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Things to do in Vienna January: Museum for Applied Arts MAK

Things To Do In Vienna January 2021: 11 Tips To Kick Off The New Year

Things to do in Vienna January 2021. Usually, January is a quiet tourism season. However, right from day one Vienna will host a series of amazing musical events and festivals. Other than that, watch the New Year’s Concert for free, understand Austrian history after World War I, join a Vienna ball, or do some ice skating.

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1. Attend the New Year’s Concert (1st January)

Things to do in Vienna January: New Year's ConcertThings to do in Vienna January 2021. The New Year’s Concert by the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra is Vienna’s top cultural export. It is also the ultimate glamour treat for any lover of classical music.

Location: Vienna Musikverein
Time: 11.15 am to 1.45 pm
Tickets: Chances to get regular tickets drawn through ballots are less 1 percent.

Three Great Alternative Options

new year's concert in Vienna: Minorite churchIf you dream about attending the New Year’s concert and were not successful watch the free live streaming of the New Year’s Concert outside the Vienna State Opera along Kärntner Strasse. There will be limited seats available. 

To welcome the new year in a much smaller musical setting, visit the Vienna Chamber Orchestra along with violinist Mario Hossen. From 4.30 pm, epic classical tunes will sweep across French-Gothic Minorite Church. By the way, Vienna Unwrapped readers receive a 10% discount. Just use the code unwrapped in your shopping cart, after clicking on Add to Cart, where it says ‘Apply Discount Code’. Book tickets.

Alternatively, why not ice skate to the live tunes of the New Year’s Concert at Wiener Eislaufverein ice skating rink?

2. Laugh Out Loud At Johann Strauss’ Operetta ‘The Bat’

Things to do in Vienna January: Strauss operettaThings to do in Vienna January 2021 New Year’s Day is  quiet in Vienna. But not everything is bordered up after the midday New Year’s concert. If you have missed Johann Strauss’ most loved operetta Die Fledermaus (‘The Bat’) the night before you can usually enjoy it in the first few days of the new year.

Essentially, the operetta portrays 19th century Vienna with its waltz tunes, merry songs and beautiful costumes. Luckily, at both the Vienna State Opera and Volksoper you will follow brilliant English surtitles, so no guessing game.

Date: 1st and 28th January 2021 (Wiener Volksoper)
Location: Vienna State Opera or Volksoper Vienna
Tickets: get tickets

3. Grab A Bargain During Winter Sales Shopping

Goessl Austrian fashion storeThings to do in Vienna January 2021. Like in most countries, January is a great time for bargain shopping. In fact, winter sales in Vienna start in most fashion and design shops just after Christmas and last well into the start of February. Even some jewelry shops lower their prices on certain items. For travelers like you, exploring Austrian clothes, jewelry, and homeware from cake tins to table cloths helps get a feel of local culture. If you’d like to know where best to shop, access my Vienna shopping tips.

4. Join A Naschmarket Food Tour

Artisan vinegar at Vienna NaschmarktThings to do in Vienna January 2021.  With the seasonal hustle and bustle gone, roaming market and artisan food stalls becomes attractive again. A local group of professional foodie guides regularly take small groups on a highly praised tasting tour across Naschmarkt.

Since this market collects food from Austria and specifically the Balkans, you will smell, bite and sip your way through Central and South Eastern  Europe. Find out more about this fun and insightful tour.

5. Learn And Taste At The Coffee Festival

Vienna coffeeThings to do in Vienna January 2021. To feel the buzz of our dynamic coffee culture, head for – a brewery. During three days, coffee lovers and professionals from Vienna and all over the world will show and tell, and taste, at the Ottakringer brewery’s event halls. Explore Vienna’s trendy new coffee scene, learn the tricks of great coffee making from a world class barista, taste gourmet food, and participate in an interactive coffee workshop. 

Dates: 15th to 17th January 2021
Location: Ottakringer Brauerei, Ottakringer Platz 1, 1160 Vienna
Opening Hours: tba
Admission: tickets available from October 2020

6. Slippery Things To Do In Vienna January: Wiener Eistraum

Things to do in Vienna January: Ice rinkThings to do in Vienna January 2021. The Vienna Ice Dream (Wiener Eistraum) skating rink is placed right in front of Vienna’s Rathaus. For me, the city hall ice skating rink is the best skating venue in Vienna.

Because it is so centrally located, you can continue your sightseeing while skating as you are surrounded by the neogothic City Hall, Ringstrasse boulevard and the Burgtheater, and the University of Vienna. I’m sharing our family’s skating experience there in Ice Skating Vienna.

7. Go Ice Curling On The Canal

Things to do in Vienna January: curling on Danube CanalThings to do in Vienna January 2021.  Curling has a long tradition in Austria and is a fun winter pastime. This year, Vienna’s leisure boat Badeschiff will let you curl right in its on-deck swimming pool. The pool is 25 metres long and will have two curling lanes. Another lane is available on the shore. The upper deck hosts punch and mulled wine booths with a view across the Danube Canal.

Dates: November 2020 to mid March 2021 (dates tbc in October 2020)
Opening hours: 12.00 pm to 10.00 pm
Bookings: lanes can be booked for 30 min between noon and 4.00 pm (EUR 25) and between 4.00 pm and 10.00 pm (EUR 45). Call 0043 660 312 47 03 to book or use the online form (German only).

8. Stopover At These Best Coffeehouses

Things to do in Vienna January: Cafe LandtmannThings to do in Vienna January 2021. Clearly I won’t lie about average temperatures in January. When I’m outside for more than one hour, I use my mental coffeehouse map to find the best places to warm up over a Melange or tea. Especially in those that offer coffee specialities including shots of liqueurs to help fight wintery chills!

You can access my list of best Vienna coffeehouses to integrate a few warm stopovers in your itinerary.

9. Dance At The Vienna Philharmonic Ball

Things to do in Vienna January 2021. Whether you like glamour or dancing or both, the Wiener Philharmonikerball is my top Vienna dance travel tip for January. For me, it is the most beautiful and most authentic Vienna ball, taking place in the sumptuous halls of the Viennese Musikverein. It is hardly found in mainstream Vienna event packages and considered an insider tip among Vienna travellers. For further information, go to Vienna Philharmonic Ball.
Other Vienna Balls in 2021.
Date: 21st January 2021

10. Learn About Fine Art And Architecture

Klimt's The KissThings to do in Vienna January 2021. Before the tourism season gets back into full swing is the best time to explore Vienna’s top museums. At Belvedere Palace, for example, crowds usually gather in front of Gustav Klimt’s ravishing painting The Kiss (picture).

Besides the world’s largest Klimt collection the Palace houses Austria’s biggest art treasures in the Austrian National Gallery. And all of those are boxed up in lavish baroque halls that teach a lesson about classical architecture.

If I was an art historian I would pick this place, too, to enthuse people with Viennese treasures – read more in Belvedere Vienna.

Address: Belvedere Palace, Prinz-Eugen-Strasse 27, 1030 Vienna

11. Attend an Opera and Classical Concert

Things to do in Vienna January 2021. Throughout the month, the Vienna State Opera calendar holds six of the best operas in store. It shouldn’t really matter which day you are free to go if you love the tunes of Rossini (The Barber of Seville, La Cenerentola), Mozart (Don Giovanni), Bizet (Carmen), Wagner (Lohengrin) or Verdi (Othello, La Traviata). Book tickets.

As for Vienna concerts, I would likely go for Vivaldi’s Four Season’s at baroque church St. Charles Borromeo (Karlskirche). In fact, Vivaldi lived his last year in Vienna, and is actually buried underneath the Technical University a few meters from Karlskirche.

Check what to do during other months:
find out about Things to do in Vienna, February
or more in Things to do in Vienna, March

visit Vienna Attractions – Guide to Hotspots and Insider Tips
go to Visit Vienna – 20 Free Vacation Tools and Travel Tips

find out more about Vienna Unwrapped’s Vienna Travel Planning services for independent travellers

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