Vienna – one of the greenest capitals in the world

Wien gruenste stadt

What makes Vienna one of the most livable cities in the world? What is the share of green space in Vienna? Which parks are UNESCO World Heritage Sites? Since when has the Prater been open to the public?

Vienna was voted the city with the highest quality of life in the world for the 10th year in a row in 2019 . A large part of this is due to the green areas, which make up almost 50% of the city. These include the many parks, the Vienna Woods, the vineyards and also the agricultural land.

Also in the inner city area we find many parks and gardens, especially along the ring road. With the industrialization in the 19th century. and the rapid population growth, a parcelling of green areas began and a lot was built up.

A quick counter-response of urban planning was the construction of green spaces, as more and more recreational areas became necessary for the population. The Volksgarten and the Stadtpark are among the first public gardens in the inner-city area. Burggarten and Volksgarten as well as the gardens of Belvedere and Schönbrunn are Unesco World Heritage Sites.

The Volksgarten was founded on the initiative of Emperor Franz II/I. built and opened in 1823. Did you know that in the past so-called armchair women collected money for sitting here? Due to the dismantling of the ramparts of the city wall, the park was extended to the Ringstrasse in 1863 and the Rose Parterre was created. The Empress Elisabeth Monument followed in 1905.

The Stadtpark is the most monumental park in Vienna and was created in 1862 during the construction of the Ringstrasse. Here, too, visitors initially had to pay if they wanted to sit down. Probably the most famous and most photographed monument is located here – the golden Johann Strauss monument.

The Burggarten, originally reserved for Emperor Franz Joseph, was opened to the public three years after his death, in 1919. There is also his statue, which was erected here only in 1957. The Palm House and the Butterfly House attract visitors.

The largest park in Vienna with about 6km² is the Prater, the green oasis consisting of alluvial landscape , which was the former hunting ground of the Habsburgs. First mentioned in documents in 1162, the Prater was opened to the public in 1766. Prater, in Latin “Pratum”, means meadow or pasture.

The baroque parks of Belvedere and Schönbrunn impress with the garden art of the 18th century and present unchanged their splendor.

Time Travel Tip: Vienna has many parks in the city center (Volksgarten, Burggarten, Stadtpark) that always invite you to take small breaks.





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