Seeing Vienna on Foot and by Tram
Vienna, like Budapest, is a grand city of wide boulevards lined with majestic buildings, decorated with splendid statuary, and plenty of public spaces that allow you to step back and admire them. So what’s the best way to explore the city? Seeing Vienna on foot and by tram.
Seeing Vienna BY FOOT
The old centre was just a ten-minute stroll from the apartment where we stayed and, as is our nature, we did plenty on aimless walks around the city. Like Budapest, Vienna boasts elegant avenues, such as the Ring Road around the old cente (Opern Ring, Kartner Ring, Schubertring Park etc), but within the Ring it also has an old historic centre with narrow pedestrianised streets that are perfect for meandering. It’s a city made for ambling.
While you can easily do your own self-guided strolls using little more than a free map, which you can pick up from the excellent tourist information centre (Albertinaplatz 1), the tourist office also has a terrific brochure called Walks in Vienna which lists around 50 themed guided walks you can do.
Seeing Vienna BY TRAM
Vienna, like many cities around the world, has double-decker hop-on-hop-off sightseeing buses, which can sometimes prove very handy for getting your bearings and seeing the whole city centre affordably, like this one we did in Cape Town. In Vienna, they’re completely unnecessary though, because you can do a loop of the centre, taking in most of the city’s most magnificent buildings and most important monuments, on the Yellow Tram.
The Yellow Tram is a tourist tram, not a public tram – with a friendly conductor who’ll give you time to settle in before coming to your seat to collect you money and give you headphones so you can listen to the commentary that comes in a handful of languages. This means it is more expensive than the normal trams, at 6 euros for one trip around the ring or 9 euros for a 24-hour ticket.
We did one trip around the Ring on the Yellow Tram and that was fine because we were staying a while and we were walking everywhere every day. If you’re on a short trip, however, you would be better planning your day out and getting a 24-hour ticket and treating it like one of those hop-on-hop-off buses I just told you not to catch!