Prague to Vienna by train
Romantic Prague and grandiose Vienna have been twinned together for centuries. When Mozart felt hurt and unloved in Austria, he relocated to the Czech capital. When Czechs were looking for employment during the Habsburg Era, they often found it in Vienna. With a Eurail Pass, you can compare two of the most dynamic capitals on your own schedule. There are several options for how and when to get there and numerous side-trips and possible stop-offs along the way from Prague to Vienna.
How to get from Prague to Vienna by train
There are two ways to get from Prague to Vienna. One option is to go via the eastern part of the Czech Republic. Another option is to go via Linz, an Austrian city, west of Vienna. All direct trains usually take four hours and 45 minutes (the night train takes just over six hours and requires a reservation). The second route is perfect if you want to start out by exploring the many castles of the Czech Republic, or the beautiful Danube hills west of Vienna.
Getting to the right Prague train station
All trains to Vienna leave from Prague’s main train station, Praha hlavní nádraží. Located in the heart of the Czech capital, it is about five minutes by foot from the top of Wenceslas Square.
Arriving in Vienna
Vienna has several train stations. Most trains from Linz terminate at Wien Westbahnhof, west of Vienna’s historic center, or Innere Stadt. Here’s the good news. All Viennese train stations are directly connected to the city’s extensive public transportation network. Your Eurail Pass provides free transportation on all S-Bahn train lines in Vienna.
Two great stopovers on the way from Prague to Vienna
The small city of Linz has an oversized cultural footprint. Mozart composed one symphony here and Beethoven another. The narrow lanes and beautiful historic buildings of the well-preserved Old Town, host numerous cultural festivals and special events today. Overdose on music at Europe’s newest opera house which opened in 2013. Check out the stunning Lentos Kunstmuseum, a major contemporary art gallery. Afterwards, track down a world-famous local delicacy at the source. Linzer Torte isa cake made of crunchy pastry, filled with an ocean of sweet and sour red-currant jam. The old town is a short walk from Linz’s main train station, Linz Hauptbahnhof.
Central Europeans have celebrated this city for its renowned perník, or gingerbread. Pardubice has a right to exclusively produce its favorite sweet in 1759. Today, you can’t walk two blocks without spotting a gingerbread stand in Pardubice. And even more frequently seeing signs for the local beer, Pernštejn (also try Pardubický Porter, even tastes like the gingerbread). Enjoy an afternoon in Pardubice on the perfectly preserved, Renaissance square. Or use it as a base for exploring the mountains of east Bohemia.