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LIVING IN AUSTRIA

Six of the best things to do in spring in Vienna

Austria's capital is one of the most beautiful cities in the world, but even more once it comes alive after the long winter months

Cherry blossoms seen against a blue sky in spring in the Austrian capital of Vienna. Photo by Matias Tapia on Unsplash
Cherry blossoms seen against a blue sky in spring in the Austrian capital of Vienna. Photo by Matias Tapia on Unsplash

Spring in Vienna will start on March 20th, and even though the weather can vary tremendously (with April famously being a “stubborn” month), Austrians look forward to the sun and milder temperatures after months of short and cold winter days.

The city springs back to life, with more people on the streets, occupying park benches, the outdoor seating areas of bars and restaurants being fully used again and ice cream shops reopening. 

The city blooms with colour again, be it on the cherry blossom trees, the tiny Frühblüher, or the carefully planted tulips. There is much to do (and much to make up for after winter hibernation) over spring. 

READ MORE: What are the best things to do in spring in Austria?

Here are some of the best things to do in spring in Vienna.

Enjoy the flowers

Vienna goes all-in when it comes to its flora in springtime. There are many places where you can enjoy the sight of dozens of magnolia and cherry trees and planted roses and tulips. 

Schönbrunn Palace gardens are certainly among the best places to visit during spring. The well-cared-for imperial gardens carry all sorts of colours and shapes. The magnolia trees and blooming ivy are some of the main attractions. 

All city parks are good choices for those looking for that Instagrammable pic. The Stadtpark has beautiful cherry blossoms that look stunning with the park’s elegant settings. The Augarten also has plenty of beautiful trees, as well as lovely spots for picnics.

During spring, a trendy place is the Setagayapark, where cherry blossoms and magnolia trees bloom over Japanese-style ponds. Unfortunately, the site is not so big, and it can get very crowded during weekends.

Another popular setting for those who like to see the blooming trees – and take that Instagram pic – is the Sigmund-Freud-Park, where a pink magnolia tree makes the perfect frame for the gothic Votivkirche.

Is springtime Vienna's most beautiful season? Image: Amanda Previdelli

Flowers blooming in the Austrian springtime. Image: Amanda Previdelli

It’s hard not to find beautiful spots. Still, other areas with the much sought-after blooming trees include, but are not limited to, Burggarten, Türkenschanzpark, Karlsplatz, the streets of the 13th district, and in all honesty, perhaps the small park just around the corner of your apartment.

In the 4.5 kilometres Prater-Hauptallee, you can see thousands of blooming chestnut trees – and drop by Vienna’s Prater amusement park for a ride or two. Another famous street filled with blooms is Hainburger Weg, where cherry trees from each side of the pedestrian path touch and hide the skies.

And the prominent flower garden Hirschstetten in the 22nd district is open again for spring, with more than 69,000 spring flowers, a new 3,000 sq metre green area (with seating options) and 15 Japanese cherry trees. 

READ MORE: Spring weather arrives in Austria for the weekend

Ice cream shops and outdoor areas

You know spring has arrived when you start seeing long lines outside of ice cream shops in Vienna. 

Don’t try to fight it; just go for it. Buy a take away ice cream cone or sit down in one of the beautiful parlours for ice cream-shaped like pasta (yes, that’s a thing), and try some delicious vegan options out there too.

And speaking of sitting down… Austria’s outdoor sitting and eating areas, including the famous Schanigärten, are back too. While winter brought Austrian life to indoor places, the summer sun (even on colder days) invites residents outside for a meal, or a Spritzer. 

Try all the wine!

Spring is also the time when some of Austria’s major wine festivals take place. From April to June, the new wines are celebrated. In addition, people can visit wine cellars, participate in hikes through Vienna’s wine regions, and enjoy the season in one of the great Heurigers surrounding the capital.

Though the traditional Weinwandertag, the official hiking day(s), only takes place in September, the paths and beautiful hiking trails are open and blooming in spring.

READ MORE: How to buy wine in an Austrian supermarket

Vienna City Marathon

The city’s annual marathon takes place in late April, and hundreds of people, from professionals to occasional joggers, participate.

If the winter months have left you in less than fit, there’s also the possibility of running half a marathon.

On Saturday (this year, April 23rd), there is also a 10k and a mile run (2k), as well as children’s and inclusion runs. 

READ MORE: Travel: What are Austria’s current entry and Covid rules?

Is springtime Vienna's most beautiful season? Image: Amanda Previdelli

Is springtime Vienna’s most beautiful season? Image: Amanda Previdelli

Donaukanal and and Donauinsel

Spring is also the perfect time – not too crowded, not too hot – to enjoy walks and picnics all over the city, but especially on the Donaukanal, enjoying the sun, seeing all the graffiti, and taking pics by the river. 

The bars are open, and there are plenty of options around. You can ride along with a bike or go for a run with your dog, or you can walk further and spend a day in the Donauinsel, where blooms are also easy to find. 

Don’t be surprised if you see naked people around town. Of course, there are specific places for the freikorper kultur, but that won’t stop some of its main supporters. Sunbathing in parks and by the river – with or without tops – is also a very Austrian activity as temperatures rise. 

Easter markets

They are back! After two pandemic years, finally Easter markets are set to reopen (with 2G rules) in Vienna.

The markets traditionally open at the end of March and welcome the spring season with colourful eggs, arts and crafts, typical food and beverage, and many activities for children. 

READ MORE: EXPLAINED: What are Austria’s current Covid rules?

Useful vocabulary

Frühling – Spring

Frühblüher – early bloomer

Frühlingsgefühle – the feeling of happiness with the upcoming spring

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LIVING IN AUSTRIA

What are Austria’s last posting dates for Christmas 2022?

Planning to send Christmas presents back home this year? Here are the dates you need to know when using the Austrian postal service.

What are Austria's last posting dates for Christmas 2022?

Christmas can creep up fast, but with a little preparation you can make sure Christmas cards and gifts make it to friends and family in time for Christmas.

However, there are different dates to be aware of, depending on whether items are being posted within Austria or abroad.

Here’s what you need to know.

READ ALSO: 8 things to know if you’re visiting Austria in December

Last posting dates in Austria

Austria Post’s Team Christkind will be working overtime in the coming weeks to deliver around one million parcels every day.

If sending a letter or Christmas card, here are the last posting dates.

  • Within Austria: December 21 for priority shipping or December 19 for economy.
  • Within Europe: December 16 (priority), December 12 (economy).
  • Worldwide: December 12 (priority), December 8 (economy).

These are the last posting dates for sending a parcel.

  • Within Austria: December 21 for standard shipping and December 22 for Post Express.
  • Within Europe: December 16 (standard), December 21 (Post Express).
  • Worldwide: December 14 (standard), December 15 (Post Express).

READ MORE: IN PICTURES: A guide to the main Christmas Markets in Austria

Post office opening dates

In the week leading up to Christmas, there will be slightly different opening times at Austria Post.

From Monday December 19 to Thursday December 22, post offices will be open from 8am to 6pm.

On Friday December 23, the opening times will be 8am to 7pm. The exact opening times of your nearest Austria Post branch can be found here.

Austria Post aims to deliver parcels up until 12pm on December 24. 

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