Vienna being the capital of Austria is a place people always want to visit. But what is outside of the city? Well there is a lot more than you think…
Just on the outskirts of Vienna is an open wooded area that can give you hours of endless walks. It’s a beautiful area that you wouldnt believe is just on the outside of the capital. It’s a short drive away and to get to it I would recommend driving the beautiful road of Höhenstrasse.
Along the road you pass a few quiet villages that you could stop and have a bite to eat and a drink before your walk, if like us, you can park up at the many free parking spots along the route and get the dogs out the car to take them for a walk.
There are plenty of walking paths that you can take, either being longer or short depending on your preference. If you get high enough on your walk you can see lovely panaramic views of Vienna.
We found this place a hidden gem of the surrounding area of Vienna and wouldn’t have known it was here without a lot of research.
We parked up at the free car park and starting to take a walk. The castle itself is inside of a huge park and you will be pleasantly surprised. It is a large park with numerous paths taking you on different walks.
Taking the main path takes you straight to the castle. The castle itself is an impressive one and looks how you would expect a castle to look like (you can see why they used it in the movie). You can pay to get in the castle to look around but with the boys we couldn’t do that.
Other paths take you to the wooded areas of the park for a nice woodland walk or you can head to the children’s play area near the castle if you have children.
Another sight not to miss is the small Roman amphitheater that is hidden away in the middle of the woods. There are signs, but believe it or not, it is easy to miss if you don’t hit the right entrance. It is now in ruins but it beautiful to walk within the ruins and think of the games that would have been shown here.
The main reason we visited this place everyday while we were in Vienna, was the enclosed area for dogs! We have two large dogs so even when we find a enclosed area it can sometimes be too small or the fences would be too low. This place was none of them and easily the best place so far to let our boys off for a play. We would visit each morning and evening so we came across other dogs and dog owners who were all friendly and had no problems with there dogs interacting with ours (despite the size and playfulness of our big puppy).
This river you can’t miss when going to Vienna. It lies right in the centre and goes straight through the city. This river is one of the largest rivers and runs through multiple countries so this wouldn’t be the first time we would see it.
We took a day out to walk the river which I think you need to do to appreciate the size of it.
You can walk it either side and we decided to drive out of the city just a few miles away and then park up. Depending on how far you want to walk depends on where you park, don’t forget anything – whatever you walk one way you have to walk the same back!
We decided to walk towards the city. That way we had a half way mark and we were able to stop and get some lunch.
It was a lovely, quiet walk, with just a few people running or cycling past you. There was a variety of views (all having the river in it though) from peaceful country views, to urban parks with numerous beach volleyball and exercise machines scattered along the river. I think this is the best type of walk to do with it giving you variety and stopping you from getting bored of the same views for miles (if that is even possible to do in Austria).
With the river being so long there is a variety of lengths and routes you can do, so pick a good stop to park up, or start from, and just walk, you could do the river walk everyday and find something different each time just by seeing a different part.
Before we even visited Vienna we went to laxenburg. We didn’t go around this town itself but we headed to the park. The park is a huge area of land which is part of the castle gardens that is situated within it. I will be honest – there is a charge to get in, and when we stood outside we weren’t sure whether it was worth it – especially as you have to pay for the dogs too!
After Simon persuaded me to spend the money, we went in and to our surprise it is worth the entrance fee and more! We went for a good 2-3 hours and we didn’t see the whole of the park. It consists of numerous walkways and if you want a jog, gives you different paths which have different times. It is so easy to go off to one of the smaller paths and go exploring through the wooded areas around. It has a river running through the middle which is lovely to walk down.
If you have children there are playgrounds they can enjoy whilst you rest your feet, and in the summer they have numerous activities around the lake which is just beside the castle.
It even has a giant fish pond that you can have a walk around and you never know, even see some fish.
Once we visited the castle we took the very short ferry from the castle back to the main part of the park. You have to pay for the ride but a couple of euros each (plus the dogs) it is worth it the novelty (you even ring the old castle bell to call the ferry across).
This place has something for everyone and you could easy spend the full day here, especially in peak times when all the attractions and cafes open up.
In short, if you visit Vienna, take a couple of days out to see the surrounding areas. There is so much more to see and you will be pleasantly surprised at what you see….