Hej! I am an American grad student studying and living in Sweden. Being a grad student, I have perfected the act of budget traveling. I have a fierce passion for cute dogs, film festivals, coffee and traveling. Join me as I work towards my personal goal of visiting all 28 EU countries before I graduate in June 2019! Feel free to pop over to my personal blog, Little Mouse. Big World, to read more about my travels while balancing grad school life.
25 years old
Things to do in Vienna
The Sights of Vienna
In Vienna, there is a sense of old and new merging together to create one beautiful city that screams to be explored! And since Vienna has free WIFI available around the city, especially in touristy areas, you’ll never have to worry about the Snapchats of your awesome trip not going through.
Rathausplatz: It's hard to determine if this building is the city's town hall or the home of a fairy tale princess. Either way, it's an imposing building that always seems to have something going on. In the winter, this is where the town's Christmas market and ice skating rink are. (Side Note: if you can, try to be in Vienna around Christmas – the Christmas markets are just plain fantastic!)
St. Stephen's Cathedral: This church has the tallest spire in Europe. If you'd like, you can climb up the towers to get a fantastic view of the city. If you prefer to stay closer to the ground, the church is unbelievably beautiful.
Belvedere gardens: Below the shadow of Belvedere Palace lies the Belvedere gardens. With the sculpted hedges and impressive water fountains, you can describe the experience of strolling around the gardens as "perfectly magical." No matter when you visit Vienna, the gardens will always be open and free to enter. However, Spring and Summer are the best months to see how expansive and colorful they can be. Inside the palace is an extensive collection of works of art from Austrian artists such as Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele, and Oskar Kokoschka. If after visiting the gardens you decide to visit the palace, the student price is €12.50.
Schönbrunn Palace: Easily accessible using public transportation, the Palace is stunning and well worth your time if you have a free afternoon. Here you can see where a young Mozart played for the Emperor or simply experience the extravagant lifestyle of the Imperial family, the Habsburgs. Although student entrance to the palace is €13.20, you can walk around the Schönbrunn palace gardens for free and enjoy its beauty in both Winter and Summer. Within the garden lies a hedge maze, which is €4.20 for students and they only sell tickets if the weather is pleasant.
Located outside the Imperial Palace, Michaelerplatz is perfectly situated in Vienna as a starting point for your historic walking tour. You will see exposed Roman features juxtaposed between royal and modern buildings. It is a complete feast for architecture junkies or people who simply enjoy looking at pretty things. There is so much history crammed into one tiny section, you won't know which way to start.
One direction leads to St. Michael’s Gate, which then paves the way to the Hofburg Palace. Inside this gilded palace are many different museums, such as The Sisi Museum or The Imperial Apartments. Do some research beforehand to decide if any of them peak your interest. Then in the other direction lies St. Michael’s Church. While beautiful on the outside, the most drawing factor lies beneath the church. The Catacombs of St. Michael’s Church has over 4,000 bodies are buried there; due to the environment, they will not decompose, which is creepy and intriguing all at the same time.
Viennese Museums that are always free!
If you encounter a rainy day while visiting Vienna, head over to one of the following free museums:
Geldmuseum: This museum is all about money. Hosted by the Oesterreichische Nationalbank, this museum displays the history of money and issues with money fraud. Whether or not it peaks your interest, it may be worth your time if you are met with bad weather and have nothing to do.
Bezirksmuseen: If you’d like to learn a little more about the history of Vienna, then this is the museum for you. Here, you can catch a glimpse into what life was like through the years.
MUSA: This is probably the most impressive free museum that Vienna has to offer as it contains modern and contemporary art from Austrian artists. With about 30,000 objects from 4,500 artists, you will definitely find an art piece to get lost in or that just makes you think.
Known for their splendor and regality, the Viennese coffeehouses are something to be experienced at least once during your trip. Don't be turned off by the idea of visiting a Viennese coffeehouse simply because you think it will be outside of your budget. There is a wide variation in price between the coffeehouses and even within the same coffeehouse. It’s wise to do some research before going to the café, so you know what to expect and you're not shocked when the bill comes. This experience will be more expensive than just grabbing coffee at the corner store, but it's well worth it. Split a cake between a few people or just make the cake your dinner (you are on vacation after all). Café Central was founded in 1876 and is still one of the best-known coffeehouses in Vienna. They brag that poets and writers were inspired by their coffee and cakes. Café Schwarzenberg seems to have a very “locals only” vibe while still upholding the pristine tradition of Viennese coffeehouses.
Your Bus Stops in Vienna
Please note that there are 5 bus stops in Vienna
Vienna Hütteldorf (train)
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