The magnificent city of Vienna combines the rhythm of the old world with cultural, historical and natural landmarks, and the pulse of the present, with contemporary art exhibitions, night-life and entertainment for all tastes. Marvel at UNESCO World Heritage sites, such as the Viennese Old City Centre and the Schönbrunn Palace; view the city from the famous Ferris Wheel at the Prater or from the Donauturm; enjoy art – from classic to contemporary - at the Belvedere, the Albertina, the Kunsthistorisches Museum and countless other museums, attractions and parks.
Formerly the capital of the Habsburgs, Vienna has been rebuilt after World War II to reflect its former glory, and at the same time, reinvented itself as a modern city, a global cultural centre and as the capital of Austria. This "old new city" also features works by the late Friedensreich Hundertwasser, one of the world’s most innovative architectural artists.
The University of Vienna, the oldest university in the German-speaking world, is located right at the centre of town. Vienna is home to several other academic and research institutes, as well as a centre for numerous international organisations and companies.
And finally, no visit to Vienna would be complete without a taste of one of the world’s best cuisines. Don’t forget to sit down at a classic café, and inhale this city’s atmosphere. Keep the sweet taste of the Strudel
and the Sachertorte
for your next visit at Leonardo Hotels Vienna.
Discover Vienna & the Leonardo Hotels in Vienna
Cuisine in Vienna
The Viennese Cuisine is famous worldwide for its delicacies, and especially for the pastries and cakes, which is part of the Viennese café culture. The Viennese cuisine has always been influenced by Austria’s rich agricultural landscape, and by Vienna’s location as a bridge between East and West – and all, with typical Viennese "Gemütlichkeit". The famous Wiener Schnitzel (breaded veal, usually served with potato salad) is influenced by similar Milanese dishes, adapted to the region and the lifestyle of the Viennese. Wine lovers would enjoy sitting in Vienna’s Heurigen, traditional wine taverns, serving young Austrian wine. On your visit to Vienna, don’t forget to sit at one of the city’s historical cafes and have a Strudel or a Torte next to your coffee. The Apfelstrudel is a layered pastry filled with apples, while the famous Sachertorte is a chocolate cake with layers of jam, usually served with whipped cream. Today, the vibrant city caters to many types of culinary preferences and lifestyles, including vegetarian versions of the traditional Viennese dishes, ethnic restaurants and chef inspired gourmet restaurants.
The Vienna International Airport (Flughafen Wien) is located just southeast of the city of Vienna, and is the largest airport in Austria and home to Austrian Airline and its subsidiaries. Except for flights from and to Vienna, it can serve for a stop-over for several days in the beautiful city between other destinations. Thanks to Vienna’s excellent infrastructure, it is easy to travel in the city from Leonardo Hotels Vienna or from the airport.
Entertainment in Vienna
The Stadthalle Wien is Austria’s largest indoor arena for concerts, sports event and large conferences, with more than 16000 seats. The Messe Wien is a fair centre right at Vienna’s city centre, near the Prater – exhibition space is 70.000 m² and several major fairs take place there every year. Leonardo Hotels Vienna can offer full service to conference and fair visitors, including special deals.
Sports and Vienna
Sports fans could visit Ernst Happel Stadium, where Austria’s National Football (soccer) Team plays, as well as international matches by Vienna’s Rapid Wien and Austria Wien, both playing in Austria’s premier league. Besides football, many other types of sports are played in Vienna, including tennis, volleyball, American Football, rugby and ice hockey. The Spanish Riding School is one of Vienna’s most popular tourist attractions, demonstrating classical dressage. The Vienna Marathon takes place every year in April and draws many spectators and over 30000 runners.
Sightseeing in Vienna
Schönbrunn Palace & Park
The Schönbrunn Palace was one of the palaces of the Habsburg emperors of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and before that – of the Emperors of the Holy Roman Empire. First built in the 16th century by Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian II (and developed by successive emperors), the palace is considered today to be a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of Vienna’s prime tourist destinations. The Schlosspark surrounding the palace is one of Vienna’s finest parks, a refuge from the city, and features a Zoo (Tiergarten Schönbrunn) , a café in the Gloriette, a pool, a maze and much more. Every year, at the beginning of June, there is a free open-air concert of the Vienna Philharmonic in the grounds of the palace.
The Prater is stretching on a long green lung in Leopoldstadt and features one of Vienna’s most famous landmarks – the Ferris Wheel (Wiener Riesenrad) at the entrance to the park, which also offers a panorama of the city, when your gondola reaches the top. The entrance to the park and the amusement park is free, visitors pay for each attraction separately.
St. Stephen's Cathedral
The St. Stephen's Cathedral (Stephansdom) is the seat of the Archbishop of Vienna. Several important events happened in the Gothic and Romanesque church, initially built in the 12th century, including Mozart’s wedding and funeral. Vienna features many other sacral sites that are worth a visit: the St. Charles's Church (Karlskirche), which offers a magnificent view of the city; the Votive Church (Votivkirche), one of the most important neo-Gothic religious architectural sites in the world; and the Central Synagogue (Stadttempel), built in the 19th century, which also serves the Jewish community of Vienna today.
Museums in Vienna
Vienna features many museums, dedicated to art, crafts, natural history and general history. The Belvedere Palace, converted into an arts museum, features numerous collections, with works ranging from the Middle Ages to contemporary art. The Belvedere features, among other exhibitions, the largest collection of Gustav Klimt works in the world. Among the other important museums are the Albertina, with its vast collection of fine art from Monet to Picasso and the Kunsthistorischen Museum, which features a collection of Greek and Roman antiquities, a collection of Egyptian and Near Eastern artifacts, a coin collection, a decorative arts collection and the main highlight – the painting gallery, with pictures by the grand masters of the 16th and 17th century. Nature lovers and young dinosaur explorers cannot miss the Natural History Museum (Naturhistorisches Museum), as well as the Haus des Meeres, a large public aquarium in a former Flak Tower.
Classical Music and Vienna
The birthplace of Waltz, Vienna is a delight to music lovers. Several important composers have lived or worked in Vienna, including Mozart, Schubert, Strauss, Mahler and Schoenberg. Vienna offers concerts and gigs for all tastes – Classical and Punk, Jazz and Pop, Electronic and World Music. The Vienna State Opera and the Vienna Philharmonic are known worldwide for their performances, and several grand balls are the highlight of the Viennese social calendar. The two most important such balls are the New Year’s Eve Kaiserball and the Life Ball, the largest AIDS charity event in Europe. The contrast between these two events symbolizes the Viennese uniqueness – a traditional yet innovative city.