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Top 8 Things to Do in Austria with Family

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Family hiking in Hohe Tauern National Park, Austria

Hohe Tauern National Park, Austria

Austria is a wonderland of adventure, with a storybook ambiance that offers fun for the entire family, and our top eight things to do in Austria with kids can make your experience that much more rewarding.

Explore palaces with captivating gardens, delve into the unique world of caves, or simply marvel at the beauty of buildings and the grandeur of landscapes. Take a step back in time as you explore a truly inspiring destination, from historic cityscapes to hidden countryside gems.

Take a moment to uncover Austria’s delights with your family, from taking in the rolling hills to viewing one of the highest mountains in the world on an adventure-filled journey.

  1. 1. Wander Royal Palaces
  2. 2. Explore Captivating Caves
  3. 3. Spend the Day in an Open-Air Museum
  4. 4. Hike the Winding Trails
  5. 5. Hit the Ski Slopes
  6. 6. Explore Fairytale Realms and Villages
  7. 7. Learn About Austrian Cuisine
  8. 8. Wander Through Christmas Markets
  9. Experience the Top Things to Do in Austria with Kids

1. Wander Royal Palaces

Hohensalzburg Fortress in Salzburg, Austria

Hohensalzburg Fortress in Salzburg, Austria

Let your kids wander the grounds and hallways of some of the most scenic and fairytale-like palaces and fortresses in one of the world’s most picturesque countries.

Vienna boasts a large number of palaces, ranging in size and shape, all offering adventures and activities for young visitors. Kids have the option to visit a ‘children’s museum’ within the Schonbrunn Palace, for example, complete with dress-up and immersive experiences.

Dramatic mountains and glistening lakes set the scene for grand castles and magical palaces throughout Austria, creating a natural playground for families with children of all ages to discover past wonders, regal architecture, and the drama of history.

Best Places to Wander the Grounds and Hallways of Royal Palaces: Schonbrunn Palace • Hohensalzburg Fortress • Hofburg Palace • Salzburg Fortress

2. Explore Captivating Caves

Dachstein Cave in the Austrian Alps

Dachstein Cave in the Austrian Alps

Step into a world of mystery as you walk through glistening ice caves and stark salt mines, exploring dramatic settings that whisk you into different worlds.

Resembling a scene from a fairy tale, where sheer rock faces, dangling stalactites, and bold stalagmites decorate magnificent spaces, inquisitive travelers of all ages will be intrigued.

Explore underground wonders on a whirlwind journey deep into hillsides and wind your way down into the center of the Earth on a magical journey through one of Austria’s treasured experiences.

Best Caves to Visit: Eisriesenwelt Caves • Hallstatt Salt Mine • Altaussee Salt Mine • Dachstein Caves • Obir Stalactite Caves

3. Spend the Day in an Open-Air Museum

Römerstadt Carnuntum Archeological Park in Austria

Römerstadt Carnuntum Archeological Park. Photo courtesy of Lower Austria Tourism / Andreas Hofer

Let your family discover Austria’s fascinating past at open-air museums, where history and fun mix perfectly in the country’s best places to visit. Options to learn as they play outdoors will entertain children of any age.

The open-air museums take nature conservation seriously and young visitors will have a chance to see plants and herbs of days gone by thriving, while animals graze nearby.

From classic Austrian architecture and archeological displays to giant sculptures in a large garden, visiting an open-air museum is a wonderful way to spend a sunny day in Austria.

Best Open-Air Museums to Visit: Römerstadt Carnuntum Archeological Park • Stübing Open Air Museum • Bertoni’s Open-Air Museum, Winden am See • Salzburg

4. Hike the Winding Trails

Welterbeblick skywalk in Hallstatt, Austria

Welterbeblick skywalk in Hallstatt, Austria. Photo courtesy of Austria National Tourism Office / Viorel Munteanu

Picture rolling hills draped in green hues, tall trees scattered across the undulating landscape, and plenty of fresh air in which your entire family can bask when taking to hiking and walking trails in Austria.

Take a stroll on gentle pathways that wind their way through lush landscapes or take the family on a hike along some of the country’s most popular kid-friendly trails, with attractions such as grottos and tunnels to admire along the way.

Lakes make the perfect stopover for a picnic and provide fantastic panoramas from which to enjoy the scenery, while a walk on the Hallstatt Skywalk will take your breath away.

Best Trails to Hike: Rosengartenschlucht, Tyrol • Senn’s Wonder Walking Trail, St Anton am Arlberg • Triassic Trail, Waidring • Wood Trail, Zell am Ziller • Hallstatt

5. Hit the Ski Slopes

Skiing in Tyrol, Austria

Skiing in Tyrol, Austria

In winter, skiing and other activities along the snow-white slopes capture the magic of Austria.

Family-friendly resorts and hotels can be found throughout the country, with some offering ski kindergartens or dedicated ski schools for children. Youngsters can take to a variety of slopes and slants to suit each level.

From tobogganing and skiing to indoor activities with a child-friendly team, enjoying a winter vacation in the Austrian hills is a wonderful adventure for the whole family.

Best Places for Skiing: Galtür, Tyrol • Serfaus-Fiss-Ladis • Hauser Kaibling, Schladminger Tauern • Leogang, Zell am See

6. Explore Fairytale Realms and Villages

Crystal Dome at Swarovski Crystal World in Austria

Crystal Dome at Swarovski Crystal World in Austria. Photo courtesy of Swarovski Kristallwelten

Step into a mini world of wonder or spend time in the countryside where witches are said to roam as you and your family explore the fairy-tale-filled destinations in Austria.

Magic comes in unique and surprising ways in Austria, as you uncover the gems that create the perfect ambiance for families of all ages.

Uncover the sparkle of the country as fairy tales spring to life along winding roads and in stunning villages as you uncover unique ways to make magical memories.

Best Fairytale Villages to Visit: Minimundus, Klagenfurt • Hexenwasser, Söll • Hirschalm Fairytale Farm • Swarovski Crystal Museum, Innsbruck

7. Learn About Austrian Cuisine

Cookie baking class at Tassenbacherhof in Strassen, Austria

Cookie baking class at Tassenbacherhof in Strassen, Austria. Photo courtesy of Austria National Tourism Office / Robert Maybach

What could be more fun than learning how to bake cookies or delicious local favorites in an Austrian kitchen? Cooking classes for kids are fully interactive and fun.

Take your time as you sift through ingredients and follow the careful instructions of your tutor as you move from savory to sweet, creating dishes such as goulash and apple strudel, both local delights in Austria.

Enjoy your wares in-class or take them away for later as you pride yourself on a job well done and enjoy fond memories of a fun family day in an Austrian kitchen.

Best Places for a Cooking Class: Salzburg • Vienna • Innsbruck

8. Wander Through Christmas Markets

Christmas market in Vienna, Austria

Christmas market in Vienna, Austria

Take your family through glistening lights, glitz, and glamour as you wander through city squares and town alleys alive with Christmas joy.

Visit stalls for fun gift options and ideas, and sip some hot chocolate while listening to carols. The magic of the season comes to life with giant Christmas trees reaching for the heavens and life-size nativity scenes guided by stars in a brisk night sky.

From Vienna to Salzburg, you can spend your festive vacation in the best places to spend Christmas in Austria for a dreamy winter escape in Europe.

Best Places for Christmas Markets: Graz • Innsbruck • Salzburg • Vienna

Experience the Top Things to Do in Austria with Kids

Village with mountain in the background in Tyrol, Austria

Tyrol, Austria

Explore Austria's fascinating culture, breathtaking scenery, and historical treasures as a family, with each new experience ensuring you have an enriching and fun trip across the country. Unlock secrets and sights in fairy-tale villages, gilded cities, and regal castles that will leave lasting impressions of your Austrian family adventure.

For more information about your trip, take a look at our Austria travel guide or browse itinerary ideas with our Austria family vacations and tours.

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