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Best Time to Visit Austria

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Fall colors at Gosauseen Lake in Austria

Gosauseen Lake in Austria

The dramatic Alps, Lake Vienna, and cities bathed in well-preserved history accentuate the allure of Austria and knowing the best time to visit will enhance your adventure.

Discover cities dripping in ornate decor, squares coming to life with concerts and exhibitions along cobbled streets that unfold with rich culture. Embark on countryside journeys that will enrich your soul and open your eyes to fairytale landscapes.

Plan your Austrian visit around the ideal time of year for you, depending on what you desire to experience in a country waiting to be explored.

  1. Best Time for Sightseeing
  2. Best Time for Hiking & Biking
  3. Best Time to Avoid Crowds
  4. Best Time for Arts and Culture
  5. Best Time for Food Experiences
  6. Best Time for Family Travel
  7. Best Time for Couples
  8. Spring and Summer Activities
  9. Fall and Winter Activities
  10. We Can Help You Decide

Best Time for Sightseeing

Belvedere Palace in Vienna, Austria

Belvedere Palace in Vienna, Austria

Best Months:  May • June • September • October

In our view, splitting your time between cities rich in culture and beauty and rolling hills that seem to go on forever is best done from May to June and September to October. Key cities such as must-see Vienna and Salzburg are best enjoyed just outside the high tourist seasons as you will avoid the height of summer in July and August. As summer is quite mild in Austria, it is fine to visit smaller towns and villages at the foot of the Alps at this time. Set out early on your adventures and take time to stop and enjoy the Austrian ambiance.

Best Time for Hiking & Biking

Biking through a valley in the Austrian Alps

Austrian Alps

Best Months:  July • August • September • October

Setting foot on the many trails and tracks in the Austrian mountains and rolling hills is an adventure all its own. Hiking and biking are popular pastimes in Austria, best enjoyed from July to October. Pathways lead visitors through picturesque countryside on the slopes of the Austrian Alps, passing by lakes and quaint villages, or up and over challenging peaks. Follow in the footsteps and tire tracks of professionals as you pace yourself in majestic settings throughout the country. For a more gentle stroll or cycle, take a turn along the banks of the Danube River, admiring streets and stores in a variety of cities and villages along the way.

Best Time to Avoid Crowds

Kufstein in Tyrol, Austria

Kufstein, Austria

Best Months: April • May • September • October

The best time to avoid the crowds in Austria is from April to May or September to October. Summer is popular in Europe, with school breaks offering a longer getaway period, so consider traveling before or after the high season to avoid the crowds. Key sites in major cities stand ready to welcome visitors any time of the year, but planning your visit in the shoulder season will give you a wonderful chance to wander the halls of Schonbrunn Palace in Vienna, the Mozart Museum in Salzburg, or discover dramatic Kufstein in Tirol.

Best Time for Arts and Culture

Vienna Film Festival in Austria

Vienna Film Festival in Austria. Photo courtesy of Austrian National Tourist Office / Julius Silver

Best Months: May • June • July • August • September • October

From breathtaking ballets to outstanding art exhibitions and glitzy film festivals, Austria has a dynamic cultural vibe and many cities and towns across the country offer a taste of the arts from May to October. You can visit during key festivals and cultural events that appeal to you. Explore Vienna in October to experience the Viennale Film Festival or the Wiener Festwochen, a cultural celebration of Austrian history that takes place between May and June. Fall music and art festivals create a vibrant ambiance along riverbanks and in towns such as idyllic Innsbruck.

Best Time for Food Experiences

Dinner by the lake in Velden am Wörthersee in the Carinthia region of Austria

Velden am Wörthersee, Austria. Photo courtesy of Kärnten Werbung / Tine Steinthaler

Best Months: May • June • August • September • October

Let your senses of smell and taste whisk you away at one of Austria’s favorite food festivals, or discover award-winning restaurants or other culinary delights from May to June or August to October. Food festivals invite patrons to try an array of local dishes, with entertainment accompanying every bite. Vienna’s largest food festival takes place in May and the Gourmetfestival in Scheffau in gorgeous Tirol attracts an enthusiastic crowd in September. For an out-of-this-world experience, consider enjoying a meal high upon a mountain with views of the Dachstein Massif or on a boat on Grundlsee Lake as summer winds down.

Best Time for Family Travel

Mother with daughters in a infinity pool in the Austrian Alps

Austrian Alps

Best Months:  May • August • September • October

While most families tend to visit Austria during the summer vacation months, consider planning your visit slightly before or after this key travel time to enjoy all the fun Austria has to offer in May or from August to October. Ensuring you get to experience it all, avoid crowds, and take advantage of open spaces, you can enjoy the snowcapped mountains just before the end of the season or embrace the overall cultural adventures of Vienna. Whether walking fascinating city streets or running through countryside parks, exploring captivating caves or finding pristine alpine lakes, Austria is an amazing destination for families.

Best Time for Couples

Couple at a farmstead with flowers in Albach, Austria

Albach, Austria. Photo courtesy of Alpbachtal Tourismus / Bernhard Berger

Best Months: March • April • May • September • October • November

What could be more romantic than the sight of red-brick roofs standing out against a landscape splashed green or blue or castles and palaces rising above quaint village homes as you enjoy Austria from March to May or September to November. By avoiding the busy summer and focusing on quiet hillside escapes or refreshing lake sojourns, you can indulge in the blissfully romantic ambiance of spring or autumn. Enjoy brisk strolls along the Danube or cozy up in a mountainside retreat, with every excursion and activity creating an unforgettable memory during your Austria trip.

Spring and Summer Activities

Kayaking at Gosauseen Lake in Upper Austria

Gosauseen Lake in Upper Austria

Best Months: April • May • August

The mild Austrian climate makes it the ideal destination to explore and experience outdoor activities, with April to May and August proving the most ideal time to visit. The warm days and pleasant nights allow for a comfortable and inviting chance to discover river-side strolls, city ambles, and countryside activities. Sidewalk cafes and picnics by the lake add to the excitement of hopping from a bustling city like Vienna or Salzburg to a village gem such as Hallstatt, with the great weather acting as a welcome gift.

Key Activities: Hiking • Biking • Kayaking • Mountaintop Dining • Village Walks • Concerts • Art and Food Festivals

Fall and Winter Activities

Skiing in the near Kitzbühel in Tyrol Province, Austria

Kitzbühel, Austria

Best Months: October • November •  December

Picture a cozy cottage in a fairytale snowy scene and dramatically silent white-capped peaks that offer a blissful feel to your stay from October to November. Winter sees sports enthusiasts flock to the Austrian mountains for snowboarding and skiing. Quaint villages and towns glisten as Christmas lights warm the chilly days and nights, while locals share fables and delicious cuisine with visitors. Imagine a beautiful pathway before you, the Danube on the one side and local stalls and cafes on the other, as you stroll along in fall leaves or winter frost.

Key Activities: Skiing • Snowboarding • Art Festivals • Walking Tours • Christmas markets

We Can Help You Decide

Hallstatt, Austria

Hallstatt, Austria

Austria is a gem and with so much to see and experience, knowing the best time to take advantage of important considerations such as fewer crowds, ideal weather, and key events can only enhance your adventure. Find information for your ideal trip to Austria with our Austria Travel Guide or discover inspiration with our sample Austria Tours & Vacations. Fill out a Trip Request or call 1-888-265-9707 to speak to one of our Austria Travel Specialists.

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