It’s not a bad time to visit Vienna. March has a chance of decent spring weather but it’s not peak tourist season, so you miss the crowds that swarm across parts of the city in high summer.
On the other hand, as with February, it’s relatively quiet in terms of major events. Unless Easter happens to fall in March…
Top activities in March 2022
So what little treats does the month offer you that other months might not have?
(This assumes no problems caused by any continuing pandemic. Check official sites nearer the time as the event landscape can obviously change.)
Visit an Easter market
(Eggs at the Freyung Easter market)
The Easter markets typically open around two weeks before the holiday weekend. So with Easter Sunday relatively late in 2022 (April 17th), March may just miss out on its markets this year.
If the stalls do open in late March, then take the opportunity to browse for handicrafts and gifts, but also to sample traditional (and unusual) Austrian fare at the many booths selling food and drink.
For more seasonal entertainment, read the guide to Easter in Vienna.
Buy some vinyl, art…or food
March typically hosts one or two weekend festivals as Vienna slowly emerges from its winter sleep. For example:
A taste of retro
The Ottakringer Vinyl & Music festival (March 4th to 6th in 2022) is a market, fair, exhibition, and gig rolled into one.
Held in a working brewery, it harks back to the days when music was “real” and not this manufactured nonsense the kids listen to these days. Why, I remember when all you needed was a washboard and a…sorry, pass me my slippers.
Actually, the festival combines a retro feel with contemporary dynamism. “Authentic” is the word I’d use.
And if that’s not enough music for you, then the Vienna Blues Spring normally starts up toward the end of the month (2022 dates TBA), with a host of national and international bands, singers, and musicians from the genre.
A taste of the city
If you like a decent loaf in your life, then the Brotfestival (2022 dates TBA if it returns) is a one-day celebration of the baker’s skills. Bakeries from across Vienna, Austria, and beyond collect to showcase their wares and talents.
Film and photo
Put a little Gallic je ne sais quoi into your life at the French film festival (2022 dates TBA, though it moved to June/July in 2021), which features contributions from all over the francophone world.
If you prefer your pictures still, then Foto Wien (March 9th to 27th in 2022) celebrates the medium of photography for two weeks with a whole slew of events, exhibitions, and activities.
Art and design
The Art Vienna fair (March 18th to 20th), a 3-day contemporary art fair, gathers together numerous art galleries and usually features works of international and regional importance, as well as giving a platform to up and coming artists.
And the SPARK Art Fair Vienna, which premiered in 2021, looks set for a sequel from March 24th to 27th.
Browse an exhibition
Vienna always has plenty of art and other exhibitions going on at any one time. We have quite a few months until March 2022, so exhibition schedules remain largely open. But, at the time of writing, you might be able to enjoy, for example:
- The AI exhibition at the Technical Museum, with its exploration of robots and more. Since robots and dinosaurs go together (sort of), try the KinoSaurier exhibition at the Natural History Museum; it essentially deals with “dinosaurs at the movies”
- A poignant exhibition on Nazi art policies at the Wien Museum MUSA
- A major Josef Hoffmann exhibition at the MAK museum. The latter also has the final days of an exhibition on those who taught or influenced Gustav Klimt (until March 13th)
- A Lower Belvedere exhibition examining the influence of Sigmund Freud on the works of Salvador Dalí
- The incomparable David Hockney (at the Kunstforum Wien)
- Exhibitions on the evacuation of Jewish children pre-WWII or the Viennese Rothschilds at the Jewish Museum
- And a twin delight of top-class exhibitions at the Albertina:
- The main house presents around 60 masterpieces by Edvard Munch, as well as later works inspired by him
- And the Albertina Modern has an Ai Weiwei exhibition starting mid-March
Enjoy the spring flowers
It’s all a little dependent on the weather, obviously, but March sees the emergence of the green shoots of spring, with tulips, daffodils, snowdrops, and other flowers perhaps optimistically forcing their way up through the soil.
The municipal gardens department does an excellent job of filling Vienna’s many parks (and roadsides) with spring colour. A couple of tips, if the climate allows:
- The Lainzer Tiergarten is a managed nature protection area with free-roaming deer and wild boar, paths through the woodland, playing areas for kids, and places to eat
- The Vienna woods (Wienerwald) cover the hilly west of the city, with numerous walking trails and restaurants dotted throughout
- The city-run Hirschstetten nursery and botanical gardens remain a well-kept secret
Take your last chance
March is the final full month of the Viennese ball season. And probably your last opportunity to indulge in some winter sports until the end of the year:
- The Wiener Eistraum open-air ice skating experience provisionally runs until March 6th, and the skating season at the open-air rink at the Eislaufverein typically continues into at least part of March
- Vienna’s “local” Alpine ski resort at Semmering may still be open and is suited to a day trip out to the slopes
And if you prefer to get your adrenalin from watching, rather than participating, then the Masters of Dirt freestyle motocross show is scheduled to visit the Stadthalle from March 11th to March 13th.
Treat yourself to a spa day
Finally, with the weather still liable to turn chilly at times, you can always dip into a thermal pool.
The Vienna spa complex (Therme Wien) has various indoor and outdoor pools, a well as the usual array of spa offerings: from Swedish massages to Austrian pastries.