1. Austrian National Library -Österreichische Nationalbibliothek
Amassing a collection of over 7.4 million books, the Austrian National Library is a must visit and not just for book lovers. Constructed in the 18th century by the Habsburgs, it was known as the Imperial Library before being renamed in 1920. The Prunksaal – State Hall – of the library is actually part of the Hofburg palace and is a true work of art. The hall is divided into half, signifying peace and war and features elaborate fresco on the wall and the dome by Daniel Gran.
2. The Albertina
A treasure trove for art history lovers,the Albertina is home to various works of art including, 1 million masterprints of old works of art, around 65,000 drawings as well as modern art,photographs, architectural drawings and graphic works. With masterpieces from artists like the Dürer's “Hare”, Monet, Picasso, Katz, Rothko, Chagall and more,the Albertina is said to have the most valuable and largest collection of art. The Albertina itself is a work of art and is located in the Southern side of the Imperial Palace, near the last fortress walls.
3. The Belvedere
Used as Prince Eugene's summer residence,the Belvedere is a breathtaking garden palace that was skillfully crafted by Johann Lukas von Hilderbrandt. An avid art connoisseur, Prince Eugene collected various masterpieces of Austrian art from the early middle ages. From beautiful sculptures to drawings and paintings, the Belvedere is also a historic,architectural work of art. Much of the building has remained untouched and ithouses one of the largest collections for medieval studies in architecture and art.
4. The 21er Haus
Vienna is renowned for its architecture and the 21er Haus museum is one of the most interesting pieces of architecture you will find. Created by Karl Schwanzer who received the title of Grand prixd'Architecture for his design, the 21er Haus museum opened in 1958. In 2011, it underwent a makeover by Adolf Krischanitz and Hermann Czech who restored the original design and made tasteful, modern additions such as the café-restaurant that overlooks the sculpture gardens and the cinema. Today, the 21er Haus museum houses art collections from 1945 to the current day.
5. The Natural History Museum - Naturhistorisches Museum
With sculptures that are 36,000 years old to dinosaur fossils and an exhibition of the oldest meteorites in the world,the Naturhistorisches Museum in Vienna is a must see in Vienna. Started by the Habsburgs, the vast collections are indeed a labor of love and you can find minerals and gems to insects and pterodactyls all housed within one roof here.
Our top 5 museum picks contain museums that not only house centuries of valuable artifacts, they're also a huge part of Vienna's history.
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Photocredits: 123rf & Pixabay