Spanish Riding School

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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

    1. The Lipizzaner

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

  • Haute Ecole

    2. 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

    3. 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

    4. 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

    5. 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.

Planning Your Visit

  • 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.

Other Sightseeing Options in Spanish Riding School

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What people are saying about Spanish Riding School

Overall rating

4.3 / 5

based on 5,758 reviews

It seemed hard to hop on and off as there is too much to see at certain stops and it would be a challenge to match Dutch visits with the bus schedule. However, just staying on the red and blue routes throughout (60 min each) provides an excellent overview of the city as the bus drives through key areas with the general commentary from the audio guide on board. Highly recommend taking the premium package including the additional 2.5 hour walking tour (the guide Charles is fantastic) and evening bus tour (60 min, with live commentary by Charles). Overall, a must if you are visiting Vienna!

Highly recommend this mini tour and what I recommend the most is Stephen like the church ;) he really made my day in Vienna, I didn’t know where to begin my journey to explore and that’s was the best start I could do. Go see Stephen and his knowledge of where he was born and grew up.

Very nice and competent lady who made the city walk. She said a lot of interesting things about Vienna and also dealt thoroughly with specific questions. I can only recommend everyone to do something like this.

A great and entertaining tour through the city center with lots of interesting information. Highly recommended even if you are not in Vienna for the first time!

Very interesting tour with a very personable guide and exciting facts - highly recommended!