Vienna's historic heart is circled by the Ringstrasse – a boulevard dotted with opulent landmarks like the Vienna State Opera house. Once you cross over, you'll find more to ogle – from the imperial Hofburg Palace to the sprawling square of the Heldenplatz. Nearby is St Stephen's Cathedral, an epic monument to the Gothic and Romanesque, and you'll also want to explore the shops and cafes of the vast promenade, the Graben.
Contrasting with the luxurious landmarks of the Ringstrasse and Innerstadt, the small district of Josefstadt can seem more low key. But that's part of its charm, because this is the Vienna of the locals – full of charming cafes and bars where students and older residents mingle. It’s a pleasure to simply amble among the handsome townhouses, though there's also the bona fide tourist attraction of Piaristenkirsche Church, a Baroque marvel.
One reason so many flock to the Landstrasse district is the Belvedere, whose handsome Baroque walls contain world-famous masterpieces by Klimt and Schiele. It's close by another vast palace, the Palais Schwarzenberg. One of Landstrasse's other sights is as quirky as the Belvedere and Schwarzenberg are grand – the multicoloured, patchwork, children's drawing-like façade of the Hundertwasserhaus apartment complex, which looks almost like an hallucination made real.
Snug within the waterways of the Danube, Leopoldstadt is an island within Vienna. It's where you can stroll among the chestnut trees of Wiener Prater park, where you'll also find the Wiener Riesenrad, an iconic Ferris wheel that's been turning since 1897, and famously featured in classic film noir, The Third Man. In the heart of the old Jewish Quarter, the Karmelitermarkt has food stalls to make everyone's mouth water.
Landmarks abound in the Wieden district of Austria's capital – the standout being St Charles's Church (or Karlskirche), which, with its ornate dome and sculptures of saints, is one of the world's most stunning religious buildings. If the sightseeing makes you peckish, head for the Naschmarkt, which dates back to the 16th Century and attracts thousands every day with stalls selling everything from Middle Eastern spices to traditional Austrian crepes.
Reviewed by a Hotels.com guest on Dec 29, 2012
My wife and I stayed at Hotel Capri for four nights whilst we visited Vienna and the Christmas markets. Very comfortable hotel - clean, good condition, great breakfast, friendly and helpful staff. Great value. We would stay here again.
"Pretentious but good"
Reviewed by Jamie W of "Johannesburg" on
Jan 10, 2012
The Meridien possibly tries a little too hard to be be cool and modern, but this would doubtless appeal to many of its clientele who appear to be fashion victims or dubious new money from Russia. However, for all that, it is actually a comfortable and welcoming environment in which to stay. Very clean and efficiently run and in an excellent location. The reception staff were charming if not always that quick to react. I would have no hesitation in recommending this hotel as a good base from which to explore the centre of Vienna
"Atlantis Hotel Vienna"
Reviewed by Judith H of "Durban SA" on
Jul 22, 2011
Although a lovely hotel, luxurious room and excellent service I would rather have found something cheaper as it was more than I needed for a brief one night stay in Vienna. I was also confused as to which bus/train to take to return to the hotel and ended up walking miles. The receptionist was very helpful but I was still confused by too much information!
"Roomz Hotel - great design"
Reviewed by a Hotels.com guest on Jun 19, 2011
Beautiful design of hotel, very friendly and helpful staff, location was convenient - between airport and city centre and few minutes walk from train station and free wifi in public areas. Surrounding area, not very much, but lovely brand hotel.
Reviewed by LOUIS of "SOUTH AFRICA" on
Jun 16, 2011
OPERA SUITES IS NO HOTEL AND WHERE THE 4 STARS CAME FROM IS A MISTERY. WE STAYED IN ROOM 222 THAT ENTERED DIRECTLY FROM RECEPTION, EVERY GUEST VISITING RECEPTION, PHONE CALL, ETC WERE CLEARLY HEARED. THE BATHROOM AND SHOWER IS SO SMALL YOU HAVE TO GO OUT TO CHANGE YOUR MIND. THE LOCATION IS PERFECT. THE STAFF WERE VERY FRIENDLY. APART FROM ABOVE WE ENJOYED OUR STAY.