10 best things to do in Vienna Austria

Vienna is just one of those cities you have to visit once in your lifetime. This magical little capital will offer you everything you need in one place. In this article, we will share the top 10 things to do in Vienna Austria in case you are not quite sure where to go on your first visit. The best things to do in Vienna include going to museums and visiting palaces. We will also share things to do in Vienna for young adults and things to do in Vienna with a baby.

10 best things to do in Vienna Austria

The cool things to do in Vienna Austria are all written here. I chose something for everyone. There are also the best things to do in Vienna in October as the capital can offer you magical scenery during autumn. What I think is so amazing about this city is how versatile it can be. Whether it’s summer or winter, you will always have some sort of event going on. Let’s see the top things to do in Vienna Austria!

1. Schönbrunn Palace

The first on the list of the top 10 things to do in Vienna Austria is visiting Schönbrunn Palace. You can probably plan a whole day of spending here because there are just so many things you can visit. The best things to do in Vienna start with looking at the gardens next to the palace. This would also be one of the best things to do in Vienna in October as the colors will make the scenery even more magical.

Schönbrunn Palace is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site and it’s Austria’s most visited tourist attraction. It was the summer home of the Habsburgs for centuries. The name means “beautiful spring” and it was called like this due to the artesian well which was used to consume water by the court. The palace is in Rococo style and it’s one of the most important architectural, cultural and historic monuments.

Visiting the palace is just one of the things to do in Vienna for young adults. You can visit the Sisi museum, have a look at all the royal families’ rooms, visit the 18th-century interiors from the time of Maria Theresia, visit the Privy Garden, Orangery Garden, Maze, and Gloriette. Schönbrunn just has it all and that’s why it is on the list of best things to do in Vienna.

2. The Hofburg

The Hofburg palace is an exquisite building and should be on your list of top things to do in Vienna Austria. The palace is a former residence of the Habsburg dynasty. Located in the heart of Vienna, Hofburg was built in the 13th century and they expanded the building several times afterward.

As the Schönbrunn was the summer residence, the Hofburg acted as a winter residence for the Habsburg family. Since 1946 it is the official residence and workplace of the President of Austria. The building is a mix of baroque, gothic, renaissance, and neoclassical architecture. Visiting the Hofburg will be one of the cool things to do in Vienna Austria.

Things to do in Vienna for young adults should include visiting the Hofburg as it offers a variety of attractions. The attractions are the Imperial Silver Collection, the Sisi Museum, and the Imperial Apartments. Let’s see some more of the top 10 things to do in Vienna Austria.

3. Natural History Museum

The best things to do in Vienna when you are unsure how to spend your day is to visit a museum. The Natural History Museum is counted as one of the most important history museums worldwide. The museum has 39 exhibition rooms and that present over 100,000 objects. The scientists work on various research projects that include topics like human sciences, earth sciences, and life sciences.

Inside the museum, you get to discover a number of exhibitions. Some are permanent and others are seasonal. The exhibitions are about geology, dinosaurs, and prehistory. There is a zoological floor that still uses the original cabinets. In case you are feeling tired after taking in all that information, you can rest at the cafe in the Museum.

The reason why visiting the National History Museum is one of the 10 top things to do in Viena Austria is because you can visit this at any time during the year. Whether you are wanting to get away from the cold weather or even the hot weather, the museum will keep you entertained for a few hours. This is also the reason why it’s the best things to do in Vienna in October.

4. Rathaus

Rathaus Vienna or otherwise known as the Vienna City Hall is one of the top things to do in Vienna Austria. This building is the seat of local government. Built in neo-gothic style by Friedrich von Schmidt, the Mayor of Vienna resides here. The Rathaus is quite a massive building, holding 3 and a half floors, 2 basements, an attic, and a tower.

The Rathaus went through some renovations in 2012 which were around 35 million euros and they should finish by 2023. The already opened parts are the neo-baroque Salon Ziehrer and the redesigned Lanner-Lehar Hall. Do you also think that visiting the Rathaus is one of the cool things to do in Vienna Austria? We surely think so.

“How can you get in?” you might ask. You can get free guided tours every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 1 PM, however, don’t take our word for it, sometimes these might change due to different reasons. It’s just interesting to see where the mayor of this gorgeous capital is living and doing his everyday activity. Would this be one of the best things to do in Vienna?

5. Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna

The next on our list of top 10 things to do in Vienna Austria is visiting another amazing museum, the Museum of Art History, otherwise referred to as “Museum of Fine Arts”. The building has an octagonal dome and it’s built in renaissance and baroque style. It is also the largest art museum in the whole of Austria and the most important museum in the world.

It is one of the things to do in Vienna for young adults as the exhibitions are interesting and have a great story. The primary collections are those of the Habsburgs, especially the collections of Ferdinand of Tirol and Emperor Rudolph II. You are able to view their portraits and armors. You then also get a collection of paintings of Archduke Leopold Wilhelm.

Art lovers should definitely visit this museum as it holds many famous paintings, such as “Madonna of the Meadow” by Raphael, “Self Portrait” by Rembrandt, and “The Four Seasons” by Giuseppe Arcimboldo. The collections include the Egyptian and Near Eastern Collection, the collection of Greek and Roman Antiquities and the collection of Sculpture and Decorative Arts. There are quite a few things to choose from when visiting the Museum of Art History in Vienna.

6. Tiergarten Schoenbrunn – Zoo Vienna

If you are looking for things to do in Vienna with a baby then going to the zoo is one of them. The Zoo is on the list of the top 10 things to do in Vienna Austria. What better place for families than going to the zoo and enjoying nature and the lovely animals. This would be one of the best things to do in Vienna in October as the scenery would be magical.

The Zoo was established by the Habsburgs as part of the Schönbrunn Palace around 1752 and today it is the oldest operating zoo in the world. The zoo is part of the UNESCO World Heritage site along with the palace. Their motto is “Seeing animals. Protecting species. Welcome to the Imperial Zoo”. The Imperial Zoo is one of the best things to do in Vienna in October when you are not quite sure what else to visit in the city.

There are many types of animals you can see here. The exotic ones include pandas, elephants, polar bears, rhinos. Then you have your aquarium with crocodiles, fish, and free-living birds. The rainforest house will spook you with an artificial thunderstorm just to create that perfect atmosphere. As you can see visiting the zoo is one of the cool things to do in Vienna Austria.

7. Belvedere Museum

Here we have another spectacular building and visiting it makes it one of the top things to do in Vienna Austria and also one of the cool things to do in Vienna Austria. The Belvedere is a historic building built in Baroque style. The Belvedere was built for Prince Eugene of Savoy as a summer residence. Sometimes I wish I lived in those times and have palaces built for me.

What can you see at the Belvedere Museum then? You should definitely take a walk around Belvedere Lake. In case you want to spice up your social media account, take some amazing pictures of the lake which reflects this majestical building. You can also come here during Christmas as the Belvedere Christmas market will be open.

For more adventure, visit the Privy Garden, a Baroque garden that will take you back in the time when the Prince was alive. Make sure to check out the iconic painting of Napoleon Bonaparte. The interior design of Belvedere is worth the visit as well and it’s one of the best things to do in Vienna in October!

8. St. Stephen’s Cathedral

I just love these buildings. Looking at them really takes you back in time and makes you wonder what it was like to live in a time of kings and queens. Visiting the St. Stephen’s Cathedral is definitely between the top 10 things to do in Vienna Austria and also one of the things to do in Vienna for young adults.

St. Stephen’s Cathedral is the mother church of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Vienna. Currently, it is the seat of the Archbishop of Vienna, Christoph Cardinal. The cathedral was built in Romanesque and gothic style and it’s on Stephensplatz.

What can you see inside the church then? Inside you can see the beautiful Organ Case from 1513 in the late gothic style. The chapels were built in 1359 and it is the burial place of Prince Eugene. Now the one thing the cathedral is really famous for is its towers which were built in 1356.

9. Leopold Museum

Leopold Museum – Photo from Wikipedia

We are almost at the end of our list of the top 10 things to do in Vienna. The Leopold Museum is one of the largest collections of modern Austrian art. The largest collection is the Egon Schiele Collection. Visiting Leopold Museum is definitely one of the cool things to do in Vienna Austria.

The best things to do in Vienna when the weather is not the best but you don’t want to waste time is to visit all of the exhibitions. This year’s exhibitions were the following: Universal Artist, Emil Pirchan who is an expressionist. “A symphony in Pictures from Vienna 1900” made by Josef Maria Auchentaller. “The Body Electric” by Erwin Osen and Egon Schiele is based on the drawings of Ervin Osen which were recently discovered.

Leopold Museum is really for the curious mind. This isn’t your typical museum where you would see objects from the 14th and 15th centuries and the rooms of kings and queens. This Museum is a representation of the modern world and what our modern artists can do nowadays. Visiting Leopold Museum is just one of the things to do in Vienna for young adults.

10. Haus des Meeres – Aqua Terra Zoo

Hause de Meeres Aqua Terra Zoo – Photo from Trfihi Parks

In case you are looking for things to do in Vienna with a baby, then why not take your family to the public aquarium of Haus des Meeres. The aquarium has over 10,000 aquatic beings and they are all inside a tall concrete flak tower that was built during World War II.

Why is it one of the top 10 things to do in Vienna Austria? Because it is managed by the Aqua Terra Zoo which is a non-profit organization and they don’t receive support from the authorities. It is important for us to support this by visiting and buying the tickets as all of that money goes into investing into the aquarium even more.

You can see an Atlantic tunnel which is a 500,000 liter Atlantic aquarium by means of a tube. You are able to see sharks, jellyfish, rays, and perches through this. Inside the aquarium, there is also an artificial Stalactite cave where you can see nocturnal animals, centipedes, and cavefish. Looking at all these interesting sea animals will make this experience one of the best things to do in Vienna.

Conclusion – Best things to do in Vienna

We have arrived at the end of the list of best things to do in Vienna. Hopefully, you have enjoyed these top 10 things to do in Vienna Austria as we have selected the list with care and with consideration of families who are looking for things to do in Vienna with a baby. We have also included things to do in Vienna for young adults.

The cool things to do in Vienna Austria can all be found in this list and the best things to do in Vienna in October as during autumn everything is more magical. So what are your top things to do in Vienna Austria? Please tell us if you have found other interesting things to do besides these ones. Don’t miss the best ski resorts in Austria either!

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Piroska Vigh

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