Inevitably there are thousands of events on throughout the year in Vienna. If you’re looking for specific concerts, temporary art exhibitions and similar, simply visit the official listings guide.
The listings can be a little overwhelming, though. So here are links to reviews, photos and official sites for the top annual events and festivals, particularly those that are publicly accessible (i.e. free).
January – March
Slap on your skates at the end of the month for the Wiener Eistraum, which runs through until March. March also usually sees the Easter markets start up, depending on when Easter actually falls. See, for example, the one at Schönbrunn Palace.
April to June
The Easter markets may continue in early April, which is when most of the Vienna Blues Spring music festival takes place. The Argus Bike Festival also takes place in early April, followed by the Styrian Spring festival.
May sees the Fest der Freude , a free concert on Heldenplatz to celebrate the anniversary of the liberation of the city in WWII. The same month also features the Genuss Festival, a three-day food and drink festival in the Stadtpark.
July to September
The Jazz Festival usually extends into July, which also sees the start of the Rathaus Film Festival, with daily public viewings of concerts and performances from various genres of music on the square in front of the Rathaus. The film festival carries on through August.
August is also the traditional month hosting the Waldviertelpur regional festival (moved temporarily to May for 2016), when you can stuff yourself with specialties from one of Austria’s more rural regions. There’s also the Vienna Old Timer Parade, when numerous classic cars parade around the Ring.
The food theme continues in September with the Vienna Harvest Festival (Erntedankfest), while those of a more alternative bent will enjoy the international Buskers Festival and the family-friendly Streetlife Festival.
October to December
October/November is film season with the Viennale, a prestigious international film festival. November marks the start of the Christmas season, notably the wonderful markets (and the modern equivalent – Winter at the MQ). These continue through until December 25th, and often beyond in the form of New Year’s markets. Many people also celebrate New Year’s Eve in Vienna along the Silvesterpfad.