What to do in Vienna - A solo female Traveler's Guide
A solo female traveler's Guide to Vienna, Austria
by Viktoria Undesser
What to do in Vienna as a Solo Female Traveler
As an Austrian, I've been coming to Vienna every once in a while since I was a kid. First with my parents, then with friends, and then I finally got to live there for a while. This gave me the chance to explore this beautiful city by myself as well as with friends and it takes my breath away time and time again. It's safe to say, I love the city and all it comes with.
What to do in Vienna
Visit the Prater
The prater is Austria's most famous amusement park and it is home to Vienna's landmark Giant Ferris Wheel. Go for a ride and get a great view of the city! Be sure to pick the right Ferris Wheel though - I remember a trip to Vienna when I was about 15 and me and my friends were super excited to try the Giant Ferris Wheel, only to end up in a smaller Ferris Wheel that's opposite the famous one ;) If you have time you can also try out some of the other rides in the park, go for a traditional Stilt and a beer at the famous "Schweizerhaus" or try some delicious Austrian desserts at the food trucks around the park!
Schloss Schönbrunn is a baroque palace and it's one of the most beautiful cultural and historical monuments in Austria. It used to be a summer residence of the Habsburgs' (the family that ruled Austria for the better part of a millennial) and it's a beautiful palace surrounded by vast gardens, the world's oldest zoo, a maze and so much more! There's so much to explore, you can easily spend an entire day, having a picknick in the gardens, admiring the beauty of the palace and just walking around the area.
There's an abundance of museum's in Vienna, but one of my absolute favourites is the Heeresgeschichtliche Museum or Military History Museum. In accordance with their slogan "Wars belong in Museums", about five-hundred years of Austrian and European Military Affairs are depicted in the collections exhibited in the main building, comprising, weapons, armours, tanks, aeroplanes, uniforms, flags, paintings, medals and badges of honour, photographs, battleship models, and documents.
The Naschmarkt is located in the 6th district and it's the city's largest urban market with over 100 permanent stalls and some of the best restaurants and food stalls in the city. It's been operating since the 1780s, when it started out as a dairy farmer's market, then evolved into a fruit and vegetable market and finally turned into the local and international specialities market it is today.
St Stephen's Cathedral is the highest church in Austria and it is truly beautiful. Construction started as early as the 12th century and it's one of the most important Gothic structures in Austria. The altars and side chapels are gorgeous and you can also see the cathedral treasure and relics. For a truly special experience, visit the Stephansdom during Easter or Advent concerts. Climbing up the343 steps to the tower room also gives you an amazing view over the entire city, while doing a tour of the catacombs is scary and interesting at the same time.
Driving or walking along the Wiener Ringstraße, or ist ceremonial boulevard means experiencing culture and history. You pass by a variety of historical sights such as the Vienna State Opera, the Imperial Palace, the Parliament, City Hall and many more! You can either walk or take a tram, comfortably riding along the boulevard. There's the official "Vienna Ring Tram", that includes Audioguides, but you can also just take the normal tram if you want to save some money and don't need the audio commentary.
The Rathaus (City Hall) and the place in front of it is a magnificent place to explore - not only is the surrounding architecture beautiful, but the place is also utilized almost year round - there's Christmas market in November and December, a public ice skating rink in January and February, Octoberfest and throughout the summer there's a huge screen playing famous plays and operas throughout the summer, among others.
Try Wiener Schnitzel with Potato Salad
The most classic Austrian dish is the Wiener Schnitzel with some delicious potato salad. The best and biggest is said to be served at Figlmüller in the city centre and the prices aren't overly expensive, either!
Have Sacher Torte for Dessert
The Sacher Torte is probably the most famous Austrian Dessert. The "original" Sacher Torte (Sacher cake) is according to the Hotel Sacher, the inventors, the "most famous cake in the world since 1832" and their recipe is a well-kept secret - even though it's replicated by families and bakeries all over Austria, of course. It's a seriously delicious chocolate cake, thinly coated with apricot jam and chocolate icing. The classic at the Hotel Sacher is delicious, however, at almost 5 Euros for a piece of cake, it's also a little excessive. Always go for smaller, less famous, family-owned bakeries.
What are your favorite things to do in Vienna? Share with us in the comments!
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