Austria

Things to do in Austria

No matter what the season, it is impossible to run out of things to do in Austria, whether you’re looking for ski slopes to hit in the winter or powerful historical sights to visit in the summer. Austria is chock full of stunning cathedral architecture. Stephansdom (or St. Stephen’s Cathedral) in Vienna is a marvel of Gothic architecture both inside and out, with dazzling stained-glass windows and a tiled roof decorated with chevrons and Austrian eagles. Vienna’s Schloss Schönbrunn is another can’t-miss sight – guided tours of the palace will take you through the grand legacy of the Habsburg family as you tour 26 sumptuous and perfectly preserved rooms. If you’re wondering what to do in Salzburg, the Festung Hohensalzburg is a main attraction. This 900-year-old military fortress is a powerful reminder of the country’s former military prowess and offers sweeping views of the Salzach River and the mountains. Salzburg’s marble, stucco and frescoed Schlosskonzerte music hall is also an exquisite venue for chamber-music concerts.
Snow bunnies looking for things to do in Austria should take note of the abundance of ski slopes and resort towns available for a winter visit. Some of the best ski towns in Austria include Heilegenblut, a small village whose easily accessible mountains attract tourists in both winter and summer; Semmering, a favorite among Vienna residents that offers fabulous ski slopes in winter as well as a relaxing spa; Bad Gastein, known for its 19th-century feel, its first-class skiing as well as its year-round therapeutic spas; Zell am See, famous for the sapphire-blue Zeller See lake and its picturesque snow-capped peaks; and Innsbruck, where you can visit the late-medieval old town and Habsburg palaces when you’re not hitting the slopes.

The first in Vienna to offer wines by the glass (a Riedl glass, anyone?) this tiny yet groundbreaking wine bar is well known among locals and yet could easily be overlooked by the average passerby. Though tucked in a passageway near St.

Hajszan’s eponymous Heurige, a renovated grape-pressing house, has become one of the city’s hippest destinations.

A nearly 40-year-old bar that lures skiers with copious helpings of Jägermeister and rock ’n’ roll.

Founded in 2002 in Vienna's First District by Francesca von Habsburg and run by the fourth generation of art collectors in the prominent Habsburg-Lorraine family, the Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary is not a prototypical museum.

Aggressively futuristic and sensual, the four Alpine railway stations
along the line linking Innsbruck's city center to Hungerberg are
eye-popping biomorphic forms in glass, floating over simple concrete
platforms. At first glance the stations seem to evoke rocket-fueled,

Helmuth Unger's unpretentious wine store and bar started out strictly as bottle shop. Today, wine connoisseurs head to Vienna's textile quarter to enjoy their varietal of choice and an array of food items like antipasti, cheeses, and the house signature smoked salami.

Stick to the northern end for farmer produce and fancy offerings, including Gegenbauer, with casks of homemade oils and vinegars, and Alles Seife’s handmade soap.

A lively disco where Swedish ski instructors and European vacationers down frothy steins and ski-booted table dancing is de rigueur.

A prominent tourist attraction in Schlosspark since the 1960's, the former summer residence of the Hapsburgs is a true Baroque palace. Within its lacquered and gilded walls are 1,441 rooms filled with priceless artifacts of Austria's longest reigning royal family.

Situated on the sixth floor of the Do & Co Hotel, the space has windows about 30 feet high looking straight across Stephansplatz at the tiled roof and towers of the Gothic St. Stephen's Cathedral.

Located on one of Vienna’s chicest streets, repurposes household and office items into furniture, including lamps made of used celluloid and a funky chaise longue created from old three-ring binders.