Day Trip Destinations on the Viennese Outskirts
Time for a change of scenery and a day of exploring in our own city! Here are some day-trip destinations on the city’s outskirts and idyllic oases that offer tons of fun, relaxation and variety!
First on our list are the Steinhofgründe, the grounds of the iconic Steinhof sanitarium. This large, idyllic areal is perfect for a long hike: Full of architectural marvels, the masterful Otto Wagner himself was responsible for the design of the magnificent buildings, with the historic church and hospital especially notable for their elegance. The pristine recreational area offers a variety of leisure activities and is the ideal place for long strolls with the whole family, an extensive run, or chestnut hunting in the fall. The vast meadows are perfect for flying a kite as well. The scenery is especially romantic in wintertime, when the low sun slowly sets behind the hills.
Providing conclusive evidence of Vienna’s biodiversity, the Lobau is an untouched nature preserve right on the edge of town. Beautiful, quaint and serene, it will place you and anyone looking to relax after a stressful week under its spell, so you should plan your trip right now! If you’re the athletic type, you should check out the Lobau’s many cycling paths, which are among the most beautiful in the city. One of our favorite tours starts and ends at the Roten Hiasl inn, a perfect place to refuel after your workout. Spanning a bit over 20 kilometers, the round trip goes through part of the Donau-Auen national park, passing picturesque sandbanks and even a museum; resembling a figure eight, you’ll pass the Napoleonstein twice, a memorial to the French emperor’s first defeat here in 1809. As you head east, you’ll pass the Eßlinger Furt, following the markings until you reach the Uferhaus Furt. From there, the path leads you back to the Napoleonstein and the starting point. The Lobau museum is also certainly worth a visit.
Just outside the city limits, there are many idyllic parks that are beautiful all year round. Perhaps one of the most gorgeous destinations and an absolute highlight is the Schlosspark Laxenburg in the municipality of the same name. Just 25 kilometers away from Saint Stephen’s Cathedral, Laxenburg boasts the Altes Schloss castle, the Blauer Hof palace and the Franzensburg castle. If the weather permits, you can rent a boat or take a ferry to the gothic revival Franzensburg until early November. With a hop-on-hop-off train and 10 kilometers of paths, we at 1000things are completely smitten by this 19th century landscape garden that is among the most significant in all of Europe, and highly recommend a visit. There are hourly busses from Hauptbahnhof, Vienna’s main station, that can take you to Laxenburg in only half an hour.
It may sound a little morbid, but the Vienna Central Cemetery has a vast amount of walkways perfectly suited for a nice stroll, so we simply had to include it in our list. Spanning across almost 2.5 km², the cemetery church, Saint Bartholomew’s, with its beautiful blue dome is not the only impressive feature on these grounds: there are more than 2 million graves, including notables like Schubert, Strauss, Falco and Beethoven. Make sure to pay your respects at Udo Jürgens’ final resting place, where you will find a giant white marble piano and a literal sea of candles and lights. And who knows, maybe you’ll be lucky enough to spot a squirrel or a deer poking their heads through the dense foliage. On top of all that, there’s a very special Viennese secret waiting to be discovered.
This is a place where supposedly only very few of you have been before, and we were more than surprised as we made our way to the backmost corner of Simmering – almost bordering on Schwechat. Full disclosure: getting there by public transportation is a little bit of a hassle, which is why we decided to take our bikes along the Danube, past the Freudenauer harbor, which made for an easy trip. It’s eerily quiet here, almost feeling like a movie set. The harbor itself with its towering granaries is reminiscent of Hamburg and dates back to national socialist times. If you hike a bit further, you’ll reach the “Cemetery of the Nameless,” which you may know from the popular Hollywood movie “Before Sunrise.” Hidden behind trees and bushes, it can get quite spooky when the fog covers the areal like a veil. This is definitively one of the coolest destinations on Vienna’s outskirts.
Another unmissable highlight on our list is the castle in Perchtoldsdorf, Lower Austria. The numerous vineyards make it especially worthwhile in the fall, inviting you to explore and enjoy the fresh air, but sunny days in winter or the springtime, when everything is in full bloom, also have plenty to offer. You can reach the historical town in just 20 minutes from Hauptbahnhof via the S-Bahn, where numerous sights date back to the Middle Ages. You should definitely plan a trip to the castle, but the local nature preserve Naturpark Föhrenberge which includes the Perchtoldsdorfer moors are breathtakingly beautiful as well.
An undeniably touristy highlight, but impressive nonetheless, every Vienna local should take a fall trip to Kahlenberg at least once. Just take the D tram to Nussdorf and take a wonderful stroll up Kahlenbergstraße and you’re there. A small detail on the side: at Heurigen Kierlinger, we actually enjoyed a white wine spritzer for an unbelievable €1.40! Naturally, we decided to sensibly invest the remainder of our budget on the bubbly! When we arrived on the summit and caught our first glimpse of the view, we could barely stop oohing and aahing. Vienna, city of our dreams!
Are you in the mood to explore new places and corners of your favorite city? Find more culinary highlights awaiting you here, where you’ll find our favorite cafés in Vienna’s 7th district.
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