City of Kings – Vienna
The river Danube flows through Vienna, the capital of Austria and due to spectacular architecture and the great composers like Mozart, Beethoven and Mahler, who composed music in this city, it has visitors all year around.
You can travel to Vienna by plane, car or by coach. Similar to most European cities you can get Vienna Card, which is 48 or 72 hours valid with 210 discounts like free bus fares. The card cost around 21.90€ and 24.90€. You can always choose Hop – on Hop – off buses, which costs 15€, but the price also depends on how many days and which zone of the city you will choose.
People who prefer to travel on their own; they can choose to travel on the public transport which coasts 2.20€ per fare, a 24 hour ticket which costs 7.60€, a 48 hour ticket which is 13.30€ and a 72 hour ticket which cost 16.50€.
I can also reinsure that Vienna’s public transport system (bus, trams, underground trains) is very good and runs every few minutes. You can buy your ticket fares on ticket machines and inside a bus station. Before you jump on the tube you will have to validate your ticket on the ticket machine. When you travel by tram you can validate your ticket on the spot. The public transport in Vienna is very easy and you should not have any problems in finding your way. You will not be bored in this beautiful capital city of Austria, we recommend you to visit:
Schönbrunn Palace is located about 6 km from the city centre, but it is very easy to find if you take a tube. The whole territory of the palace including the gardens is 176 hectares, therefore visitors usually spend at least half of the day to see the whole Palace. It is a Baroque style palace, elegantly decorated by its emperors. It is a former summer residence, but now is a museum. Behind the Palace there is a large park which use to be a hunting grounds, but now it is a flower garden with fountains and sculptures and various of buildings. In 1779 the gardens were open to the public visits and till this day admission is free. The old town of Vienna and the Schönbrunn Palace are on the UNESCO heritage list.
Transport: Metro – Schönbrunn (U4) stop
The Hofburg Imperial Palace
The Hofburg Palace was built 600 hundred years ago, it reflects Hofburg imperial history, it also attracts loads of tourists. Most visited places are: Kings apartment, chapels, church, the national library and various of other museums inside this magnificent building. Hofburg palace has around 2000 rooms, it was built in different architecture styles, from gothic to baroque and neoclassical. Tourist can visit: the armory, historical music instruments, ethnography, arts, history, natural history museums, which holds thousands of various exhibits. Not far from the Palace you can also visit the most famous square of Vienna – St. Michael’s Square.
Transport: Metro – Herrengasse (U3) stop
Botanical Gardens of Vienna was founded in 8th century next to Belvedere Palace, it is 8 hectares territory. The whole territory is divided in two: one part is a theme based and the other is geographical. There are 9000 species of plants and a small garden of the Alp plants. Most of the plants which grow in the greenhouses are publicly closed, only one tropic plant greenhouse is open to the public. Next to the Botanical Gardens there is a Schmetterlinghaus – The Imperial Butterfly House, entrance fee is 7€.
Transport: Metro – Südtiroler Platz (U) stop
Belvedere Palace (the Upper and Lower Belvedere)
The Belvedere is a building complex in Vienna – it used to be prince summer residence, consisting of two Baroque palaces facing each other on the hill. In between there are French style gardens with statues, fountains and terraces. Lower Belvedere palace was built in 1714 – 1716. Most of chambers are open to a public eye. Including dining chambers, mirror halls, bedrooms, the golden cabinet – small, but very posh. In the Upper Belvedere on the south side, there is an art gallery. There are mostly Austrian artists in the exhibition. This building is much more spectacular than the Lower Belvedere, this building has more sculptures and ornaments.
Transport: Metro – Südbahnhof (S) stop
St. Stephen’s Cathedral
St. Stephen’s Cathedral or Cathedral of Vienna is a symbol of the city, which attracts tourist from around the globe. It is a Gothic style cathedral, which was built on a previous church basis in 14th Century. Inside the cathedral are the tombs of Habsburg dynasty. The West side of the chapel’s facade belongs to Romanticism. St. Stephen’s Cathedral’s massive south tower is ironically called ‘Steffi’. There is a Gothic style massive tower which is 137 meters high. St. Stephen’s Cathedral roof is covered by 200,000 glazed tiles, the tiles form a mosaic of the double-headed eagle that is symbolic of the Roman empire.
Transport: Metro – Stephansplatz (U1, U3) stop
Vienna State Opera – Staatsoper
Vienna State Opera is the most famous opera house in Europe, which was built in the 19th century. It was open publicly in 1869 on May 25th. First musical composition was Mozart’s Don Giovanni (Don Juan). Vienna State Opera capacity is 2200 spectators. The opera house holds various of events such as charity concerts, ballet and operas. If you cannot make it to the play, you could always come in and have a 30 minutes tour around the opera house.
Transport: Metro – Karlsplatz (U1,2,4) stop
The Austrian Parliament Building
The Austrian Parliament Building belongs to Neoclassicism. It was built in 1884. Portico leading to the entrance of a building was made in eight pillars – the pillars are in the Corinthian style. The Athena Fountain stands in the front of the central porch of the building. There are 8 ancient historians sculpted on the balustrade. On the left side four Greek historians; on the right side four roman historians. The whole building is decorated with various of sculptures, and the quadrigas decorate both ends of the roof.
Transport: Metro – Volkstheater (U2, U3) stop
City Park (Stadpark)
Vienna’s city park was created in the middle of 19th century, the park that extends from the Ringstrasse to the main city district. At the first it was an English version of the park, but couple of decades later the park was introduced with statues and fountains. Main attraction of the park is Johann Strauss memorial.
Transport: Metro – Stadtpark (U4), Stubentor (U3) stop
Charles’ Square (Karlsplatz)
This is one of the biggest square in Vienna. The Karlskirche is located here with some other small institutions. It is a Baroque style church. The Karlskirche was built in 1716 – 1737 by emperor Charles the 5th. On the east side of the square there are couple of Vienna history museums and a park called ‘Resselpark’, in which you also find some famous Austrian statues. On the west side of the square you can find a lovely Naschmark, a city market.
Transport: Metro – Karlsplatz (U2, U4) stop
City Market (Naschmarkt)
The Naschmarkt is Vienna’s most popular market, even though there are so many markets in Vienna, this one is the oldest and the biggest. This market was established in the 16th century. There are loads of spices, drinks and food on the sale. The market is famous for a good quality foods.
Transport: Metro – Kettenbrückengasse (U4) stop
This Palace was built in early 18th Century. It was a summer residency for Liechstenstein Royal family. Today this building belongs to Liechstenstein museum, it contains a private art collection, which includes paintings and sculptures. The summer residency was built by the prince of Liechstenstein Johann Adam I. The building exterior is moderate. It was inspired by Roman villas, which was built in the classical style. The Interior is very rich with beautiful mural paintings and frescoes. At the begging the palace garden was built in Baroque style but later in the end of 18th century it turned into English. What we can see now is that the garden was rebuilt in 2003, with two different styles (English and Baroque).
Transport: Metro – Friedensbrücke (U4) stop
Vienna city hall (Rathaus)
Vienna city hall was built at the end of 19th century. Vienna city hall holds yearly events like Christmas markets. City Hall was built in Gothic revival style, between 1972 and 1883. Friedrich von Schmidt was the famous architect who also built Cathedral of Cologne and also began the restoration of the Cathedral of Sant’Ambrogio, it is no coincidence that 100 meter tower looks like belfry. Not far from city hall there is a park called Rathauspark, which has couple of fountains and few statutes.
Transport: Metro – Rathaus (U2) stop
Palace Garden (Burggarten)
The Garden was built in 19th century, not far from Hofburg palace. This was a private land only for emperor and his family. Today this is a lovely public park, which has statues and elegant palm trees greenhouse. The greenhouse of steel and glass was built in 1901 and 1907. Inside there are tropical butterflies and even bats, nevertheless the most famous and the most photographed object inside is Mozart statue by Victor Tilgner.
Transport: Metro – Museumsquartier (U2) stop
People’s garden Volksgarten
This park was built between 1820 and 1823. The park was built over the city fortifications that were destroyed by Napoleon army. This the first recreation zone in the city centre. This elegant park was loved by aristocrats. French style garden territory is full of flowers planted symmetrically, it has a lovely rose garden, beautiful fountains and interesting monuments, which a rich taste to the place. In the middle of the park stands a Theseus Temple, which was completed between 1820 and 1823.
Transport: Metro – Herrengasse (U3), Volkstheater (U2,U3) stop
It is one of the main streets in Vienna, with lots of shops. The street was completed in 1220, when Duke Leopold the 4th was in charge of the city. Most of the buildings in the street were build in the 19th Century. In the middle of the Graben street stands Baroque style memorial The Plague Column, it was built after the Great Plague epidemic in 1679.
Transport: Metro – Stephansplatz (U1, U3) stop
Other key things:
- To see the whole city of Vienna you will need 2 to 3 days;
- Public transport starts from 00.30 in the morning so there shouldn’t be any problems;
- In Vienna shops closes at 7 pm and it does not open on Sunday;
- Most of the people of Vienna speak English;
- If you wish to see an opera, the ticket price goes from 14€, but it sells quickly and it sells two months in advance. There a no performances in July and August;
- Between Vienna and Slovakia’s capital Bratislava there is only 70 km in a distance. Therefore, you could take a fast boat on to Danube’s river and see both capitals. The boat from Vienna to Bratislava leaves every 95 minutes, and the boat from Bratislava to Vienna leaves in 105 minutes, and also it is closed from October to the end of April. Price single journey ticket cost 25€ and return 38€;
- You can also take a coach from Vienna to Bratislava, here are couple of coach names Flixbus, Regiojot and Lux Express. If you buy in advance with Regiojot ticket cost 1€, coach leaves every hour, inside you have a very comfortable seats with iPads, coffee machine, and spectacular views through the window, you will not get bored at all and it only takes 1 and 30 minutes;
- City Hall in Christmas time, has a huge Christmas market and in the summer there are loads of interesting events, like festivals and food fairs;
- Austria is most famous for its cakes, the smell of the cakes surrounds the whole city, the most famous is Strudel
- The most famous souvenir from Vienna is a Mozartkugel, it is a small chocolate candy ball;
- Great Hotels in Vienna: RAFAEL KAISER