Vienna is a must visit city in Europe. It’s a city of sophistication, culture, and immense beauty. It’s not all Mozart and Choirboys, it’s also grand architecture, culinary delights, and a really rocking pub scene. When you visit it is not hard to see why Vienna has been voted the world’s most liveable city several years running. With so much to see and do we have narrowed down our list to bring you the ultimate guide to a weekend in Vienna.
Must see Vienna
Topping the list of attractions is this grandiose palace built in the 1630’s. It is a former imperial summer residence and is definitely very regal. You can do a tour of the inside which gives you an insight into the lives of the palace’s former inhabitants. The palace gardens are also a real treat. There is even a life sized maze to get lost in (and hopefully find your way out of again).
It is probably one of Vienna’s most recognisable symbols with its multicoloured sloping tiled roof. For a fantastic view of Vienna you can climb the 343 steps to the tower. Sadly due to time constraints we had to miss out on this. But this is definitely at the top of the list for next time.
Coffee houses have played a large part in the shaping of Viennese culture. Therefore visiting one is an absolute must. When you do you should treat yourself to some coffee and cake and maybe read the paper as the Viennese do. The most traditional cake in Vienna is the Sachertorte. It is a chocolate cake with apricot jam and dark chocolate icing. It is worth it.
Sample the cuisine
Vienna has an amazing culinary scene. Some of the basics you have to try though are the Weiner schnitzel, Pork Knuckle and the Kasekrainer. The Kasekrainer is a hot dog with cheese inside the sausage. You can pick one up at the several sausage stands in the city. They are especially good as a late night snack after a night out. The Pork Knuckle, which is my personal favourite, is a slow cooked delight best served with a potato based side. It is really filling so a shot of Austrian Schnapps goes really well with it. Finally we come to the Weiner Schnitzel which is probably one of the best known items of Austrian cuisine. Schnitzel is a thin breaded cutlet made from veal. There is a chicken or a pork alternative but the proper Weiner Schnitzel is made from veal. Needless to say we ordered the chicken alternative.
The park has various rides like bumper cars, roller coasters and all your fair ground games. If you want to visit it is important to note that it is only open March – October every year. The most prominent feature of the park is the Riesenrad, a 212 ft tall ferris wheel. First constructed in 1897 it was one of the first ferris wheels ever built. It is worth a ride. The gondolas are wooden and really make you feel like you have gone back in time. If you are feeling really brave the park is also home to the tallest swing ride in the world. It’s 117 metres tall and apparently offers some amazing views of Vienna. We wouldn’t know because there was no way we were getting on it.
A quirky thing to see in Vienna is this colourful housing complex. It is a really unusual building built after an idea and concept by Austrian artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser, hence the name. It is not an absolute must see. You can’t go inside and a lot of the paint seems to be fading these days. Still it a great place to get a few Instagram shots, so something to keep in mind.
We had no idea there were vineyards in Vienna and this was a pleasant surprise. It is a bit of a journey out of town and you will need to take a bus to Kahlenburg. It really is worth doing if you have the time. We had a lovely afternoon walking around and stopping at local vineyards for a sample along the way. Make sure you walk down the hill as this gives you the chance to take some incredible photos of the view.
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