Having spent four days in Vienna a number of years ago it was interesting to go back a few months ago for a whirlwind 24 hours. And it was even more interesting as I was with people who had never been to the city so I was in charge of fitting in all of the highlights without making it too rushy. You can see the highlights from my first trip here, here, and here but today is about the consolidated version. When arriving to the city via train we quickly dropped our bags at our hotel which was located on the Ring – this is the heart of the city and if you are in the city for a short period of time I highlight recommend you stay I this area – it makes nearly every attraction walkable so you can spend more time seeing and doing rather than going to and from.
We then went to the Hofburg Palace for the GrandTour which included the Imperial Apartments, the Sisi Museum, as well as the Silver Collection which is saying something as this was the the residence of Habsburg Monarchy. Unfortunately of the three places you can go on the silver collection allows photos, a few of which I have included below, but the state apartments are definitely my favourite. The Habsburg dynasty lived in the palace between the 13th century through o the 20th century and the inside in beautifully maintained and reminded me of Versailles. And the Sisi Museum gives great insight into one of Austria’s most beloved monarchs, Empress Elisabeth (1837-1898) the wife of Emperor Franz Joseph.
I had then booked dinner ant Figlmüller, one of the highlights of my first trip, and I convinced my family that it was worth the late reservation (8:30, a far cry from our usual 7pm and the rainy evening). I had talked up the famous Figlmüller schnitzel so much all four of us ordered the same thing and were not disappointed. If you are going to go though, you definitely need to make reservations.
It was a an early night because we had 8am tickets to Schonnbrunn Palace when it opened and planned to be there early for the Christmas card (which I mentioned in this post). Many will say to skip the palace if you only have a short period of time but I strongly disagree – I have visited twice and dedicated three posts on Sparkles and Shoes to it, and that is saying a lot, especially for palace you can not take pictures inside. It is stunning, majestic, has a great audio tour included in your ticket price and is only a short subway ride ( the call their underground the U-Bahn) from the heart of Vienna.
We then took a free walking tour which took us to stop sites in the center of the city including Vienna Ring Road, Royal Opera House, Stadtpark, and Museums Quarter. Since we still had some time before we needed to leave we too a detour to St. Stephen’s Cathedral and climbed to the top of the Medieval place of worship. The view from the top was gorgeous and I love the vantage of the tiled roof from the windows at the top of the spire.
After climbing the cathedral we headed back to the hotel, grabbed our bags, and boarded a train from Vienna to Salzburg – and you can read about our Salzburg adventures here. Notably we missed the Belvedere Palace and is true the are rooms filled with works by Manet, Monet, Degas, and the the most famous painting, The Kiss by Gustav Klimt, but I love a palace that looks like the time when it was inhabited and this one has absolute no furniture. And yes, this is one take of what To do in the city, but I would argue it gives you a good sense of the Austrian capital – but in case you need more the Vienna tourism board has 6 different itineraries for you to pick from if you only have one day to spend in the city so feel free to go check those out if my picks are not hitting home with you!
Have you been to Vienna?