The Danube has long been considered the lifeline of Europe. Many cities benefited from the favorable location on the river and Vienna is also characterized by the Danube through and through. What was once an important waterway for transport and trade is now used for recreation. Whether on the Danube Canal, the renatured Old Danube or on the great river itself – Vienna’s blue oasis can be enjoyed everywhere, especially in summer.
The most beautiful places on the Danube in Vienna
The Danube Canal is also called the Little Danube. The approximately 17 km long “sleeve” flows past Vienna’s old town and the canal itself is best explored on boat tours with the DDSG, the Danube Steamship Company. In addition to bars and cafés, there is mainly street art on the banks. Graffiti is allowed in many places and you can always discover new, mostly humorous masterpieces on walks. There is also a sculpture avenue between Franzensbrücke and Aspernbrücke, where works by Austrian sculptors are exhibited. Bars can be found at the Wien City ship landing stage at Schwedenplatz and in the very popular Strandbar Herrmann in the park of the same name.
The Danube is so wide that you can hardly see the other bank. After a walk along the shore, you can either go to the café of the Hotel Hilton Danube or to the nearby Café Little Britain, where you can have an excellent breakfast.
The so-called New Danube is separated from the main river by the Danube Island. This is a great place for cycling, swimming and skating. The “Copa Beach” now replaces the former “Copa Cagrana”, a popular party mile in Vienna. The three-day Danube Island Festival, the largest free open-air party in the world, takes place here every year. If you also want to spend nice evenings here in between, you can stop off at one of the many beach bars. The Danube Island is also equipped with numerous information boards and free WiFi and has long been popular with city dwellers and tourists.
Die Alte Donau
The Alte Donau is also a bathing paradise. Numerous gardens, meadows and restaurants line the banks. There are also many footpaths and cycle paths. The local boat rentals allow you to go sailing, pedal boats or rowing boats. Some companies also offer exclusive offers such as full moon rides or candlelight dinners. There are four lidos in total. The former workers’ lido is now a free sunbathing area and the federal baths Alte Donau, which can be easily reached by underground, has enough space for all visitors even in summer without giving up the feeling of being full.
If you are hungry in the evening you can choose between over 40 restaurants. The restaurant “Zur Alten Kaisermühle” on the Fischerstrand is particularly rustic. An annual highlight is the Festival of Lights on the Old Danube in July. Colorfully decorated boats, music and a big fireworks display at the end of the evening. For a good view, however, you should reserve a table or a boat in good time.
A tip for everyone who loves walks: Start from the Floridsdorf water park in the north and walk along the eastern shore. Here you can dangle your feet in the water, eat ice cream and enjoy the view.