The so-called Gürtel seems to act like an invisible border between Vienna’s inner and outer districts, with many rarely venturing beyond it, unaware of the good reasons lying out there to do so. But there is so much to explore and do outside the inner 9 districts, especially beyond the Gürtel. These culture hotspots will convince you to go exploring.
Here are 15 culture-filled locations you should definitely spend some time with beyond Vienna’s Gürtel:
Technisches Museum – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Mariahilfer Straße 212, 1140
Entry: 13€ (11€ students)
In this museum, technology and science are an experience. While the name may sound boring, we’d go as far to say that it’s one of the most stimulating museums in Vienna. The Technical Museum invites its visitors to discover, experience, and reflect on different fields of technology, engineering and its history in a very interactive and immersive way. There’s even a floor dedicated to music and media evolution which is fascinating.
Photo via facebook.com/technischesmuseumwien
District Museums – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: in every district that is beyond the Gürtel
Were you aware that every Viennese district has its own museum in Vienna? Well, if you weren’t, don’t worry, that’s what we’re here for. Opening times vary in every district, so be sure to check here for more info if you’re interested in learning more about the different districts of this grand old city. You may think that sounds like a snore, but trust us, some fascinating local history can be found in them.
Photo © www.bezirksmuseum.at
brotfabrik Wien – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Absberggasse 27, 1100
Entry: most art spaces here offer free entry
One of our favourite upcycled pieces of architecture lies in the 10th district – the Ankerbrot Fabrik. Its former life was as a bread factory for the Anker bakery chain, however, this building’s soul within its red brick walls has been reborn into a multipurpose space, as a cultural hub, an event venue, and a place where social change, and community coherence is fought for. Delicious international dishes can be munched on at the social project restaurant from Caritas, Magda’s Kantine, or you can cook your own with a bunch of strangers by participating in the Community cooking sessions every week, which carries the cool concept to bring people together through the universal love for food. Meanwhile, there’s creativity being thrown about all over the place as it hosts several creative companies, and also two very impressive contemporary art and photography galleries, like the Galerie Hiliger and Ostlicht Galerie. If you consider yourself a culture vulture and haven’t ventured out to the Brotfabrik, you should really be questioning your dedication to the arts.
Gedenkstätte am Steinhof – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Baumgartner Höhe 1, 1140
This place is a shocking and real eye-opener. Gedenkstätte am Steinhof is a museum / memorial to the Nazi’s horrible and dark history with medicine and the experiments they performed on innocent humans. It shows the cruel and heinous things that some truly nasty people did to “weed out” those people they deemed “inferior”. The exhibition is located in Pavilion V of the Otto-Wagner Hospital, and it offers a comprehensive overview of the Nazi’s medical crimes committed in Vienna.
Photo © www.wien.info
Beethoven Museum – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Probusgasse 6, 1190
TUE–SUN: 10am–1pm & 2pm–6pm
Entry: 7€ (5€ students)
Despite the fact that he’s actually German, Beethoven’s work and life are inseparably bound to Vienna. Ludwig van Beethoven, the composer and pianist that was a crucial figure of the Classical and Romantic eras, spent a lot of time in Vienna. And that’s why a property in the 19th district has been turned into a museum dedicated to him. It’s not just any random location, but it used to be where the musician sought to cure, or alleviate, his hearing disorder, and where he composed some of his most important works.
Photo via Birgit & Peter Kainz
Klimt Villa – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Feldmühlgasse 11, 1130
Entry: 10€ (5€ students)
Have you ever wondered how those great artists of the past used to live? Well, you should check out the Klimt Villa, where you can get a glimpse of the famous Viennese artist’s studio that he used from 1911 until his death. At this little cottage in the 13th district, you’ll see where Klimt “toiled away” on his opus, and it’s the only one of his former ateliers in Vienna that is open as a permanent exhibition.
Photo via facebook.com/klimtvilla
Original Wiener Schneekugelmanufaktur – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Schumanngasse 87, 1170
Did you know that snow globes were actually invented in Vienna? And the “recipe” of how they make the snow is still a well-kept secret? Find out all about those mini winter wonderlands at the original factory that also has a mini museum attached. Dive into the world of snow globes and buy one (or two) globes there (to support the local businesses, you know)!
Photo via facebook.com/OriginalWienerSchneekugelmanufaktur
Ottakringer Brauerei – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Ottakringer Platz 1, 1160
The yellow beer cans of the mighty Ottakringer Brauerei beer brand scatter the ground at plenty of festivals, and many living in this city are die-hard loyal fans to it, so much so, that if a foreign country laid siege to the city, they’d be a crowd of people who retreat to the brewery to protect the birthplace of their beloved amber liquid. And not only does it stink up the district with the smell of hops, but it also plays the role as one of the greatest event venues in the city. With its industrial insides, it makes for a edgy setting for markets, concerts and all kinds of other festivals. Keep an eye out for events happening here, or you could also book a guided tour for the brewery if you’re into that. Just check out the Ottakringer Brauerei website.
Wiener Stadthalle – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Vogelweidplatz, 1150
The Wiener Stadthalle is a huge location used for all kinds of purposes. Not only is it the city’s largest concert venues where you’ll catch plenty of big name international acts, but you’ll also find other kinds of performances happening there, like fairs, dance performances, figure skating shows, and musicals. You can check out their event programme on their website!
Photo via Roland Rainer
Blue Tomato Bar – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Wurmsergasse 21, 1150
The Blue Tomato Bar is a intimate bar where you’ll find regular jazz and avant-garde music concerts happening. Expect it to get crowded, fast, when there’s a notable act in town. Check out their programme and see for yourself. It’s a good location for a relaxed evening with some live music.
Photo via bluetomato.cc
Die Schöne – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Kuffnergasse 7, 1160
This gallery (or whatever you might wanna call it) might not be pretty from the outside, but it’s damn pretty on the inside! There’s always something new and exciting happening at this location in the 16th, be it an exhibition, a performance, theatre, or some other random cultural exhibition or performance. It’s a location for people who want to try out new things. It can be a meeting point between art, artists, and art-lovers. A truly inspiring and unusual space, if you ask us! Here’s the program.
Photo via facebook.com/dieschoene.at
Brunnenpassage – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Brunnengasse 71 / Yppenplatz, 1160
Brunnenpassage is a very special place at the Yppenplatz offering a multi-cultural space where people from all kinds of different backgrounds come together to develop and exhibit art projects. Their belief is that access to art and culture is a human right (agreed!). Be sure to check out this ArtSocialSpace next time you’re in need of a culture slash feel good hit! You’ll catch poetry slams to live dance performances and art-on-the-walls kind of shows.
Photo via facebook.com/Brunnenpassage
Hauptbücherei Urban Loritz Platz – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Urban-Loritz-Platz 2A, 1070
Bookworms unite! Vienna’s main library has its location right on the Gürtel. In this unique building, you’ll find all sorts of books (323,400 to be exact, more or less), so there’s plenty to read there, and plenty of culture to consume. Plus, the English book section is plentiful, stocking classics to contemporary bestsellers. Meanwhile, it’s also a good study location. Various events, such as readings also often take place here. Just check their event programme to see if one of your favourite authors is paying them a visit.
Photo © www.wien.info
Breitenseer Lichtspiele – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Breitenseer Straße 21, 1140
One of the (they claim to be THE) oldest continuously operating cinema theatre in the world is located in the 14th district. Ye’ ol’ Breitenseer Lichtspiele has been screening films at this location since 1909, and they are currently hosting a carefully selected programme that includes silent movies with live piano music, documentaries, art-house films, and other special events. An especially unique movie night happening here is the “Strickfilm” at which the lights are only slightly dimmed so you can knit while watching a movie.
Photo via facebook.com/Breitenseer-Lichtspiele-199419196653
Improper Walls – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Reindorfgasse 42, 1150
Nestled in Vienna’s 15th district is one of the city’s leading indie art galleries, Improper Walls. Its walls showcase artists, with a focus on urban and contemporary art, illustration and multimedia. This gallery practices diversity in its range, with a dedication to showcasing local and international artists that don’t fit in your typical art gallery. With their vibrant, welcoming and young atmosphere, and a lovely team behind it, they attract a good crowd which is made up of people familiar with the art scene, and those who rarely step into a gallery of any kind.
Improper Walls organise exhibitions on a non-profit basis, but also hosts live music, performances, and other cultural events and workshops.
Photo via Marija Veljkovic
Kuffner Sternwarte – Culture beyond the Gürtel
Where: Johann-Staud-Straße 10, 1160
MON & SUN: from 8pm (in all weather)
WED & THU: from 8 pm (when there’s no precipitation)
Every third SUN of the month: solar observations from 3pm
Look at the stars, look how they shine for you! Seriously, you can do that here. While this one can not really be put in the culture category, we’re bending the rules and including it anyway – it sure is a special space. At the Kuffner Observatory, which is one of two telescope-equipped public astronomical observatory stations in Vienna, you’ll learn some great dinner party talk about stars and space and stuff! If astronomy sounds interesting to you, do venture out to this place.
Photo via facebook.com/KuffnerSternwarte