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Vienna is a wonderful place to visit year round. However, it tends to get crowded in the summer and winter months. Visiting in the fall has some great advantages, including it being a prime time to experience the city’s wine culture and a season for great cultural events. Here’s 10 reasons why you should visit the Austrian capital in Autumn.
When the summer dies down and the trees start to shed their leaves, copper, gold, and bronze colours erupt around the city. Vienna is lucky enough to contain numerous, sizeable parks, and each turns into a gorgeous, natural, fiery spectacle in the fall – especially when paired against a bright blue sky. Stadtpark, Augarten, Schönbrunn and the Botanical Gardens of the Belevedere Palace are all wonderful places for a stroll. However, if wanting to experience true autumn magic, then head to the western edge of the city to find Vienna woods, where nature lovers can enjoy over 2,000 plant species and 150 bird species.
Vienna has an incredible selection of museums. Whether you are a modern art buff or curious about natural history, there’s something for everyone here. However, it can be difficult to cram museum visits into your trip, especially if wanting to minimise stress. The long night of museums, taking place on the 6th of October, is a chance to explore Vienna’s institutions after-hours, with a huge range of museums and galleries keeping their doors open until 1am. Tickets cost around €15 and more information, including which venues are involved, can be found here.
Fall is by far the best time to visit Vienna if you are a wine lover, as this is when the local Heurige, or wine inns, open their doors and the produce is at its finest. The Vienna wine hike takes place annually in the autumn and gives guests the chance to explore the city’s glorious vineyards in areas including Kahlenberg, Nussberg, Bisamberg, and Mauer, where the combination of the nearby River Danube and the proximity of the Vienna Woods provide unique and optimal climatic conditions for growing grapes. Wine tasting and offerings of traditional Austrian cuisine are included in the hike, and the views of the city in its golden fall splendour are a highlight. Details on how to partake in the hikes can be found here.
Those who enjoy celebrating Halloween will love this event, especially if visiting with children. Although Vienna doesn’t give nearly as much attention to this event as it does Christmas or Easter, the Prater amusement park is the place to be if you want to get ghoulish. Zombies, ghosts, and various other sinister characters descend on Vienna’s famous funfair – and dressing up is very much encouraged. As well as the ghost train and a variety of spooky sites, you can also experience all the joys of the park, including the iconic Ferris wheel, the Wiener Riesenrad, and the Praterturm.
Vienna is a cultural hotspot, dubbed as the “capital of classical music”, and autumn is a great time to visit because it’s when Art Week takes place. Happening in mid-November each year, this exclusive event involves a huge range of exhibitions, panel discussions, artist talks, tours, and installations – perfect for art lovers. Visit their website for more information on this year’s event.
Early autumn is the last chance to experience Vienna in the sun. In June and July, temperatures in the city can creep up to a scorching 40 degrees, making exploring the city an extremely arduous task. As the heat dies down in September and October (temperatures average 21° at this time), it is a great chance to see the sights without fear of extreme heat stopping you from enjoying yourself.
26th October is Austria’s National Day, which relates to political movements following the end of WWII. It’s a time when various parades and events take place across the city. See here for more information.
From pumpkin soup topped with the gloriously nutty oil from Styria, to Maroni and Potato stands on the streets generating tempting aromas, autumn is a fantastic time for foodies to visit Austria’s capital. See our pick of the best restaurants in Vienna to sample local cuisine, which will have some seasonal dishes using locally sourced food.
Film buffs will have a great time if visiting Vienna in the fall. The long-running Viennale international film festival takes place annually in October, premiering an incredible range of films and taking place across Vienna’s many vintage cinemas, including Gartenbaukino, the planetarium Urania Sternwarte, Metro-Kino, Filmmuseum and Stadtkino. Documentaries, short films and experimental cinema are among the genres showcased here, and the festival includes a number of events such as talks with directors and special galas.
Vienna’s scenic countryside and hilly landscapes make for some beautiful wanderings, and there are numerous hiking routes around the city. Early autumn is a fantastic time to embark on a ramble in the city’s surroundings. Head to Nussberg for the most beautiful, panoramic views of vineyards and the skyline.