When we write blog posts about our city breaks we often try to mix the popular attractions with those less well known. You may have seen our blogs about Five Different Things To Do in Lisbon, Amsterdam and Barcelona. However, when we went to Vienna we admit we stuck with the classics.
Vienna is a beautiful city full of history and culture, we wanted to delve deeper into this and we absolutely loved our time there. From things we both would highly recommend to some which we couldn’t agree on, below we’ve listed five must sees in Vienna.
Spanish Riding School
The Spanish Riding School was one of the main reasons we wanted to go to Vienna. Our mum always used to tell us about the pure white or Lipizzan horses, so we knew it had to be on the bucket list, and we can absolutely say it didn’t disappoint. We’re not going to lie, when we were younger we thought that it was an amazing statue of white horse… we were in for a surprise!
The horses and their riders perform in the Winter Riding School in the Hofburg – an amazingly grand and beautiful building which is an amazing attraction in itself. They do stunning tricks and perfectly timed dressage, it’s a show we will never forget! Some of the younger horses can be a little naughty which is part of the charm, watching them take their journey, and you have been if you don’t see one take a poop in the middle of a very serious, classical number.
After the show, we took a tour around the riding school, including the stables and behind the scenes. We’d highly recommend the tour as you find out so much more about the history of the riding school and how the horses are trained – especially their welfare and how they spend their summer holidays! They are very camera shy and you’re not allowed to take photographs inside the training grounds, so it’s something you just have to go an experience yourself!
Top Tip: Make sure you book your tickets early as the shows sell out fast! Also make sure you get seated tickets because the show is well over an hour long.
Now this is where we don’t agree and it has caused a lot of tense conversations! The Hundertwasserhaus is a multi-coloured house designed by Austrian artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser supported by architect Joseph Krawina. It is not on the classic Vienna hit list but its creative and quirky nature drew us in and we made it a priority on the itinerary.
When we got there I loved it, Camilla was not too sure. I thought the individuality of the building was intriguing and it has turned into a little village with cafes and shop with wonky floors and spiral staircases. It reminded me slightly of Gaudí’s work in Barcelona which we had seen early that summer due to its very distinctive style. It is different to any other building you will see in Vienna and in my opinion worth the walk.
You will have to form your own opinion and let us know if you Team Camilla or Team Natalie.
Oh our golly gosh, we can’t even explain how fantastic this place is! We were there for a whole afternoon and could even fit in everything this dream of an attraction had to offer! You could spend an entire day there if you had the time!
The building is a stunning creamy yellow and is filled with 1441 dreamy baroque style rooms surrounded by the most pristine gardens we’ve seen which stretch forever. The building is a Unesco World Heritage site and boldly beautiful from every angle. The view from the Gloriette of the palace is breath-taking as it is completely surrounded by the Vienna skyline. But if you get bored of looking at this incredible building (which will break our hearts) or can face the walk to the Gloriette, which will test our thighs, there is still so much more!
You can have a wonder around the palace very own zoo which is said to be the oldest zoo around or get lost in the maze right by it. You can walk around the stunning gardens which have hidden treasures such as green houses, statues and ponds or you could take a trip to the Lindor shop which has every flavour going!
This is one of our highlights of the trip and it is a must see while in Vienna, it is a place of sheer beauty!
Like the Schönbrunn Palace the Belvedere Palace is stunning! It again is an unapologetically bold and beautiful building, like much of the architecture in Vienna. Again, it has amazing gardens surrounding but the gem on top of the icing is it holds The Kiss by Gustav Klimt which is part of his gold period. It is a stunning piece of art work and our favourite which we say while in Vienna – and boy we saw a lot of art! It piece is magic and you can stare at it forever taking in all the intricate detail – which we would have done if we didn’t have a flight to catch.
A beautiful building in itself with a little edge and not to be missed!
Want to see amazing views of Vienna? Then look no longer than Wiener Risenrad – Vienna’s Giant Ferris Wheel. Located in the Prater amusement park in Leopoldstadt this ferries wheel is one of Vienna’s most popular attractions. And who doesn’t love tapping into their inner child and have the thrill of a little roller coaster while there away!
We went on a grizzly, rainy day but absolutely loved the views over the city and could see for miles! From here you can walk back into the centre through the city and see a slightly more local side – which in our opinion is one of the best things about travelling somewhere new!