Vienna Things to Do Tips by BillNJ
Vienna Things to Do: 3,208 reviews and 6,035 photos
The Pestsäule (Plague Column) is a prominent sculpture on Graben -- in one of the busiest pedestrian zones in Vienna. The sculpture was built in response to the big plague epidemic that inflicted the citizens of Vienna in 1679. After much debate about the design, the monument was finally built in High Baroque style. The Pestsäule was inaugurated in 1693.
Directions: In the Graben pedestrian zone in Vienna's 1st district
The Baroque Peterskirche (St. Peter's Church) is a church with a long and interesting history. Some believe that it was established by Charlemagne around 800 A.D., although there is no evidence supporting this view. The construction of the existing Baroque church on the site began in 1701 -- and the church was consecrated in 1733.
Peterskirche is located on Petersplatz in Vienna's 1st district, right next to Graben and just west of the Pestsäule. The Peterskirche is largely obscured by the surrounding buildings, and can only be seen clearly from directly in front.
Address: Petersplatz, 1010 Vienna
Directions: In Vienna's 1st district on Petersplatz, right next to Graben and just west of the Pestsäule.
Outside of the Baroque Mariahilfkirche (Mariahilf Church) on Mariahilferstrasse in Mariahilf (Vienna's 6th district), there is a prominent statue of the famous composer Joseph Haydn -- one of the most prominent and prolific composers of the classical period. Haydn was a close friend of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and a teacher of Ludwig van Beethoven.
Haydn lived and died in Mariahilf (Vienna's 6th district). Therefore, it is fitting that the monument to him is located outside of Mariahilfkirche. To visit, take the U3 subway line to the Neubaugasse stop.
Address: Mariahilfer Straße 55, 1060 Vienna
Directions: Outside of the Mariahilfkirche (Mariahilf Church) on Mariahilfer Straße (Mariahilferstrasse) in Mariahilf (Vienna's 6th district), near the Neubaugasse stop on the U3 subway line.
The Urania is a public educational institute in Vienna that contains a planetarium, seminar rooms, and a movie theater. It was named after the Muse Urania who represents astronomy. The Urania overlooks the Donaukanal (Danube Canal) -- and is a favorite spot for the Viennale, Vienna’s annual international film festival.
Address: Uraniastraße 1 1010 Vienna
Directions: Vienna's 1st district, near a tram stop.
The Rochuskirche (Rochus Church) is a large Baroque church located in Landstraße (Vienna's 3rd district). Since a refurbishment in 2008, the Rochuskirche looks all nice and shiny from the outside. Between the impressive twin towers of the church, there is a depiction of St. Augustine flanked by two Augustinian monks.
The Rochuskirche overlooks the Rochusmarkt -- a small market with stalls selling fruit, vegetables, flowers and fresh meat. There are also some stores and restaurants in this area - which has its own stop on the U3 subway line.
Address: Landstraßer Hauptstraße 56, 1030 Vienna
Directions: In Landstraße (Vienna's 3rd district) across the street from the Rochusmarkt (Rochus Market), which has its own stop on the U3 subway line.
Before visiting Vienna, I purchased an advance ticket for a performance of a classical string quartet advertised as a "Konzert im Mozarthaus" (Concert in the Mozart House). The name in the advertising is a little confusing because the concerts are not in the building on Domgasse 5 known as the Mozart House. Instead, the venue for the concerts is the Sala Terrena on Singerstrasse 7 -- a small, ornately decorated Baroque concert hall with a vaulted ceiling. Mozart and other famous classical composers/musicians performed in this small concert hall which is renowned for its terrific acoustics.
The Sala Terrena seats up to 100 people -- and there were a few empty seats for the performance that I attended. However, during the busy tourist season, it is probably best to purchase an advance ticket to ensure seat reservations. With this tip, I have included a link to a web page with more information about the concerts and how to purchase tickets in advance.
Address: Singerstrasse 7, 1010 Vienna
Directions: In Vienna's 1st district, a short walk from the Stephansplatz stop on the U3 subway line.
The Stephansdom (St. Stephen's Cathedral) is a large church in the Gothic style that is located in Vienna's city center. There is an underground stop (Stephansplatz) on the U3 line right outside the cathedral -- so it is very accessible by public transportation. Also, the area outside of the cathedral is bustling with hotels, stores, restaurants, and other tourist attractions.
I viewed both the exterior and interior of the cathedral. While it is a beautiful church in a fantastic location, I was a little disappointed because it wasn't anywhere near as impressive as the gigantic Gothic cathedral in Cologne, Germany that I visited a couple of years ago.
Directions: 1st district, right outside the Stephansplatz stop on the U3 line
The Spanische Hofreitschule (Spanish Riding School) is the oldest Classical Dressage riding school in the world, featuring the famous Lipizzaner stallions. Performances at the Spanish Riding School were originally only presented to guests of the Royal Court. However, after the fall of the Austro-Hungarian empire in 1918, the school opened up regular performances to the general public to help pay for its upkeep.
The regular performances, held in an elegant riding hall, are immensely popular with tourists -- and are often sold out months in advance. It is possible to purchase advance tickets for performances online to ensure a seat reservation.
Address: Michaelerplatz 1, Hofburg, Vienna
Directions: In Vienna's 1st district, between Michaelerplatz and Josefsplatz near the Hofburg.
The Universität Wien (University of Vienna) is the oldest university in the German-speaking world and one of the largest in Europe. The University was founded on March 12, 1365. The current main building on the Ringstraße was built between 1877 and 1884.
The University of Vienna was the birthplace of the Austrian School of economics. The founders of this movement who studied and later instructed at the University of Vienna included Carl Menger, Eugen von Böhm-Bawerk, Friedrich von Wieser, Joseph Schumpeter, Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich Hayek.
Directions: Near the Schottentor U2 subway stop.
The Votivkirche (Votive Church) is a large Neo-Gothic church located on Ringstraße in Alsergrund (Vienna's 9th district) near the University of Vienna. The church was built in response to a knife-attack on Emperor Franz Joseph by Hungarian nationalist János Libényi on February 18, 1853. After the unsuccessful attack, Franz Joseph's brother Ferdinand Maximilian Joseph, the later emperor of Mexico, called upon the community for donations to build a new church on the site of the attack. Construction of the Votivkirche began in 1856, and it was dedicated twenty-six years later on April 24, 1879. The church has undergone extensive renovations after being badly damaged during World War II.
Address: Rooseveltplatz 8, 1096 Vienna
Directions: In Alsergrund (Vienna's 9th district), near the Schottentor stop on the U2 subway line.
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