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St. Stephen's Cathedral
Holiday Travel Guide

Ancient, glorious and shot-through with history, this Gothic pinnacle makes the skyline of central Vienna its own.

Commanding the heart of the Inner Stadt, St Stephen's Cathedral rises from the centre of Vienna like a ghostly reminder of the medieval city that once spread around it. With its frosted-white Gothic tower soaring 136 metres into the sky and its vibrant zigzag tiled roof featuring the Habsburg double-headed eagle, it's an unmistakeable icon of the capital. And with a history stretching back to Roman times, every brick, tile and statue has a tale to tell about this imperial city.

The story of St Stephen's traditionally starts with the Romanesque church built here in the 12th century. But recent diggings have shown that a Roman cemetery was sited here in the 4th century. The church was dedicated to St Stephen – the first Christian martyr – in 1147, but it was largely destroyed by a terrible fire in 1258. The western gate, and its two Romanesque windowed-towers, survived however.

The fabulous Gothic needle of the north tower was completed in 1443, and its white spire can be seen from most of Vienna. That made it an invaluable watch-tower during Vienna's two major sieges. Once blackened by pollution, recent restoration has seen its limestone returned to its pristine-white condition.

There is much to be seen inside St Stephen's too. The eye is drawn first to the marble Baroque High Altar, with its scene of the stoning of St Stephen. On the left side of it is the beautifully carved and gilded Wiener Neustädter Altar, dedicated to the Virgin Mary. And to its right is the red marble tomb of the man who commissioned it – Emperor Frederick III – with its 240 finely sculpted statues.

Other highlights include the dark depths of the catacombs (home to 11,000 skeletons) and the Ducal Crypt, where 78 bronze urns contain remains of the Habsburg family. More spiritually uplifting, though, is the Maria Pötsch Icon. This weeping painting of the Madonna came from a Hungarian village. It hasn't wept since it arrived, but many believe that it once helped saved the city – and St Stephen's – from Turkish invasion.

2233 Cheap Hotels Near St. Stephen's Cathedral

Hotel Sacher Wien
Hotel Sacher Wien
5 out of 5
Philharmonikerstrasse 4, Vienna, Vienna
The price is NZ$528 per night from 13 Mar. to 14 Mar.

This family-friendly Vienna hotel is located in the historical district, steps away from Kaerntner Strasse, Albertina and Vienna State Opera. Spanish Riding ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (675 reviews)

"The Sacher is just a wonderful place, with tradition, style and all the same modern. It geld always like coming home. The stuft is so nice!"…"

Reviewed on 16 Sep. 2020

Hotel Sacher Wien
Palais Hansen Kempinski Vienna
Palais Hansen Kempinski Vienna
5 out of 5
Schottenring 24, Vienna, Vienna
The price is NZ$472 per night from 10 Mar. to 11 Mar.

Located in Innere Stadt, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Sigmund Freud Museum and Judenplatz. St. Stephen's Cathedral and Hofburg Imperial Palace ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (923 reviews)

"Very friendly, welcoming, easily able to relax, very high standards consistent"…"

Reviewed on 6 Mar. 2020

Palais Hansen Kempinski Vienna
Hotel Beethoven Wien
Hotel Beethoven Wien
4 out of 5
Papagenogasse 6, Vienna, Vienna
The price is NZ$171 per night from 21 Mar. to 22 Mar.

Located in Innere Stadt, this hotel is steps away from Theater an der Wien and Naschmarkt. Vienna State Opera and Albertina are also within 10 minutes. Resselgasse ...

4.6/5Exceptional! (977 reviews)

"The themed rooms are really interesting and the beautiful lobby with its art books. The staff were really friendly."…"

Reviewed on 20 Dec. 2020

Hotel Beethoven Wien
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Top St. Stephen's Cathedral Hotel & Accommodation Deals

Hotel Sacher Wien
Hotel Sacher Wien
5 out of 5
Philharmonikerstrasse 4, Vienna, Vienna
The price is NZ$528 per night from 13 Mar. to 14 Mar.
Hotel Sacher Wien
Palais Hansen Kempinski Vienna
Palais Hansen Kempinski Vienna
5 out of 5
Schottenring 24, Vienna, Vienna
The price is NZ$472 per night from 10 Mar. to 11 Mar.
Palais Hansen Kempinski Vienna
Hotel Beethoven Wien
Hotel Beethoven Wien
4 out of 5
Papagenogasse 6, Vienna, Vienna
The price is NZ$171 per night from 21 Mar. to 22 Mar.
Hotel Beethoven Wien
The Ritz-Carlton, Vienna
The Ritz-Carlton, Vienna
5 out of 5
Schubertring 5-7, Vienna, Vienna
The price is NZ$456 per night from 20 Mar. to 21 Mar.
The Ritz-Carlton, Vienna
Hotel Wandl
Hotel Wandl
4 out of 5
Petersplatz 9, Vienna
The price is NZ$264 per night from 10 Mar. to 11 Mar.
Hotel Wandl
Steigenberger Hotel Herrenhof Wien
Steigenberger Hotel Herrenhof Wien
4.5 out of 5
Herrengasse 10, Vienna, Vienna
The price is NZ$264 per night from 8 Mar. to 9 Mar.
Steigenberger Hotel Herrenhof Wien
Park Hyatt Vienna
Park Hyatt Vienna
5 out of 5
Am Hof 2, Vienna, Vienna
The price is NZ$570 per night from 5 Mar. to 6 Mar.
Park Hyatt Vienna
Le Méridien Wien
Le Méridien Wien
5 out of 5
Robert-Stolz-Platz 1, Vienna, Vienna
The price is NZ$239 per night from 4 Apr. to 5 Apr.
Le Méridien Wien
Boutique Hotel Am Stephansplatz
Boutique Hotel Am Stephansplatz
4 out of 5
Stephansplatz 9, Vienna, Vienna
The price is NZ$315 per night from 28 Mar. to 29 Mar.
Boutique Hotel Am Stephansplatz
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.