"NEW YEAR CELEBRATIONS" Vienna Local Custom Tip by mel_bee

Vienna Local Customs: 271 reviews and 372 photos

As New Year's Eve approaches you may be puzzled to find stalls around the city selling pigs, frogs and metal figures. This is because the Viennese find pigs lucky and it is a traditional present to give at this time. The metal figures are melted and poured into water (blei giessen), the shape formed is supposed to predict the future (if you believe in such things). In the afternoon of 31st December, if you are in the first district Graben and Kärntnerstrasse area you will find lots of stalls selling hot punch which you need to drink cause its so cold this time of the year. Pick up a flyer as there are loads of events all over the city. You will find discos and bands as the evening wears on. After dark people begin lighting fireworks and gathering around the Stephansplatz and Rathausplatz. Midnight is rung in by the pummerl bell and then everyone goes crazy drinking champagne, throwing fireworks in every direction and then apparently it is good luck to smash your champagne bottle. If you don''t like big crowds try to find a restaurant, hotel or bar with a special ticket only programme or head to Spittelberg which has a no firework policy!
Then as the Austrians say - Gute Rutsch (literally a good slide into the new year).

Review Helpfulness: 2.5 out of 5 stars

Was this review helpful?

  • Updated Jul 8, 2003
  • Send to a Friend
  • Add to your Trip Planner
  • Report Abuse



“The world`s a book & those who don`t travel read only a page”

Online Now


Top 5,000 Travel Writer
Member Rank:
0 1 1 9 6

Have you been to Vienna?

  Share Your Travels