Vienna: Six things to do on a visit to Austria's capital

2012 Vienna

Vienna has just been named the world's best city to live in 2016. And, as this year also marks the start of EasyJet's direct Edinburgh to Vienna route, we asked our friends at Skyscanner to tell us the top things to do in this beautiful city.

Check out their top tips below - and add to them in the comments box!

Gloriette at Schönbrunn Palace

1. 2016 is the 100th anniversary of Emperor Franz Joseph's death, so it's the ideal time to pay a visit to the Schönbrunn Palace, the Emperor's former summer residence, which is just one hour from the city centre.

Vienna MQ, Museums Quarter

2. No break here is complete without a visit to the Museum Quarter, where you'll find beautiful Baroque buildings alongside sleek towers of glass and chrome, and the Leopold Museum, chock-full of modern Austrian art.

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3. When you need to recharge your batteries, head to one of the city's institutional beer halls for a stein of potent Austrian lager - recent addition Brickmaker's Ale andCider House on Zieglergasse claims to have the largest selection in the country.

4. Vienna is known for its well-organised public transport and the popular use of bikes in the city centre. The CityBike scheme lets you to hop on a public bike and explore the city for a small fee, but the city is such a manageable size that you can see it all on foot too.

Austria, Vienna, Danube canal

6. If you'd rather take the weight off your feet as you take in the sight and sounds of the city, opt for one of the river and canal tours which offer your a great lay of the land although they are best experienced during spring and summer.

For flights, is currently showing flights on the new route from Edinburgh to Vienna with easyJet from just £111 per person. Price based on return flights, departing on 1st March, returning on 8th March.


City break guide: Vienna
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Vienna: Six things to do on a visit to Austria's capital

As hotel concepts go, this is one we welcome with open arms; Vienna's wine and design hotel - the Rathaus - is a celebration of just that; intoxicating liquor and brilliant interior design. Independently run by the wine-loving Fleischhaker family, the hotel marries contemporary design with a connoisseur's palette for fine wine, offering special tasting courses and evenings. The wine element even extends to the breakfast table in the guise of a special wine-infused cheese.

Vienna's coffee and cake ritual is not one to be taken lightly - from the infamous Sacher torte to Demel's delectable artisan chocolates, the Viennese know how to put on a good spread. Cafe culture is big here - either settle down with your laptop and an espresso at the lively Das Model near the Museum Quarter, where all the furniture is for sale, or go the refined route at the Sacher coffee house.

Traditionalists will fall in love with Palmenhaus; sophisticated Viennese cuisine and the melt-in-your mouth pastries served in the architectural gem that is the Jugendstil glass house.

For vodka cocktails, the style mavens are currently propping up the bar at Drings in The Ring Hotel, but if you want to dip your toes into Vienna's young art scene then you need to be pulling up a stool at the Camera Club - where there' s an electric, low-key and genuine underground feel.

Design and innovation are the cornerstones of Viennese shopping. While you can pick up fancy designer goods in the Kohlmarkt area, its the gift shops around the Museum Quartier and Neubaugasse, that will offer something a bit more tantalising. Analogue fans can hang out at the original Lomography Camera Store; 20th century furniture buffs should head to Lichterloh and fans of cult European labels should look up Park for Ann Demeulemeester, Martin Margiela and Acne.

Bypass the lure of the horse drawn carriages for your own two legs, and walk the cobbled streets of Vienna's elegant old town, Kohlmarkt, instead.

As you're in their home town it would be rude not to pay a visit to Egon Schiele and Gustav Klimt at the fabulous Leopald Museum in Vienna's self-contained Museum Quartier; where there's also plenty of bars and cafes to keep your energy levels topped up.

Brush up on your Tosca and take in a performance by the Vienna State Opera. While for those that can afford it there's plenty of decadence to be enjoyed, the fun is in joining the ruckus which gathers just before the start of each performance when the cheap seats are released.

Kristalltherme Bad Fischau is like a little window into 19th century Vienna; imperial cabins, manicured lawns, spring water pools and a wellness spa - this is where Vienna Society goes to do its unwinding.

A Vienna cliche, but one well worth embracing is organising a visit to one of the showcases given by the Spanish Riding School, who perform classical dressage in a sun-flooded 18th century palace.


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