I am looking for hotel suggestions and things to do in Vienna from Dec 29-Jan 2.
How about a budget and what your interests are?
If you strike out with Vienna let me know and I will send the list of what we are doing Christmas and New Year's Eve in Budapest. ;-)
There will be 5 people traveling so we will probably need two rooms-$100-$150 a night?
Hotel suggestions - use booking.com and filter for price and guest reviews. Cross check reviews with Trip Advisor. Stay as close to the center as you can, preferably in districts 1, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9. You might want to consider renting an apartment in lieu of a hotel. Look at vrbo.com.
Things to do - You'll probably want to stick to inside attractions as it will be very cold. Christmas markets will be over by the time you arrive, with the exception of the one at Schonbrunn (very good and worth visiting). New Year's Eve festivities center around the First District and include the Silvesterpfad, literally New Year's Path, which is a winding route through the center of town with music stages, parties and food stalls. Continues on New Year's Day. Personally, I always avoid the center on New Year's Eve as things get really rowdy - broken glass, people setting off fireworks in crowds, etc. One of my favorite things to do during this period is to go to the Rathaus (City Hall) on New Year's Day and watch the live broadcast of the famous New Year's Concert which takes place down the road at the Musikverein by the Vienna Philharmonic. People will be dancing in the square.
Hope that helps.
Since your request for hotel information followed my suggestion that you might look towards Budapest as well; let me suggest the K&K Opera Hotel witch fits your budget. http://www.kkhotels.com/en/hotels/budapest/k-k-hotel-opera/welcome/ nice 19th century building next door to the Opera House and Andrassy ut.
We are spending Christmas and New Year in Budapest again this year (third time). I posted a list of some things that might be interesting here: https://community.ricksteves.com/travel-forum/hungary/holiday-season-in-budapest
2nd Emily's advice. You can also usually see the performance of Die Fledermaus on a screen outside the Staatsoper. We opted to go out of city center a little to Heilegenstadt to a restaurant called Engelhardt. It over looks Vienna and at midnight you can watch the fireworks go off over the city. Great food, mostly locals. Wherever you want to go to eat you MUST reserve in advance. Emily is very right about it being a bit boisterous in the center and people setting off firecrackers in the crowds...not really my scene.
James...still trying to sell Budapest I see. Do you work for their agency? (;-)
@Alex, naaaaaaaaaaaaaaa, just hanging wall paper. I would tell you why I do this but then your name would be put on a list at the headquarters of the Államvédelmi Hatóság
And George, thank you. Great list. I am saving for another year.
James- we are also planning to visit Prague for a few days before Vienna. What did you like there and where did you stay? I also will look into Budapest... Nothing is set yet. Thanks for your ideas.
Loved the Czech Republic. Wonderful place. Everyone is different but we had a much better time in the Czech Republic than we did in Vienna. But that just us you will find as many with an opposite view.
The winter works for you because the crowds will be less and I bet its beautiful under the snow. Prague had one of the best hotels experiences of all of our travels in the region. We stayed at the Hotel Ventana right behind the Church of Our Lady before Tyn; right in Old Town. But it is more expensive than $150 a night.
We also had a great hotel in Cesky Krumlov; but mainly for location and the view of the castle from a room with a balcony: Hotel Dvorak.
South of Prague were also the Castles Karlstejn and Zoklov. Each totally different and each amazing to visit.
For my taste, especially in the winter; two full days in Prague would be enough, one night in Cesky Krumlov and day trips to a couple of castles. While I haven't been there I understand that the spa town of Karlovy Vary can be fun in the winter.
While I have visited, the Czech Republic really isn't my strength. I will bet you get good ideas from the others here.
Or maybe you were asking about where we stayed in Vienna. The Astoria once and the Imperial the second time. The Astoria wasn't very impressive but it was affordable and well located. The Imperial was very nice and I will have to admit that despite my overall experience in Vienna the dinner we had at the Imperial was one of the most magnificent of my life (and we have had some good experiences to compare it against)). Occasionally we make some purchases in Vienna but we haven't spent the night since.
I just looked at the costs on the list George was kind enough to provide ............ ouch! Still for a lifetime event, maybe ........................
Already on that list and the old KGB's and old Stasi as well. I'm pretty slippery though. They all would have liked to visit with me back in the 60's when I was hanging out in Austria.
Just checked on booking.com -- they estimate 33% booked for those dates. But that beats Salzburg around Christmas -- 55% booked!