Vienna has over 60 kilometres of public beaches , Source: City Councillor Ulli Sima on Facebook

Vienna - great beaches, 500 km away from the sea

Vienna - great beaches, 500 km away from the sea

As the days grow hotter, people are looking for ways to cool down and, luckily, the Viennese have got the Danube

Despite its location, far away from any coast, Vienna has a lot to offer when it comes to beaches. With the recently published European Environment Agency report on water quality, Austria ranks the highest with 97% of its bathing spots achieving the highest ranking.

At the same time, city authorities have been developing the Danube banks as a trendy beach spot since at least the 1970s and can now offer over 60 kilometres of free water access. This includes sandy banks, shady tree areas, shallow kid-friendly areas, secluded nudist lakes, pontoons, public bathrooms and even some great U-Bahn connections.

Furthermore, authorities are focused on opening more and more of the riverfront to bathers, as they continue to add new areas. Just last year, authorities inaugurated the Pirate Bay (Pirat Bucht), the largest sandy beach in the city, offering 3,500 square metres of sandy goodness.

pirate beachThe new Pirate Beach, Source: Donauinsel on Facebook

Getting your cool on in Viennese summer

The trendiest spot on the Danube is by far Copa Beach – a strip of green banks, sandy beaches, tropical plants and hip restaurants. The Copa Beach has the added benefit of being super close to the city centre, with just a 15-minute U-Bahn ride.

copa beachVienna's trendiest beach - The Copa Beach, Source: CopaBeach on Facebook

Another popular bathing spot is the waters of the Alte Donau, offering 1.6 kilometres of beaches. The artificially built canal is home to rich fresh-water flora, the so-called macrophytes. The area offers 11 larger jetties, equipped with loungers and chairs, as well as a pebble beach, sunbathing areas, green spaces and trees.

rich flora and faunaTadpoles in the Alte Donau, a rich eco-system, Source: City of Vienna

Apart from the heavily urbanised riverbanks close to the heart of Vienna, the local area offers some frankly wild natural spots, in the Viennese part of the Donau-Auen National Park. One is the Panozzalacke – perfectly suited for children, because the water is quite shallow, while the wide sunbathing lawn offers plenty of space to relax and let off steam.

national park lakesThe lakes in Donau-Auen are a great place to escape the hustle and bustle of the Austrian capital, Source: Tourist Info Wien 

The other one is the Dechantlacke – a small lake hidden in a dense forest. The lake has a small island in the middle and is particularly popular with nudists, as it is very secluded.

  secluded lake
Dechantlacke is a very secluded spot and still so close to the city, Source: Tourist Info Wien



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