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EVENTS

Naturally enough, in Vienna the cycle of music festivals is unceasing. In January, New Year concerts consist of lavish balls. February brings Fasching (Carnival), which celebrates the return of spring with masked processions and dances. Corpus Christi (the second Thursday after Whitsun) is heralded with more carnivals, some held on lakes in the Salzkammergut. The Vienna International Festival (from mid-May to mid-June) has a wide-ranging programme of arts and is considered the highlight of the year. Midsummer night's celebrations on 21 June light up the sky with magnificent bonfires.

National Day on 26 October involves lots of patriotic flag-waving. St Nicholas Day, on 6 December, marks the beginning of the Christmas season with parades. Public holidays also include Christmas Day and St Stephen's Day (26 December).

15 Aug - Whit Monday
40 days after Easter - Ascension Day
1 May - Labour Day
1 Jan - New Year's Day
Mar/Apr - Easter Monday
1 Nov - All Saints' Day
26 Oct - National Day
26 Dec - St Stephen's Day
25 Dec - Christmas Day
8 Dec - Immaculate Conception
6 Jan - Epiphany


When to Go

There's almost always something happening in Vienna, making it a year-round destination. Weatherwise you might want to miss January's chill, and July and August's heat - you won't be able to see the Lipizzaners and the Boys' Choir in those summer months anyway. June and September are particularly good times to visit, though you'll find that everyone else thinks so too, making things somewhat busy. As always, it's a good idea to opt for the less-crowded spring/autumn shoulder months of April-May and October-November.



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