A guide to visiting Vienna during summer
Vienna Vienna. Oh how we loved you Vienna.
Introducing the city of architecture, of art, of opera and the home to schnitzel, Mozart and St. Stephen’s Cathedral.
Last week, 5 girlfriends and I packed hand luggage only and hopped on a bargain 7am flight with EasyJet from Gatwick over to Vienna, Austria.
For £75 return flights we bagged ourselves 3 days, 2 nights in the capital of Austria to spend some quality time together. Yes, I had a holiday.
Please excuse the iphone photos and lack of photographic creativity in this blog post. I left my laptop and cameras at home for this adventure but figured i’d still create a little guide for you.
A guide to visiting Vienna during summer
Vienna has such a subtle charm about it and will cater for all types of traveller: the foodies, the wine lovers, the market seekers and the art enthusiasts.
Vienna is rich in culture and is the perfect little weekend destination. Though of course, in a couple of days, you could only possibly scratch the surface…
Budgeting for Vienna
The first thing and only thing people mentioned about Vienna when we told them we were going was how expensive it was. But honestly? If you’re used to city prices like I am in London, you’ll be absolutely fine. In fact, most of the places we went were surprisingly cheap. It was only in the main squares when you sit down to eat and drink, that you’ll incur the ‘tourist prices’.
For example, a glass of Aperol Spritz in a lovely bar on the river with live house music was €5.90. You’d expect to pay €9-10 for that in London!
What we spent:
- €21 City Airport Train return (open date)
- £64.65 each for our Airbnb apartment (slept 6 of us!)
- £75 return flights
- €15 each for a group shop (breakfast, drinks, snacks)
- €20-40 a day for drinks, lunch and dinner (inc. alcohol and ice creams!)
Totalling around €215-230 for a 3 day 2 night break!
Getting to Vienna
Vienna’s main airport is Vienna International Airport which is accessible from London on a direct flight with a duration of less than 3 hours. Easy
If you’re looking to arrive by train the main city train station is Wien Hauptbahnhof.
Getting from the airport into the city centre
From the airport you have a few options:
- CAT (City Airport Transfer) which is €21 return (open dated) and you can buy at the station.
- You can take the regular train (red ticket machines) which take a bit longer but are about half price at €4.20 one way!
- Uber operates there if you fancy a private transfer. Note: at the time of posting this blog, Uber is currently suspended.
- Rent a car from the airport
Getting around Vienna:
There are quite a few options for getting around Vienna, so much so, you’ll need to keep an extra eye on the road for cyclists, trams, cars, pedestrians and… escooters!
- bus (Autobus)
- local train (S-Bahn)
- tram (Straßenbahn)
- subway (U-Bahn)
Note: You are trusted to buy a ticket. There are no barriers like in London so transport appears free. It is not! You’ll be lumped with a hefty fine if you don’t get a ticket.
- the e-scooter
SO FUN. We downloaded an app called Lime and it couldn’t have been any more simple to use. You literally link your card, find a bike on the inbuilt GPS, scan the bike and off you go. It charges you per minute.
Admittedly it probably ends up being more expensive than public transport but… it’s an electric scooter.
I have mixed feelings about these electric scooters. Biggest one being they are so quiet it’s almost dangerous as no one can hear you coming. I would recommend these for the quieter roads and parks. They are SO fun but I’d hate to put you in any danger. I don’t think drivers are used to them just yet.
Things to do whilst in Vienna during summer
Places to eat:
I was so impressed with how many vegan spots there were in Vienna. I’m not actually Vegan but I eat mostly plant based so Vienna get’s a huge seal of approval on the vegan front. Here’s some of my favourite spots and some I’d heard about but didn’t get the chance to experience.
- The Lala if you’re into healthy, wholesome food – you’ll LOVE this place. They have everything from matcha lattes and poke bowls to all green power bowls, chia puddings and vegan desserts in the fridge. There’s outdoor seating too for the perfect brunch spot.
- Veganista for mind blowing vegan ice cream. These shops are dotted across the city. There was one next to our Airbnb apartment and there was one next to The Lala too. Did someone say dessert?
- I suggest a takeaway / picnic on the river front. Such a beautiful spot for sunset vibes.
- Neni in Naschmarkt. Take a wander and then time it with lunch!
- Superfood Deli for acai bowls, greart coffee and all the superfood toppings.
- My Secret Garden. (Just down from Superfood Deli, looks amazing! Next time.)
- Griechenbeisl for the Austrian dishes and to dine in the oldest restaurant in Vienna.
Places to drink:
- The Ritz-Carlton for sunset drinks
- Danube Canal! There are so many lovely bars and restaurants along the river…
- Die Blumenwiese was our favourite. It has a real sexy, beachy vibe with comfy seating, a live DJ and £5.90 spritz menu!
- Wolfgang Coffee – apparently a great coffee spot!
- Superfood Deli for smoothies, juices and all your turmeric / matcha / beetroot latte choices.
Sightseeing in Vienna
1. St. Stephen’s Cathedral
THAT cathedral. Take a tour, have a coffee in the square or simply admire it from the outside. It’s a gorgeous slice of architecture.
2. Go jump in the water!
Oh my gosh. Definitely my favourite thing we did. On a sunny day the Alte Donau is everything you need. Head just outside the city centre and there are several swimming spots where you can bask in the sun riverside and soak up the nature.
3. Wander through Naschmarkt
This food market has existed since the 16th century and is a great spot for wandering, picking up some souvenirs or tasting local produce. There are restaurants and bars throughout for you to stop in. We had lunch in Neni and I can highly recommend it!
4. Explore the art in the Museumsquartier
5. Do a behind the scenes tour or get tickets for the Vienna State Opera
6. Visit the Freud museum
7. Explore Vienna Woods
I’d love to do this next time!
8. Head out to Kahlenberg for wine tasting
I really wanted to go to Mayer Am Nussberg whilst in Vienna as it boasts stunning views across Vienna from it’s vineyard. Unfortunately though, it’s only open Saturdays and Sundays and we visited midweek so it was closed.
9. Take a photo with Schönbrunn Palace!
Another gorgeous building here in Vienna – if architecture is your thing… Vienna is your place.
10. Hang out on the riverfront and some cocktails at sunset
Have You Been to Vienna?
Where were your favourite spots?
Love as always + happy adventuring,
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