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Spanish Riding School
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Spanish Riding School: Tours & Tickets

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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

The Lipizzaner

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

Haute Ecole
Photo: macstre@flickr (CC BY 2.0)

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
Photo: John Harwood@flickr (CC BY 2.0)

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
Photo: Jeffrey Avery@flickr (CC BY 2.0)

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
Photo: Daniel Stockman@flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

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.

Our insider tips

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.

What people are saying about Spanish Riding School

Overall rating
4.4 / 5
based on 3,641 reviews

Nothing too exciting but an insight of how the horses are cared for

We visited the stables after we had seen the show, there was a wait in the main entrance where other people were also queuing up for other events so it got busy at times. We were grouped with a good English speaking guide and taken into the arena and then around the main stable block, we were asked NOT to take photos and were only permitted to in the tack room. We were able to see the horses feed in their individual stables and the guide gave us a brief commentary about the horses answering questions as we walked through, you kind of got the feeling that we were in the way as the grooms were trying to go about their daily routine with groups of people standing around. Under no circumstances were you allowed to touch the horses, but the experience overall was interesting and informative.

Vienna Spanish Riding School Guided Tour Reviewed by

Vienna. Spanish Riding School Morning Exercise

I was unable to get tickets for a performance concert with the Lippizane horses so I booked the Morning Exercise tour. I was very pleasantly surprised. Love it. About 20 minutes is long enough to watch them but they are so beautiful. Most of the time they are just walking around with their trainers but some of them will do a bit of jumping and it's so worth it to see them (the horses that is, not the trainers- lol!) A little tip - annoyingly, although you may have your booking confirmation printed or have it on your phone, you still have to get a ticket printed when you get there. However, you don't have to stand in the long queue - just walk into the hall and at the end of the reception desk there is a couple of staff who will print your ticket out for you. Enjoy!

Vienna: Spanish Riding School Morning Exercise Reviewed by

Excellent--knowledgeable guide and a thrill to meet the horses.

The tour was excellent--Josh was knowledgeable, personable, and easy to hear. I knew we were going to get a tour of all of the facilities, and I had been disappointed to not be able to attend either a show or "morning exercises" because of our schedule, but when we got to see the Stallions up close in their stalls, I was touched and thrilled. And although we are not allowed to touch them or take pictures of them, just being able to look many of the horses in the eye and say a little something to them made me feel connected to them. I only wish the gift shop were open when the tour ended--perhaps extending the hours so that those who take the tour can visit the shop at the end would be good.

Vienna Spanish Riding School Guided Tour Reviewed by

An impressive hall setting & graceful horses to captivate the viewers.

A lovely setting with an interior with elaborate decoration. Good viewing areas, both sitting and standing. A small amount of commentary to explain what we were viewing and its history. It was 36 degrees outside and a little cooler inside, so a fan may be useful. Our group consisted of adults and teenagers and all enjoyed 20 mins, but we stayed longer as there were "horse" fans among the group and they were thrilled. We were asked not to take photos, but pictures and brochures are on sale. The site said it may be smelly, but we didn't really notice any.

Vienna: Spanish Riding School Morning Exercise Reviewed by

The show met my expectations from a childhood dream to see the Lipizza

On the second tier we looked down on the horses from a higher level than anticipated. Also I had hoped there would be live music. Still, seeing these horses perform so elegantly was wonderful fulfillment of a childhood fantasy that began with a Walt Disney movie about the horses.

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