24 hours in Vienna. Since it’s small, can you cover Vienna in one day? As many people visit Europe on a round trip they have one or two days for Wien. While you can’t totally cover Vienna in 1 day, you can slice and dice it to your own preferences. To give you an idea of what is doable, here are seven packages of 24 hour itineraries,.
Before you read on here are two crucial tips: First, swap your hotel breakfast for one in a local coffeehouse. You will gain an hour of experiencing real city life. Second, find a suitable 24-hour Vienna travel card to help reduce transport and sightseeing expenses.
24 Hours In Vienna: Best Of Sightseeing
A day in Vienna for classical culture travellers can look like this:
8.30am to 9.30am: Have Breakfast at a local coffeehouse close to Ringstrasse, for example Café Prückel, Café Diglas or Café Museum.
9.30am to 10.15am: Get on a Vienna Ringtram for a 30min tour of the Ringstrasse state boulevard. You will see a dozen of Vienna’s most important sites.
10.30am to 1pm: Join one of the guided walking tours. Some of the Old Town Tours also start at 10.30am.
1pm to 2.30pm: Have lunch at one of the restaurants in Vienna’s city centre.
2.30pm to 6pm: Visit Schonbrunn Palace and gardens. You should have time to take a breath in one of the local cafés there, either Gloriette café or the more hidden Landtmann’s Jausenstation.
6pm to 8.30pm: Return to the centre or surroundings for dinner.
from 8.30pm: Relax at one of the best bars in Vienna while seeing the city by night. Visit rooftop sky bars such as the Onyx Bar at Haas Haus opposite St. Stephen’s Cathedral, or the Sky Bar on top of Steffl department store in Kärntner Strasse. Alternatively, treat yourself to a night at the Vienna State Opera.
24 Hours In Vienna: For The Romantic
If charm and romance score high on your wish list, choose small and original places.
8.30am to 9.45am: Have breakfast at Café Hawelka, Café Sperl or Café Diglas. Alternatively, head for park Café Meierei right in the middle of Stadtpark for an excellent selection of cheese and milk specialities.
9.45am to 12pm: Take a walk through Old Vienna. For example, the areas between Himmelpfortgasse and Fleischmarkt, and between Am Hof and Seitenstettengasse are full of small romantic alley ways. Consider a 2 hour Secret Vienna tour of romantic courtyards, which will connect you with Vienna’s residential life throughout the centuries.
12pm to 2pm: Have lunch at a small atmospheric restaurant such as the elegant Art Deco café/restaurant Zum Schwarzen Kameel or down-to-earth Gasthaus Hanno Pöschl.
from 6.00pm: Have private dinner at one of the city’s private dining places. Alternatively, wine and dine at one of the local wineries, or at a Viennese tavern such as Zu Den Drei Hacken or Silberwirt.
24 Hours in Vienna: For Not So Mobile Travellers
To begin with, a one day visit to Vienna does not need to be packed up in order to be memorable: Being such a laid-back city itself, Vienna shouldn’t rushed anyway. Here is an itinerary that both gets you around and gently tips you into the best seats.
9.00am to 12pm: Start the day touring Vienna’s best places with your own private car and driver. There are great local transfer services who will drive you around with a polite and savvy English speaking driver (and possibly tour guide, for more in-depth historical references). I visited some Vienna sights by car, and loved it. If you want to skip the lines at Schonbrunn Palace, consider this private car and Schonbrunn tour.
12pm to 1.30pm: Take advantage of your mobility and ask the driver to drop you at an original eatery off the beaten track that is well connected for your return journey by public transport, for example Gasthaus zum Rebhuhn or Servitenwirt in the 9th district.
4.30pm to 5.30pm: Even when just one day in Vienna, allow yourself to visit at least one of Wien’s best parks and gardens. My favourites for laid-back strolls and pretty benches are Volksgarten and Stadtpark along Ringstrasse Vienna.
7.30pm: Dine at a local restaurant or tavern close to your hotel. Alternatively, get a Schnitzel and top view of Vienna at Danube Tower‘s 170 metre high restaurant which slowly rotates.
24 Hours In Vienna: Spend A Free Day Like A Local
Because we have seen all the major landmarks our family just do our personal fun stuff when back in Vienna. Here is one of our day programmes that we did on our last visit.
10am to 11am: Brunch at contemporary Café Heuer at busy Karlsplatz or at Café Ansari in Leopoldstadt, just across the Danube Canal.
11am to 12pm: Visit Karmelitermarkt and nearby Augarten in Leopoldstadt, Vienna’s oldest baroque garden with contemporary art space Augarten Contemporary.
12pm to 1.30pm: Lunch at Zimmer 37 or Café Mima at Karmelitermarkt
2pm to 4.00pm: Muse over the Fin-de-Siècle at the Egon Schiele Museum (aka Leopold Museum) at Museumsquartier. If your one day in Vienna happens to be sizzling hot, hang out at the Old Danube for a little boat ride or swim.
4.30pm to 5.30pm: Delve into Viennese cakes at popular cake shops Heiner or Kurkonditorei Oberlaa.
5pm to 7pm: between April and mid September: visit Volksgarten Pavillon or the city’s Film and Food Festival (July, August) for outdoor drinks and early bite; All year round you can bag a few great objects while shopping for local design and crafts.
from 7.30pm: Definitely the perfect extension of one day in Vienna for classical fans is an operetta or opera. Alternatively, dive into local nightlife such as Puff Bar or Rote Bar at Volkstheater (see details in Best Bars in Vienna).
Where To Stay: Schreiner’s, Grätzl Hotel, Vienna Residences
For the fun and action loving, choose things to do in Vienna in one day to either follow in the locals’ footsteps or to absorb insight into the city by moving around.
8.30am to 9.30am: Have breakfast at trendy cafés Neni or Tewa on Naschmarkt (Monday to Saturday). Both open at 8am. Alternatively, why not join a local and hang out at an off-path Kulturcafé, and roam the best places at Naschmarkt and Karmelitermarkt?
9.45am to 1pm: Join a kickbike or e-scooter tour with food sampling if you visit between April and October.
Visit the Vienna Prater. During the summer, you can rent a Segway or a four-seater family bike in the Prater commons. Have lunch at Schweizerhaus, our local institution for crispy pork legs.
6.30pm to 9pm: Have dinner at a local tavern or winery.
from 9pm: Enjoy our nightlife at Volksgarten Club Disco, Puff-Bar, Rote Bar at Volkstheater, and Platzhirsch. (Guest blogger Sam has contributed a few tips for pretty wild clubs in his post on Vienna’s nightlife.)
If your girlie day includes shopping, make sure you don’t spend a Sunday in town, as most shops are closed. For added inspiration, see what I’m doing with my mum, sister, and daughter in Vienna Travel Tips for Ladies.
9am to 10am: Have breakfast at charming vegan cake heaven Simply Raw Bakery. For a more traditional experience go to Café Sperl or Café Diglas.
10.30am to 12.30pm: Visit the Museum of Fine Arts or the Albertina for classical art treasures. Both museums have great restaurants. If you prefer a contemporary touch, visit the Museum of Applied Arts/Contemporary Art (MAK).
12.30pm to 2pm: Have lunch at MAK’s Salon Plafond or at Café Prückel opposite.
2pm to 5pm: Go on a shopping tour with added sightseeing.
5pm to 6pm: Relax at Palmenhaus orangery in Burggarten close to the Opera over coffee and snacks. Alternatively, relax inside a Vienna Ringtram during a 30min sightseeing tour.
from 6.30pm: For stylish drinks and food, take the 59A bus (State Opera to Margaretenplatz/Schönbrunner Strasse) to cult bar and restaurant Motto .
10.45 am to 12.45pm: Visit a performance at the Spanish Riding School (certain days only); alternatively go on an exclusive one hour private tour through the Museum of Fine Arts (EUR 90 per tour exc. entrance ticket; email email@example.com to arrange at a minimum of 1 week in advance);
1.15pm to 3pm: Lunch at two star Michelin restaurant Steirereck
3pm to 5.30pm: Go on a private tour or do a bit of luxury shopping with added sightseeing of the old town. Hop into pastry shop Demel Vienna for Imperial cakes and coffee.
6pm to 7pm: Go for a 60 min chocolate spa treatment at Hotel Sacher (EUR 120; bookings: firstname.lastname@example.org). While you can take Sacher Torte with you when one day in Vienna, you can’t take the masseuse.
from 7.30pm: Visit one of the local classical concerts or the Opera. Dine at the city’s two star Michelin restaurant Silvio Nickol. If you visit between January and July, book tickets for a traditional Viennese ball.
Where To Stay: in one of these luxury hotels in Vienna