Sleeping in Airports

Vienna Airport Layover Sightseeing

This article includes links to our travel partners at Tripadvisor, where you can read traveller reviews, book tours and plan your visit to Vienna.

Vienna Layover sightseeing
(photo credit: mRGB / Shutterstock)

Known as the capital of Classical music, Vienna has a lot to offer tourists, from musicians to artists and food lovers alike. With its incredible architecture, fragrant wines, and unique history, this city will charm you with its beauty.

People stopping at Vienna Airport only for a layover may wonder whether it is worth heading into the Vienna city centre between flights. If you are among them, read on for some highlights to consider.

Airport Overview

Vienna Airport is about 20 km southeast of the city centre and can be reached by public transport in 30 to 45 minutes. If you only have a few hours before your next flight, you should stay at the airport. Like most airports, the terminal has a variety of shops, restaurants, and cafés and free WiFi. With a longer layover, take advantage of the ‘visitor world tour,’ which will give you insights into the hustle and bustle at the airport. Aviation enthusiasts will also get the chance to choose from a variety of tours, such as the Austrian Aircraft shipyard tour, AUA Aircraft shipyard Combi Tour XL, and many others. For more information on the airport, check out our Vienna Airport Guide.

Vienna Sightseeing Attractions

Below are a few of the top things to do in Vienna during your layover:

Hop-On Hop-Off Tours

Hop-On Hop-Off tours are always the best option for people who don’t have much time. These buses will take you to Vienna’s main attractions and landmarks, allowing you to hop off whenever you want to spend extra time in a given location.

  • How to get there: Most tours depart from the city centre. You can get a train to Wien Mitte station and figure it out from there. This trip will take you less than 30 minutes.
  • Time Required: While the bus route lasts from one to two hours, you must also add the time spent visiting the sites.
  • Plan Your Visit: Check out Tripadvisor for more tour details, visitor reviews, and reservation options.


(photo credit: saiko3p / Shutterstock)

If you are an artist or are simply interested in art, check out the Museumsquartier. Here, you will find the Leopold Museum, the MUMOK, and exhibition centres, such as the Kunsthalle Wien. Architecture lovers will be delighted by the quarter’s ancient Baroque buildings and modern establishments designed by architects Laurids and Manfred Ortner.

  • How to get there: Head to Wien Mitte station with one of the trains departing from the airport and then choose between a 10-minute bus ride or a 30-minute walk. The whole journey will take from 40 minutes to one hour. You can check this Google Maps for more info. Alternatively, an Uber for the Museumsquartier will cost 35 to 40 euros.
  • Time Required: This largely depends on how many museums you want to visit. You can easily spend a whole day here.
  • Plan Your Visit: Check out Tripadvisor for more tour details, visitor reviews, and reservation options.

Vienna Opera House

vienna opera house
(photo credit: mRGB / Shutterstock)

It’s no mystery. Vienna is mainly known for its musical past. From Mozart to Strauss, Haydn, and Webern, Austria has been the birthplace of some of the most famous composers of all time. This is why the Vienna Opera House is a must-visit for all classical music lovers. It was, in fact, here that artists such as Wagner, Mozart, and Strauss performed some of their best compositions.

  • How to get there: Head to Wien Mitte station with one of the two main trains departing from the airport. This journey will take you from 15 to 25 minutes. From there, you can enjoy a 20-minute walk or take a 10-minute tram ride. If you decide to go for an Uber, remember that this will cost you 35 to 40 euros.
  • Time Required: Guided tours usually last 40 minutes.
  • Plan Your Visit: Check out Tripadvisor for more tour details, visitor reviews, and reservation options.


Neubau is one of the most vibrant neighbourhoods in Vienna. Here, you will find stunning graffiti art, great restaurants and cafés where you have a well-deserved break, and unique shops selling vintage clothes.

  • How to get there: Head to Vienna city centre and take one of the many trams and buses departing from there. You can check this Google Maps for more info. The whole journey will take about one hour. Alternatively, an Uber will cost from 40 to 60 euros.
  • Time Required: Budget at least two hours to see this neighbourhood without rushing.
  • Plan Your Visit: Check out Tripadvisor for more tour details, visitor reviews, and reservation options.

Airport Transportation

Vienna Airport is about 20 km from the city centre. Once you land, you will have a few options to reach Austria’s capital. Here are the most popular ones.

  • Trains: Two main train lines connect the city centre to Vienna Airport. The CAT is the fastest and takes about 16 minutes, stopping at Wien Mitte station. From here, you can walk to the centre within 20 minutes or take one of the many buses, trams, or metros. Alternatively, you can take the slow train called the S7 Schnellbahn. This option also stops at Wien Mitte station but will take about 23 minutes. Some of the other stops include Floridsdorf, Handelskai, and Traisengasse. While the CAT train will cost about 15 euros, the S7 is about 5 euros.
  • Taxi: Alternatively, you can opt for a taxi or an Uber. The latter will cost 35 to 50 euros and take you to the city centre in about 30 minutes. Taxis can be slightly more expensive.

Before You Go: Layover Tips

Ready to explore the world capital of classical music? Great! But wait an extra second. We still need to discuss a few issues before you pack your things.

  • Do you need a visa? For more information, check the Federal Ministry Republic of Austria website.
  • When is your next flight’s check-in time? Even though Vienna Airport is quite close to the city, budget enough time to get back to the airport and go through all the security checks. When in doubt, always contact your airline to ask for extra info on when to arrive at the airport to avoid missing your flight.
  • What’s happening with your luggage? If you travel with different airlines, you won’t have any doubts. You will indeed have to take care of your luggage between flights. But, weirdly enough, this sometimes happens when travelling with the same airline. So, make sure to double-check this info and, if you need it, make use of the airport luggage storage facility.