I had the pleasure of living right on the Danube River many years ago, just outside of Vienna in a small village called Kritzendorf. Any free time I had, I would fill biking or walking along the banks of the river. The Danube (or Donau in German) is one of those very special rivers in the world.
I would also take the train into Vienna every opportunity I had, sometimes with specific destinations in mind, and other times with the intention of just getting lost in a part of the city I wasn’t familiar with yet. I found some amazing hidden gems that way.
Vienna is brimming with imperial history, having been the centre of the powerful Habsburg monarchy. The Danube Waltz itinerary takes you to some of the really famous landmarks, such as the Ringstrasse, which is the street with the city walls that encompass the city’s central core. You will also have a chance to see incredibly ornate architecture, such as Hofburg Palace, St. Stephan’s Cathedral and the grand Opera House. If wandering the centre on your own, St. Stephan’s (or the Stephansdom) is a great marker to keep you oriented.
You will also have the option to visit the Schönbrunn Palace while in Vienna – something else I would recommend highly. It is truly opulent. The palace is Austria's most frequently visited tourist attraction. Its state rooms with their original furnishings and decorations convey an authentic impression of the imperial lifestyle. The park and gardens surrounding the palace alone make it worth the visit.
One last tip: if you’re a love of ice cream, head to Schwedenplatz (very close to the central core, in the “second district”) – trust me, it will not disappoint!