No one does coffee quite like they do in Vienna. Vienna’s many historic cafes are most often over-the-top elegant with plush seating, rich hardwood interiors and high ceilings, but the best coffee these days come from the small, independent roasters. Just off Mariahilf’s main shopping street, Mariahilfstrasse, Kaffemik sits on a small side street with a picture-perfect, pretty interior of blue-tiled walls and simple elegance. The cosy little cafe (it’s very small!), offers a rotating selection of Europe’s best independent roasts.
Vienna’s best outdoor market is at the heart of the Mariahilf district. Naschmarkt has operated since the 16th century as a foodie market where foods and food products were sold. Today, the pedestrian street is peppered with gourmet restaurants, outdoor seating (year-round, even!), flower stalls and cafes. On Saturdays, the Naschmarkt comes alive with a flea market. Don’t miss the pedestrian street lights which feature same-sex couples—a nod to the neighborhood’s many LGBT establishments and a reminder of Austria’s longstanding commitment to LGBT rights.
Thanks to the diverse and international variety of locals living in Mariahilf, there are countless international restaurants in the area. Take a stroll down Mariahilfstrasse for a taste of everything from modern Greek food at Mythos Restaurant to experimental sushi at DOTS. For weekend brunch, don’t miss Restaurant MiLL. The picturesque garden and kitschy interiors complement the tasty and eclectic menu.
Mariahilf is the type of place where all your senses can get overloaded. From walking around the Naschmarkt, smells of fresh fruit and flowers combine with the low murmur of the street vendors and customers haggling prices. Your eyes jump from delicious cakes to colourful textiles and diverse faces. Affordable street food is sold almost everywhere, with sweets and chocolates being a temptation along the way. Your fingers are an active part of this whole experience: testing fruit to know if it’s ripe, hunting hidden treasures in the tents of the flea market.
If you walk south from the famous Vienna State Opera, crossing the Museumsquartier (a popular plaza for street performers and leisurely coffee visits), you’ll enter the busy Mariahilferstrasse where you can shop everything from major fashion brands to small boutiques. There’s even the Hemp Embassy—a clean and informational education centre about marijuana plants.
Most of Mariahilf’s street life (besides the commercial and buzzy Naschmarkt), takes place along Mariahilferstrasse. Sit and relax in the many cafes and restaurants (especially along Zollergasse and Neubaugasse) before a visit to the small park in the centre of Mariahilf, the Esterhazypark—a cosy green space for enjoying the local street life. The Richard-Waldemar-Park is also worth a visit, a tiny park with urban gardens and huge murals. Take special note of the architecture here—the unique Viennese facades and the iconic Church of Mariahilf—a baroque parish with six chapels decorated with frescoes.
“Mariahilf is the epitome of modern Vienna – dynamic, young and stylish. Particularly the area between Vienna’s longest and most lively shopping street, Mariahilfer Strasse, and its trendy “sister” Gumpendorfer Strasse is an inspiring hub and well worth a visit. Here you will find an eclectic mix of shops and art galleries, from traditional coffeehouse culture to local fashion design and trendy concept stores. Find a seat in one of the small independent cafes, enjoy a delicious traditional Viennese coffee (or handcrafted cocktail) and watch local life pass by”.
Helena Hartlauer, Media Relations Manager at Vienna Tourist Board