Tourism in Vienna, Austria. The Environment and Attractions. Vacation Packages. Capital of the Republic of Austria and one of Europe's most visited cities, Vienna (Wien) owes much of its charm and rich history to its splendid location on the banks of the Danube River. For centuries the gateway between West and East Europe, it was the natural nucleus of the once sprawling Habsburg Empire, and to this day remains Austria's most important commercial and cultural hub. Vienna continues to attract visitors with its many great historic sights, fabled collections of art, glittering palaces, and exceptional musical heritage that's still carried on in concert halls and one of the world's great opera houses. With an unmistakably cosmopolitan atmosphere, Vienna retains a distinctive charm and flair, accentuated by its fine old architecture, its famous horse-cabs (Fiaker), as well as its splendid coffee houses with their Viennese cakes and pastries. Whether you're looking for places to visit in Vienna for one day or things to do in several days, you'll have plenty of choices in this elegant city. If time permits, considering taking some day trips to explore the beautiful surroundings and nearby cities. Thanks to its setting on the banks of the Danube in the northeastern foothills of the Alps, the area around Vienna offers an abundance of beautiful scenery to explore, from tall mountain peaks to emerald river valleys. The city's central location makes it a convenient base for day trips by train to visit some of the nearby towns and villages, where you'll find magnificent abbeys, opulent palaces, and historic attractions. For a longer rail journey, take the Semmering Railway through picturesque countryside or even travel as far as the beautiful Austrian city of Salzburg. If you're prepared to travel even farther afield, you can add a few cross-border cities to your itinerary, such as Prague and Budapest. From the beautiful Vienna Woods to mountain peaks and from lovely old palaces to exciting day trips by boat, rail, and road, the city offers some of the best scenery in Austria right on its doorstep.