Austria, Tips, Travel Advice

Vienna Travel Tips

15 Comments 10 May 2012

Vienna

Vienna has so much to see, how do you choose?!

I had never really considered Vienna before, however upon reading an article by Andrew McCarthy in National Geographic last fall, it came onto my radar.

He wrote, “I have arrived in Vienna with a simple plan: to live as local a life as possible. Instead of discovering this famously imperial city from the comforts and security of a hotel, with an attentive staff to stand behind me, I’ve decided to plunge in on my own terms and rent an apartment—and not in the city center I know to be the heart of tourism, but in one of the outer, more “local” districts. I have always found that the less insulated I am from my surroundings, the richer are my experiences.”

The article was a perfect description of why I like to stay in apartments when I travel, and all of a sudden I found myself wanting to experience this Vienna apartment lifestyle that Andrew wrote about.

Luckily Go with Oh had apartments in Vienna, so immediately it became one of my four destinations on the European Spring Tour.

This was my first trip to Austria let alone Vienna, but instead of getting a guide book, I relied upon social media to bring me my tips! The Go with Oh crew was busy gathering Vienna tips from their readers for me to follow. And as usual I ran out of time to do them all, but I was able to follow many of them.

Sweet Tooth

Winning Tip – @cambridgecook Demel cafe on Kohlmarkt has better cake than Sacher Hotel #Vienna

sachertorte

The winning sachertorte at Cafe Demel

The person who provided the tip about Café Demel knew exactly how to get my attention…chocolate. I loved the fact that the tip went against the norm of eating sachertorte at the typical tourist spot, Hotel Sacher, and instead directed me to a much better option! The scent of chocolate enveloped me as I walked into Café Demel. There’s a retail store there selling sweets, a bar for a quick stop, a traditional coffee shop upstairs, and a bakery where you can view them making the sweet creations in back. This place will entertain you for hours!

View video of my sacher torte tasting at Cafe Demel.

Architecture

@SophieR In Vienna, check out the fabulous houses designed by eccentric architect Hundertwasser.

 

Hundertwaser

Hundertwasser House - pretty eclectic for Vienna!

This was a super easy tip to do since my apartment was only 2 blocks from the Hundertwasser House! There’s lots of great architecture to ooh and ahh about in Vienna, but this one sort of makes you go “huh?”  Of course I made a quick stop at the colorful and very Un-Austrian looking building!

Food

@IreneHaidner Wiener Schnitzel types ummm good .. a must try if you haven’t
Not only did I try Wiener Schnitzel, I tried sausages, potato salads, and plenty of beer!

@cambridgecook Trzesniewski on Dorotheergasse off Graben for tiny open faced sandwiches and tiny beer “Pfiff” #Vienna

vienna food

Brötchen - Open face sandwiches

I didn’t exactly get to Trzesniewski, but I did get to try the tiny open faced sandwiches called Brötchen that they make when I was visiting a friend who was holding a cocktail party!  Yum!

Music

@aerofede Another great idea may be going to an Opera,or visiting the opera theater,depending in what’s available

vienna opera house

Inside the State Opera House on the daily tour

I had multiple tips telling me to get the cheap standing room tickets for the opera; however, even though I like a good bargain, I opted to see a string quartet instead of a standing ticket at the opera. Instead I took a great tour of the opera house! For a mere 5 Euros you can go on an English tour of the famed Opera house. Not only do you get to see the magnificent seating and balconies, but you even get to step on stage and see just how massive it is for yourself.

Since I love string instruments, I utilized the great ViennaUnwrapped.com event listings to determining if there were any classical concerts happening during my stay.  I found a  quartet performance in a smaller theatre which I splurged on. I really enjoyed this as I felt a bit more local this way and was able to see yet another gorgeous Viennese theater. Plus, what’s better than hearing Mozart being played live while in Vienna?

History

@STACEYLCRONIN Schoenbrunn Palace is an amazing must see!

@IreneHaidner My first suggestion in #Vienna, #Austria is #Castle #Schönbrunn @ottsworld @GowithOh #travel

Schonbrunn Palace

The mighty Schonbrunn Palace

woods

The woods surrounding Schonbrunn Palace

A short metro ride out of the city center transported you back into imperial Austria. I suggest you pack a picnic lunch and go wander around the woods and gardens (it’s free!) and find a little secluded spot to relax. It’s not hard as the gardens are huge. I also took the indoor tour while I was there and loved getting a first-hand look at the opulence of the imperial Habsburg Family.

Get to the outlaying towns

@cambridgecook Outskirts Wine Tavern (Heuriger), not in Grinzing! Wieninger & Mayer am Pfarrplatz have great food & wines.

viennese food

Getting out of town for a massive plate of food!

I actually had a friend take me out to a wine tavern on the outskirts of Vienna. It was a completely different feel from the rest of Vienna!

Ask the Locals in Social Media!

In addition to the Go with Oh tips, I reached out to a few Austria based bloggers to get some advice. No only did I get some excellent local tips on what non-touristy coffee houses to go to, Andreas offered to show me around! I had been following Andreas on twitter (@travelwriticus)  for quite some time, and it was a treat to get to meet him in person and have a few days with him showing me the city and answering all of my silly questions about Austrian culture. He was my lifeline in Vienna.

Andreas showing me coffee houses around Vienna

My favorite ‘Andreas tips’ were food based!

Go to Café Pruckel for the best Wiener Schnitzel…seriously was the best I’ve ever had.

Go to the Naschmarkt to see a variety of outdoor stalls and shop for your apartment.

Naschmarkt

Naschmarkt - a great place to shop if you are doing an apartment stay!

I’ll be writing much more about some of these tips in detail over the next week, but be sure to check out all of the Vienna travel tips I received in the Go with Oh competition!

View Venice Travel Tips
View Rome Travel Tips

Disclosure: Go with Oh hosted my apartment lodging in Vienna. However, all of the opinions expressed here are my own – as you know how I love to speak my mind!

Your Comments

15 Comments so far

  1. Walter says:

    Hi Sherry, Glad to hear that you had a good time in Vienna which I still consider my hometown despite hardly spending much time there.

    The traditional coffee house culture is still thriving and the Naschmarkt is quite a paradise for foodies.

    I shall keep your Wiener Schnitzel tip at the Cafe Prückel in mind for my next visit myself!

    The city’s cultural offer is really very diverse and one of the things I miss the most.

    You might also enjoy going to places like Baden (very close to Vienna) and Graz in the south if you ever go back to that small country called Austria ;-) Others will come up with more worthwhile suggestions.

    Happy travels,
    Walter

    • Sherry says:

      Thanks for stopping by Walter! Stay tuned as I have much more to come on the coffee houses and Cafe Pruckel! Thanks for the suggestions for my next visit!

  2. Emily says:

    I did the standing room at the Vienna State Opera for 3.5 Euro and saw The Magic Flute, and I’m not exaggerating when I say it was one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen! It was a long show though, so I can definitely understand opting for a string quartet. That was probably awesome, too!

  3. Perfect timing, we are about to head to Vienna in the next few weeks. Any particular tips for families?

  4. Lucy says:

    I went to Vienna last year and loved it. Did you go to the retro amusement park? I wish I’d known about Hundertwasser House – it looks wicked!

  5. Miruna says:

    I’ve never considered Vienna, either, but reading your article…:)I might start packing. Very nice!

  6. I really liked Vienna, there is something romantic about the city.

    Never got to see the Hundertwasser house though, looks pretty crazy!

    • Sherry says:

      I know a great little apartment in the Hundertwasser neighborhood! It was rather weird – sort of like Gaudi in Barcelona – a bit out of place but interesting.

  7. Vienna looks clean and be a city of unique where I’ve met.
    “Interesting!”

  8. Nice Information.I have never visited Vienna Reading your blog makes me want to try
    everything according to your experience by visiting there. I’m glad Google brought me
    here. Thank you

  9. Mike says:

    We are headed there for our first visit this spring. Great post! Gotta love the travel blogging community!

  10. SimplyVienna says:

    Vienna has something that you dont know but really feels romantic, and thats what i love about Vienna. this is a great information you shared. thanks!

  11. Such a lovely guide to our beautiful city! We read a lot of travel blogs but I have to say so far I enjoyed this one most of them all. Beautiful pictures as well. If you ever need to stay on a budget in Vienna, we recommend that you check out it’s “best” Hostel :)

  12. Awesome list Sherry! I cannot wait to try some of these places out during my upcoming trip to Vienna :D


Share your view

Post a comment

Sherry traveling the world

I'm Sherry, a corporate cube dweller turned nomadic traveler. I travel to off-the-beaten-path destinations to bring you unique travel experiences and photography. But it's not just about travel, it's also about life experiences of a middle age wanderer.
New here? Then Start Here.

Where am I and Where am I going?

NYC -> Colombia

Receive Ottsworld Updates via Email

green line
green line

green line