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What's free in Austria?

Thought a vacation in Austria will cost you a fortune? Not necessarily - Austria’s cities offer uncountable festivals, museums, galleries, sights and activities that are absolutely free of charge.

 © Oesterreich Werbung
For free - all over Austria

• Entrance to most churches, markets, gardens, parks and galleries in Austria: indulge in great architecture, art, shopping and history!

• Because of Austria's long tradition, many folklore festivals take place throughout the year - particularly outside the cities - where Austrian culture and lifestyle can be experienced first hand. Ask your host about festivals in your area.

• Up to the age of 6, children can use public transport for free. In many Austrian cities up to 4 children until the age of 15 travel for free when accompanied by an adult. If you are travelling with kids always ask for special reductions!

• Enjoy Austria's high quality drinking water - not only in your glass but in one of Austria's numerous crystal clear lakes, with water so good you can drink it!

• Around Christmas time - or more precisely - starting in late November, Christmas Markets in many cities and towns all over Austria get you into a festive and cheerful mood!

• The perfect way to usher in the New Year: Vienna, Salzburg, Innsbruck and many other major towns in Austria turn their old city centres into open-air ballrooms. On New Year's Eve watch the fireworks and waltz into the New Year!

Almost for free - all over Austria

• There are a number of discount cards with attractive value-added opportunities. You can explore the splendour and cultural delights of the cities with significant discounts on public transport, sightseeing, shopping, dining, etc.

• When enjoying local foods in Vienna for a steal then go to restaurants called "Wiener Gasthaus". These local taverns serve lunch meals often starting from € 9,-! Or enjoy a good snack at the "Würstelstand". This is a true Austrian institution and should be on every "things-to-do-list" while visiting Austria.

Free concerts/events that are worthwhile a visit:


VIENNA

Summer night concert of the Vienna Philharmonic
Every year in June the Vienna Philharmonic performs an open air concert with free admission in the impressive ambience of the gardens of Schönbrunn Palace. Undoubtedly one of the world's most famous and finest orchestras, the Vienna Philharmonic whishes to provide all Viennese, as well as visitors to the city, with a unique musical experience in Schönbrunn's beautiful baroque gardens for free! www.sommernachtskonzert.at

Vienna open air opera
In April, May, June and September the Vienna State Opera broadcasts selected performances LIVE on a 50m2 LED video screen on Herbert-von-Karajan Square, right next to the opera building. Enjoy opers of Mozart, Strauss, Wagner, Verdi, Puccini and many other great composers for free! www.wien.info

Music Film Festival Vienna in front of Vienna's City Hall (June - September) begins at dawn and entrance is free. For more information visit the website of the Vienna tourist office.

Festival on the Danube Island in Vienna (June 28 - 30, 2013) is Europe's biggest party for young people. For three days a great line-up of stars will entertain the more than two million party-goers on about 20 stages.
www.donauinselfest.at

• Vienna boasts many coffeehouses. Although they are not for free, many offer free piano concerts during the day. Call the Austrian Tourist Office at 02 9299 3621 and get the brochure "Concert Cafés in Vienna" for more information.

• The Museum of Applied Arts (MAK) in Vienna offers free entrance on Tuesdays from 6.00 pm to 10.00 pm.
www.mak.at

October 26 is a special day in Austria. It is not only our National Holiday, on this day most of Vienna's museums also have free entrance!


SALZBURG

Siemens Festival Nights (July 7 - September 2, 2012) is a special treat for classical music lovers: it brings Bayreuth and Salzburg Festival highlights to public viewings and the Internet. The Summer Festival's highlights are broadcast on a large screen set up on Chapter Square (Kapitelplatz) each day for a period of three weeks.

Festival opening party
To celebrate the start of the Salzburg festival over 100 concerts, events and exhibitions are for free on the opening weekend! www.salzburg.info

• The Red Bull Hangar-7 is an absolute must-see in Salzburg. This hip airplane hangar is a mix of airplanes, art gallery and culinary paradise. Every day from 9am - 10pm. Entrance is free.


GRAZ

La Strada (July 27 - August 5, 2012) is a free art festival on Graz' charming streets. The festival presents about 200 street and puppet theatre productions aiming to make Graz laugh, wonder and reflect.
www.lastrada.at

"Aufsteirern" Event in Graz takes place every year in September (September 14 - 16, 2012). For one day, the Old Town of Graz turns into a rural Styrian village. Join the villagers on an exciting "journey" through their province and get acquainted with the great diversity of Styrian customs, traditions and culinary specialties. www.aufsteirern.at (German only)

"Murszene" Jazz concerts at Mariahilferplatz. An extraordinary "for free" music festival that takes place every year from July to August in Graz (July 26 - August 17, 2012). For more information visit the website of the Graz Tourist Office.

Jazz Summer Graz (July 5 - 8, 2012) takes place in the outstanding atmosphere of the "casemates" on the Schlossberg in Graz. Legendary jazz stars perform on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays in July. Superb ambiance, great music and culinary pleasures, what more can you ask for on a warm summer night? For more information visit the website of the Graz Tourist Office.