When it comes to mesmerizing views of Vienna and its best rooftop patios, the city has a great selection to offer.
Vienna has a unique skyline and is a blend of historic and modern buildings. It’s from these vantage points you can see the city from different angles than when you are on the ground.
So, if you are new in the city, or just here for a few days, then you must explore these places as it’s one of the most unique things to do in Vienna.
From observation towers to rooftop bars and even thrill rides, here is a list of where to get the very best views in Vienna.
- Palace of Justice (Justizpalast)
The palace is situated near the famous Ringstrasse. But the weirdest thing is as you enter the building, you’ll have to go through a security check. As you walk in, you will see a gorgeous foyer and from here you can make your way to a café at the top.
Once up there, you’ll walk past a few offices of judges and public prosecutors until you arrive at the café. It’s from here you’ll be able to enjoy a variety of refreshments as you take in the stunning views of Vienna. The palace of justice is an iconic landmark and has a great deal of history which you must explore whenever you have the time.
- Rooftop Bar of 25 Hours Hotel
The 25 Hours Hotel is also situated near the Ringstrasse and has one of the best rooftop patios. Known for its wonderful ambience, it’s a perfect place to go for some evening drinks and enjoy the views of Vienna. The terrace faces the Rathaus, Stephansdom, and other well-known architectural structures in central Vienna.
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- St. Stephen’s Cathedral
Towering over Vienna at 134 metres (440 feet), St. Stephen’s Cathedral is one of the most popular viewing points in the city.
Situated in the heart of the city centre this architectural masterpiece can be ascended in two ways: An elevator will take you to the viewing platform on the north tower, where you’ll see a large cathedral bell ‘Die Pummerin’.
The second option is more strenuous as you’ll have to climb 343 steps of the tight spiral staircase to the Türmerstube in the south tower, which is almost 137 meters (450 feet) high. The views of the historic city centre are fantastic from both viewing points.
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The Schönbrunn Palace is one of Vienna’s most popular attractions. You can enter its gardens for free. Once you reach the top of the garden, you will be able to see as far as Kahlenberg – north of the city.
If you still want to enjoy higher views, then you can pay a small entrance fee and get to the Gloriette – that houses a coffee shop. From here the views of Vienna are even better and you can relish a couple of Viennese pastries and a cup of coffee.
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- The Ritz Carlton Hotel
This luxury hotel has something more to offer – one of the best rooftop patios that has great views of Vienna. As you look towards the north, you’ll be able to see the Stephansdom and Rathaus. In the south you’ll get views of the Karlskirche and the Belvedere.
In the summer months you can relax and drink refreshing cocktails while enjoying the sunset. And if you happen to visit during winters, then you will be able to enjoy the city’s highest Christmas market. Be it any time of the year, the place offers an experience you shouldn’t miss.
- The Donauturm (Danube Tower)
Standing at 252 meters, Donau tower rises from the Donaupark and is easily the tallest structure in Austria. The viewing platforms are located at 150 meters and offer mesmerising views of the city and the Danube. To further enrich the experience, there are interactive panoramic screens that provide information on the surrounding sights.
There are also two rotating restaurants (at 161 and 165 meters) that offer fabulous views and are ideal to enjoy the view in the evening. And if you are feeling brave then this tower also offers bungee jumping.
- Haus des Meeres
Once upon a time this place used to be a World War II bunker and flak tower, today Haus des Meeres is an aquarium and home to thousands of marine and terrestrial animals. But it’s the 9th and 11th floors that have been transformed into viewing platforms providing excellent views of Vienna. What’s more on the 11th floor is the Ocean’s Sky Cafe where you can drink and dine while taking in the panoramic views.
- Cafe Bar Bloom
The Cafe Bar Bloom is located at a walking distance from Stephansplatz (Stephan Square) and is a beautiful bar that offers a variety of drinks and snacks. From here you can enjoy mesmerizing views of Vienna while sipping on refreshing drinks. The best time is when the sun sets behind one of Vienna’s most iconic landmarks – the Stephansdom, a gorgeous piece of architecture that has its own charm during the sunset.
- Rooftop of Natural History Museum
Just because it’s surrounded by famous landmarks, the Natural History Museum’s rooftop promises one of the best views in Vienna. It’s high enough to get an overview and low enough to capture beautiful details of buildings that you wouldn’t have spotted from the ground.
The museum offers ‘View from the Roof’ tours held every Wednesday and Saturday. This includes a cultural-history walk through the museum, and then a terrace tour with a fantastic view of Vienna. It’s definitely an unforgettable experience.
- Rooftop Restaurant of Sofitel
For a treat for all the senses, head to this rooftop restaurant, located on the18th floor. From here you’ll enjoy a grand view over the whole city centre including the St. Stephen’s Cathedral.
The restaurant serves gourmet cuisine and has a fantastic bar and stunning designed ceiling that hovers like a canopy over the guests. For the best views go there in the evening to enjoy Vienna by night.
- Sky Bar Roof Terrace
The Skybar is nestled at the top of Steffl – a departmental store along Kärntner Straße. It’s more of a restaurant and cafe where you can take in the beautiful views of Vienna and also try many international and local dishes and drinks. Since the place is surrounded by landmarks, you can walk around the terrace, and see the city from different viewpoints, all from a single location.
- Kahlenberg and Leopoldsberg
After exploring the viewpoints within the city, it’s now time to check out some of the best viewpoints outside the city. These beautiful viewing points within the green spaces, can be explored on walks and hikes.
Some of the best places to view the whole city are Vienna’s local mountains Kahlenberg, Leopoldsberg and Bisamberg, the Vienna Woods with their observation points and the vineyards on the outskirts of the city.
Jubiläumswarte is an observation tower located on the outskirts of Vienna. It stands 31 meters (102 feet) above the ground, and provides excellent views of lush green hills, a rural scene, and a touch of the city. On days when the weather is good, it’s possible to see all the way to the Leitha Mountains and Schneeberg.
- The Prater Riesenrad (Ferris Wheel)
Those who have been to the Prater amusement park or nearby, must have seen this Viennese Giant Ferris Wheel. It’s a 19th-century landmark that stands at a height of 65 meters (213 feet). And once you board the iconic red gondolas, the entire trip takes about 12-15 minutes. While there are higher places in Vienna, the experience of the Ferris wheel is different and a great activity for families and couples visiting Vienna.
This is certainly for thrill-seekers to experience. The Praterturm stands at a height of 117 meters (384 feet) in Wurstelprater amusement park. The ride is definitely not for the faint-hearted, and to add to the fear factor, it rotates at speeds up to 60 km/hour. However, if you’re brave enough to take up the challenge, you will be rewarded with the panoramic views from the top.
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So, get started on these best rooftop patios and views of Vienna and we will keep soon adding more locations to this list. Get your camera ready to capture some great pictures and enjoy one of the most unique things to do in Vienna.