathroom inside. You have to use the one on the Nashmarkt. The Japanese soups
Café Landtmann , +43/1/24 100 - 0, +43/1/24 100 - 0, daily 7:30AM-12AM, 1., Dr. Karl Lueger-Ring 4, (near the Rathaus, right beside Burgtheater), Old café, cozy and romantic. Used to be frequented by Sigmund Freud. Delicious food and desserts. Menu of the day for around €11. Breakfast: several sets for €7-12.50 (all menus until 11:30am, except Franz Landtmann served until 3pm)
Le Bol , 0699 / 1030 1899, 1., Neuer Markt 14, Fine French Provencal-style fare with a communal table at the center and a smoking section only at the back, goat cheese salad is highly recommended (€6,90).
Levante, 533 23 26, 1., Wallnerstrasse 2, Part of a world-wide (but small) chain which has several branches in Vienna. The one on Wallnerstrasse is full service and the most conveniently located for most visitors. Authentic Middle-Eastern restaurant serving mostly Turkish and Greek dishes with some Viennese daily specials. Good place for both meat-eaters, for the kebabs, and vegetarians, for the many Middle Eastern salads.
Mythos, +43 1 96 90 2111, Open daily 11AM-midnight, Mariahilferstr. 111/Webgasse 45, A nice family-run Greek restaurant open on Sundays and holidays, with a good variety of items to choose from.
Palmenhaus (brasserie) , 01 5331033, Nov-Feb: Wed-Thu 11:30am-12am, Fri-Sat 10am-2am, Sun 10am-12am. Mar-Oct: 10am-2am daily, Burggarten 1, Good value for money in the very center of the city, great democratic ambience without imperial decor. Large mains served with a bowl of salad included. Very high ceilings, full of air and palms. Friendly staff speaks fluent English. Children-safe wide couches. Consider seating at elevated Mezzanine (reservation recommended) which has a special view over park.
Pat's Brainfood, 0664/2038303, M-Th 11.30AM to 3.30PM, Fr 11.30AM to 3PM, closed weekends and holidays, 1., Plankengasse 4, Tucked away on a little side street of Neuer Markt is this wonderfully creative and fresh soup and salad joint with a weekly rotating menu (see website) and take-away. Standing room only.
Reinthaler, 1., Gluckgasse 5, Innere Stadt just south of the Kapuzinerkirche, One of the better traditional Beisl restaurants, with old fashioned food priced below comparable places. Daily specials usually include a couple of vegetarian options. Good non-smoking section.
reisinger's am salzgries , +43 676 648 17 48, +43 676 648 17 48, M-Th 11.30AM to 10PM, Fr 11.30AM to 3.30PM, 1., Salzgries 15, Small restaurant, mainly frequented by locals. Daily changing menu, viennese and mediterranean food. Home made desserts. Usually pretty crowded, so an upfront reservation is adviseable. English menu.
Tewa 672 Naschmarkt, +43 676 79 222 14, +43 676 79 222 14, Very bio place at Naschmarkt, popular with early-30s bohemian locals.
WOK , +43/1/585 21 02, +43/1/585 21 02, daily 11AM-2:30PM, 5:30-11PM, 4., Operngasse 20, (beside the Naschmarkt, directly opposite the University of Technology), A nice and cozy restaurant offering a variety of South-East Asian cuisine. You can get Chinese, Thai, Malay, and Indonesian dishes. Also, you can ask the friendly owner if she would offer you some home-made dishes not available on the standard menu.
Schöne Perle, +43 664 / 243 35 93, 2., Große Pfarrgasse. 2, U2 Taborstraße, Contemparay Austrian and international food. Stylish yet informal restruant with good lunch specials in the Karmaliterviertel. English menu. Seperate non-smoking section
Procacci , 512 22 11, Bar: M-Sa 11:30 AM-1 AM, Restaurant: M-Sa 11:30 AM-midnight, closed Sunday, 1., Göttweihergasse 2, Excellent northern Italian fare with a range of fine specialties. Slightly small portions but an extensive wine list to drown this particular sorrow in. Reservations recommended.
Artner I , 503 50 33, M-F noon-midnight, Sa, Su and holidays: 6PM-midnight, 4., Florgasse 6, Belongs to a famous winery. Offers creative, fresh fare that tends to be on the lighter side than most Austrian cuisine. Excellent wine cellar, reservations recommended.
Artner II , 503 50 34, M-Su 10AM-2AM, 1., Franziskanerplatz 5, opposite Kleines Cafe, Belongs to a famous winery. Offers creative, fresh fare that tends to be on the lighter side than most Austrian cuisine. Excellent wine cellar, reservations recommended.
Fabios , +43 1 532 2222, +43 1 532 2222, M-Sa bar 10 AM-1 AM, restaurant Noon-23:30, 1., Tuchlauben 6, Italian fish restaurant combined with bar/lounge for Vienna's glitterati. Quality is excellent, but prices are steep.
Plachutta , Tel.: 01/512 15 77, Tel.: 01/512 15 77, 11:30AM-12AM; kitchen closes at 11:15PM, 1., Wollzeile 38, A very nice restaurant that specializes in beef (claimed to be only local and from trusted farmers) and has some flavour of traditional Austrian cuisine. Try the Tafelspitz, it comes in a copper pan and still is in the soup it was cooked (the soup alone is worth a trip to Vienna). Alternativel, try Backhendl. The chef claims that they prepare more than 100 kg of beef each day. Probably 3 to 5 waiters will be at your disposal. Reservation is recommended.
Tenmaya , 512 73 97, Daily 11:30AM-2:30PM and 5PM-11PM, 1., Krugerstrasse 3, Traditional Japanese restaurant and setting that serves everything from kaiseki to teppanyaki. Reservations are recommended for this popular restaurant.
Danube Tower Restaurant, U1 VIC/Kaisermühlen, bus 20B to Danube Tower you have to pay for the elevator first: €5.90 for adults), On a sunny day and have a look over Vienna from the rotating restaurant
You can buy excellent ice cream (Eis) at a number of places.
Eissalon am Schwedenplatz , 1., Schwedenplatz, Maybe the most popular place. You can choose from a lot of different flavors, but it's always crowded and you often have to stand in a queue for a few minutes.
Zanoni & Zanoni Gelateria , 1., Am Lugeck, just down Rotenturmstrasse from Schwedenplatz towards the Stephansdom, In the same district as Eissalon. Зopular with Viennese and tourists for its huge €2 cones to go.
Perizzolo, 1., Tuchlauben, A less crowded, but nevertheless excellent Eis address. Ask for the Special Nougat ice cream
Tichy , 10., Reumannplatz 13, metro: Reumannplatz, Another famous place for ice cream. Famous for its Eismarillenknödel (small dumplings of vanilla ice cream with an apricot core) and Himbeereisknödel (raspberry core, vanilla ice cream, coating of ground poppy seeds). Arguably the best ice cream in Austria, if not in whole Europe.
New wine is usually enjoyed at a Heurigen (wine bar licensed to sell the new vintage). Austria in general, but especially the area around Vienna, produces quite a large amount of wine each year. It's not often exported and white is more common than red. Grüner Veltliner is a common white wine served almost everywhere. Officially the new wine season begins on November 11 (St Martin's Day), but as early as September, some partially-fermented new wine (called Sturm which is cloudy, because it has not been strained) is available around town in 2L green bottles (try the Naschmarkt – sometimes the vendors will have samples, it is less strong than wine, about 4 percent alcohol ). Taverns can call themselves Heurigens whether the wine they serve is their own or not – for genuine in-house product look for a Buschenschank. This is a particularly Viennese Heuriger which can only be open 300 days per year or until their supply of house-made wine runs out. Heurigen can be found e.g. in Grinzing, Sievering (19th district) and Mauer & Rodaun (23rd district) areas, but also in almost every suburban area in Vienna. Even in the center, there are some Stadtheurigen. While the Heurigen of Grinzing are bigger and more famous with tourists, they are often a rip-off. If any of the year’s vintage lasts until next year, it officially becomes Alte (old) wine on the next Saint Martin's Day. The Heurigen in the South of Vienna or in Perchtoldsdorf are much cheaper and serve the same quality as the Heurigen in Grinzing. Also in the Northern suburbs, you can find cheap and somewhat authentic Heurigen. Try the towns of Stammersdorf or Hagenbrunn, for example Karl Matzka , hard to reach by public transport.
After a long day, the perfect place to relax among Viennese are the Heurigen in the suburbs. Somewhat akin to a beer garden, except with wine, these tiny treasures are the only places authorized to serve new wine. New wine is made from the first pressing of the grape and can appear a little cloudy. Be careful, it's stronger than you might think! This is why it's served in very small glasses, .25L and up. Some Heurigen serve food, either elaborate Viennese specialties or very simple bread and cheese platters. No matter which one you choose, you're guaranteed to enjoy yourself. Just hop on a convenient outbound tram line, take it to the very last stop, and look for buildings with large, evergreen foliage hung over the doors. Each one is unique, but all are a good bargain. Locals invariably have a favorite: ask around.
Rather unusually it is necessary to say some words about Vienna's drinking water which is really unique in Europe. The majority of Vienna's water comes from the three "Hochquellwasserleitungen." Meaning "high-(as in mountain) spring waterlines (as in aqueducts). Indeed the city's water flows through aqueducts from the mountains around 100 kilometres south of Vienna (Schneeberg and Hochschwab). These were built during the reign of Emperor Franz Josef and supply Vienna with nearly unchlorinated high-quality drinking water, with a considerably higher quality that many bottled waters. So if you visit this city, it is not necessary to buy water, you can simply drink tap water here - unless you prefer sparkling water.
Another speciality is that at typical coffeehouses a coffee is always accompanied by a glass of cold clear water. And there is a law that in any restaurant you can get a glass of drinking water for free with any order, just specify tap water ("Leitungswasser").
If you come to Vienna and don't try some coffee, you've missed one of the great reasons to come here. Vienna has a reputation for having an excellent coffee culture. You should at least visit one of the countless traditional 19th century coffee houses where you can sit down, relax, and have some coffee.
It is impossible to just order "coffee." Wouldn't be undestrood and could deeply offend the Herr Ober (head waiter). Vienna prides itself of its dozens of varieties of different coffees. Most commonly:
Kleiner Schwarzer also known simply as a Schwarzer or as a Mokka is the Viennese version of espresso. It is made with a tick more water, a Viennese roast(the point between origin and roast flavor) and it is pulled slowly allowing it to oxidize.
Großer Schwarzer is simply a double Schwarzer (similar to a double espresso).
Kleiner Brauner is a mokka (espresso) with cream, often on the side.
Großer Brauner is a double Mokka with cream.
Melange is prehaps the most typical Viennese coffee. Similar to cappuccino but with the Viennese style mokka and more foamy milk in equal parts.
Verlangerter is mokka (espresso) with extra hot water, similar to a small Americano.
Kapuziner is a mokka (espresso) with a dollop of whipped cream on top.
Kaffee Verkehrt (or in the more modern places Kaffee Latte) is the local version of a latte.
Also consider specialties like the Kaisermelange (coffee, milk, egg yolk and cognac) on the menu and the Viennese Ober (the "senior" waiter) takes pride in this variety.
Most cafés in addition to coffee serve beer and wine and sometimes liqueurs. Many serve meals, especially at lunch, and these are often cheaper than in restaurants.
Never order coffee to go. All you'll probably get is a bewildered reaction by the staff. take away is reserved for McDonalds, Starburcks and bakeries advertizing it. In Vienna, coffee definitely is slow food, to be enjoyed with friends or accompanied by a newspaper in a relaxed atmosphere .
Finding a cafe. Most likely you will find the "top" coffee houses at the Ring, the Kärnter Strasse, Graben, and some other (maybe difficult to find) places in the first district (Innere Stadt). There are also very nice old coffee houses a little outside of the Ring at the districts within the Gürtel.
Hawelka, café 1010, Dorotheergasse 6, tel: +43 (1) 512 82 30 Fax +43 (1) 32 815 31, open 8AM to 2AM Sun and hol 10AM-2AM, closed Thu . Just 100 m from the Stephansdom, hidden in a side street, is one of the most famous "intellectual" cafes in Vienna. Established in 1939, it's surprisingly cheap for its location and its fame and can get quite cozy. Josephine Hawelka (former owner, deceased 2005) was proud of the marriages she caused by placing random people together at tables. Try the "Buchteln". Usually quite smoky.
Griensteidl café, 1010, Michaelerplatz 2, +43-1-535 26 92-0, near the Hofburg and the Michaelerkirche , is a elegant Café-Restaurant where you also get warm food for lunch. Recommended for non-smokers and families as smoking is banned from this traditional coffee house.
Tirolerhof, (established in 1900) 1010, Führichgasse 8, just behind the opera and near the Albertina you will find this quaint, traditional café with art deco accents. Mon-Sat 7AM-10PM, Sun 9.30AM-9PM.
Prückel café (established in 1903) 1010, Stubenring 24 (Luegerplatz). Quite the hang-out in the evening, during the day this cafe is a bit more laissez-faire. Live piano music every Mon, Wed, and Fri from 7PM-10PM.
Demel (café and confectionary shop), 1010, Kohlmarkt 14 (walk 5 min from St. Stephan along Graben pedestrian street, Kohlmarkt is on your left hand), Tel: +43/1/535 17 17-0 Fax: +43/1/535 17 17-26, , email: email@example.com. Good pastries are ubiquitous in Vienna, but Demel is considered by many to have the best of all and indeed was once the pastry caterer to the Imperial household. As a result of this it is usually jammed with tourists, though their amusing marzipan display window can be admired even from the street. Outdoor seating in warm weather, but the inside is more atmospheric. Partly smoke-free. Open daily from 10AM–7PM.
Kleines café ("small cafe") 1010, Franziskanerplatz 3. As the name suggests, this café is rather small. It was created by architect Hermann Czech during the 1970s for notable Austrian actor Hanno Pöschl, who still owns it. It's a popular meeting place for artists and actors (or would-be variants) and enjoys an excellent location in a quiet square inside the city. The few seats are often occupied but hang around and they are vacated regularly. Seating on the square in fine weather, a bit smoky at peak times.
Cafe-Museum, 1010, Operngasse 7, tel/fax: +43 1 586 52 02 . This cafe was designed by famous architect Adolf Loos, however the interior has been entirely refitted (now even from its rather cooler 80s atmosphere). Serves food as well as coffee, teas, and other drinks. Casual, quiet atmosphere; good non-smoking section.
Cafe Central 1010, Corner Herrengasse/Strauchgasse . One of most famous Vienna coffee houses, recently authentically restored. Beautiful premises inside the Palais Ferstel, it is too touristy and a bit more expensive for having a meal, but can be worth it for a cup of coffee. There is an occasional pianist that is delightful to hear, and a good non-smoking section.
See also Alt Wien under Bars and Beerhouses.
Cafe Europa, 1070 Wien, Zollergasse 8, tel: 5263383. The scenester meeting place in recent years, the cafe is often bursting at the seams. But good tunes, decent service prevail. Good people watching and decor.
Alt Wien, Bäckerstrasse 9, tel 01/512-5222. This cafe/restaurant/bar is on a very medieval-looking lane in the central district and is a time warp of another kind: its folky-bohemian atmosphere could convince you you're in North Beach or Greenwich Village, circa 1967. Liveliest late.
The American Bar (sometimes called the Loos American Bar or Loos Bar) Kärntner Durchgang 10 1010 Wien tel: 01/5123283 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, open Thu - Sat 12PM-5AM, Sun - Wed 12PM-4PM . This bar will delight fans of Art Deco. Famous for its architecture and interior decoration by architect Adolf Loos, it's a time warp of Vienna from 1908 when it opened. Drinks are expensive, but very good and the price is worth the experience. This is a quiet, sophisticated bar, where boisterous behavior or very casual dress will not be appropriate. Usually smoky due to small size. There's outdoor seating in warm weather but there's not much point in using it since the what justifies the prices is the interior. Note that groups and sight-seers are not admitted.
Chelsea, Lerchenfelderguertel, U-Bahnboegen 29-31 (between the U6 underground stations Thaliastrasse and Josefstaedterstrasse), 407 93 09 email@example.com. Daily 6PM-4AM, Su 4PM-3AM. A wide range of international beers, often full house and dense. Prices okay, 1/2L of beer is €3.1.
Flex Donaukanal, (U2 or U4 Schottenring, Abgang Augartenbrücke), 533 75 25 firstname.lastname@example.org. You haven't been to Vienna if you haven't been to the Flex - particularly if you are younger than thirty. Situated next to the "Donaukanal", a part of the Danube, it's the meeting point of the off-mainstream, bohemian, artsy people. During the summer nights when it's warm, there are always a lot of people sitting on benches outside the club. It's easy to socialise and make new friends. Inside the club you can enjoy bands and DJs. At the bar you can ask for free soda water.
Siebensternbräu (7-Stars-Brewery) , Siebensterngasse 19. An excellent Biergarten a few blocks East of Mariahilferstr. They serve their own brews, which are all excellent. There is the usual assortment of bar food, friendly staff, and outdoor seating underneath an old Linden tree in the middle of a hidden courtyard. Move indoors well before 11PM, because a local noise ordinance requires the bar to shut down the patio and the interior tables fill up quickly (even more so than usual).
Schweizerhaus , Prater 116, 7280152 13, Mar 15-Oct 31 11AM-11PM. Large beer garden in the Prater, some say they have the best beer in Vienna andthey also offer traditional Austrian dishes at moderate prices. The Schweizerhaus is also well-known for its excellent "Stelze" (knuckle of pork).
Shiraz , Stadtbahnbogen 168, 1090 Vienna. Phone: +43.664.3355555, email@example.com. This is a small and pretty comfortable, rustic-style bar in the "city railway bows". You can smoke water pipes and listen to "chill out" music. The owner, a Persian, socialises with all his customers. Everything is worth its price and you really feel that this bar is something special. Its a good place to relax.
Stiegl´s Ambulanz , Altes AKH Hof 1 Alserstraße 4, 1090 (subway station U6, Alserstraße) +43.1.40211500, firstname.lastname@example.org. The Stieglambulanz is a good bar run by the Stiegl brewery where you can enjoy Stiegl's beers. Stiegl is one of Austria's best common beers. The Ambulanz is popular for students with its modern furnishings and relaxed atmosphere. Try the "Paracelsus", which you only get in Stiegl breweries.
Europa, Zollergasse 8, near U3 Neubaugasse, One of Vienna's most popular meeting points, Europa is an ideal place to relax with a fine drink after a tiring day.
Despite Vienna's stuck-up reputation don't be led to believe it is a quiet city. There are diverse cafés, bars, clubs, parties and festivilles as well as thriving noctornal prostitution and casino scenes.
The café scene often continues into the early hours, during the week and on weekends. Additionally there are many traditional neighborhood bars some which also have Viennese food. Most popular though, are bars (some with a nominal cover fee) with a dj and small dance floor. These are quite comfortable and there are plenty to meet anyones musical taste, many are open all night.
Although "mainstream" is hardly a majority of people in Vienna it is still refered to as such. Even here there is quite a bit of variance between places the conservative working class goes out and the conservative upper class tends to go.
Prater Dome is Austria's largest club. Located in the Prater amusement park (Praterstern U1, U2). Come dressed like euro-trash to get it. Thursday is ladies' night with free entry and drinks. Popular with the young conservative working class.
Bricks is a small bar with a dj and dance floor in the 2nd District (Taborstraße U2). It is a very local place and the crowd is an array of people of all ages from the neighborhood.
Bermuda Triangle is a night-life area popular with tourists next to Schwedenplatz (U1, U4) in the first district. Nearby are some more alternative clubs as well as the Clubschiff floating in the canal.
Club Habana has a Latin theme. Mahlerstraße 11 in the First District (Karlsplatz-Oper U1, U2, U4).
Gürtel at Josephstädter Straße (U6) has lots of bars and music oriented venues under the (elevated) subway tracks. For isntance Chelsea . Very popular for concerts and in summer, when bars put seats outside.
Flex is Vienna's main-stream alternative club. It is located along with some bars that open in summer on the Danube Canal (Donaukanal). (Schottenring U2, U4: exit "Schottenring" then walk, keeping the river on your right, until you get to a bridge. Look down the stairs to the canal and you're there.) There are loads of tables in front of and on top of the club in summer and an enclosed bar in the colder months with the club next door.
Fluc - Fluc (an upstairs bar) and its downstairs club-like half Fluc Wanne (meaning "tub") are located together between the Prater Park (with the big ferris wheel) and the station Praterstern (U1, U2). Most of the club is underground (in an former underpass), so don't miss it. More alternative with very diverse djs and bands.
Pratersauna is Viennas edgiest hot-spot club located well inside the Prater amusement park, it can be hard to find. Ask directions or take a cab. The club is a former sauna normally with a pool and sauna area depending on the current configuration. There are several dance floors, an outdoor area and a dark room.
Badeschiff is an orange boat in the Danube Canal just south of Schwedenplatz (U1, U4). All sorts of events and parties go on here, in the summer you can take a dip in the outdoor pool-bradge during the day. There is a lower leval that is the main club at big parties and a more comfortable lounge upstairs.
Although the gay night life in Vienna is not concentrated, its blossoming. It can be hard even for locals to keep up with whats on offer, but luckly it doesn't matter since the Vienna is accepting and you can go out where ever, and even meet other queers be that your intention. Austria is a very conservative Catholic country, during the day gay and lesbian couples might get some stares, especailly from the older generations but at night most of the conservative people have gone to bed.
Meat Market happens regularly at both the Pratersauna and on the Badeschiff (see above). It is more alternative and its the hot major queer party in Vienna these days. The same people put on Dem Schönen Frönen which is similar but with a focus on minimal, instead of alternative music.
Gumpendorfer Straße in the 6th District has several very gay-freindly bars to meet most any taste, there is one every block or so.
Brothels are legal in Vienna, as is street prostitution and pimping. There are male and female prositutes, many from Austria's neighboring countries (few from Austria), but also from Africa, Latin America and Asia offering their services. Brothels differ greatly from small to the point one-room operations to hoakey grad parlors. There is no true red-light district, but there are many 'bars' located on the 'Gürtel' as well as in the 2nd District, but they can be found everywhere. Street prostitution areas exist but should be avoided due to the low-regulation and high amount of trafficed and unregistered workers. There are plenty of gogo clubs as well though, that are not brothels. Some of these have male and female dancers dancing together and are frequented by men and women together.
Casinos are plentiful in Vienna. Also a spectrum hole-in-the-wall places with machines to the hoakey Eastern-European style with pumping music and strobes on the facade to grand elite places.
Vienna offers a complete range of hotels. The quality of Vienna's hotels is generally good, and prices are much higher than in neighboring countries, though deals can be frequently found.
In choosing an accomodation it is important to know which part of the city you want to spend time in. Most accomodations claim to be centrally located, which for the Viennese would mean they should be in or next to the 1st District, which only a few are. Many are even outside the core districts 2-9. Still, all of them are located within about a 5-minute walk to an underground or at least a tram station, so you can get to the center within 20 minutes on public transportation on all of these listings, most take considerably less.
A quick reminder about adresses and districts: the number preceding the street name is the district. So 9. Badgasse 26 is Badgasse #26 in the 9th district. These can also be made into a postal code by substuting it the the XX: A-1XX0 Vienna (0X for districts below 10), for instance A-1090 Vienna for the 9th district.
Non/smoking: Since it is still culturally accepted to smoke in Austria hotels don't have as many non-smoking accommodations availible as in other countries. Non-smoking rooms are in limited supply, and hotels with non-smoking floors are rare, so even if you have a non-smoking room you may find that the public areas of the hotel, including sometimes the corridor outside your room, are heavy with tobacco smoke.
Hütteldorf Hacking, 14. Schlossberggasse 8, U4 to Hütteldorf (30 minutes from Wien Mitte) exit the station on the south side, follow signs (about 10 minutes), Hütteldorf Hacking is one of two HI hostels in Vienna, located in a peaceful neighborhood to the west of the city.
Meininger Hotel Vienna City Center, Columbusgasse 16 (U-Bahn: Keplerplatz), tel. +43 720 73 36 43 (fax: +49 30 666 36 222, email@example.com), . Double Rooms start at €34 per person, dormitory starts at €17.
Wombats City Hostel Vienna: The Lounge , +43/1/8972336, +43/1/8972336, Mariahilfer Str. 137, 1150 Wien, directly at Westbahnhof, It's clean and chic with more of a party atmosphere. Opened 2006, it touts an imperial facade from 1880.
Actilingua Apartment-Hotel*** , +43 1 749 5112-0, +43 1 749 5112-0, 11. Schneidergasse 7, near U3 Zippererstrasse, Friendly budget apartment-hotel with free wifi. Spacious rooms and fully equipped kitchens.
Short-term appartment rentrals are becomming a popular alternative to hotels, since Vienna has especailly beautiful housing stock. Keep in mind that not all apparments-hotel are operated 100% legally or morally; it is best to find independent reviews.
ViennApart , +43-1-3177540, +43-1-3177540, 9. Nussdorfer Strasse 27, Spacious non-smoking apartments for up to 6 persons in a charming 19th century house near the city center, good access to public transport. Free internet access (WLAN), Credit cards accepted, On-Line Booking possible.
Design Apartment Penzing, Mobile Phone: +43-699-1031-6941, firstname.lastname@example.org . Modern apartments near the heart of Vienna's city center and close to Schloss Schönbrunn. Apartments are from €90.
Arenberg Hotel & Pension , Stubenring 2, A-1010 Vienna, +43-1-5125291, fax: +43-1-5139356 email@example.com. Located in the city center in walking ditance to most of the major attractions. A charming family owned hotel. Rates from € 88,-
Aviano Pension , +43 1-512 83 30, +43 1-512 83 30, Marco dAviano Gasse 1, Charming small pension in the very center of the city. Good breakfast, very friendly to families with toddler (except a small staircase prior to elevator); free grog for guests in the afternoon. Free excellent wifi in all rooms. Helpful reception most of the time, also in finding a right place to eat. Comfortable for non-smokers. **In Dec-Mar 2010, a construction project on a nearby street may be noisy at times--rarely disturbing, but makes 30% cheaper.**
Hotel Pension Residenz , Ebendorferstraße 10, A-1010 Vienna, +43-1-40647860, fax: +43 1 406478650 firstname.lastname@example.org. Three star hotel in the city center of Vienna, next to Rathaus and the Wiener Ringstraße.
Hotel am Schubertring , Schubertring 11, A-1010 WIEN. +43-1-71702-0, fax: 7139966 email@example.com. A charming private hotel in the heart of the city. Located directly on the famous Ringstrasse and only a stroll away from the Opera and the pedestrian zone - Kärntnerstrasse and Graben - the most important sights of Vienna can easily be reached by foot. Special guest rate garage parking available. Double room from €128
K+K Maria Theresia , +43-1-521 23, +43-1-521 23, Kirchberggasse 6, A gourmet's dream hotel: fantastic breakfast buffet with a selection and quality most european 5-star hotels can hardly compete to. Also a convenient base for exploring Naschmarkt small restaurants (which is 1km away). Overall, excellent value for money both for a business traveler and for a family with a toddler. Details: Comfortable for non-smokers. Heated floors in bathroom. Rooms are modern and each has a full tea set, wired internet in every room, electronic safe box, hairdrier, minibar. Small sauna adjoining a tiny gym (cycle, cardio and something else)--available to all guests, open until at least 11pm, with towels and bath robes. Breakfast from 6:30am. Drawbacks: few steps to overcome to get to the hotel with a stroller (which is very rare for a accessibility-conscious Vienna).
Hotel Sacher , +43/ (0)1/ 514 56 0, +43/ (0)1/ 514 56 0, Philharmonikerstraße 4, Hotel Sacher is located next to the Opera and at the end of the pedestrianized Kärtner Strasse shopping area. This hotel is best known as the place where Sachertorte (cake) was invented. The elegant drawing room is a popular place to gather after a performance at the Opera. The food is pricey, but definitely worth the money. The rooms offer old style luxury with heavy carpets.
Hotel Imperial , +43 (0)1/ 501100, Kärntner Ring 16, Hotel Imperial was build in 1863 as a viennese residence for the German Prince of Württemberg in Neo Renaissance style. Excellent location at the ring in total imperial style and impeccable service.
Hotel Palais Coburg , +43 (0)1/518 18-0, Coburgbastei 4, The Palais Coburg is a converted historic building that now has an outstanding restaurant (perfect wine list) and spa direct in the city center. Beside some rooms mostly suites and impeccable service.
Hollmann Beletage , +43-1-9611960, +43-1-9611960, Köllnerhofgasse 6, A-1010 Vienna - Centre of Vienna's Old Town, Boutique hotel in the city center of Vienna. Only 25 rooms, contemporay design, gourmet breakfast. From €150/room and night
The Ring, Vienna's Casual Luxury Hotel, Kärntner Ring 8, Phone: +43 1 22 1 22. Located in the heart of Vienna, opposite The Vienna State Opera, the five-star boutique hotel has an unexpected interior, which mixes the traditional with the modern. Many of the building’s historic details have been preserved to ensure the hotel remains all of its historic charm.
Kärntner Straße runs south the Oprea (Karlsplatz U1/U2/U4) to Stephansplatz in the first district, it is a major shopping artierial with mostly international chains.
Am Graben An up-scale shopping promeade, with many local specialties such as Wien Porzellan, continuing from Stephansplatz (U1) to the going to west.
Kohlmarkt prehapst the fanciest shopping area picking up from the end of the Graben jogging over to Michaelerplatz with almost exclusively high-end luxury shops and designer stores.
Mariahilferstraße is the longest and most popular shopping avenue in Vienna, featuring all kinds of stores, many flagship stores from international brands, etc. More diverse and cosmopolitan than Kärntner Straße. Stretches from the Museumsquartier to Westbahnhof and can be reached conveniently by subway through stations (east to west) Museumsquartier (U2), Neubaugasse (U3), Zieglergasse (U3), or Westbahnhof (U3/U6).
Schleifmühlgasse This little cobbled lane on the edge of the Fourth District is home to many excellent contemporary art galleries, as well as some fine restaurants, an English video rental shop, etc. Reach by foot from Karlsplatz (U1/U2/U4).
Taborstraße in Leopoldstadt (District 2) runs from Schwedenplatz through the district several kilometers. It offers a mix of Jewish and ethnic businesses as well as plenty of quirky independet shops, galliers and spaces in the side streets and a few streets directly parellel to it. As you get further away from the canal there are more ethnic businesses, like African wig shops. (U2 Taborstraße, Tram 2 runs its length)
Praterstraße runs through the Leopoldstadt from the Danube Canal in near the Innere Stadt (where a few enticing galleries and local design shops are located around the serene Nestroyplatz (Nestroy Square)) to Praterstern. There are plenty of interesting buildings and many cafes and local business located along this green boulivard. (U1 Nestroyplatz, U1/U2/S Praterstern)
Landstraßer Haupstraße in the 3rd District, starting from Wien Mitte, is a relatively upper middle-class neighborhood shopping street, with a wide variety of business from pubs and clubs to organic shops to second-hand stores. The Rochus Market Rochusmarkt and a shopping arcade are located along this street as well. (U3 Rochusgasse)
Wiedenerhaupt Straße in the 4th District starts from Karltsplatz and passes the University of Technology and becomes a very quiet shopping street with mostly small business selling oddities like stamps and a few tranquil cafes and bars. (Trams 1, 62, and WLB run its length)
Favoritenstraße in the Wieden is neighborhood street with regular shops like pharmacies and groceries, but a very lively one and a good example of where most Viennese do their everyday business. (U1 Taubstummengasse, U1/S Südtirolerplatz)
Margaratenstraße in the 5th District is a chic shopping area with cozy cafes, galleries and up-market shops. (U4 Pligramgasse)
Wallensteinstraße in Brigettenau (20th District) has been revitalized through a project called Lebendibige (Lively) Wallensteinstraße. There are lots of local shops along this street including some very impressive facades and open squares. Businesses reflect the diversity that a recent influx of Turkish immigrants has brought to the area, but also acliamed resturants can be found here. (U4 Friedesbrücke)
Florisdorf Spitz visit a good vareity of normal everyday business at the tip of 21st District in its own downtown area around Florisdorf station. (Florisdorf U6/S)
Außere Mariahilferstraße in Rudolfsheim-Fünfhaus is a continuation of the shopping main shopping street comming from Neubau and Mariahilf. It is home to several hostels and plenty of immigrant shops but is also known as one of the main prostitution drags and houses some of Vienna's oddest flagship stores like the Cros store. There are a few leftist spaces on some of the cross-streets. (U3 Westbahnhof)
Favoritenstraße is the 10th District has interntational chain clothing stores as well as lots of cafes and resturants in the area around Kepplerplatz (U1) and becomes and immigrant shopping area after the busy Reumanplatz (U1) station.
Shu! , +43 (0)1 5231449, +43 (0)1 5231449, Mon closed; Tue-Fri 12pm-7pm; Sat 12pm-5pm, 7., Neubaugasse 34, U3 Neubaugasse, A collection of creative but still comfortable shoes from multiple brands, primarily Italian--and for moderate prices. They also have sales outlet Shu!Depot at Westbahnstraße 4, 1070.
Museum Quarter (MQ), 7.,, U2 Museumsquartier, U2/U3 Volkstheater, Has half a dozen of small designer clothes shops.
Polyklamott, , 6., Hofmühlgasse 6, U4 Pligramgasse, Sells hand-picked second-hand clothes.
Gasometer in Simmering is a moderate-sized mall in former coalgas brick towers that were no longer neede after the city converted to natural gas. It is unfortuneately largely empty. It also houses a megaplex and concert venue. (U3 Gasometer)
Columbus Center in Favoriten is small mall on Kepplerplatz. (Kepplerplatz U1)
Shopping City Süd is the biggest shopping mall in Europe (by number of visitors) just outside of Vienna, housing a very wide range of stores and brands. (WLB to Vösendorf-SCS additional ticket needed, or IKEA bus from Oper)
There are 21 markets with stands and small shops in Vienna that are open daily (except Sunday). Additionally many of these have true farmers' markets, often on Saturday mornings. There is a large variety of sellers and markets, from the upscale to the dirt cheap. Each has several shops of different kinds (butcher, bakery, produce, coffee, etc.). There is another handful of weekly farmers markets around the city as well as seasonal markets like the christmas markets.
Viennese supermarkets are not very large, especailly compared with the hypermarkets covering the rest of Central Europe. However, there is practically one on every corner. They are open about 7 AM to 7 PM M-F and 7 AM to 6 PM on Saturday. Only two stores in train stations (Praterstern and Franz-Josef-Bahnhof) and at the airport are open later and on Sunday. Hofer , Penny , and Lidl strive to be discount stores, whereas Billa , SPAR and Zielpunkt as well as the larger Merkur tout selection and quality. There is not a major difference in prices. Most regular stores have a deli where the clerks make sandwiches for the cost of the ingrediants you select. Altough many products are Austrian, none of the supermarket chains are actually Austrian-owned, try to support the local economy by frequenting independet shops or visiting actual markets.
Upscale grocers are not common in Vienna.
True factory stores:
Charity auctions are common in Vienna. Some stores give their proceeds to social programms (often second-hand store back-to-work programs similar to Goodwill, or other charity shops).
Open from Nov 15s or 20s to Dec 23th or 24th, most Viennese Christmas Markets ("Christkindlmarkt", "Adventmarkt" or simply "Weihnachtsmarkt") are not so much for shopping as for eating and drinking. From midday until the late hours of the night, people gather at Christmas markets to drink mulled wine, punch, and chat to one another and the occasional stranger. Entry to all of these markets is free.
Rathaus : More of a fairground than a Christmas market, this is Vienna's largest and busiest incarnation. Located on the large town square between Rathaus and Burgtheater, the Wiener Christkindlmarkt is by far the largest and probably best known christmas market in Vienna. Large christmas tree in front of the townhall, skating possibility, adorned trees in the park, often crowded!
Spittelberg : Probably the most delightful, though often quite packed Christmas market in Vienna, the Spittelberg market is scattered over a series of lanes lined with picturesque early 19th century Biedermeier houses (many of them former brothels, which is the reason the area was spared early 20th century urban renewal). Some of the stalls are extensions of the shops and bars of this normally rather sleepy area.
Maria-Theresien-Platz : A relatively new market between the two museums and en route to/from the MuseumsQuartier (MQ). It is easy to maneuver than some and the quality of the goods is better than most.
Schönbrunn : One of the better markets with higher quality goods and a more festive atmosphere in front of Schönbrunn palace. It is easier to spread out here and the specialties are food, handmade soaps, and candles.
Resselpark/Karlsplatz - A small, alternative and more rambunctious Christmas market in front of Karlskirche.
Freyung : A fine market in the First District frequented by locals and professionals on their lunch break and downtown shoppers. Focus on handicrafts and original gifts such as hand-made Christmas decorations, mangers or objects made of natural materials. Christmas cakes and biscuits as well as hot punch and Glühwein. There are usually fewer tourists.
Viennese speak Austrian German, though there is a special Viennese accent all its own. Standard (Northern) German however, the version usually studied by English speakers, will be understood although not always so welcomingly. People in jobs dealing with foreign visitors usually are fluent in English, though English is not as universally spoken as in northern European countries, and signs (including descriptive signs in museums) don't as often include English translations as in some other European countries, so those who don't speak German may find a traveler's phrase book or bilingual dictionary useful.
Vienna is potentially one of the safest cities in the world for its size. There are no slums or districts you should avoid. In general, you can visit any part of the city at any time of the day without taking many risks — just use your common sense. At night, though, it is wise to avoid parks. The drug scene at Karlsplatz (underneath the Opera) hangs out there during the day, but they do not care at all about tourists. Just ignore them and they will ignore you. The Prater (fair grounds/amusement park area) is said by some locals to be less safe at night, though more in reference to pickpockets than anything else. As in any major city, watch out for pickpockets who grab and run when boarding the U-Bahn (subway). Petty crimes (like jackets 'going missing') are more common and normally go unreported and wont get much sympathy. There have been a very few racist assaults in Vienna (even some by the police themselves). Many streets and public-transport facilities are littered with racist and nazi graffiti.
Prostitution is legal, even on the street, and is common around the area of the Prater and around the Westbahnhof. Ironically, some of the areas are a stones throw from the UNODC Headquarters (the UN agency resposible for combating human trafficing) and are human trafficing hubs for all of Europe. Many of these prositutes are not registered and a high number are know to be trafficed, so take care if seeking their services. It is safer for everyone involved to visit a brothel. Women dressed in a certain mannor walking around these areas alone at night might feel uncomfortable being checked-out in a certain way but there is no real danger. (There is no male street-prostituion to speak of in Vienna.)
Austria has one of the highest rates of missing people (per-capita) in the Western world. It is similar to that of the USA despite Austria's small size and that everyone is required to register their address with the state.
Recently there have been some reports of fraud around Karlsplatz and the Ring. The usual scenario is that someone will stop you and ask for directions. A couple of other guys show up claiming to be police, showing a badge (must be fake). They ask if you were getting drugs from the other guy and then will ask for your passport and wallet for verification. When you are busy trying to convince them that your passport is valid, one of them sneaks out some money from your wallet. Best to tell them that you want to go to the police station — there is one at Karlsplatz U-Bahnstation. It's a minor annoyance, but it's better to be careful. In a different case of fraud they try to convince you that your money is counterfeit money and that they have to inspect it. As always use common sense: police are ought to approach you in a very distinctive way (you will notice if they do so), the badge must have Polizei (police) and the Austrian coat of arms and/or the Austrian flag located somewhere on it, and they will be willing to bring you to the police station or a properly uniformed officer.
Do not walk on the bike lanes and cross them like you would cross any other road. Some bike lanes are hard to recognize (e.g. on the "Ring" in Vienna) and some cyclists bike rather fast. Walking on bike lines is not only considered impolite but it is illegal and you run the danger of getting hit.
If you see people gambling on the streets (usually in popular tourists' destinations like Stephenplatz or Mariahilferstrasse) stay away! The modus operandi usually involves a guy playing the classic game of "hiding the ball". This involves covering the ball (or small trinket) with either a bottle cap or a match box and swirling it around with two other bottle caps asking people to guess the position of the ball. The game is set in a way that you can easily see the ball's position. This is done to lure the unsuspecting person into placing a wager. There are usually two main players and, between them, they will lose and win money back and forth to give the appearance that it is a fair game - do not be tricked! They are from the same gang. Once you get greedy and get lured in, you will surely lose your money! The person in control of the bottle caps will remove the ball from their position through sleight of hand and you will never see your money back. Besides the two or three other players involved, there are usually at least two lookouts - one on each side of 'stage'. Vienna has plenty of leagal casinos if you care to try your luck.
Vienna has a large number of mostly free wireless hotspots in bars, restaurants, and cafés (see drink section). Wifi is known locally as WLAN or Wireless LAN. Those that are on the Freewave Wi-Fi network can be found here: . MuseumsQuartier has free wireless internet. There are plenty of internet cafes except for in the first district. Touch-screen media terminals are avaible (including internet) in many phone booths, much of the content about Vienna is free.
If you're a European student you can make use of the eduroam service. The University of Vienna, the Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration, the University of Technology, the Medical University of Vienna, the University of Applied Arts Vienna, the University of Music and Performing Arts as well as the Austrian Academy of Sciences are part of this programme in Vienna.
Television in Austria is almost exclusivly in German. The national public media ORF offer limited programming in several slovik languages and Hungarian. There are plenty of international English-language channels avaible.
Austrian news is printed in English in a newapaper called the Austrian Times . The Vienna Review offers a more indepth examination of local issues. International papers are widely avaible. There is a New York Times insert in the Monday edition of the local newspaper Der Standard which can be found quickly in coffee houses and elsewhere due to its tan color.
See the get in section for details on how to reach nearby places by rail, road and water.
Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia, is only 60 km (50 minutes by train or car, more by boat) from Vienna. In the past prices were one-fifth of what they are in Vienna but many things now cost pretty much the same. From the Donaukanal.
Sopron is a historic town, in the part of Hungary closest to Vienna.
Wachau valley - A beautiful, windy valley of high cliffs, vineyards and romantic, crumbling medieval castles, one of which played prison to Richard I of England (Richard the Lionheart) during the Crusades.
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