As the capital of Austria, Vienna simply thrums with culture. Within the throes and hums of daily life here are true gems of experience, life’s little delicacies for those of discerning taste. Any day here should start with a trip to a Viennese coffeehouse, an informal national institution since 1683. Some of the greatest minds of the 20th century — James Joyce, Gustav Klimt and Leon Trotsky, to name a few — gathered here for mélange (espresso with steamed milk and foam) and cake. Once you’re suitably caffeinated, the city is your playground. You might spend the day palace-hopping, exploring the opulent likes of the Hofburg, Schönbrunn and Belvedere palaces — all of which have traded housing royal families for serving as museums in the modern day. Vineyards flourish and stretch just beyond the city center, meaning it’s easy to winery-hop and sample the best the city has to offer.
Your evenings are easily just as indulgent: The Vienna State Opera House has been an elegant institution since 1869, with some of the most popular opera performances in the world gracing its stage to accompany the world-renowned philharmonic orchestra. Should your visit coincide with the winter months, you’ll likely want to attend a Viennese Ball — attendees come from around the world to dress up in their finest formalwear and dance the night away.