Every October, ORF hosts a “Long Night at the Museums”. On this evening, museums all over Vienna (and cities across Austria) open at 6pm and stay open until 1am.
The special ticket, about 13 Euros (reduced price for children), gives you an all access pass to every participating museum in Vienna between 6pm and 1am. You can museum hop all over town with a small booklet outlining every museum and its offerings in English. Some museums are notable while others are quirky sites where some people would never consider a closer look. ORF provides buses at many stops to shuffle museum goers between locations.
This year, we began with an early dinner followed by the Egyptian/Greek and Roman exhibits at the Kunsthistorisches Museum. Then, we walked over to Heldenplatz and ran into the Welt Museum with its “Franz is Here” exhibit about Franz Ferdinand’s world travels. The Welt Museum is connected to the Neue Burg so we continued walking along the corridors do some interesting armory exhibits among many others and another on an excavation of Epheseus.
We continued walking around and ended up at the Papyrus Museum, the Globe Museum and the Esperanto museum which was interesting, quirky and small. They had a demonstration of Klingon and the exhibit itself focused on a brief history of the Esperanto movement. A short film in English was available to visitors.
In case you are curious, there were plenty of children out and about with their parents fairly late into the evening. Certain museums hosted children’s programs (in German). In the Neue Burg, they were providing the opportunity for children to try on medieval armor. I also heard about the Dental Museum offering programs about dental hygiene for those with “brushing challenges”. Please note that if you plan to museum hop with kids, you may want to pick a certain area to avoid having them tire out too quickly.
Would I have paid to visit some of the lesser known museums on an average day? Probably not. But they were well worth discovering for the regular price of a ticket to the Kunsthistoriches museum.
The booklet in English is available here free of charge to use as a guide to explore Vienna’s plethora of museums year round.