Aerial shot of Vienna in Summer

50 Things to do in Vienna this Summer

In Vienna by Carly1 Comment

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The sunshine finally arrived, the waiters are finally smiling and the summer is finally upon us here in Vienna!

So what will you do with this one beautiful summer life you have? If you’re stuck for ideas or just melting into a puddle and need some inspiration, here’s my pick of 50 Things to do in Vienna this Summer.

It may be surprising, but we’ve learned that Vienna in summer can actually be delightful and is well worth sticking around for. You can save the summer beach trip to Greece or Croatia until September to really extend your summer feels!

Vienna can very much hold its own for summertime relaxation and sunshine activities and these are our best 50 alternative things to do in Vienna this Summer.

50 things to do in Vienna this Summer

 

1 Swim in the Alte Donau. Nothing more classically Viennese summer than swimming in the old Danube. The only question is where is your favourite perch? Beside the open BBQ patch, in the manicured gardens of Ganselheufelbad, along the Arbeiterstandstrasse? Decisions, decisions…

Group of friends on a boat on the Alte Donau

Keep an eye out for rouge boats filled with festive locals as you swim in the glorious Old Danube

2 Attend the Vienna Philharmonic Schönbrunn concert. A nights free entertainment from no less than the Philharmonic orchestra in the palatial ground of Schönbrunn. But you better be quick it’s happening Thursday 20th June this year!

3 Try the Meine Insel floating islands boats for hire. A super fun way to enjoy the weather with a view from the water, you can byo picnic and wine glasses then putter around the Ganselheufel island and relax in the sunshine.

women sitting on a floating island mini boat with palm trees

4 Try the ice cream at La Garda Eis Salon by Westbahnhof – my personal pick of best ice cream in Vienna! Creamy, Italian made, served with generous portions and crunchy waffles, I’m a total sucker for this place.

5 Cycle to the Lobau nature reserve and spend a day exploring. With hectares of grass reserve and a few FKK nude bathing spots, the Lobau is a Viennese hideaway to get away from the city.

6 Swim on top of the Danube at the Badeschiff public pool. Trying to swim the Danube would be a disaster, but luckily the Badeschiff Wien has a pool upon their boat so you don’t have to risk life and limb to say you’ve swum ‘on the Danube’. Just head to their restaurant pool and bar to get some laps in at the heart of the city.

 
 
 
 
 
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Here you can take a swim in a pool on a boat in the Danube canal 😍 Picture by @prostmahlzeit_badeschiffwien #vienna_austria

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7 Sip cocktails on the rooftop bars of Vienna. With so many free to access rooftop bars in the city, you have to take advantage of the long summer nights to enjoy the views and maybe a drink or two.

woman on rooftop balcony with drink

8 Get yer ass to Donauinselfest. Europe’s largest free music festival and an institution in Vienna. Held over 3 days in summer on the Donau island, there are games, food stands, music of every possible type and genre, huge rides for kids and lots of festive activities for all.By far one of the most popular things to do in Vienna for summer!

9 Cycle the city. With weather so fine and the trams and Ubahns a sweaty mess with no air con, now is the perfect time to make friends with your bike. Or if you’re just visiting, try the City Bike rental scheme, where you can get a bike for limited time hire to see how you like the freedom of two wheel travel.

Pinterest pin of things to do in Vienna

10 Try the ice cream at Tichy – said to be the city’s best beloved ice cream from the 10th district. The Eis Marillen knodl is a bonafide patented work of edible art.

11 Visit Vienna City Beach Club. A beach bar and sometime restaurant along the banks of the Alte Donau, known for its all nighter party scene, the Vienna City Beach Club is cool spot to sit in beach chairs and dip your feet in the water.

group of friends at Vienna City Beach Club

In the daylight hours there are food options, drinks, and all manner of hot bodies sunning themselves on the loungers. By night, the place turns into a bit of a rave by the waterside, but always worth stopping by to see another side to Vienna than classical palaces!

Sunset at the Vienna City Beach Club waterside

 

12 Bar hop the Donaukanal. The city centre flocks to the banks of the Donaukanal in summertime and there is no better place to feel the beating heart of Vienna than perched in a beach chair or dangling your legs above the Danube, beside a rickety pop up bar on the Donaukanal. I love Adria bar and All about the Meat Baby for daytime chill into evening.

Beach chairs by the Donaukanal

Beach chairs aplenty by the Donaukanal

If I’m feeling fancy and want a pamper day I’ll treat myself to a spot at Blumenwiese on the lush white couches with an apertivo in hand.

two women with charcuterie board at Blumenweise

Either way, the Donaukanal is for everyone and embodies the spirit of Vienna in summer, so ya gotta go. 

13 Swim with a panoramic view across the entire city at Krapfenwaldbad public pool. Still one of the most jaw dropping pools I’ve ever visited, there’s a lovely little restaurant and plenty of rolling green hills and kids activities at this stunning hilltop swim spot.

poolside view from Krapfenwaldbad looking over cityscape

14 Yoga in the Park. In summer the Yoga classes head outdoors (again Vienna doesn’t believe in air-con so this is practical AND inspiring!) You can enjoy your daily stretching with a view in Augarten, Strandbar Hermann, Klyo terrace, Praterstern and more.

15 Retreat to a courtyard terrace. There are some hidden Oases in the city filled with leafy courtyards to bring sweet relief from the heat. Try Glacis Beisl, Wandviertel, and Amerlingbeisl to escape and snack in luscious leafy surrounds.

16 Take a Day Trip from Vienna to a lake. Vienna has a bunch of easily accessible swim spots just a short train or tram ride away that can feel like a mini holiday! See our full list of surprise easy swim spots here.

Woman sunbathes beside a lake

This woman did not move all day. #lifegoals

17 Check out a musical film festival. The Rathaus town hall plays host to free cinema screenings of music performances all summer long, smack in the centre of town. Shows include Ed Sheehan live at Wembley, Amy Winehouse in Shepards Bush, and plenty of classical operetta’s and live performances.

18 Food truck festival at Rathaus town hall. Of course, this is Vienna, so they throw in a food festival of multi cultural cuisine alongside the cinema screening so you won’t go hungry. Food trucks of Greek, Israeli, Austrian and even Aussie food and plenty of drink options means you won’t have to leave your perfect perch to enjoy the atmosphere.

19 Try the Ice Cream at Eis Greissler. You might see a theme emerging – trying ice cream at all the best spots in the city is an absolute must do for Vienna summers. Eis Greissler is a fave of the hipster set for their organic ingredients and experimental flavours. Try it for yourself to see the difference!

Ice cream cone held aloft at Eis Greissler

20 Hideaway in a quiet cafe. The Viennese coffeehouse culture is world famous, but better known in cooler months. However, if you are very lucky in summertime, particularly August, a lot of the smaller cafes clear out completely and you can have the entire place to yourself on a simmering afternoon.

My personal favourite haunt is Cafe Nest in the 4th district. They open their windows, play obtuse music selections and let you while away the hours as you write, read and unwind after a day at work.

21 Treat yo’self to swim in a Palace. Did you know Schönbrunn Palace has a swimming pool hidden in its gardens?!! It is GORGEOUS and you are swimming casually in a goddamn palace. Lovely deep pools, volleyball courts, a restaurant and walking distance to my fave brunch spot Meierei, why wouldn’t you do this if given a chance? Check my full story of a summers day in Schonbrunn here.

Ice cream held aloft outside Schonbrunn Palace gates

22 Wakeboarding time. Austrians love some adventure sports activities and there is no shortage of options in Vienna to try some ridiculous adrenaline inducing waterspouts.

The standalone wakeboard course at Wakeboardlift Wien is a fun way to try your hand at Wakeboarding by the Donauinsel. Truth be told, I spent most of my time falling over in my attempts but that’s half the fun!

23 Water Rafting. If Wakeboarding sounds too terrifying, there’s a nearby Water rafting arena available to try in a safe group environment a man-made white water rafting course. The guides are friendly, and the course super fun to try your hand at rafting – plus you get to cool off and gain some skills!

24 Park Sunbathing. There are no shortage of parks in Vienna and nearly all will encourage you to kickback, relax and soak up some sunshine under the arbour of a friendly chestnut or oak tree.

Take your pick from Augarten, Volksgarten, Sigmund Freud Park, Stadtpark with its mini ponds or the always gorgeous Sagatayapark (though sunbathing there might get some rude comments from the local residents!)

Flowers in bloom in Vienna

25 Frolic in the Rose gardens of Schonbrunn & Volksgarten. Now is prime time for the blooming of the famous rose gardens in Schonbrunn palace and Volksgarten. These carefully tended and overly-Instagrammed spots are a delightful to stroll through in the magic hours of the morning when they are slightly less crowded.

26 Hideaway from the sun in the Haus der Musik. If you’re as pasty as I am sometimes staying outside for too long just isn’t an option and you want somewhere blessedly cool and indoors to while away the hours – Haus der Musik will always be my top recommended museum for exactly this! Immersive, interactive and interesting at any age, use it as your escape hatch from the heat.

27 Brunch on the outdoor terraces. Summertime brunch is a delight of options, with places like Cafe Ansari, Salonplafond, Landkind, Cafe Eduard, Cafe Hildebrandt and my summer haven Jausenstation Meierei all having spectacular outdoor brunch seating options to soak up the weather.

 
 
 
 
 
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@land.kind.wien on weekends is always full, but somehow manages to find a place for you. This table squeezed my sister, mister and I onto one squeezy corner. We played tetris with the coffee mugs, teapots, honey, cheese and spreads – knocking knees, dropping spoons, catching up on life in the rapid fire way you only do when living abroad. It was cosy and loud and delicious and ours to enjoy – to celebrate a morning, a birthday and moments together 💕 . . . #viennabrunch #wien #vienna #brunchlovers #igersvienna #visitvienna #viennanow #living_europe #1000thingsvienna #wienliebe #viennacity #welovevienna #viennawurstlestand #topviennaphoto #vienna_online #lovevienna #viennablogger #viennaonly #austrianblogger #wonderlustvienna #communityfirst #igerswien #igersaustria #discovervienna #viennagram #slowtravel #slowtravelvienna #slowlivingvienna

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28 Hop on the Vienna Heuriger Express. There is no better time to hop aboard the adorable Vienna Heuriger Express and try the many Heuriger’s that skirt the city in the vineyards. Mayer am Nussberg is my forever favourite, but there are many more to tipple away your summer weekends at.

29 Attempt a Ropes Course climb. Keep yourself busy at one of the many outdoor ropes courses in Vienna. There’s one beside the Donauinsel and another within the massive Ganselheufelbad pool area.

Outdoor ropes course with people climbing

30 Go back in time with a swim day at Neuwaldegger Bad. This is a hidden gem of the city that very few travellers manage to find – a 1950’s style private swimming pool nestled on the hillside of the 17th district.

Get there relatively early to nab a shady spot beneath the trees and delight in the deep pool, extensive sun lounging areas, including FKK naked sunbaking areas, and a rustic setting. The

31 Sit at Yppenplatz and watch the world go by. Yppenplatz and Brunnenmarkt are wonderful for people watching, getting some fresh local produce and spending a lazy morning in one of the cafes.

If you manage to nab a spot beneath an umbrella at Cafe Frida or Cafe am Yppenplatz you’ll be in set for the day.

Brunch at cafe am Yppenplatz

32 Get amongst the FREE events. Vienna has weekly pop up markets, a summer Jazz festival, exhibition events and so much more happening every week. Check out full guides from our mates at Vienna Wurstelstand for the weekly updates on what’s happening fo’ free in town.

33 Find the best street art at the Calle Libre festival. If you’ve seen some cool street art in Vienna, its likely come from this collective of artists. From August 3rd – 10th, the Calle Libre Festival for Urban Aesthetics is happening to bring more people up close with Street Art and urban design aesthetics in Vienna and let you in on the secrets of the street art scene.

 

34 Take a boat tour on the Donau canal. With a light breeze, fancy setting and views all along the waterside from the lively Donaukanal, down to the sedate chill out areas that give way to the Heuriger’s of the 19th, a boat tour gives you a different summery perspective on the city. This isn’t a river cruise in PAris though, don’t expect major sights, more just a chilled vibe on the water on a sunny day and a perspective on the local side of the city.

Of all the many options to river cruise in Vienna I’d recommend this trip. Only an hour or so and includes lunch so worth the money – but see for yourself which option you’d prefer! You can click here to check prices and book your spot. 

bridge and view on the Danube

35 Hike away your troubles. For active things to do in Vienna this summer, hiking is the cheapest, most easily accessible option. The Lobau nature reserve, Wiener Wald, Kahlenberg and so many other public hiking paths that you can view here give plenty of options.

Just let me be your protective Aussie mate and say – wear sunscreen. Hike in the morning, not in the peak sunshine of the day between 11am-3pm. And for goodness sake pack plenty of water and snacks!

36 Try the ice cream at Schelato. Organically made (of course, we’re in the 7th district) and with creative flavour combinations with Rhubarb, rosemary walnut, pistachio, basil and Maracuja coconut, you won’t be getting bored on your taste test adventure here.

Schelato has two outlets in the city and both are worth a visit to try original flavours.

37 Take inspo from the true Viennese. Stefan and I have developed the habit of going to wonderful hidden places in Vienna where we CRUSH the average age range by about 30 years.

No joke, we’re normally the only non-retirees in the joint at 10er Marie and Gösser’s heuriger but, this has become our secret weapon. The oldies know the goldies!

Plenty of city heurigen & classical restaurants are perfect in summertime for escaping the heat from the streets because they have secret outdoor courtyards out the back. My favourite? Zum Alten Fassl in the 4th district, with perfect fairylights in their backyard.

38 Spend the day in Prater Park. I’m not just talking about the amusement park area, which is great if that’s your jam, but there is so much more to discover in this expansive green corner of Vienna.

In the summer you can picnic in the meadows, or amble along the Hauptallee under the shade of the chestnut trees. Personally we love taking our bikes across town to wind our way through the many pathways of Prater until we stumble across somewhere lovely to stop and eat, like the historic Lusthaus which is so picture perfect it hurts.

Lusthaus in Prater Park Vienna

39 Experience the Beer Gardens of Vienna. There are many beer gardens to choose from in Wien from the tourist friendly to hidden gems.

If you haven’t been to the historic Schweizerhaus beer garden inside Prater Park, you haven’t seen the Viennese at their most jolly – its huge and the best bet for a unique beer garden experience.

Our local favourite is hidden in a park of the 15th district and is perfect for large groups with kids or tipsy adults – Schutzhaus Zukunft aus der Schmelz. We spent many weekends last summer enjoying the World Cup viewing here and can only reccommend their potato salad alongside your refreshing beer, radler or soda zitrone.

40 Beach feels at Copa Beach. Formerly known as ‘Copa Cagrana’ the so-called ‘partymile’ of Copa Beach has had a hipster rejuvination over the last few years.

What used to be a few trashy bars and clubs has now reformed into a trendy beach hangout zone, with sandy beach bars, a huge public viewing screen for live events, pop up food stalls where you can get acai bowls, mexican food, poke bowls and lush cocktails. You could easily spend a day here trying some Stand Up paddling, lounging on the beach chairs, trampolining and sunbaking. Its the closest you get to a summer holiday in Vienna!

41 Cycle through the 22nd to find a swim spot. I’ll admit, living on the westside of Vienna, I don’t often venture ‘over the river’ to the 2nd and 22nd districts, but in summer I can easily get lost in the back streets of this district hunting out the perfect swim spot and following my nose and the crowds of people with swimwear on.

All along the Danube there are little pockets of space to hand out by the water, you just need to find your own.

Sunset along the danube from a bridge

42 Come chill with us at Schwendermarkt. You guys know my soft spot for the 15th district, and in particular Schwendermarkt, our favourite little Grätzl area.

With Landkind for brunch & wine, GOTA for coffee, Ein Affee for a cheeky drink into the evening and all the treasure trove stores of Reindorfgasse just a short stroll away, it’s very hard to pull myself away from our ‘home base’ in the summer.

Especially as they keep hosting killer events for the community here! With BBQ grill parties, local markets and festivals like ‘Summertime in Rudolfscrime’ on June 28th and rounding out the summer with Reindorfgassefest September 6th-7th there’s a lot to enjoy at Schwendermarkt this summer, and you’ll definitely catch us there.

43 Try the vegan ice cream at Veganista. Honestly, and this may be embarassing to admit but – I truly couldn’t tell much difference between fruity sorbets of Veganista with regular gelato. It’s that damn good.

They have so many flavours and some truly indulgent Ice cream sandwiches that the fact its vegan is a bonus – you really just come here for the taste and variety.

44 Attend a 250-year old street party, Neustifter Kirtag. The outer suburb of Neustifter am Walde hosts an annual ‘Kirtag’ party this August 16th to 19th.

Basically, everyone dresses up in their Dirndls and Lederhosen and enjoys wine from the heurigers of the Village, which is famed for its local wine taverns. The tradition started way back in the 18th century when the villagers asked Maria Theresia to waive their taxes after a difficult harvest. She not only granted their requested, but asked they they host their celebration festival every year as part of the deal – and thankfully, the locals kept their word. Neustifter Kirtag is always a riot of live traditional music, wine, beer and enough food to keep you steady on your feet. Its the best way to experience an authentic village summer festival without leaving the big city.

45 Make the most of the ‘Schanigärten’ terraces on street sides. The #1 sign of summer arriving in Vienna is when the little footpath terraces start popping up like funky mushrooms and takeover all the parking spots in your district.

Basically, a restaurant can rent out the area out the front of their place to build a makeshift terrace and extend the restaurant out onto the street. They are the best places to kick back and relax over sundowner drinks or dinner and can be found all over the city.

Blogger outside Shanigarten terrace in the sunshine

46 Dance away at Popfest. The annual free festival at Karlsplatz in July is a great excuse to check out some local and eclectic live music, then boogie down with an iconic church as your backdrop.

Even if you’re a grandma like me who doesn’t party too often, Popfest is fun because you can meetup with friends, wander between stages and take it easy if you want to. Hosted this year on July 25th to 28th, you literally just have to rock up to Karlsplatz across the weekend to enjoy ilve bands, art pieces, and of course, plenty of food trucks.

47 Throwback to the 1950’s with added DJ at Volksgarten Pavillion. This treasure of a spot, hidden behind some rose bushes in the Volkgarten, is a retro delight in the daytime and stylish hangout by night.

The decor is all pastel colour-pops and simple 1950’s style, ideal for relaxing with an iced coffee after exploring the city. Once the sun starts to set, the resident DJs spin tunes to themed evenings, from Hip Hop to Techno to Soul, every night of the week. The outdoor patio has a foosball table and a summer BBQ from 6:30pm onwards, so you can easily slip from day to night in this super chilled out timewarp.

 
 
 
 
 
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There is nothing better than Vienna in bloom 💕 For the first time in 6 years, we’re planning to stay in Vienna for the summer, and I am SO excited. The city this time of year is buzzing with events, people, terraces for sipping spritzers and all the ice cream stands 😋 We have a lot of big plans for the month ahead that I’ve shared on the blog today – but mostly I’m excited to make the most of this glorious city we are lucky enough to call home. TELL ME: What’s your summer plans? . . . . . . #wien #vienna #austria #igersvienna #visitvienna #viennanow #living_europe #wienliebe #viennacity #welovevienna #lovevienna #viennablogger #viennaonly #austrianblogger #wonderlustvienna #communityfirst #igerswien #igersaustria #discovervienna #viennagram #inbetweenpresets

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48 Take a bike tour to the Wachau Valley Wineries. While the weather is fine, why not try to offset all the gelato and wine tasting with a healthy (ish) bike tour in the nearby Wachau Wine valley?

This day trip includes your bike and helmet hire, transport to the Wachau region just outside Vienna, tastings at each Heuriger and a guide for the whole day. The Wachau is unbelievably beautiful and the wine, needless to say, fresh and delicious. An ideal day trip from Vienna!

I’d recommend booking this cycle day tour through Get Your Guide, just because I know and trust that website having used it myself heaps,  and have taken a similar trip with them before. You can check out pricing by clicking here.

Alternatively, if cycling isn’t your thing and you just wanna skip straight to wine and still see the Wachau Wine region, there’s this day trip that looks like it definitely hits all the highlights with none of the sweaty effort! You can nab your spot by clicking here. 

49 Chill out at Hermann Strandbar as the sun sets. This is a classic Vienna summer hangout, though sometimes super busy, its popular for a reason, 

Sprawling, sandy, with food, drinks and entertainment most nights, Hermann’s is a reliable summer bar for families, couples and friends to enjoy. 

Aerial image of Donauinsel in summer

50 Spend the whole day at Ganselheufelbad. This place is ri-donk-ulous and I can’t believe it took Stefan and I years to uncover it.

Nestled on the Ganselheufel island, this massive public swimming pool has so many activities and huge grassy areas to lounge in you could move in for the summer and be entirely satisfied.

  • There are multiple restaurants, a bakery, an Eis Greissler outlet.
  • There is a bonafide wave pool.
  • There is a huge kiddies pool area.
  • There is a ropes course.
  • There’s a rental for Stand Up Paddleboards.
  • There are volleyball courts.
  • There is a basketball court.
  • There are paths for walking strollers or taking in the greenery on the walkways.
  • There are giant chess and backgammon boards to play with in the shade.
  • There is just so much room for activities guys!

All this, and it’s right beside the water on the shady side of the Ganselheufelinsel.

You can lie upon the grass and watch the world go by on the water, or laugh at the plebs on the other side of the island.

My favourite thing here has to be the traditional Viennese bathing cabins that are rented by locals. This is where you will see pure Viennese living at its best, where they set up camp for the day and sunbake beside their cabins for hours at a time.

Ganselheufelbad is only €6 entry for the day and honestly the only place you need to go for things to do in Vienna this summer.

There you have it, 50 incredible and alternative things to do in Vienna this summer!

So, what’d I miss? Let me know in the comments if there is any other must-do activities you’d add to this list. Or, if you’ve never heard of the excellent summer things to do in Vienna, comment which one you’re going to try first!

 

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