What to do in Vienna with kids
Vienna is a city that offers plenty of fun for kids. Alongside countless museums and playgrounds, here families have countless options to keep the boredom at bay, such as at the Schönbrunn Zoo, the aquarium Haus des Meeres, the attractions at the Prater amusement park (where there is much more than just the world-famous Ferris wheel!) and lush grass for picnics on the Danube Island.
Here is a brief, by no means complete list of all the various attractions in Vienna that you can discover as a family. Here is an example of a 3-day itinerary.
(Maxingstraße 13b, 1130 Vienna, U4 Station Hierzing, entrance for children €8, adults €16.50. Children under 6 free)
The Schönbrunn Zoo, which opened in 1752, is located on the grounds of the castle of the same name, and the first highlight awaits visitors right at the entrance with the reptile house. Definitely take a peek inside! Countless fish, spiders and jellyfish await you and your children, perhaps giving the smaller ones a few goosebumps.
The walking tour is designed in an exciting way. For instance, you pass under a water bridge and with a little luck you can watch a large, strange looking fish glide over you.
It’s ideal for taking photos or just passing the time.
Since 2003, the Schönbrunn Zoo has also participated in the breeding programme for panda bears and has housed two of the endangered animals for some time now.
Their resemblance to big teddy bears makes the panda bears a must-see for younger children.
Numerous other endangered species also live at the zoo. Maybe you can take advantage of your trip to the zoo to talk with your kids about animal protection and nature?
Finish off the first day with a walk through the expansive castle park. Lots of benches, little ponds and hiding spots ensure plenty of variety to engage the kids all day long.
Museum of Natural History, Vienna
(Maria-Theresien-Platz, 1010 Vienna, U2 & U3 Station Volkstheater, Entrance for adults: €2, children under 19 free)
For just €2 (and only adults must pay entrance), in the Museum of Natural History you will be greeted by a very impressive building with a wide-ranging and interesting collection of prepared and stuffed animals.
Sharks, birds of prey, crocodiles, and some models of prehistoric animals are sure to elicit oohs and ahs from the little ones. Curious nature enthusiasts can learn lots of background information, and in the second floor, visitors can take a leisurely break in the café.
The Marie-Theresien-Platz square is certain to impress with memorable stands in the beautiful Christmas village. However, you can enjoy a wonderful view from the benches on the square year-round.
The museum also houses a planetarium with a semicircular dome on which films are screened. The film screenings cost €5 for adults. The programme is available at the information desk.
After visiting the museum, you can take a stroll along the Ring Road, stopping off to see the Volksgarten public gardens. You and your family can easily walk along the wide pavements of the Ring Road to see some of Vienna’s most impressive buildings, including the Parliament, City Hall, the Stock Exchange, Hofburg Palace and the Grand Hotel. The numerous parks of Vienna offer ample opportunities to stop and rest along the way.
The Prater amusement park
(Riesenradplatz, 1020 Vienna, U1 Praterstern, free entrance, individual entry fees for rides, for example, the Ferris wheel costs €9.50 for adults and €4 for children under 14 years old.
A combination ticket is recommended, which you can buy at the cashier’s desk at the Ferris wheel. The ticket includes entry to 13 attractions in Prater and is a considerable price savings. You can find the complete price list at: http://www.wienerriesenrad.com/de/das-riesenrad/preise/
First off, although the Prater’s opening season is actually only from March until October, its most famous attraction, the Vienna Ferris Wheel, is open all year long. A few other attractions are also open in winter.
Visitors who opt for the combination ticket pay a reasonable entry price for the Prater. Compared to an amusement park where one pays a single entry fee for access to all the rides, this can seem like a drawback at Prater, but on the other hand you can also bring your own food, so you don’t have to buy food there. And one often only rides each attraction once, anyways.
However, if you would like to eat out at Prater, make sure to try the Schweizerhaus. As one would expect at an amusement park, the prices are not the cheapest, but the food is very high quality.
Winding down on Danube Island
As a farewell outing, your family can relax together at Danube Island and perhaps pack a picnic. When the sun is shining, you have a splendid view over the city and can reflect on your days in Vienna. Now and then a cruise ship might pass by, and after your picnic you can easily reach your final destination with the underground. This is a perfect finish to what was hopefully a lovely family holiday in a beautiful city.
Vienna has much more to offer families; these tips are just a sampling of what you can discover there. You will see for yourself – no matter what is on your itinerary, Vienna is certain to offer a few extra surprises.