We decided to take a trip to Vienna just before Christmas. When googling places to be in Christmas, Vienna always came on top of the list. And they were right. It almost felt like the city had a day time version; where old men wearing their long coats and felt hats, queues in front of expensive cafes for SacherTorte and the mouth watering smell of Viennese sausage stalls. Then the sun went down and the city transformed into a Christmas wonderland. Lighted up streets made it feel like you were walking in a rom-com set, the Christmas markets in front of monumental buildings and the smell of glühwein (mulled wine) taking over the city.
Whether you are looking to visit Vienna around Christmas time or not, the city remains gorgeous. Here’s a quick, long weekend guide to Vienna!
Where To Stay
We wanted to stay somewhere in the city centre that would allow us to walk everywhere but also if we wanted to stay a few extra hours in the hotel, it would be chilled enough to do so as well. We stayed in the 25hours hotel at Museumplatz. Each of 25hour hotels are inspired by different themes, and the one in Vienna was inspired by the circus. Behind our bed was a huge mural of circus dancers, bathtubs were on the balcony and we even had a small hula hoop competition in our room 😀 Our experience from the point we set foot to the hotel to the point we left it was positive and I would 100% recommend it.
Where To Go
This very much depends on what you would like to see in the city. Although the weather was cold, we preferred to walk outdoors and actually discover the city by foot. We have been to the Rathausplatz, which is a gorgeous neo-gothic style building. It also hosted the biggest Christmas market in the city. We proceded to walk to the Austrian National Library, which was the most impressive library I had even been in. I felt like Belle in Beauty and The Beast when she walked into the beast’s library. Karlsplatz hosted another monumental building which was the Karls Church.
From Karlsplatz, you could walk to Stephansplatz which is the main shopping street by passing by the famous Operahouse. Stephans Church is the main cathedral in the city. The architecture of the cathedral is breathtaking, I would strongly suggest visiting it!
If you’re more the museum type, where the 25hours hotel is located is known as the Museumsquarter, with the 3 main arts museums and the natural history museum. I would also recommend visiting the illusions museum, Mozart’s House and Freud’s house.
Where To Eat
I always love finding new places to eat and drink when visiting a new city. Vienna has some amazing options when it comes to dining. For a bit of a fancier experience, I would recommend the restaurant at Motto am Fluss, although we didn’t have the best customer experience, the food and views were worth going. You could also sit at the cafe for a more relaxed atmosphere. If you can, do go to Figlmüller for the best schnitzel you’ll ever get to taste. However, if you’re not fund of touristy locations and queues, I would also recommend Zwölf Apostelkeller, where you will get to eat and drink the most traditional Viennese food with locals in an underground cellar.
For the famous cafés and cakes that Austria has got to offer my favourite is Demel. There’s usually more seating at Demel than Café Central, which I think are the two most famous cafes in Vienna. If you go there, do have the Sachertorte along with coffee and whipped cream. Don’t expect to be able to eat anything else for the next 5 hours but its 100% worth it!
Last, but not least, the first meal we had in Austria was from a sausage stall, which I think has to be done. Don’t just go to any sausage stall though, go to the Bitzenger Würstelstand at Albertina and get the sausage with cheese in it. It was delicious!!
We hope you have a great time in Vienna – do let us know if you end up doing any of these activities whilst there! x