With direct flights, rich cultural history, diverse architecture and remarkable scenery, Austria is the perfect destination for city breaks.
When it comes to culture, there are few cities that can compete with Vienna. The Austrian capital boasts remarkable architectural sights in gothic, baroque and modernist styles, more than 100 museums, more than 140 art galleries and, of course, classic music and café culture at every turn. The city, in fact, has an entire area dedicated to art: the MuseumsQuartier, comprising 60 cultural institutions spread out over 90,000 m2. Here you will find the mumok, the Museum of Modern Art, containing works by luminaries Andy Warhol, Pablo Picasso and Max Ernst; and the Leopold Museum, home to a remarkable Egon Schiele collection.
Elsewhere you will find the Mozarthaus, Mozart’s former Vienna residence; Haus der Musik, an interactive museum of sound where you can give being a conductor a shot; and the Kunst Haus Wien, which includes the idiosyncratic Museum Hundertwasser, each managed by Wien Holding. The company also operates cruises on the Danube with DDSG Blue Danube; an evening sailing with live music and traditional Austrian fare is one of the best ways to enjoy the sights of city.
Oenophiles will love Schlumberger, Austria’s oldest sparkling winery, open since 1842. One way to take advantage of all these incredible sights and more is to purchase a Vienna Pass, which includes free admission to more than 60 of Vienna’s most popular attractions, unlimited rides on the Vienna Sightseeing hop-on/hop-off buses, and free guidebook to all attractions and bus routes, also available as download and app. With direct flights from nine UK airports, it’s the perfect city break destination.
Salzburg has a lot going for it: the birthplace of Mozart, the setting of The Sound of Music, world-famous music festivals, it’s also backdropped by the Austrian Alps. The city is celebrated for its baroque architecture, small-town charm, culture and beer. Salzburg has long been a city of breweries – the oldest is the Stiegl Brewery, established in 1492, which offers tours as well as a cosy pub to sample the product. Each year, more than 250,000 people attend the Salzburg Festival to take in opera, theatre and classical music performances. There are 12 direct routes between the UK and Salzburg.
Home to a stunning baroque and gothic Old Town, Innsbruck also offer a unique proposition because of its geography: a 20-minute cable car trip will take you from the city centre to 2,000m at the Nordkette mountain range. There are seven direct routes between the UK and Innsbruck.
The capital city of Styria, Graz is a stunning medieval town, known for its famous Uhrturm, a centuries-old clock tower on the top of the Schlossberg hill). The city is also known for its week-long Food Festival in August, and excellent restaurants. No airlines fly direct from the UK, but it’s easy to connect via Frankfurt, Munich or Vienna.