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A thriving coffeehouse culture, the grand Schönbrunn Palace, a rich tradition of Jewish life and classical music in Austria’s capital, Vienna.

The baroque streetscape and tree-lined roads of Ringstrasse. The Gothic tower and patinated domes of Saint Stephen’s Cathedral. The grand, imperial Schönbrunn Palace and its expansive garden. Vienna is continually named one of the world’s best cities to live in due to its combination of ornate architecture, easy walkability and welcoming atmosphere.

Cafe lined streets, ViennaStroll through the cobblestone streets of the First District as you visit one of Vienna’s many coffeehouses, a prominent feature of Viennese culture. Enjoy a cup of coffee and an apple strudel as you sit in the same café as Sigmund Freud. Or you might head to the State Opera House and listen to the swell of the orchestra, and experience the rich musical history of the city that inspired Mozart, Beethoven and Brahms.

One of Europe’s less-visited capital cities, Vienna is centrally located in Austria, and gives you easy access to much of Europe.

Things to see and do in Vienna

Musical history

Vienna is often heralded as the capital of classical music, and since the 19th century the two have been intrinsically linked. Mozart grew up in the nearby Austrian city of Salzburg, but spent much of his adult life in Vienna, and Beethoven, Haydn and Brahms also did much of their composing here.

The city also produced home-grown talent — Johann Strauss I and Franz Schubert were both born in Vienna. While you’re visiting, you can experience the city’s classical music by seeing a show at the Vienna State Opera, located centrally in the First District.

Coffeehouse Culture

Vienna’s coffeehouses are a significant aspect of Viennese culture. Locals often spend hours at a time in the architecturally ornate buildings enjoying a cup of coffee and a sweet treat while reading the newspaper, chatting with friends or playing card games.

These cafés, many dating back to the late 1800s and early 1900s, have provided inspiration to many people throughout history, including Sigmund Freud, Leon Trotsky and Peter Altenberg. We can arrange for you to take a guided walking Viennese coffeehouse tour to see some of the most important cafés in the city.

Jewish history tour

As in many European cities, the tragedies of World War II left an indelible effect on the Jewish community in Vienna — an estimated 65,000 Austrian Jews were killed during Nazi occupation. You can take a walking tour through some of the most significant sites in the city dedicated to Jewish history.

The Holocaust Memorial is a solemn concrete monument, its platform engraved with the names of the camps where Austrian Jews were killed. The Memorial Against War and Fascism comprises four statues portraying the atrocities of the war, carved of granite from the Mauthausen concentration camp. You’ll also visit the Judenplatz and Jewish Museum Vienna, museums dedicated to Jewish life in Vienna.

Schönbrunn Palace

Schönbrunn Palace, ViennaThe former summer residence of the Habsburg family, Schönbrunn Palace is the crown jewel of imperial palaces in Vienna and we can arrange a tour that includes a driver-guide who will bring you to the immaculately manicured lawns of the palace.

There, you can explore some of the 1,400 rooms inside, including the Billiard Room, which still has its original decor and furnishings. The Herringbone Room features large family portraits of the Habsburgs, as well as parquet flooring and an intricate frieze around the ceiling. You can then head to the UNESCO World Heritage-designated garden, an expansive park that includes a vineyard, a pool and multiple cafés.

Best time to visit Vienna

Vienna is a year-round destination. The weather is mild, with the warmest months of July and August averaging high 20s °C (80s °F), and even in January and February, the temperatures rarely dip below freezing. In December, the city comes alive with Christmas markets, though walking around may be more enjoyable in warmer months.

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    Ideas for experiencing Vienna

    Our specialists seek out authentic ways to get to know the places that could feature in your trip. These activities reflect some of the experiences they've most enjoyed while visiting Vienna, and which use the best local guides.

    • Wachau Valley & Danube boat ride
      Views over the Wachau Valley

      Wachau Valley & Danube boat ride

      Wachau Valley & Danube boat ride

      This river boat tour of the Wachau Valley starts with the Baroque majesty of Melk Abbey, then takes you on a slow drift through the vineyards, orchards and villages along the Danube’s forested banks. A stop in the historic town of Dürnstein, with its storied history, completes the day.

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    • Jewish heritage walking tour
      Juden Gasse, Vienna

      Jewish heritage walking tour

      Jewish heritage walking tour

      Take a guided half-day walking tour of Vienna’s First District to the memorials and museums dedicated to Austria’s Jewish community and the 65,000 Austrian Jews killed in the Holocaust. Pay your respects at the Holocaust Memorial and see the ruins of a medieval synagogue.

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    • Bratislava day trip & walking tour
      Vibrant buildings of Bratislava

      Bratislava day trip & walking tour

      Bratislava day trip & walking tour

      Take a walking tour of Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia and crossroads of Central Europe. Medieval fortifications, Gothic cathedrals, a neoclassical palace and a vibrant coffee-house culture await you in this off-the-beaten-track visit to the city, just an hour from Vienna.

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    • Spanish Riding School performance
      Morning exercise

      Spanish Riding School performance

      Spanish Riding School performance

      Watch the Ballet of the White Stallions at the ornate Spanish Riding School inside of Hofburg Palace. You’ll get to see the world-renowned Lipizzaner horses as they perform flying changes and half pirouettes in the lavishly designed baroque-era arena.

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    • Coffeehouse tour of Vienna
      Viennese coffeehouse

      Coffeehouse tour of Vienna

      Coffeehouse tour of Vienna

      This three-hour guided coffeehouse tour around Vienna brings you to some of the most storied cafés in the city, and gives you a taste of the city’s renowned coffee and pastries — all in one morning.

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    • Vienna walking tour & Schönbrunn Palace
      Athena statue in front of Austrian Parliament

      Vienna walking tour & Schönbrunn Palace

      Vienna walking tour & Schönbrunn Palace

      This combined walking-and-driving tour lets you map out the location of many of Vienna’s most storied sites, as well as explore the mammoth Schönbrunn Palace. You’ll see the former imperial palace in Vienna as well as the Habsburg’s summer residence outside the city limits.

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    • Vienna market visit & cooking class
      Preparing apple strudel

      Vienna market visit & cooking class

      Vienna market visit & cooking class

      Spend a morning on a brief walking tour of Vienna’s markets, tasting the city’s delicacies along the way. Then retire to your guide’s private apartment for instruction on cooking a two-course gourmet lunch. Sample Austria’s wines with the meal you’ve prepared in a chef’s kitchen.

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