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vienna city guide

by Stephanie

Today’s city guide comes from Julia Schromm, a community manager at the tourism app development company, Zooners. Julia is also a blogger on the Zooners City Blog, writing about the various wonders of Vienna. Today she shares some of those wonders with us, including the spectacular shops, coffee houses and restaurants the city has to offer. Thanks, Julia, for this great tour through Vienna! — Stephanie

The full guide continues after the jump . . .

Vienna is the city of monumental buildings, Sissy and carriages. Over the decades, Vienna has been covered in dust, grasping on to the historical importance of its many different places of interest. But a few years back, Vienna woke up and is now developing a nice, visible arts-and-culture scene. Vienna couldn’t compete with any fashion city in Europe, but now young designers open their shops and stores successfully.

No other European city has — based on its population — as many museums and exhibition spaces as Vienna. The city government supports the arts and invests in cultural forums and events. When I moved to Vienna in 2008, I finally got the opportunity to become familiar with this wonderful city, and now I want to share it with you.


Lila: If you’re looking for urban, chic style, this is the place to you’ll find it. I really enjoy the relaxed atmosphere and the nice people. The designer herself is at the shop most of the time, so consider yourself in good hands. Sat 11–18; Showroom: Yppenplatz 5, 1160 Wien

Lila Pix is a hip and fabulous designer who focuses on accessories. Mo–Sa: 12–18; Studio & Showroom Lindengasse 5, 1070 Wien

Konditorei Fruth is one of the best confectioneries in Vienna. It’s the sweet tooth’s heaven. Believe me. Macaroons are hard to get here in Vienna, but they have the good ones. Perfect for presents and special occasions. Kettenbrückengasse 20, 1040 Wien, Tue–Fri: 11-19, Sat 9-17; Wiedner Hauptstraþe 114, 1050 Wien, Tue–Fri 9–18, Sat 9–15

The Viennese café Das Möbel presents itself as a furniture and design shop. Perfect for a lavish breakfast and to relax in one of the many different designer chairs. The furnishing changes on a regular basis. You can buy accessories and smaller pieces here, and customers who buy furniture will go to the Möbel shop in the 6th district. Möbel Cafe: Daily 10–1, Burggasse 10, 1070 Wien; Möbel Shop: Mon–Fri 10:30–18:30, Sat 10–16, Gumpendorferstraþe 1, 1060 Wien

Ozelot: If you’re looking for a new bag, you’ll probably find the perfect one at the Ozelot shop in the Lindengasse. They offer special pieces, including fancy wallets from Austrian and international labels.

Stroll through the Lindengasse for more individual and special shops. This area is the centre of Vienna’s creative fashion scene. Mon–Fri:12-19, Sat 11–17:30; Lindengasse 43, 1070 Wien

Design and fashion shops in the 7th district: The Lindengasse and its surroundings is the playground of young designers. You can find a map here on 7tm. They offer shopping tours, fashion shows, etc.

Brot und Salz: The recently opened shop has precious, little goods on sale. You’ll get accessories, jewelry and funny little things made by young designers. The perfect place when you’re looking for a present. Gumpendorfer Straþe 88a, 1060 Wien; We–Fri 12–19, Sat 12–18, Tue by arrangement

Mein Design is another brand new shop in Vienna. The shop lends the sales area to various handpicked Austrian designers who don’t have their own sales room yet. Mein Design gives them a completely new and witty sales platform. The products sold here are exclusively produced in Austria. Mon–Fri 11–18, Sat 10–14; Kettenbrückengasse 6/1/1, 1040 Wien

Flea Market: Every Saturday there’s a flea market taking place at the Naschmarkt. It’s Vienna’s biggest flea market, and you’ll find everything from furniture, jewelry and books to vinyl and clothing. Sat 6.30–18; Naschmarkt, 1060 Wien


The Reinthaler is a real classic amongst the inner-city restaurants. They serve nice Austrian cuisine, but be aware of the giblet dishes. Customers range from students to middle-class families. Special lunch offers for reasonable prices. Mon–Fri 9–22; Gluckgasse 5, 1010 Wien

Figlmüller: If you’re in Vienna, you have to eat the Wiener Schnitzel, and the Figlmüller is the best place to do it. The Wiener Schnitzels are huge here. Daily 11–22:30; Wollzeile 5, 1010 Wien

Feles serves delicious food made from seasonal and mostly local ingredients. You’ll enjoy high-quality Austrian cuisine and nice local wines. The prices are moderate for this kind of noble cuisine. Mon–Fri 11–15 and 18–23, Sat 18–23; Bischof-Faber-Platz 8, 1180 Wien

Wetter — Communitá Buona Cucina is one of the hip new restaurants in town at the hip and thriving Yppenplatz. The interior is black/white and reduced to the minimum. Its Italian cuisine is delicious and way beyond pizza and pasta. Payergasse 13, 1160 Wien

Rasouli is one of my favourite spots on the Yppenplatz. You can get delightful organic food, highly recommendable for vegetarians, too. Light and creative Austrian cuisine; in the future, they will also offer some Afghani dishes. Besides the evening dinner, it’s super for breakfast or if you need a break from your grocery shopping and strolling around the Yppenplatz. Tue-Fri 9.30–24, Sat 9–24, Sun 15–23; Yppenplatz/Payergasse 16, 1160 Wien

La Salvia offers you the Italian dolce vita. It’s a small shop/wine store/bar/restaurant with specialties imported from Italy, Slovenia and Croatia. Enjoy a glass of wine and some antipasti. Tue 17–22, Wed–Fri 10–22, Sat 9–17; Yppenplatz/Corner Weyprechtgasse, 1160 Wien

Amerlingbeisl: In summer, you can enjoy the “Sommerspritzer” in the idyllic inner courtyard of the Amerling — which is the absolute highlight of this locality — and in winter, they have the best punch you can get on the Christmas Market, which is one of the most beautiful ones here in Vienna. Open daily from 9–2; Siftgasse 8, 1070 Wien

Le Bol is a French bistro in Vienna’s 1st district, where you will get beautiful wines and food and the best café au lait in town. Good for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Also highly recommended for the obligatory coffee break. Mon–Sat from 8, Sun and holidays from 10am; Neuer Markt 14, 1010 Wien

Smokey’s: If you’re looking for delicious burgers, chances are you’ll find them at Smokey’s. They serve truly good, European-style burgers that are among the best in Vienna. The burgers are served with homemade fries, homemade sauces and fresh lemonade. Smokey’s is situated in the town centre right behind the opera. Mon–Wed 11:30–23, Thu–Sat 11:30–00:00; Walfischgasse 4c, 1010 Wien

The Die Burgermacher proves that a burger can be much more than a piece of meat between two slices of bread. High quality, organic ingredients, creative combinations and a good portion of enthusiasm turn simple fast food to a real culinary experience. Tue–Fri 5:30–22:30, Sat 12:30–22:30; closed Sun, Mon and holidays; Burggasse 12, 1070 Wien

The Delicious Monster is small restaurant with Austro-Indian cuisine. The “Delicious Monster” is nicely decorated with pictures you can also buy. Nice atmosphere, ideal for a decent and inexpensive lunch. Mon–Fri 10–18; Gusßausstraße 12, 1040 Wien

Sunshine Restaurant: It’s a small Chinese restaurant, and I know, we don’t eat Chinese any more. It’s boring, it’s not tasty and it’s 80s. Well, this one is different and offers delicious Cantonese cuisine prepared by Master Xiao. You can get snacks, big bowls of soup and all kinds of delicious, exotic dishes. It’s worth a try. Daily 11–22; Friedrichstraße 8, near Karlsplatz, 1010 Vienna

The Hidden Kitchen is not easy to find, but it’s worth the quest. They offer a variety of inspired and creative salads and lunch packages. You can get delicious cupcakes there, which is unfortunately a rare opportunity here in Vienna. If you’re planning a picnic in a park or outside the city, they’ll provide you with a huge picnic basket. Mon–Fri 11–16; Färbergasse 3, 1010 Vienna


Traditional Viennese Coffeehouses

The Café Sperl, which opened in 1880, is the most beautiful traditional Viennese coffeehouse. It offers a variety of coffee specialities, cakes and nice food. You can flip through international newspapers while enjoying your Melange. Sunday afternoon, there’s live music. Free WIFI, Mon–Sat 7–23, Sun 11–20, Sundays closed in July and August; Gumpendorfer Straße 11, 1060 Wien

The Cafe Prückel is one of the oldest and most famous coffeehouses in Vienna. The waiters are grumpy, but nevermind — that’s the prototype of what a typical Austrian waiter in a Kaffeehaus is supposed to be. Sounds weird, I know. In winter, you have to order the Orangen-Punsch — at your own risk, of course. It’s delicious and also one of the best alcoholic drinks there is for a cold winter afternoon. Free WIFI, open daily 8:30–22; Stubenring 24, 1010 Vienna

Café Bräunerhof: Another classic when it comes to Viennese coffeehouses and Thomas Bernhard’s favourite one. The Bräunerhof is well known by locals, but tourists seem not to have discovered it yet. It’s calm and cozy. Enjoy a breakfast or go there for your afternoon coffee while reading through a huge pile of international newspapers. Live music on Saturdays. Mon–Fri, 8–20:30, Sat 8–18, Sun 10:30–18; Stallburggasse 2, 1010 Wien

Cafe Alt Wien is a hidden coffeehouse/bar in Vienna’s first district frequented mostly by students, artists, writers and journalists. Breathe in the special flair and atmosphere of this place with all the posters on the walls. Enjoy the Gulasch, a traditional Austrian dish the Alt Wien is famous for. Free WIFI, Daily, 10–2; Bäckerstrasse 9, 1010 Wien

Cafe Ritter in Ottakring: The vintage Cafe Ritter is convincingly comfortable and classy. Enjoy the place while taking a sip from your Melange. Free WIFI, Mon–Fri 8–1, Sat 8am–midnight, Sun 14–midnight; Ottakringer Straþe 117, 1160 Wien

Kaffeeküche: It’s not a classical coffeehouse; it’s more like a coffeeshop in the middle of an alive tram station. The Kaffeeküche offers really good coffee, if not the best. Many students go there because the university is only steps away. You can get snacks, like the original French brioche, sandwiches and other goods. Don’t be surprised if you have to get in an endless line to get your coffee in the morning. It’s worth it. Mon–Fri 7am–7pm; Schottentor Passage 8, 1010 Wien

Top Kino is actually an arthouse cinema with a dependance in the 4th district called Schikaneder. Both Top Kino and Schikaneder are bars, coffeehouses, cultural platforms and cinemas at the same time. The Schikaneder is more of a club. Top Kino: Free WIFI, Mon–Wed 15–2, Thu–Sat 15–4, Sun 10.30–24, Rahlgasse 1, 1060 Wien; Schikaneder: Daily 18:00–4:00 Uhr, Margaretenstraþe 24, 1040 Wien

The name Tanzcafe Jenseits already tells the story: “jenseits” means “afterlife” or “beyond good and evil.” The Tanzcafe Jenseits is a former bordello with red plush everywhere; dimmed lights and several cozy booths to hide make it a real experience. There’s a super small dance floor and a daily DJ-line. Nelkengasse 3, 1060 Vienna, opens at 7pm

One of Europe’s best music clubs is the Flex. Many young people go here to meet their friends, have a drink or dance all night long. It’s situated at the Donaukanal and offers a huge terrace right beside the river. Am Donaukanal, 1013 Wien, opens at 20:00

The Pratersauna is a social life and art space. This former wellness center surrounded by the peaceful Prater greens is an old-school Viennese institution, still unspoiled in its original architecture. The minimalistic space combining 60s charm with contemporary interior and art design is set up as a “micro cosmos” for creative communities. 10pm–06am/January–April /Friday & Saturday 09pm–06am/May–December/Wednesday–Sunday; Waldsteingartenstraße 135, 1020 Wien

The Cafe Europa is a good place to start the day with a late breakfast or end it with a drink. It is a lively, crowded place with good food, fine sound and DJ sets in the Backroom. The Cafe Europa is one of the few bars that will serve food until 4. Free WIFI, 11–4, food until 4; Zollergasse 8, 1060 Vienna

The rhiz, one of Vienna’s finest locations for electronic and dance music, is located under a Metro Track. It offers a daily DJ programme and concerts of Austrian and international musicians. Daily from 18:00; Lerchenfelder Gürtel 53, 1160 Wien

Chelsea offers daily varying DJs and concerts with Austrian and international bands. It’s a mixture of bar and small concert hall. For soccer/football fans: Premier League, dt. Bundesliga, Bundesliga, La Liga live via satellite. 18–4; Lerchenfelder Gürtel 29, 1160 Vienna

Allow yourself a break from your tour around the Naschmarkt at the Naschmarkt Deli. It is the perfect place to start with a lavish breakfast. It’s also perfect to cap your workday nicely with a glass of wine. Free WIFI, Mon–Sat 8–24; Naschmarkt stand 421-436, 1040 Wien

Why not let the night end with a visit to the Café Concerto? You’ll meet lots of nice and interesting people there, especially when they want to team up for a match of foosball. The winter garden (sunroom) is cozy, the plants are illuminated by coloured spots — it looks amazing and a little weird. On the weekends, DJs fill up the space. Be on the lookout for concerts; they’re free of charge most of the time. Nice atmosphere, plus you’ll appreciate the snacks at late hours. Tue–Sat from 19h; closed Sun, Mon; Lerchenfelder Gürtel 53, 1160 Wien



The Steinhof church is one of the most famous Art Nouveau churches in the world. High above the city, the church is set into the hills, and its golden dome can be seen from many points in the city. The golden dome is named the “Limoniberg,” in English, “Lemon mountain,” because the dome reminds one of a half lemon.

You can visit the church on Saturdays or attend the service on Sunday at 9:00. Baumgartner Höhe 1, 1140 Wien, Bus 47A, 48A

The Art Nouveau building Otto Wagner Pavillon hosts an exposition on Otto Wagner’s life and work and the influence he had on the city’s appearance. The admission fee is € 2, and it’s really nice to visit such an old and beautiful metro station. Open April to October, Tue–Sun and holidays 10–18; Karlsplatz, 1040 Wien

The Narrenturm, which actually means Madhouse Tower, was built in 1784 as a psychiatric hospital. Nowadays, it’s a mystic museum that shows human and animal dry preparations of bones and other body parts with pathological changes and other extraordinary things. Not for the faint-hearted. Wednesdays 03.00–06.00 pm, Thursdays 08.00–11.00 am, Saturdays 10.00 am–01.00 pm, Closed on Sunday and holidays; Uni Campus, Spitalgasse 2, 1090 Vienna

Markets and Parks

Brunnenmarkt is a marketplace in the 16th district of Vienna, and it stretches over the Brunnenstreet, from the Thaliastreet to the Ottakringer Street. On weekdays, up to 50 marketers present their goods, and on Saturday, the number of stalls increases to 120! The “Naschmarkt” is the only market bigger than the Brunnenmarkt in Vienna. You can do your grocery shopping, have lunch or dinner and buy some fashion design here, too. Thanks to a major gentrification process, it’s the new and upcoming creative area in Vienna. Brunnengasse/Yppenplatz, 1160 Wien; U6 Thaliastraße

Karmelitermarkt is one of the oldest markets/farmers’ markets; it’s small with a certain flair. Today, the “Karmelitermarkt” is not only a market but also a cultural centre. Recently opened restaurants are the Marktachterl and the TEWA. The farmers’ market takes place Friday and Saturday, when you’ll find seasonal specialties from local farmers. Krummbaumgasse/Leopoldsgasse, 1020 Wien

Kutschkermarkt: You’ll get seasonal products, fresh fruits and vegetables from local farmers. Here you also can smell, see and buy all sorts of wonderful flowers. You can relax in one of the market’s cafés and have lunch in cozy restaurants such as the Kutschker 44. One of the best cheese shops far and wide is the Pöhl, which now has a tiny restaurant the Pöhls Cantine. Kutschkergasse, 1180 Wien; U6 Währinger Straße, Volksoper

Votivpark: The park is in the 9th district of Vienna, in front of the “Votivchurch.” You can enjoy the sun on the deck chairs, which you can use for free in summer. You can read, play ball games or have just a nice time on your break. It’s a really enjoyable place that lets you forget you’re right in the city centre.

Hauptuniversität Arkadenhof: The Arkadenhof is a place where you can just relax, and it’s also for students to prepare for their lectures. In summer, there’s a small cafe where you can get all kinds of refreshments and snacks. There are also deck chairs to relax. Dr.-Karl-Lueger-Ring 1, 1010 Wien

Strandbar Herrmann is a city beach opened only in summer. In bright daylight, it’s a place to relax. Children play in the sand while people just couch in their deck chairs, enjoy a cocktail and relax. At night, it’s worth a visit even more. With the sunset, the Strandbar Herrmann turns into a nice nightclub with music. It’s really nice for a comfortable evening at the Donaukanal. Donaukanal, Hermannpark at the Urania, U1, U4 Schwedenplatz, U3 Landstraþe

The famous Tel Aviv Beach is located near the river. A wonderful place with an indoor area, which is kind of important considering fall and winter in Vienna. Drinks, cocktails, breakfast/brunch, nice snacks and good music. Free WIFI, Open daily; Donaukanal U2/U4 Station Schottenring- exit Herminengasse

A pool on a ship — that’s what the Badeschiff is. The admission fee for the pool is about € 10. You enjoy swimming in daylight or under the dark sky in the night. On the recently renovated deck, you’ll find a small restaurant, the Holy Moly, which offers delicious food. Open 18–1

The Badeschiff includes a party area, the Laderaum. Open Tue–Sat 22 bis 4, food served until 2 hr. Donaukanallände, 1010 Wien, between Urania and U1 Schwedenplatz

Enjoy the wonderful view over Vienna on the meadow beside the Schloss Wilhelminenberg with a picnic, or sip champagne on the Schloss Wilhelminenberg’s terrace. Either way, it offers a breathtaking view day and night. In winter, there’s a small, magical Christmas market with a skating ground. Savoyenstraße 2, 1160 Wien, take the bus 146B or 46B from Ottakring Metro Station

Fine Art

Gallery Anika handelt is a small one-room gallery in the same neighbourhood as Lila and Rasouli at the booming Brunnenmarkt. They show modern artistic photography that documents reality. I occasionally drop by after I’ve finished my grocery shopping at the market and enjoy the calm, relaxed and inspiring atmosphere. Sat 10am–1pm; Yppenplatz 5/4, 1160 Vienna

(con)temporary by Galerie Ardizón shows the art of contemporary international and Austrian artists. The exhibits cover photography, sculpture, paintings and installations. Kalvarienberggasse 15, 1170 Wien; Wed–Fri 17.30–21.00, Sat 14.00–18.00

The Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary is one of my favourite art spots in Vienna’s museum and gallery jungle. The place is magic; it’s a huge apartment with a lovely attic. You’ll see fascinating exhibits. It’s a little hidden and not as prominent as the famous spots, but you can easily drop by when you’re nearby the Stephans cathedral or the opera. Free Admission. Himmelpfortgasse 13, 1010 Wien; Tue­–Sun 12–18

Culture, Architecture, Fashion

. . . and even more can be found at the famous Vienna Museumsquartier MQ. It’s an urban art and culture space with museums, shops, cafes and restaurants.

Besides the variety of bits and pieces, bags and clothes, the MQ Shop will give you all kinds of information of what’s going on in the MQ.

The main museums in the MQ are:

MUMOK: contemporary art, paintings, sculptures, installations, drawings, graphic works, photos, videos

Kunsthalle Wien: international contemporary art, cross-genre, cross-border trends in the arts

Leopold Museum: modern Austrian art, largest Egon Schiele collection worldwide; Museumsplatz 1, 1070 Wien

An art gallery that developed into a cocktail bar/exhibition venue combo a few years ago, the St. Art gives handpicked Austrian and international artists a space to show their work. Nice bar, fine cocktails. Happy hour is daily from 19–22h, all cocktails € 4,50.


You might want to avoid exploring the city by car but rather choose walking, bikes, public transport or small mopeds.

Free City Bikes: Public bicycles called Citybike Wien are a free mobility service. Once you are registered, you can hire a bike at every bike station, the 1st hour of use is free. It’s a cheap and fun way to get around the city.

Check out the bikar iPhone App for information about bike stations, available bikes and free bike spots.

Public Transport: Wiener Linien

Vienna’s public transport includes trams, busses and subways. They start at 5am and end at about 1–2am. There are special night busses during the week and on the weekends. The subway runs all night long on the weekends. Ticket price: € 1,80; 8 day climate-card: € 28,80 for those who enjoy the city for longer

E-Mopeds are a great and green way of getting around the city! E-Mopeds are completely silent and clean without pollution. They are able to drive at 50–70 km/h. Charge the battery and go. You can rent an E-Moped for a month, a week or a day, and a test-drive for one hour is free of charge.

Hotel: Hotel Stadthalle is a newly opened eco-friendly hotel, using a photovoltaic system or large cisterns collecting water. Hackengasse 20, 1150 Wien

You can find a list of free WIFI spots all over Austria here on Freewave. Most of the spots listed here are in Vienna. Check out the free Freewave iPhone app.

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  • Yaay Vienna! Love Strandbar. Definitely recommend Schönbrunn Palace and Upper Belvedere (Klimt!), also Cafe Hewelca. The Naschmarkt is open daily and a great place to get fresh falafel. Watch out for the open barrels of sauerkraut!

  • I adore Vienna! I would add to your recommendations- for art, the Kunsthistoriches Museum. It has an amazing collection and the building itself is a work of art. For food, there is a great little place called Trzesniewski on Dorotheergasse (just off the Graben) that makes little delicious open faced sandwiches (and you can a little beer with it too!), and for music lovers, don’t miss the Mozarthaus!

  • Oh, I just got back from Vienna. I could have used this guide 2 weeks ago! She’s not kidding about the size of the schnitzel at Figlmüller–definitely get one to share. Seconding a visit to Schönbrunn. Leave yourself enough time to get lost in the gardens.

    Oh, this makes me want to go back. I really miss the potato salad and sachertorte!

  • Can you do a city guide for Lisbon or ANYWHERE in Portugal? I’m headed there in December with my boyfriend and would LOVE some ideas!!

  • We loved Vienna. My favorite museum was the The Museum of Applied Arts (MAK) http://www.mak.at/e/jetzt/f_jetzt.htm And the Volksgarten is the best in late May when the roses are all in full bloom. Schonbrunn Palace is beautiful and a must see if you are in Vienna. Thanks for the post-it brought back great memories!

  • this is so great! My husband and I will be in Vienna for a few days in January. This will make our trip planning so much easier! We already used the Miami City Guide when we visited in August.

  • We were just there in June, and a good Austrian friend showed us around. This makes me want to go back and explore even more! Another good restaurant: Die Schoene Perl—modern take on Austrian cuisine–was AMAZING!

  • Loved Vienna, but did you forget the Hundertwasser museum and buildings? I might have missed it in the list, there, but if I didn’t, they are a definite must see. Also, does anyone know the name of a traditional Viennese restaurant, kind of up in the hills overlooking the city, has the best damn potato salad in the world? I know that is not a lot to go on, but man, that was some good potato salad.

  • Exciting!!! I’m visiting for the first time in December, and cannot wait! Yes, where were those Hundertwasser buildings? I’m sure they are a must see! I’m also looking forward to the Christmas markets, of course!

  • There is one amazing new shop missing in this listing: WE BANDITS, it’s situated in THEOBALDGASSE 14 in the 6th district.

    We Bandits is an absolute MUST go when visiting Vienna! You’ll be sure to find some amazing clothes as well as unique jewellery and accessories all at a very good price!

    Their website is unfortunately not up yet (that’s how hot and new they are!!) but you can visit their facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/webandits

    Happy shopping!

  • I have just moved in to Vienna and beside practial information such as language courses, transport etc. I was looking for some unique tips, out of the “normal” city guides. I am interested in fashion, design, flee markets, cosy cafe…and this article is great, thank you for it! Looking forward to explore and enjoy the palces :)

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