These 14 Vienna public spaces are perfect spots to meet friends when the sun's out - Vienna Würstelstand

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These 14 Vienna public spaces are perfect spots to meet friends when the sun’s out

We’ve walked the streets to bring you the best urban public spaces in Vienna to meet with friends for summer drinks, without ever stepping into a bar. Whether you’re on a budget, like the idea of using the city as your own, or love socialising in the great outdoors, this list will have you sharing sweat in the most random places of the city – that’s what summer is all about, isn’t it?


The MQ

Where: Museumsplatz 1, 1070

As one of the most popular public spaces to hang in summer, this place fills up as soon as the sun shows its face, making the atmosphere here buzz. Meeting friends on the plastic, blue lego-like seats scattered amongst the sweeping courtyards, is one of the most popular past-times for the locals. And most days you can catch DJs spinning beats as part of the MQ’s ‘summer of sound’ program. For more info, see here.

Plus: there’s a Bocce court under the shade cast by the mighty grey MUMOK gallery. You can hire the equipment at the neighbouring ALOHA bar.

Where to get your summer drinks supplies nearby?
There’s a SPAR supermarket on neighbouring Burggasse, and the surrounding bars in the MQ serve drinks to takeaway.



The steps of the city’s Hauptbücherei (main library)

Where: Hauptbücherei, Urban-Loritz-Platz, 1070

Looking out at the view from the top of Vienna’s Hauptbücherei steps gives one the feeling like anything’s possible – like you could jump from where you’re sitting on the steps, land, and slide your way down on the white sails that stretch out from the main library.
Sitting here, watching the sunset over the city and the cars zip along the Gürtel, while listening to the hum of the traffic below, is the perfect grungy, urban setting for summer drinks with friends on a warm evening.

Plus: you can pick up some good, takeaway Indian food from the exotic supermarket, PROSI, nearby.

Where to get your summer drinks supplies nearby?
There are several würstel and döner stands at Urban-Loritz-Platz below.



Aloft the Albertina

Where: Catch the elevator, or take the stairs, to the roof terrace at the Albertina (Albertinaplatz 1, 1010).

There’s a good reason why that kitschy film, Before Sunrise, used this spot for one of its romantic scenes. The view over the opera and the old city centre may have something to do with it. Now while your tongue will be in a beer can or wine bottle rather than Ethan Hawke’s mouth, this is still an ideal spot for setting up your own pop-up bar with friends.

Where to get your summer drinks supplies nearby?
There is the Würstelstand with the rabbit on top, Bitzinger, selling beer and other drinks just below.



Take your pick one of Vienna’s many parks

Where: Check out our Phil’s list of his favourite parks here.

Pack yourself some picnic snacks and your homemade sangria, lay out a blanket under a tree and get those shoes off. Nothing compares to meeting with friends in a park for a few chilled summer drinks. Check out our Phil’s pick of his favourite parks in Vienna, here. And while we didn’t include it in our list of favourite parks for the sake of being different to every other list of Vienna’s parks, don’t forget the vast green fields of Vienna’s biggest park, the Prater.

Plus: check out Vienna Würstelstand’s article on How to make your picnic environmentally friendly, here.



Along the Wienfluss, at Stadtpark

Where: Stadtpark, 1030

We consider this gem of a spot one of the most underrated public spaces in the city. While most summer-lovers flock to the Donaukanal, most of the time – besides a few runners – you’ll find this waterside spot empty. Hanging out actually in the Wien-Kanal which weaves its way through the city – while illegal – is also a popular thing to do in summer amongst some brave locals. But this is the legal alternative for those who freeze at the sound of police sirens, rather than run.

Plus: there’s often a saxophone player busking on the bridge nearby, producing your very own live soundtrack.

Where to get your summer drinks supplies nearby?
You’ll find many shops (including a SPAR supermarket with long opening hours) within the nearby Wien Mitte (Landstraße) train station.



Along the Donaukanal

Where: Donaukanal, 1020/1090/1030

This one’s no secret: The concrete is worn along the water’s edge of the canal from the millions of asses that sit along it every summer, as their owners dangle their feet over the water. There are few specific areas along the Donaukanal that we’d particularly recommend:

For the quiet
Where: Around the U4 Rossauerlände station exit to Friedensbrücke

The shady area around the U4 Rossauerlände U-Bahn station is for those that prefer the waterside setting, minus the bars and the bobos (translation: hipsters). It’s more the sporty end of the Donaukanal where you’ll be dodging bikers, and have the chance to perve on muscly men playing on a playground for adults. It’s also the more green end of the Donaukanal, where you’ll find plenty of lush grass to lie on with your friends.

For a flip flop, short-short, sex-is-in-the-air atmosphere
Where: From the ADRIA beach bar located near the U2/U4 Schottenring station to the Badeschiff on the other side of the Donaukanal

Anywhere along this strip you can hijack the music, and the atmosphere from the numerous surrounding bars. Ninety percent of the time you’ll also have a neighbouring group of pretty people to flirt with.

For a picnic-at-the-beach atmosphere
Where: Just below the Urania There’s a small grass patch just below the Urania (directly across the ocean from the Strandbar Hermann) which is ideal for a picnic. It’s relatively unused, besides by a few fisherman.

Where to get your summer drinks supplies nearby? Nearby Schwedenplatz has plenty of options, including würstel and döner stands, and supermarkets.



The urban garden on the Karlsplatz island: Karls Garten

Where: Treitlstraße 2, 1040

This relatively new urban garden on the Karlsplatz island amidst the traffic is one very cool hang out spot to meet friends. Scattered with comfortable pallet furniture, the public is welcome to sit amongst the rare plant species and insect hotels of the urban garden. With its feeling of being an oasis within a busy urban setting, this really is a unique addition to the city’s public spaces.

Plus: the neighbouring Heuer am Karlsplatz (who are partly responsible for Karls Garten) produces funky beats which can be heard in the garden,

Where to get your summer drinks supplies nearby?
You don’t have to walk far in this part of town to find a place to buy your drinks. Just head into the underground mall of Karlsplatz for all your drinking needs.




Where: Längenfeldgarten, 1120

This cool little urban oasis, located below the U6 U-Bahn line came to its beautiful current state after guerrillas attacked the city – garden guerrillas, that is. The urban garden created by these gardeners, and the green park which neighbours it, is a unique spot outside the Gürtel to meet with friends.

Plus: there’s also a skatepark next to Längenfeldgarten.

Where to get your summer drinks supplies nearby?
There is a Ströck bakery within the nearby U4 Längenfeldgasse U-Bahn station, or you can catch the metro one station to Meidling Hauptstrasse where you’ll find plenty of options to buy your booze.




Where: Donauinsel, 1220

What’s 21 km’s long, green all over and is as narrow as a giraffes thigh? That’s right, the Danube island! Ok, next game – get a picnic blanket, a group of friends, a pillow case filled with cold drinks and head for the island! This is a particularly good option for the really hot days as you can jump into the mighty Danube river for a swim.

Plus: The Donauinsel is one of the few green places in the city where barbecuing is allowed. If you don’t own your own BBQ, there are several public barbecues for use. See here for more info.

Where to get your summer drinks supplies nearby?
Most of the stands selling ice cream also serve beer, while there’s also a backpack beer sellers which hang around here regularly when the weather is hot.



The Rathaus (city hall) gardens

Where: Friedrich-Schmidt-Platz 1, 1010

Lie in the immaculately manicured grass gardens in front of the Rathaus steeples and listen to the concert performances being shown throughout summer on a big-ass screen as part of the Vienna Film Festival. Check the program for the film festival here, to ensure that you like the music on the day you and your friends turn up.

Plus: There are also a range of international cuisines to choose from, from the food stands that occupy the Rathausplatz during this time of year.

Where to get your summer drinks supplies nearby?
If you don’t feel like lining up at one of the food stands in the Film Festival, walk over to the Würstelstände located at Dr. Karl Renner Ring tram and U-Bahn station.



Altes AKH Uni Wien Campus

Where: Universität Wien Campus, Spitalgasse 2, 1090

The walls that surround this uni campus are not only full of knowledge, they also block out the noise from the city bustling outside. For those looking for solace (amongst other things) chilling in the courtyard gardens of the Altes AKH is one of the best spots to do so.

Where to get your summer drinks supplies nearby?
There’s a BILLA within one of the Uni Campus courtyards.



The new WU (Economics University) campus

Where: Welthandelsplatz 1, 1020 (take the U2 U-Bahn line to the station Krieau)

Even if you’re not an economics student and are not the proud owner of one single polo shirt, during the week, the new WU uni campus (the Economics University campus) out in the 2nd district is a very cool spot to meet with friends. Plenty of bench seats are integrated into the sweeping courtyard which sits under the rusty, odd-shaped campus building. With a few restaurants and bars on campus, even outside of the uni semester this is a great spot to meet with friends.

Where to get your summer drinks supplies nearby?
There’s a SPAR supermarket on campus.



Along Vienna’s harbour

Where: Hafen Freudenau, Freudenauer Hafenstraße 14, 1020

Yes, Vienna has a harbour. Bet you didn’t know that! If you carry along the bike track which follows the Danube towards Bratislava (on the 2nd district side), you’ll enter an industrial looking area and come out on the other side where a few boats are docked, a strange boat museum sits on the water, and a neat little bike path carries you alongside the waterside which is fringed by green grass. This is a little secret spot, perfect for a barbecue or chilled parties that carry on late into the summer evenings.

We recommend… getting here by bike. If you’re in the mood for a bike tour before you sit along the water, check out the Vienna Würstelstand’s Tom Harbor Cruise tour, here.

Where to get your summer drinks supplies nearby?
You’ll have to come prepared if you plan to meet friends along the harbour for summer drinks as the next supermarket, or Würstelstand is quite far away.



On the church steps at St-Ulrich-Platz

Where: Sankt-Ulrichs-Platz, 1070

You may have walked past it before, but this is one of those quaint and charming public spaces in Vienna which is used very little. Probably not the ideal and appropriate spot for an outrageous party, but in the shade of the church, this is a nice spot to meet with friends for a few chilled drinks before moving on to one of the many bars in the 7th district.

Where to get your summer drinks supplies nearby?
There is a SPAR supermarket just up the road (in the direction towards the Ringstrasse) on the neighbouring Burggasse.

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