Vienna is the capital and the most populous city of Austria. It's the seventh biggest city in the EU and after Berlin, the second biggest German-speaking city. The history of Vienna starts about 4000 years ago and due its location on the Danube river, it has always been an important location strategically for Europe and for trade in general. During the Roman Era, Vienna was used as an important military camp, remains of which can be can still be found in the old town of the city. Vienna had its golden period in the 19th century when Emperor Franz-Josef and his wife Elisabeth ran the country and transformed Vienna into a modern city.
Vienna is renowned for its coffee houses, museums, as well as many theatre and opera houses. It's the political, cultural and economic centre of Austria and is also home to one of four official residences of the United Nations. The Austrian capital will be busiest in the summertime where the tourist will be in full flow, however the best time to visit is in the spring when the trees have began to regain their colour and volume.
Vienna international airport is the biggest in Austria, in terms of size and number of passengers handling a total of 22.5 million annually. The airport is a hub for the flag carrying provider, Austrian Airlines, and travels to several countries the world over including destinations in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Africa and North America.
Getting from Vienna International Airport to the City Centre
Vienna International Airport is located 20 km south east of central Vienna, and due to this close proximity, there are several travelling options for those wishing to access the city centre. The airport provides a City Airport Train service, which runs every 30 minutes from 5:30 a.m. until 11:30 p.m and will arrive in Vienna within 16 minutes. Additionally, there is the S-bahn service which will take you into Vienna Central within 24 minutes. Taking slightly longer, there are also bus services from the airport, and buses 1183, 1185 or 1187 will get you to Vienna's city centre in 45 minutes.
Taxi services from Vienna airport to the city centre are also very reliable and convenient. The taxi ranks are located outside the entrance to each of the 3 terminals and numbers are available from information desks. Additionally, there is a Vienna Airport cab option available. These journeys will usually cost between €18 and €25. Driving from the airport to the city centre will take 18 minutes, without traffic. Follow the A4 road to Donaukanal Straße, then change to the B227 and stay on that road until you hit Vienna.
Vienna Hauptbahnhof is the largest train station in Austria. This station was the first central train station to be opened in the capital. It was only opened in 2012 and is still partly under construction. It is located in the 10th district of Vienna and 145,000 passengers use the main station every day. The station is an international traffic junction, and has 12 platforms for passenger trains and 4 platforms for motorail trains. Underneath the platforms, as well as in the station concourse, there is a shopping centre where passengers can peruse a selection of shops and restaurants.
Getting from Vienna Hauptbahnhof to the City Centre
To access the city centre by train you can take the S60 and S80, S-Bahn lines that depart from platforms 9 and 12 from the station, or the U1 U-bahn line that departs about 500m from the station itself. Additionally, there are also trams available that depart from the Hauptbahnhof very frequently. Located at several points around the station are taxi ranks, that can take you to the city centre. The station is located just 4 km from the centre proper and will take you just over 10 minutes to drive without traffic by following the B221 road to Gürtel Straße.
Vienna (Wien) Westbahnhof is a railway terminus in the 15th district of Vienna and opened originally in 1858 as Kaiserin-Elisabeth-Bahnhof. In 2011 a shopping centre was constructed called, "BahnhofCity Wien West". The hall is surrounded by high buildings where a hotel is also located. Vienna Westbahnhof has been twice voted as the most beautiful station in Austria. It serves regional connections as well as international connections to locations in Germany, Switzerland, France and Belgium. Wien Westbahnhof has 11 platforms for passengers and 2 for motorail trains.
Getting from Vienna Westbahnhof to the City Centre
Accessing the city centre by train from the Westbahnhof is simple due the the two metro lines that operate from the station. The U3 and the U6 will take you directly to the city centre. The number 5, 6, 9, 52 and 57 tram lines also have services to the city centre. Driving to the centre from Westbahnhof covers a distance of 6.2 km and will last 18 minutes - simply follow the B1.
The VIB (Vienna International Bus terminal) is located on Erdbergstraße in the 3rd district of Vienna and is the biggest bus terminal in the city. The bus station is equipped with 18 stands, waiting rooms for passengers (open 6:30 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.), lockers, restrooms, a snack bar and a Cash machine. The most important international providers that operate from VIB are Eurolines Austria and Flixbus. National destinations can also be reached with WESTbus.
Getting from Vienna International Bus terminal to the City Centre
The Vienna international Bus terminals is easily accessed via the U3 U-bahn line. It is located 5 km from the centre of the city, and can be reached in about 10 minutes by foot and only 12 minutes by car.
The main motorways when driving into the city are the A1 and A2. The A1 is a westerly motorway that leads into Vienna via Linz to Salzburg where it connects to the German Autobahn 8. If you're entering Vienna from the south, follow the A2 which will lead you directly into the city. This is the longest motorway in Austria and connects Vienna with Italy.
Vienna has a very well established public transportation system with S-Bahn services, 5 U-Bahn lines, tramways and buses to get you almost anywhere in the city. The majority of the connections will be as frequent as once every 3 minutes and decreases to every 10 minutes at off peak times. Train, tram and bus can be used with just one ticket. The S-Bahn lines connect Vienna with regional destinations as well as within the city, and passengers have the added benefit of being allowed to carry a bike for free in the U-Bahn. The public transportation runs between 5:00 a.m. and 12:30 a.m. Monday - Friday, and on weekends and public holidays the U Bahn remains open 24 hours a day.
General Informational About the System
Cycling is very popular in Vienna, as the city has extensive bike lanes and works extremely hard to maintain them. Since July 2014 Vienna's bike lane network has a coverage of 1,259 km across the city.
Taxis are extremely popular in Vienna, despite the excellent transport system in the city.
Austria has an extremely efficient road network and modern motorway system. You need an international drivers license and - very important - a vignette (Road Tax) when crossing the borders.
In general, driving by car isn't really necessary in Vienna. The public transportation is very extensive and you can reach almost everywhere within 45 minutes. Most of the cities districts have short-term parking, as well as low priced "Park & Ride" options that are directly connected to U-Bahn stations, where you can access the city centre with ease.
Discovering Vienna on foot is a great way to see the city and to get your bearings. This is especially true in the historical city centre and districts 4 and 9, since the majority of these areas are pedestrianised. However, due the Vienna's size, travelling solely by foot will limit yourself to just the central district.
Vienna is the capital and the most populous city of Austria. It's the seventh biggest city in the EU and after Berlin, the second biggest German-speaking city. Vienna is renowned for its coffee houses, museums, as well as many theatre and opera houses. It's the political, cultural and economic centre of Austria and is also home to one of four official residences of the United Nations. The Austrian capital will be busiest in the summertime where the tourist will be in full flow, however the best time to visit is in the spring when the trees have began to regain their colour and volume.
Must Know: Vienna has a great public transport network, trams and buses will get visitors to anywhere in the city.
Must See: The Ringstraße is the road that surrounds the centre of Vienna and has many impressive buildings along the way.
Must Do: Vienna is known for its good coffee and is full of places to try it. Relax in a few of the coffee shops after a day of sightseeing.
Did You Know: Vienna is known as the City of Dreams and the City of Music.
Taking a leisurely walk in a beautiful spot is so relaxing, and Vienna city is a perfect place to explore on foot. You can start the city walk at Kaertnerstrasse. This is a beautiful area that is well worth strolling through and enjoy the atmosphere. There are plenty of places to shop in this historic area. The street dates back to the 13th century. You will also find several museums not too far from Kaertnerstrasse. The Austrian Theater Museum has been around since the late 17th century. Beethoven is known to have performed in this theater, and it is now known as the Beethoven and Stifter museum. It has more than one million exhibits. From here, you can head to Donaupark, where you can find the magnificent Danube Tower, which is 800 feet tall. In Donaupark, you will also find two revolving restaurants which provide fantastic views of the city. More strolling can be enjoyed at the smaller Herderpark in Vienna's 11th district. This park features a garden of rose and lilac plants, as well as a wide arbor fruit trees.
While most people associate Vienna with its historical landmarks, when you visit this great city the multitude of coffee shops will amaze you. There is a thriving coffee scene that manifests itself on the streets of Vienna. Although traditional coffee roasters such as Café Frauenhuber exist, third-wave innovative coffee newcomers are joining the party. Contemporary Viennese coffee houses such as the Balthasar, Kaffeefabbrik, Waldemar, Café Espresso, and the Sussmund Kaffeebar spot sophisticated interiors on top of the artisanal coffee they offer. These coffee houses are known for their 'sit-down' policy. Once you make a purchase, you are welcome to take as much time as you wish in the coffee house. A favorite among locals and visitors is Café Frauenhuber. It offers a fantastic vintage Viennese atmosphere. In case the great atmosphere doesn't cheer you up, then the delicious 'Wiener Melange' surely will. With an architecture portraying romantic historicism, Café Central is a must-visit coffee house. Enjoy their coffee with homemade cakes, pastries, and also ambient piano music in the background. Located in the backstreet of the tourist-filled Hietzing, Waldemar exudes a modern touch. Neon lights litter the interior light and their coffee served with whipped cream leaves lasting memories.
Vienna is one of Europe's leading food and wine capitals. The city's flourishing food scene features hearty traditional Austrian dishes, the most beloved being the schnitzel. Traditional Austrian eateries have long embraced international delicacies, such as sausages and cake, by making them part of their cuisine. These eateries include Figlmuller restaurant which is known for its extensive schnitzel menu, Sacher hotel famed for having the most delicious Sachertorte, Puerstner and café Mozart for their scrumptious goulash, Café Aida known for its mouthwatering apple strudel, Restaurant and Bar Motto for its tasty tafelspitz, and the Schick hotel known for its plum jam turnovers. A rising trend of modern restaurants in Vienna has paved the way for more versatile food menus, bringing a whole new wave of culinary tourism to the city. Such restaurants include Neni which serves the best Middle Eastern food in Vienna, the Palmenhaus celebrated for its Mediterranean menu and extensive wine list, O Boufes known for savory dishes, and Ulrich known to be the best brunch spot in the city. Tian Bistro and Erich serve some of Vienna's finest vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free food. The most popular Austrian street food is the Wiener Wurstel (Viennese sausages) made from pork or beef and served with fresh vegetables or the Austrian potato salad.
Known for its rich artistic and intellectual heritage, Vienna is never short of activities and events for travellers. The city has countless concert halls and museums that hold the works of renowned residents such as Mozart and Egon Schiele, making it worth a visit regardless of the time of year. Summer (June to August) is the most popular season, as thousands make their way to Vienna to indulge in sightseeing as they soak in some sun. This season is graced by popular summer events, including the Danube Island Festival, the Vienna Festival, and the colorful Rainbow Parade. travellers on a budget will find chilly Springtime (April to May) in Vienna an ideal season to visit. This shoulder season offers hustle-free access to the Sound Frame Festival and attractions such as the gothic St. Stephan's Cathedral. Despite the low temperatures, Fall (September to October) in Vienna is exciting as the city holds the Vienna Fashion Week and the Vienna Film Festival during this time. The cold winter (November to March) season draws thousands of local and international travellers to Vienna to enjoy breathtaking views at the Vienna Christmas Market, Vienna Ball Season and the New Year's Day Concert as the snow-blanketed city shines with millions of beautiful Christmas lights.