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3 days in Vienna

I will be leaving from Prague to Vienna on 27th to 30th. So my questions and any help would be great :) Is it best to buy a 72 hour transit pass even though we like walking? Is it better for convenience? Also, we have seen a lot of Christmas markets here in Prague so are interested in only doing a couple more, what other must sees would you recommend? We are thinking of doing the Monet exhibit as well, any thoughts on that. Any hot tips on low to mid priced restaurants? This is a stupid question I know, but we are coming into Vienna hbf and staying at Star Inn Schonbrunn, but I can't figure out if that is the station across the street or a different one?
Thanks for all your help

Posted by
3176 posts

Christmas Markets are an Advent tradition and as such, they will probably be closed down by the time you arrive.

Posted by
29 posts

Looking at the location of your hotel will recommend the 72 hour transit pass . You are not walking distance from the city center .

Posted by
141 posts

I agree with betawatts - get the pass, even if you only use it to get from your hotel to the city center/attractions. It will be much easier to just jump on the U-Bahn, worry-free, than have to spend time buying a ticket each day/trip. Once in the Ring, I don't remember taking any public transport, except a trolly ride once. It's very walkable there.

As for things to do - again, it would help to know what you are interested in. I can only give you my favorites, with the caveat that they might not be YOUR favorites. See both the Hofburg and Schönbrunn. The first focuses on the 19th C reign of Franz Joseph and Sisi. The latter is Maria Theresa and 18th C rococo glory. Both are worth seeing, in my opinion. The Kaisergruft, where all the Habsburgs are buried, is really cool - but I'm a Central European historian, so again, your mileage may vary. The Kunsthistorisches Museum is fantastic, and if there's an audioguide, get it. The times I was in Vienna, St. Stephen's Cathedral was under scaffolding, so the view wasn't great from the tower, but if it's clear, it's worth the trip up. What else? I really got a kick out of the Haus der Musik, which is a cool museum with a lot of interactive exhibits, and I believe is usually open later than most other museums. The Opera House is beautiful; the company wasn't in town when I toured, so we got to go on the stage, which was a highlight. And I also really enjoyed the Hofburg New Palace Museums, but unless you also like seeing three different versions of the oboe, this might not rank high on your list.

Enjoy your trip!

Posted by
83 posts

Thanks so much. Thinking of going to Monet the evening we arrive, Rick’s walking tour next morning, one of the palaces you suggested in the afternoon and in evening mot sure, next day another palace in am and a museum in pm and then Sat not sure. We like history and museums and getting a feel of the city by walking, people watching and drinking some coffee ;)

Posted by
2703 posts

The WienMobil app is the new app of the local transportation authority (Wiener Linien). You can plan routes and buy tickets using credit cards and even PayPal. It's also tied into local taxi services and ride sharing programs.

Posted by
1410 posts

You will arrive at Wien Hbf on an elevated platform. Descend to street level using the escalators near the head of the train. Your are then in a concourse leading to the main hall. At the left at the corner to the main hall there are red ticket vending machines for public transport tickets and passes. I recommend buying a calendar week pass because it has a longer validity and costs the same as the 72 hours pass (€17.10). Make sure that the pass is for the current week (and not an advance purchase for the next week).

Your hotel is close to the metro station "Längenfeldgasse", line U4 (green line). To get there from the train station follow the signs to metro U1 (red line), i.e. descend two more levels down from the main hall, go two stops to "Karlsplatz" and change there to line U4 (follow the signs).

Alternatively you can take any S-train from underground platform 1, go two stops to "Wien Meidling", change there to metro U6 (brown line) which also calls at "Längenfeldgasse".

U4 stop "Karlsplatz" (aka Opera) is the one closest to the Albertina, where the Monet exhibition is.

Posted by
2703 posts

My favorite museum in Vienna is the HGM (Heeresgeschichtliches Museum), which is the military museum. It has the car in which Archduke Ferdinand was shot (complete with bullet holes), his blood-stained clothes, and video of the funeral/period of mourning.

I'm also a fan of The Third Man museum, which has a nice collection of memorabilia from the movie, but also has an interesting section on post-WWII life in Vienna. It is open 2-6 pm on Saturdays.

Posted by
4404 posts

Your hotel isn’t central so you’ll take public transportation every day. You’ll want the weekly pass, as wmt1 suggests.

Contrary to what is stated above, several Christmas markets will still be running when you’re here, including the lovey one at Schonbrunn. Be sure to make time for this market and the one at the Rathaus.

The biggest ticket in town is the Bruegel exhibit at the Kunsthistorisches. A once in a lifetime event. You’ll need to buy a time slot at the museum ticket office at least the day prior. Many good concerts happening as well at the Musikverein and Konzerthaus.

The area around your hotel isn’t great for restaurants, so plan accordingly.

Posted by
5697 posts

For restaurants -- we try to get to Schnitzelwirt on Neubegasse once on every visit; not high-end but enormous schnitzel (we split one, with an extra helping of potato salad.) Reasonable prices.
Also the heuringen neighborhood on the edge of town.

Posted by
83 posts

Thanks everyone for such great tips. Really helpful to get accurate directions to the hotel and all the museums as well, that helps from locals and visitors alike. Any favorite coffee houses? Merry Christmas :)

Posted by
83 posts

Thanks wtm1, we are now going to go straight to the Albertina when we arrive at 5.30 pm and then to the hotel after that. So kinda same directions as you mentioned? Thanks so much

Posted by
1410 posts

The Monet exhibition is open until 9pm, so it is reasonable to go there straight from the main train station. Did you inform the hotel about your late arrival then?

How much luggage do you have? I don't know what size the lockers in the Albertina are. At the main train station the lockers are on level -1. It is no big deal to go back picking up your luggage after you have visited the Monet exhibition. The ride using U1 between Karlsplatz/Oper and Hauptbahnhof (Hbf) is only 4 minutes.

Yes, no change regarding the directions how to go to the hotel. If you decide to take your luggage to the Albertina, you just take the U4 from Karlsplatz/Oper. If you go back to the train station picking up your luggage (on level -1) you must descend to level -2 anyway for either choice how to go to the hotel. In the underpath leading to the metro check the display of departure times. If there is a train departing from (underground, level -1) platform 1 right away just go up using the lift next to the display wall. You can take any train except the Westbahn express to Salzburg. Otherwise you use U1 and U4 as said.

Posted by
3156 posts

The garderobe ( lockers ) at the Albertina are limited , both in size and quantity . In addition , considering the dates you are there , and the time , you will undoubtedly encounter massive crowds ( the Monet exhibition will greatly exacerbate these issues ) . Don't even consider bringing any luggage with you , leave it at the Hauptbahnhof .

Posted by
4404 posts

I’ve been to many special exhibits at the Albertina. To describe the crowds as massive is a bit of an overstatement. Everyone is visiting the Bruegel exhibit at KHM anyway - that’s the ticket to get.

Posted by
4404 posts

Dave, the Wiener Linien mobile app only lets you purchase tickets - it is not a route planner.

For route planning, use Qando, Wiener Linien’s app as well.

Posted by
4404 posts

Coffeehouses I like - Pruekel, Alt Wien, Sperl, Diglas, Vollpension. I’d avoid Demel, Sacher, Central, Mozart, Landtmann, unless you really like sitting with tourists taking pictures of their cake. So not in the Viennese coffeehouse tradition.

Posted by
776 posts

Go to the Doretheum! Hold on to your wallet!

Posted by
2703 posts

Hey, Emily. That's the advice I was going to provide until I opened my qando app to make sure I was giving up-to-date info. The "Ticket" link that connected to the old Wiener Linien app didn't work. I searched around a bit and found the new WienMobil app, that combines the old Wiener Linien app's ticket purchasing ability with qando's route-planning ability. It actually expands on qando's route planning; it gives recommended train, bike, walking, and taxi/car sharing routes.

From the FAQ's regarding the WienMobil app on the Wiener Linien website:

WienMobil is Wiener Linien’s new mobility app, combining the functions
of the routing app qando and the Wiener Linien ticket app. You can
also use it to find out about additional mobility services (e.g. car
sharing, bike sharing or taxis), as well as reserve or book these.

Posted by
4404 posts

@ Dave - Yes, you are correct! For some reason, Wiener Linien has three mobile apps - Qando, WienMobil and Wiener Linien. Wien Mobil is the one to get.

Posted by
3188 posts

If you are interested in Jugendstil architecture (Germanic version of Art Nouveau), take a walk along Linke and Rechte Wienzeile, which pass by the Naschmarkt. A feast for the eyes. Also, don’t miss the Secession building. When we were in Vienna, it was possible to book all kinds of moderately priced walking tours through the tourist office.