A few weeks ago I visited Vienna for the first time, and I must admit my main activities were limited to spending time with friends, eat excellent food, visit museums and stroll around, admiring this city and its architecture. I could not have asked for more. The Austrian capital is full of culture, and you feel like you are surrounded by so much beauty! The weather was beautiful and honestly, I can’t wait to go back! If you are planning 48 hours in town, these are my tips: read after the gallery!
WHAT TO DO
Belvedere Museum (Rennweg 6A)
The palace is beautiful, and its impeccable gardens make it an enchanting place. What I liked the most was a room featuring a lot of Gustav Klimt’s work: seeing The Kiss live was like a dream come true. I looked at this painting for about ten minutes full of many emotions. You just can’t miss this museum, there is even a cafe where I enjoyed a wonderful apple strudel with vanilla ice cream and whipped cream. Yum!
MuseumsQuartier (Museumsplatz 1)
This area was originally occupied by the imperial court stables. Today, it’s one of the ten biggest art complexes worldwide. It includes museums such as Leopold and MUMOK, as well as temporary exhibition spaces, like Kunsthalle Wien. I recommend visiting in the afternoon or evening, as it’s packed with young people: you can have a meal in one of the bars housed inside the complex, and have a drink in the large, open yard.
Albertina ( Albertinaplatz 1 )
The museum is right downtown and it’s perfect to visit in a couple of hours. There are always temporary exhibitions: I have visited two and the one I liked the most was the Russian avant-garde from Chagall to Malevich. Almost all the paintings had captions that explain their story. Inside the museum there is a store with a good selection of postcards, posters and books.
WHERE (AND WHAT!) TO EAT
Bäckerei Cafe Felzl (Lerchenfelder Straße corner Schottenfeldgasse)
I stumbled upon this bakery by pure chance, I was transported into a parallel universe by the beautiful smell of freshly baked bread that I could already smell from outside. To be honest, I need this bakery in my life!!! The avocado toast was excellent, and so were the sandwiches and the slices of cake we took away for a picnic at the park. The people sitting around us there were all so jealous. Go try it!
Alef Alef (Seitenstettengasse 2)
I could write a single post about how good the schnitzel I ate here was. The gefillte fish was also great: it’s a Jewish specialty I love that I would say is only for the brave: it doesn’t look so inviting. I was here for dinner, but I know that at lunchtime, on weekdays, is buffet time, and I know that the buffet is very rich. If you’re into Ashkenazi Jewish food, this kosher restaurant is the place for you.
Hotel Sacher (Philharmoniker Str. 4)
You can’t leave Vienna without having eaten (at least) a slice of Sacher cake, and what best place to go, than where it was invented? In a 19th century atmosphere, I sat down with my friends. We enjoyed some black tea surrounded by red velvet and brocades. Sacher is my favorite cake and I tried it in many spots in town but this was really the best. It’s a little pricey, maybe, but you’re also paying for the good quality of the service you get.
Dancing Shiva Superfood (Neubaugasse 58)
This is a wonderful place, and not just for raw vegan food lovers. Seen from the outside, it looks like a shop: there are lots of stuff for sale, yes, but there is also a little restaurant, and upstairs, among lush, tall green plants and scents of amber incense, you almost will feel like you’re in India. They have a wonderful selection of tea and coffee. Our personal tip is the purple rain smoothie!