Vienna Travel Guide

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See Also: Ski Austria


The capital city of Austria is the beautiful and historic city of Vienna.  Vienna could not be in a more scenic setting, situated along the banks of the Danube River and at the foothills of the Alps.


Vienna is a popular tourist destination for many reasons, among which are its music, concert halls, theatre, museums, cafes, wine taverns, parks – and even skiing!


Throughout the 19th century Vienna became known for its major cultural and scientific contributions. Vienna is known for the famous Strauss waltzes, and was also home to the psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud. Many famous composers, including Beethoven, Schubert, Mozart and Haydn all lived in Vienna.  Many other composers and musicians were attracted to Vienna, such as Schoenberg, Mahler and Brahms.


The musical passion and interest continues today, with concerts held during the summer at the gothic Rathaus and the annual Vienna International Festival, which attracts orchestras from across the world.


The city’s main boulevard is the Ringstrasse (Ring Boulevard) and many of the buildings along it are of architectural interest, including the Opera House and Natural History Museum. The city’s cafes are famous for Viennese pastries and many popular cafes, as well as museums, can be found along the Ringstrasse. 


Vienna is home to the world famous Spanish Riding School with the magnificent Lipizzaner horses.  It is also home to the Vienna Boy’s Choir and the Vienna State Opera – all well worth a visit.


Tours of the city are available by foot, bus, or horse drawn carriage. A terrific view over the city is available from the observation deck or revolving restaurant at the top of the Danube Tower.


Other not-to-be-missed attractions include the Old City, Schonburnn Palace (a former summer home of the Habsburg’s), Karlskirche – a huge Baroque style cathedral, St. Stephen’s Cathedral, the historic Naschmarkt (market) and main shopping streets.  Prater Park includes a historic amusement park with a huge Ferris wheel. The magnificent Belvedere Palace contains an impressive collection of Viennese art, including works by Gustav Klimt.


Tours are available of the homes of Sigmund Freud, Johann Strauss, Beethoven and Mozart. The Central Cemetery contains the graves of Beethoven, Brahms, Schoenberg, Schubert, along with many other famous people.


Vienna may not be an obvious winter sports destination, but if you are visiting Vienna it is possible to ski at the artificial snow slopes at Hohe-Wand-Wiese, within the city borders. Several ski areas and winter sports destinations are located within a short distance of Vienna (find accommodation here).


Vienna was home to the ruling Habsburgs for approximately hundreds of years. The Imperial Palace is a popular attraction as are many of Vienna’s famous museums and palaces, the Opera House and its world-famous Spanish Riding School.


Salzburg is the birthplace of Mozart and a very popular and interesting city to visit. It is very picturesque, situated between two mountains, on the River Salzach. Salzburg has many castles, palaces, museums and other cultural places of interest to visit.

The von Trapp family, depicted in the much-loved movie The Sound of Music lived in Salzburg.

Situated in the wide Inn Valley in western Austria, Innsbruck is world famous for its winter sports, with every type of activity from skiing and snowboarding to tobogganing, snow shoeing and horse-drawn sleigh rides. Innsbruck is host to several ski areas and the area is also a popular summer destination for walking, hiking, mountaineering and other outdoor activities.


The historic city of Graz is the second largest city in Austria and capital of the county of Styria in the SE of Austria. It is beautifully situated with hills on three sides and a wealth of historical buildings. A significant attraction is the Schloss Eggenberg (Eggenberg Castle).

Former Mr. Universe and movie star turned former California Governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, was born and raised in Graz. He moved to America and rose from rags to riches, living the American Dream. He is affiliated with the famous Kennedy family through his marriage to Maria Schriver.


The city of Linz is situated on the banks of the Danube river in northeastern Austria. The composer Anton Bruckner lived in Linz for over a decade and has a concert hall named after him, the ‘Brucknerhaus’. Mozart wrote his Linz Symphony, Symphony No. 36 in the city, and to this day the city still has a very active musical culture.


European Health Insurance Card


Visitors with a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) are entitled to free emergency medical care, but this should never be used in place of comprehensive travel insurance.  For example, the EHIC does not cover travel problems such as lost or stolen luggage or property, cancellation and curtailment, and expensive matters like personal liability, legal costs, ongoing or non-urgent medical care, air ambulance and medical repatriation.



Disclaimer: While we have tried to ensure the information in this Travel Guide is correct we do not accept responsibility for any inaccuracy or the content of external links.

Inclusion in this Travel Guide does not guarantee travel insurance is available in any country at any given time. Travel Insurance is not available in countries where the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has issued an advisory against travel.

We strongly advise a visit to the FCO website for updated travel information and general travel advice before you book and pay for any travel.