Discover the beautiful capital of Austria, enriched with history, classical music and ice skating!

I travelled to Vienna at the start of 2020 (pre-COVID lockdown) with my boyfriend. We actually had our first date there, which has solidified a special place in my heart for Vienna. We stayed there for 4 nights in a beautiful apartment found via Airbnb that was only a 20 minute walk to the centre. We arrived quite late at night so we got to see the city lit up, straight away filling us with awe and when the sun rose the next day we saw the incredible architecture of the surrounding buildings, just a taste of what Vienna had to offer!

We started our journey with a trip to a nearby shopping centre and, due to staying outside of the city centre, we found most people spoke German. This resulted in an entertaining, miscommunication-filled adventure for us two, who only know how to say ‘danke.’ Nevertheless, we trekked on towards the centre, passing an abundance of cute, independent Viennese cafés and friendly locals, before the cafes turned to beautifully-intricate buildings and the locals turned into fellow tourists – we had made it to the wonderful Museums Quarter. For any avid art gallery-goers, I recommend venturing to this area of Vienna, as it is filled with various art galleries and is a short walk to the Vienna Museum of Natural History.

We slowly made our way to Time Travel Vienna, an interactive museum that delves into Vienna’s history through the years, which we thoroughly enjoyed. Afterwards, we ventured to Danube Tower and took in a 360° view of Vienna at night – it was beautiful. There were two floors above us which we had a peek in and discovered they were a revolving café and restaurant! Though we didn’t stay for dinner, we acknowledged the menu and the prices weren’t too bad for a restaurant of that type.

The view of Vienna from Danube Tower

The next day we found ourselves back in the Museums Quarter and decided to go to the Natural History Museum, which was just as beautiful inside with its painted ceilings, detailed statues and carvings along the walls, complemented by the main staircase in all its grandeur. The building contained multiple rooms pertaining to different areas of the natural world; including space, Earth, dinosaurs, anthropology and, of course, animals.

As evening set in, we decided to partake in a cultural activity of a classical concert, considering we were in the City of Music after all! We went to Annakirche (or, St. Anne’s Church) to listen to the Lerchenfeld Quartett play beautiful pieces by Mozart, Haydn and Beethoven. We followed this up with a not-so-cultural dinner at Regina Margherita, a beautiful Italian restaurant nearby to the Church.

The beautiful grand staircase at the Vienna Museum of Natural History

Another day, another museum – a trip to Haus der Musik was definitely a must in the Classical Capital. Alternatively called the Sound Museum, it was constructed in and around the old apartment of the founder of the Vienna Philharmonic and features interactive displays relating to music, sound and history. Due to bad weather, we found ourselves back at the Airbnb after this, watching a football match. (If you like football, check out my boyfriend’s new football blog here)

Tickets and floorplan map brochure from Haus der Musik

As the weather compared to the other days was quite wet and cold, we decided an indoor place would be key, so we opted for Schönbrunn Palace, a history-rich royal residence of some famous names; including Maria Theresa, Franz Josef, Empress Elisabeth “Sisi,” Marie Antionette and even Napoleon. A lot of the usual garden activities were closed unfortunately, but the Gloriette was open so we were able to take in the panoramic views of Vienna. For our last night in Vienna we went to Wiener Eistraum (Vienna Ice World) at Rathausplatz, a square in the city centre with a collection of historic buildings, lit up aesthetically for this annual ice skating event.

One of the ice skating rinks at Rathausplatz

I was sad leaving Vienna, as someone who loves sentimentality and history, departing such a historic city where I had my first date with someone special was quite hard. It was a beautiful, safe and friendly place – we never once felt like pariahs or unwelcome. I would love to return to Vienna one day and I hope this post has inspired you to visit this incredible city!

If you would like to see more in-depth reviews about the places I visited in Vienna, food recommendations or even more pictures, please leave a comment or keep an eye out for more posts about this exceptional place. Any suggestions or questions are welcome too. Thank you for reading and remember:

Never stop wandering!

Header photo: Ephesos Museum in Vienna, Austria
Date visited: January-February 2020

Wondering where Vienna is? Click ‘show more’ to see it on the map!

You might also enjoy: