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Spanish Riding School
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Spanish Riding School: Tours & Tickets

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Vienna's Spanish Riding school: Top 5 facts

Vienna's Spanish Riding School allows you to relive the prestige and sophistication of centuries past. Here are five fascinating facts about its history, which render the Spanish Riding School the only remaining dressage institution of its kind in the world.

The Lipizzaner

The Lipizzaner

The majestic white stallions of the Spanish Riding School are all Lipizzaner, Europe's oldest domesticated breed of horse.

Haute Ecole
Photo: macstre@flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Haute Ecole

The Spanish Riding School is the only institution in the world where the prestigious, 400-year-old equestrian tradition of the haute école is still practiced in its original form.

Sublime Performances
Photo: John Harwood@flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Sublime Performances

Accompanied by classical music, the riders and horses perform highly intricate ballets, with such magnificent feats as pirouettes, passages and piaffes, as well as amazing jumps.

Years of Training
Photo: Jeffrey Avery@flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Years of Training

At the Spanish Riding School, in order to reach the required level of excellence, a horse must undergo 6 years of training, whereas riders train for 10 to 12 years.

Spectacular Riding Hall
Photo: Daniel Stockman@flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Spectacular Riding Hall

The hall where the performances are held, widely regarded as the world's most beautiful riding hall, was built by eminent baroque architect Joseph Emanuel Fischer in the 1730s.

Our insider tips

Choosing the right ticket

Note that there are different options for visiting the Spanish Riding School, including taking a tour of the stables, watching the morning exercises and, of course, witnessing one of the performances. The availability of each option is also dependent on schedule, so make sure to carefully consider the choices to avoid disappointment.

Summer holidays

The horses and riders have their summer break in July and August. It's best to get informed about the exact dates of the break prior to your visit, as it's not possible to watch a performance during the school's summer holidays.

A sweet finishing treat

Cap your day of Viennese tradition by grabbing a slice of delicious Sachertorte at the café on your way out.

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    The Visitor Center is open Monday through Sunday 9:00AM to 4:00PM. Performance times vary.
  • Is it expensive?
    Adult tickets start at €14 and go up depending on performances and tours selected.
  • Will I need a guide?
    A guide is not necessary.
  • How to get there
    Take the U3 train to Herrengasse or trams 1, 2, D or J to Burgring.
  • Additional information

    • Children under three are not admitted.

    • Each performance is about an hour, and you'll need to secure tickets well in advance.

What people are saying about Spanish Riding School

Overall rating
4.3 / 5
based on 4,786 reviews

Nothing too exciting but an insight of how the horses are cared for

We visited the stables after we had seen the show, there was a wait in the main entrance where other people were also queuing up for other events so it got busy at times. We were grouped with a good English speaking guide and taken into the arena and then around the main stable block, we were asked NOT to take photos and were only permitted to in the tack room. We were able to see the horses feed in their individual stables and the guide gave us a brief commentary about the horses answering questions as we walked through, you kind of got the feeling that we were in the way as the grooms were trying to go about their daily routine with groups of people standing around. Under no circumstances were you allowed to touch the horses, but the experience overall was interesting and informative.

Vienna Spanish Riding School Guided Tour Reviewed by

Lovely hour spent watching Lippizaner training session.

Exactly what it said on tin. Lippizaner training session from 10am to 12pm but an hour was all we needed. You won’t see horses doing the formations they do in show but you will see them practicing moves on an individual basis. Lovely to watch. Although we purchased on line tickets still had to queue to exchange it for a paper ticket.

Vienna: Spanish Riding School Morning Exercise Reviewed by

One of the world's greatest horse experiences.

The Lipizzaners can live until the age of 24 so there is a mix of young horses in training and older fully trained on show. That also applies to riders and makes it interesting to witness the different development stages. Initially it may seem repetitive but the longer you can stay the more meaningful it becomes. Highly recommended.

Vienna: Spanish Riding School Morning Exercise Reviewed by

The show met my expectations from a childhood dream to see the Lipizza

On the second tier we looked down on the horses from a higher level than anticipated. Also I had hoped there would be live music. Still, seeing these horses perform so elegantly was wonderful fulfillment of a childhood fantasy that began with a Walt Disney movie about the horses.

Interesting to observe how the training session is organised.

The arena was very busy. The ticket advised staying 20 minutes. However many people stayed much longer making it difficult to find a place where a good view could be accessed. I feel some management by the facility is needed to make observation more accessible and fairer.

Vienna: Spanish Riding School Morning Exercise Reviewed by

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