Visiting Vienna in March brings in a fresh perspective of the city – all the Christmas decorations are gone and the city slowly wakes up to the dawn of spring. With pleasant weather and fewer crowds, March is a good time to visit Vienna.
Vienna in March is still quiet in terms of tourist and the touristy areas are not super crowded. March is considered a shoulder season in Vienna.
Visiting Vienna in March: Tips & Activities guide to the Imperial City
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March is a perfect time to visit Vienna are it has not hit the tourists’ peak seasons. Considered a transition or crossover month, in March spring, is knocking on the doors, and sunshine will adorn the city in the afternoons. With little to no crowds, this is the best time to visit the city’s prime tourist attractions or book a luxury hotel for less.
How is Vienna in March? Weather in Vienna for March
Vienna is located in the heart of the European continent and their daily temperatures reflect what we “presume” European climate to look like. Talking from a Canadian perspective, its pleasant and not a lot of snow!
Vienna Austria is surrounded by the Alps and the northern European plains – so winters are snowy and cold.
But March looks promising with little to no snow. The old town which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site is completely walk-able in March, as long as you dress fairly warm. And we are talking about a warm jacket (faux leather jacket or a trench coat) and warm socks and comfortable shoes (or ankle-length booties). No winter clothing is necessary.
So here is what the temperatures look like.
- The average maximum daytime temperature in Vienna in March is 10°C (50°F) – so not too cold or too warm.
- The city gets about 4 hours of sunshine every day.
- At night, the average temperature hovers around colder 2°C (36°F).
- You can expect at least 7 – 10 rainy days in Vienna in March.
How cold is Vienna in March? Does it snow in Vienna in March?
Snow is uncommon in Vienna in March. Snow or ice-related activities (like the ice rink at the Rathaus City Hall) is closed for the season. During our trip, there was no snow on the ground, nor did it snow while we were there.
It is a bit chilly though, in the evenings or early mornings, the weather is still bearable to walk outside. The wind is common in the capital city.
Packing for Vienna in March
Keeping the Vienna temperatures in mind for March, here is what you should be packing:
- Denim or faux leather jacket – I took my faux leather jacket to Vienna and it was apt for mid-mornings. Check out this leather jacket from Levis
- Light cardigan – Especially for people who are always cold like me, carry a warm cardigan or a pull-over. I am in LOVE with this merino wool cardigan – check it out here
- Comfortable walking shoes – Comfortable walking shoes are a MUST in Vienna Europe. I prefer shoes to booties at this time of the year. Here are two of my all-time favorites –
- Day pack or a purse – Don’t forget to add a day pack or a purse. Both these items can pack a ton of things – from a wallet, small cosmetic pouch, camera to a light cardigan, and a water bottle when you are out and about exploring. Check out this anti-theft travel purse and this day pack for travel which will store your essentials.
- Universal adaptor – Don’t forget to pack your universal adaptor
Skip heavy winter jackets or parkas and winter boots, as the temperature will rarely go below freezing point. You can pack something green, to ring in St Patty’s Day in the imperial city.
Read our in-depth guide to packing for Europe for all seasons and regions.
Hotels in Vienna in March
Finding accommodation in Vienna in March, shouldn’t be an issue. You can choose a luxury stay near the city center with a great price point or choose from a variety of mid-range hotels (for less).
- Imperial Vienna Hotel (Luxury Hotel) – Another luxurious hotel in the heart of Wien city. It has beautiful interiors and a restaurant on-site. All the Vienna tourist attractions are less than 1 km away. Book your stay here
- Zeitgeist Vienna Hotel (Mid-range hotel) – This is an economic hotel, good access to trains. Great for long term stay. Old Town Wien is located about 2 km away from the hotel. Book your stay here
- Austria Trend Hotel Rathauspark Wien (Mid-range hotel) – This is where we stayed on our trip to Vienna. Great value hotel (mid-range). It is a refurbished city palace, which makes it all the more special. Free buffet breakfast was included, which had a lot of variety of food. Book your stay here
Buy Vienna Pass for sightseeing in March
For sightseeing in Vienna, we highly recommend purchasing the Vienna Pass. The Vienna Pass offers free entries to many of the city’s prime tourist attractions and also includes a hop on and hop off bus tour to access these sites.
Vienna Pass doesn’t include public transportation access, but you can add that for an additional cost. Check out the Vienna Pass here.
Things to do in Vienna in March – Events Vienna March 2020
Explore the Hofburg Palace and its many Hofburg Exhibitions
A visit to the Hofburg Palace is a must at any time of the year. The Hofburg was the imperial palace of the Hapsburg rulers and today it serves as the residence of the President of Austria.
Many of the wings of the palace are free to view from the outside. But to access the museums including the popular Sisi Museum and seasonal exhibitions, there is an entry fee. This is included in the Vienna Pass.
Hofburg Palace and Art Vienna – Also head to the Hofburg palace and Art Vienna for a modern art exhibition in March. Event Dates: March 27th – 29th 2020.
Stroll the inner city of Vienna in the afternoon
When it’s warm and sunny outside, head to the inner city of Vienna. The area near the Hofburg Palace is surrounded by cafes and stores, and remnants of the historical (famine) past.
Taking a walk in the afternoon will be comfortable and you will be able to appreciate the city’s beautiful architecture!
Head to any of the museums at the Museum Quarter (in the morning, if it rains or if you are cold)
Vienna is a perfect city for arts and history lovers. There is an amazing museum quarter in the city that will quench the thirst of every art and heritage fanatic.
Our favorites – Albertina, Leopold Museum and the Museum of Natural History. The Natural History Museum has a good collection of minerals, precious stones, fossils and animal skeletons, including some taxidermy of extinct species.
Plan to visit them in the morning hours (when they open) or a few hours before closing – that way you will make use of the nice weather outside to explore other things. The museum entry is included in the Vienna Pass, and it is located a short distance away from each other.
You can also pop by the Belvedere Palace and Museum for an amazing display of artwork and decorated staterooms and gardens, also included in the Vienna Pass.
Explore the Schonbrunn Palace and gardens
The Schonbrunn Palace is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and it was the summer residence of the Hapsburg rulers. The palace is strikingly beautiful in bright yellow paint and has a whopping 1441 rooms.
Built in Rococo style, the palace is largely associated with the rule of Maria Theresia. The palace is also considered to be one of the most impressive palaces in Europe, so it should be on your itinerary.
The Schonbrunn palace complex is huge. To explore the palace interiors, an entry ticket is required (which is included in the Vienna Pass). A guided tour of the palace interiors should take you around one hour. There are seasonal exhibitions held there from time to time.
One of the most beautiful thing about this palace is its 500 acres spectacular park and garden. In March, you won’t be able to see colorful flowers, but the gardens will be open for viewing/stroll. And there is ample greenery and sunshine for a walk (or photos).
To explore each and every nook and corner of the park will take you at least 2-3 hours. But if you are short on time – we highly recommend visiting the classical gloriette arcade (which is set on the top of the hill) and the Neptune’s Foundation (it is a sculpture based on themes from Greek mythology).
Note: There is a strudel tasting show at the Schonbrunn Palace that you MUST go to. The show and a piece of strudel from the royal kitchen is included in the Vienna Pass’s price.
Celebrating Women’s Day in Vienna
The first Sunday in March is celebrated as International Women’s Day and Vienna does this is great honor and style.
The city hosts a Feminist Rrriot Festival, which honors the endurance and fight of women’s emancipation. It also celebrates feminism and equality of rights. Dates: March 1 – 8 2020
Celebrate St Patty’s Day in Vienna in March
March is the month, where you go green. So if you are heading to the city in and around St Patrick’s Day, pack something green and head to any of the pubs in Vienna where it is celebrated.
Party with a purpose with the Irish at the Vienna Irish Ball is a popular event and it has an entry fee of 110 euros, but the evening comes packed with a three-course meal and entertainment.
Location: InterContinental Hotel Vienna. Dates: March 09 2020.
There are also tons of bars in the city for a pint of Guinness with fish and chips to party all weekend long. The Giant Ferris wheel of Vienna – Riesenrad – also joins in, as it lights up in green!
Foto Wien – The Photography Festival
Foto Wien is a photography festival held in March in Vienna in over 120 venues across the city. This event is completely free and it showcases the creative potential of local photographers.
Location: Multiple Dates: March 09 2020
Celebrating Easter in Vienna in March
If Easter falls in the month of March, don’t forget to participate in festive events. There will be Easter concert events organized across the city.
During Easter, a traditional beer called “Osterbock” is quite popular in Vienna – it is like a Red Bull, meant to fuel the body with energy (after a long day of fasting).
Enjoy at the Argus Bike Festival
The Argus Bike Festival is a two-day event showcasing bike-related exhibitors and is officially the inauguration of the bike season in Austria. The festival is the largest of its kind in Austria and the whole of Europe and it kicks off at the Rathausplatz. Event Date: 28th and 29th March 2020.
Enjoy Italian Opera at the Wien State Opera House
In March, all the opera houses in Vienna have their seasonal concerts out. At the Vienna State Opera and the Volksoper Vienna, you can enjoy Italian opera concerts from the likes of Puccini’s Tosca and Turandot or Rigoletto and La Traviata. There are guided tours available to view the interiors of the opera house, which is stunningly beautiful inside and is worth a visit.
Also, check out Wagner operas for their seasonal performances.
Enjoy a romantic time at the Wien Thermal Spa
Therme Wien is a huge green area in Vienna, which is also Europe’s largest urban spa. The entire Vienna spa complex has various indoor and outdoor pools, as well as the usual array of spa offerings to indulge in.
Make the most of your visit in March, by taking Day trips to nearby towns
Vienna is a convenient location to venture out on day trips from the city.
- Vienna Woods – Vienna Woods or Wienerwald is a protected green belt of mixed woodland terrain, sprinkled with centuries old castle and small towns. For wine lovers or adventurous hikers, visiting Vienna Woods in March is a great time as the sun is not too strong for strenuous hikes and climbs nor are the small towns too crowded to enjoy a relaxed exploration and wine tasting.
- Wachau Valley – The stunning lower Danube Valley aka Wachau Valley is a MUST visit from Vienna. In an hour, you will be in the most beautiful countryside – where you can visit Melk Abbey and the Krems. In March you can go wine tasting, but the weather may or may not be suitable for a cruise. Wachau valley is also rainier then Vienna, so pack a waterproof jacket.
- Salzburg – Mozart’s home town is just 2 hours away from the capital city. This pretty medieval town is filled with amazing views – thanks to the Alps surrounding it and of course tons of history. Trains are great for traveling from Vienna to Salzburg and/or Wachau. We found Salzburg to be a little colder than Vienna in March.
Vienna or Salzburg in March
Why not both? Both Vienna and Salzburg are located in Austria, but both the cities are very unique and different. While being the capital city – Vienna has the state of the art infrastructure, is modern yet classic at the same time (with centuries-old palaces, traditions, and history). Vienna or Wien has a slightly modern outlook and is oh-so-trendy.
Salzburg, on the other hand, is more medieval with a towering fortress over the city, cobblestone streets, Christmas-y lanes, the Alps and the lush greenery (places were the Sound of Music was shot). Salzburg is also home to some of the Nazi historical remnants and they are worth a visit. (Salzburg to Munich is only 2 hours away).
Now Vienna to Salzburg is 2 hours away by train – so you can definitely do both – should you have time. And we recommend both cities for different perspectives on Austria. Here is our 2-day itinerary for Salzburg.
Prague or Vienna in March
We have written a detailed guide to visit Prague in Spring March and April. Prague is located in the Czech Republic, and this capital city is different from the Austrian Capital city.
Now, I am a history fangirl so I LOVE Prague (my University majors in History was centered around the Eastern European politics, so you can tell!). From a tourist standpoint, Prague is more medieval (more than Salzburg), if you visit the old town square, the Prague Castle, Charles Bridge, Lennon Wall, etc. Prague is also unique with its off-beat places like the Dancing House or the Communist Museum. A lot of the Jewish history and cold war politics remnants can be understood in Prague (which is absent in Vienna).
Both cities have historical places – whether it’s the Hapsburg palaces or Communist-era buildings, both have seasonal events and festivals and both are perfect for day trips to nearby cities.
Here are the key things to keep in mind,
- Vienna is expensive than Prague, in terms of hotels and transportation.
- Prague is slightly colder in March than Vienna.
- If you are into opera, Vienna is your place. (We have a detailed 2 to 3 days in Vienna itinerary for inspiration)
- If you wish to celebrate Easter, Prague is your calling! Read our 2-day itinerary for Prague
We hope you found this guide on visiting Vienna in March is useful. Vienna is beautiful, have a great time in the imperial city!
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