Vienna’s Mariahilfer Strasse, Now Filled with Pedestrian Joy

This little clip features one of my favorite streets (Mariahilfer Strasse) in one of my favorite cities (Vienna), with one of my favorite guides (Wolfgang Hoefler). In a short chat we learn how the Green Party’s initiative turned a formerly congested street into a peaceful, community-building pedestrian zone. We also get some insight into the dynamics of Austrian politics (where there is also thunder on the right), and even watch members of the no-longer-fearsome Austrian army licking ice cream cones.

While there are more stately and elegant streets in Vienna’s central district, the best opportunity to simply feel the pulse of workaday Viennese life is along Mariahilfer Strasse. (If you visit, an easy plan is to ride the U-3 subway line to the Zieglergasse stop, then stroll and browse your way downhill to the MuseumsQuartier subway station.)

This is Day 52 of my 100 Days in Europe series. As I research my guidebooks and make new TV shows, I’m reporting on my experiences and lessons learned in Vienna, the Alps, the Low Countries, England, and beyond. Find more right here on my travel blog.


4 Replies to “Vienna’s Mariahilfer Strasse, Now Filled with Pedestrian Joy”

  1. My favorite Vienna hotels are just off Mariahilferstrasse, so I know it well. Yes, it was noisy and crowded as you say, Rick. The change to a pedestrian and bicycle mall is amazing and wonderful. I look forward to enjoying it the next time I’m in Vienna, my favorite city too.

  2. This helps me relive my wonderful time in Vienna last June-July while on your Berlin Prague Vienna tour! Hi to Wolfgang who was our local guide. I have been looking at my photos of the trip and enjoying my memories and can’t wait to go back especially Vienna’s Kunsthistorisches Museum. I would love to return to Berlin and Prague as well.
    Thanks for your wonderful work, Rick!
    Judy B of Atlanta

  3. Wow! You just sent all of us a sunny picture postcard of Vienna the way we would love to revisit it! Love those pedestrian zones and the way Europeans have for decades invested in the urban core of their cities: an early example for me was Blois in France, where professionals had both offices and homes in the same central buildings just off a main street. For years I have asked my wife why we weren’t living like this: the answer–grandchildren!

  4. My husband and I just returned from your tour of Berlin, Prague, and Vienna. We had a most enjoyable time; I especially loved Vienna. We had Wolfgang as our local tour guide, and he was our favorite local guide–knowledgeable, funny and entertaining. We found it amusing how he and our tour guide, Carlos, teased each other. (The German vs the Austrian)
    Cheri and Fred from Portland

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