14 hidden places in Vienna that only the locals really know - Vienna Würstelstand

14 hidden places in Vienna that only the locals really know

September 9, 2020

Guide to
14 hidden places
in Vienna
that only the locals
really know

September 9, 2020

Vienna Würstelstand's and say

If there’s one thing we know, it’s that we all like to be in on a secret. And we’re about to expose some. Well, many of you will know these places, however, this is a list of places in Vienna aren’t so widely known about.

To the regular visitors of these places – please don’t be mad, we just want to share all the cool places we’ve discovered over the years with fellow lovers of Vienna.

Check out these 14 hidden places in Vienna, that only the locals really know:

1. Jubiläumswarte – Hidden places in Vienna

Where: Johann-Staud-Straße 80, 1160

The Jubiläumswarte is a weather station turned super rad lookout point in the western area of Vienna, somewhere deep in the 16th district.

Climbing up the many flights of stairs is definitely worth it, and not just because you’ll get in an extra workout, but also because the panoramic views awaiting you at the top are absolutely marvelous.

The best thing about it is that it’s completely free to go up there AND it’s open 24 hours! Which means, if you’re ever in the mood to take a special date star gazing this is a great place to do it. Just prepare for a huge dose of the Viennese winds when up there.

image © Bwag/Commons

2. Setagaya Park – Hidden places in Vienna

Where: Gallmeyergasse 4, 1190

This Japanese-style garden in Döbling will make you feel like you’ve entered into a world far, far away from Vienna, and also far away from any of the sorrows, or worries you may have had upon entering.

There’s a pond, a bridge, a unique array of plants and a little waterfall in Setagaya Park. There’s even a tea house where you can sit and have a cuppa’ while you enjoy the atmosphere.

It’s a perfect escape for any afternoon walk, and a place for you to get your zen on, find your inner peace and restore any lost harmony in your life – ya’ know, all of those easy things.

3. Vienna Peace Pagoda – Hidden places in Vienna

Where: Hafenzufahrtsstraße F, 1020

Did you know that Vienna hosts a harbour? And that along a route that runs along the harbour area, known as the Hafenzufahrtsstrasse, there’s a Buddhist structure that seems extremely out of place, but has a curious kind of appeal to it. The Vienna Peace Pagoda is a unique structure that can be found right by the water in the 2nd district.

Buddha is encased in a white dome structure and the monument symbolises the unity of all humans, and the hope for the common cause of world peace, no matter your background, or religion. Now, if that’s not a mantra to follow, we don’t know what is. Visiting and sitting by this pagoda can be a peaceful thing to do as part of a walk along the waterside walking trail that passes by it.

4. The hidden bars and cafes – Hidden places in Vienna

There are many awesome bars and cafes in Vienna that you’ll only know about if you’ve caught wind of them via word of mouth – or a cool article in Vienna Würstelstand, of course.

While many say Vienna has no nightlife, our theory is that it’s just spread out over the city, so it’s not so obvious, meaning you have to go looking for it. Plus, the infamous speakeasy bars like to keep themselves hidden, online atleast, so to keep that air of mystery and exclusivity.

The bars krypt. and Tür 7 are definitely a little tricky to find, however, those who know them, love their dimly-lit and stylish appeal. To get into both of these cocktail joints, you first have to find the entrance and ring the doorbell.

For a similarly exclusive-feeling affair, check out the American-inspired cocktail bar, Barfly’s Club, which you enter by walking down a grand stairwell of a hotel in Vienna’s 6th district.

Now, if these speakeasies don’t feel hidden and like you’re doing something illegal, enough, just wait ’til you pay The Chapel a visit. To get there, you have to walk through another bar until you find a secret door that’ll lead you into a confessional booth.

Many stories have been thrown around about the legendary veteran cafe/ bar, Café Malipop in the 3rd district. Actually, most of the stories are about the owner and resident vinyl DJ, Margit, and her erratic and strange house rules (word of warning: be on your best behaviour, otherwise, you’ll be kicked out). Another cool bar who’s windows are crowded by plants as to make it kind of hidden is the rough-around-the-edges bar with a lot of heart and soul, Café Anno, in the 8th district.

If you want to spend hours on end playing board games with your friends, Café Sperlhof in the 2nd district is sincerely loved by all those who know of it. You’ll be sitting in between towers of board game boxes, which makes the experience all the more fun.

Finally, check out the lovely Gartencafé in the 6th district. On first glance, this place seems like a hole-in-the-wall coffee shop, but you’ll be amazed once you walk into their lusciously green garden out the back.

5. The hidden market squares – Hidden places in Vienna

Now, everybody knows Vienna’s largest market, the mighty Naschmarkt that spends most of its days constipated with tourists. But how about the smaller, lesser known, tourist-free market squares, which throb at the heart of many of the city’s neighbourhoods.

The collection of small stands in a square, selling up food from all over the world, typically surrounded by buildings that look like they’re guarding it like soldiers.

We ventured from one side of the city to the other to make you a list of our favourite market squares to discover in Vienna.

6. Gugumuck – Hidden places in Vienna

Where: Rosiwalgasse, 1100

Gugumuck is one fascinating place run by some fascinating people. Part snail farm, part escargot restaurant, Gugumuck seeks to keep the Viennese tradition of eating snails alive in this city.

It’s located on the fringes of the 10th district, so it is quite a trek, BUT, it is well worth it. Ask anybody who’s dined there.  You need to reserve on one of the select days that they open up their restaurant, which is particularly charming in summer when the open up their alfresco garden, which is located right next to the snail farm. They also host small festivals out there for summer and Christmas, so check all of this out on their website. Also check out the ‘Fork you, Vienna!’ episode when we visited the crowd out at their farm. 

7. The Hermesvilla mansion in Lainzer Tiergarten & its restaurant – Hidden places in Vienna

Where: Lainzer Tiergarten, 1130

If you decide to have a stroll in the huge nature reserve known as the Lainzer Tiergarten, you should really plan in half a day for it, as there’s a lot of green space and woods to cover, plus there’s an idyllic restaurant/ cafe to lunch at in one very impressive looking building. You’re sure to stumble across the Hermesvilla, which is set right in the middle of the former imperial hunting grounds – which was actually a present from Kaiser Franz Joseph I to none other than your favourite empress, Sissi, who called it ‘castle of dreams.’ Inside the regal looking shack is a cafe and restaurant run by the talented Gastro crowd of Labstelle.

image © Bwag/Commons

8. The lesser-known charming Heurige & Buschenschänke – Hidden places in Vienna

Since you’re already well versed on what a Heurige and Buschenschank is (we know this, as we know you’ve already read our facts about Heurige we bet you didn’t know article), we know you need no convincing on why you should visit one of the local’s favourites when it comes to Vienna’s wine taverns.

Hidden away up in the foothills is Heurigenschenke zur Wildsau , which is set in a quiet green garden – that actually feels like somebody’s back garden. It’s almost a rural experience on the outskirts of Vienna, including some local and seasonal wine and food that makes for a peaceful escape from city life.

Meanwhile, at Weinhandwerk, you can enjoy a stellar glass of wine in amidst a beautiful-ly overgrown and colourful garden. Most of the food they serve up here they’ve produced themselves, and most of the herbs they use have been scavenged by the people serving it to you.  This Stammersdorf Buschenschank is popular amongst those who know the scene, and for very good reason.

For more wine-fuelled good times, and an eye-popping view over the city, try out the other mountain top wine taverns at Monte Nucum (Müller’s Buschenschank), or Buschenschank Stippert in the district of Hernals. What makes these places great to visit is the warm and familiar atmosphere you feel when you’re welcomed inside. Häuserl am Stoan also possesses this feeling, and seeing how they’ve been in business since 1923, they’re pros at it by now. This spot is fantastic to stop at on a hike, in winter or summer, and it boasts one hell of a view.

9. Shakespeare & Company – Hidden places in Vienna

Where: Sterngasse, 1010

This English bookshop is delightfully hidden away in the cobblestone streets of the city center. You’ve got to go up some stairs and down a wonky-paved alleyway to reach it.

The bookshop was inspired by the famous Shakespeare and Company bookshop in Paris, and while it doesn’t hit the heights of the same kind of charm, it certainly has a flair of its own. It’s a intimate paradise, a safe space for book-lovers.

The store barely fits two people at a time, but this fact only means you get more privacy and time to browse through the bookcases and figure out which of the shelves and shelves of books you’re going to go home with, and make sweet passionate love to. Wait, what?! And if you can’t figure out which book to take home to binge read next, the shopkeepers are adorable and very helpful.

10. The event venue METAStadt – Hidden places in Vienna

Where: Dr.-Otto-Neurath-Gasse, 1220

Happening inside the ex-factory, now event venue, METAStadt, you’ll find yoga sessions, flea markets, and concerts, and more.

From the outside, one may think this is nothing more than an abandoned building, but within its brick walls, you’ll find a huge space that offers 4 event halls, boasting the perfect kind of vibe for a grungy concert, a wild DJ set, or a bustling fleamarket.

11. The hidden palace gardens and parks – Hidden places in Vienna

If Schönbrunn is overcrowded, then Palais Liechtenstein is a great location to escape the masses and still enjoy a palace setting. This palace is a real eye-catcher, and behind it, you’ll find a fairytale-like garden.

If you’re feeling adventurous, you can stroll through the park’s walkways on your own, or join the guided tours that will tell you all about the family Liechtenstein’s fancy art collection.

Another beautiful garden that only insiders know about is the Hirschstetten Flower Gardens. On top of their greenhouses, you’ll feel like you’re in an entirely different country when relaxing in the French-themed garden, or the Indian-themed garden, or the Mexican garden, for that matter.

In the 10th district, there’s the Oberlaa spa gardens with its 600 square meter Japanese garden, beach volleyball courts, and a climbing wall. While we’re in the 10th district, have you heard of the Wienerberg reserve area? With a big pond in the middle, and plenty of paths weaving in and out of overgrown greenery, this tranquil place is a favourite amongst runners.

On the other side of town, you can disappear into the 42-hectare recreational park known as Steinhofgründe and its vast meadows.

If quiet parks that few people know about is your kind of thing, check out our article on Vienna’s hidden gardens.

12. The lesser known coffeehouses – Hidden places in Vienna

There are soooo many traditional Viennese coffeehouses surviving today that are off the tourist track. And we just love discovering them, with their retro vibes, intimate booths, and smartly dressed waiting staff. Priceless.

You can experience all of this at Café Kafka, where in addition to being served some satisfying pesto-tomato-mozzarella toast, you can increase your caffeine intake from an award-winning barista! Before getting too comfortable in their beer garden know that the entire menu is primarily vegetarian, as well as vegan.

Then there’s the legendary Café Rüdigerhof that you might have heard of from your hipster buddies and artsy-fartsy friends. The café has always been a meeting place for the Vienna art scene, and has regularly served figures like Josef Hader. But its customers aren’t purely attracted by the photos of prominent figures hanging on the walls. Their down-to-earth menu, and beer garden view over the Wienfluss is also quite an attraction.

At Café Raimann, on the other hand, it’s unclear if you’ve just entered a somber coffeehouse, or a quiet library (minus the books, of course). But the creaking floorboards and heavy chairs that always announce whether you’re about to sit down, or get up, are what makes this quiet spot feel alive. It’s definitely a change of atmosphere from the loud chatter and clatter that noisier and more prominent coffeehouses are filled with.

For more lesser-known (excuse the paradox) coffeehouses in the city, check out this list that we’ve composed for you.

13. The lesser-known museums – Hidden places in Vienna

Many people will tell you to visit the huge and famous museums in Vienna that – don’t get us wrong – make for a great Saturday, or Sunday afternoon experience. But we’re here to tell you to spend some time at all these cool and unique lesser-known ones this ‘ole city of ours has to offer! And, believe us, Vienna’s got some weird and wonderful museums on offer.

There’s places like a funeral museum, a condomi museum, a circus and clown museum and a coffee museum, where you might truly learn to enjoy and appreciate the little things this weird life has to offer. We’ve actually gathered a full list of the lesser known weird and wonderful museums of Vienna for you to check out, so you don’t even have to do any work Googling them. You’re welcome!

14. Böhmischer Prater – Hidden places in Vienna

Where: Laaer Wald 216, 1100

Yep, you read that right! There’s another Prater in Vienna, and only a bunch of people really know about it, because the big one in the inner city is stealing its thunder!

It’s set in one of Vienna’s recreational areas, the Laaer Wald in Favoriten. This frozen-in-time fairground was born cuz’ some guy named Franz who owned a small inn decided to put up a swing set and a carousel. It became so popular for Sunday outings that other cafe and restaurant owners followed his lead.

A lot of the time, especially in Winter, it’s got a abandoned fairground vibe to it, however, it’s still in operation and worth a visit. Check out a photo story we put together of this bizarre place in Vienna.

Make the Most out of Vienna