The Donauturm

The tallest structure in Austria

A view of up to 80 kilometres, a viewing platform protected from the elements by glass, and a revolving restaurant: the Donauturm (“Danube tower”) in the district of Kaisermühlen shouldn’t be missed. At 252 metres it’s still Austria’s tallest construction, and one of Vienna’s landmarks.

“Unbelievable but true: from the lowest point of the city you have a sensational view!” The Donauturm is, at 252 metres, one of Austria’s tallest structures and offers fantastic views over Vienna and as far as the Alps.

The Donauturm was built in 1964 for the International Garden Exhibition. As a vantage point on the plains, surrounded by mountains, the Donauturm was initially subjected – unfairly – to quite a bit of ridicule. But on clear days the view stretches well into the Danube Valley in the west, to the Rax and Schneeberg mountains in the south, as well as to Bratislava in the east.

 

 

A striking feature of the Donauturm are the two turrets on the upper third of the tower

the lower, flatter of the two is a viewing platform, the broad cylinder above a two-storeyed revolving restaurant. There is a choice of two ways to reach them: if you have the stamina you’ll have no problem climbing the 776 steps to the viewing platform at a height of 150 metres – you don’t need to break the record of 3.31 minutes!

 Vienna from above

 Danube tower

 Park with family

More relaxed – although you may find your ears popping – are the two elevators which reach the dizzy heights in only 35 seconds. And if the altitude gives you an appetite, take a seat in either of the revolving restaurants. These are situated at altitudes of 160 and 170 metres, take between 30 and 60 minutes for one revolution, and serve good Viennese cuisine.

If you can’t get down fast enough after all of these vistas, you can plunge fearlessly in the direction of the earth: bungee jumpers leap 152 metres downward from a platform which protrudes eight metres from the viewing deck, suspended only by a rubber cord – a sight which can make even spectators feel queasy.

Text: Kornelia Kopf, Fotos: Christine Wurnig