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Vienna Ugly

  • Sa. 14.10.2023
  • 10:30 — 13:00
  • 2 h 30 mins
  • 10 (children under 14 free)
  • Obere Augartenstrasse 1, 1020 (Main gate into park, not MuTh or Sängerknaben), 4 mins walk from U2 Tabor Str. Opposite Ob. Augtn Str. 40
  • Google Maps
  • +43 680 1254 354, Eugene Quinn
  • ionicons-v5-o eugene@whoosh.wien
  • english

''ein wichtiges Ziel, [sei] Österreich wieder zurück an die Spitze zu bringen - bei Innovation, bei Qualifikation, bei Qualität, Wachstum und Beschäftigung! Make Austria great again!" Christoph Leitl, WKÖ President, 2016

"Österreich soll bei der Innovationskraft einen Platz an der "Weltspitze
ohne Wenn und Aber" einnehmen. Das wünscht sich der Präsident der
Wirtschaftskammer (WKÖ), Harald Mahrer." 2019

Everyone knows Vienna is beautiful. But we take you to the dark side, and explore some very ugly mistakes, on a walking journey.

There is no reservation - just show up on the day. There is no maximum number of participants. We walk in every weather. All walks are in English, led by Eugene Quinn. This walk can be arranged for private groups, birthdays, special events and school students, to practice their English. Und es gibt auch einen deutschsprachigen "Haessliches Wien" Spaziergang. Any other questions, please email: eugene@whoosh.wien

We want locals to explore their own city from an innovative perspective. A tour of beautiful palaces would not interest many of them, but this does. There is a fascination with death, failure and melancholy in Vienna, and this walk reflects that Ulrich Seidl mood.

Through humour, we want to make some serious points about the role of fashion, the popular press, city-planners, gentrification, postmodernism, pretentious language used by architects, UNESCO and greedy developers. Our walk focuses on the bad taste of rich people, and so we have so much choice of buildings in central Vienna.

We want to start a debate – and so participants vote on the attractiveness of each building. This is one of the cities with the biggest gap between its fantasy and reality. We want to explore that gap, and maybe close it a little. Vienna is more interesting than its reputation. In the spirit of Conchita, we want to transgress, and surprise people. To show another Vienna, beyond the cliches of Sissi and Schnitzel, a city which is more creative, contemporary and adventurous.

You have to come on the walk to find out which buildings we consider ugly. We include old and new architecture. Some structures are both beautiful and ugly. Through ugliness we can discover new dimensions of beauty, and the two have an interesting relationship in Vienna. Beauty can be boring – but ugly never is. And we love the cinematic qualities of Vienna at night, so some of our walks start at midnight.

Current walks of Vienna focus on the old city. We need new stories to tell.

Here are TV reports showing what happened when we adapted the concept to a Munich Ugly tour, and how Die Tagesschau news programme in Germany reported on Vienna Ugly.

From Participants:

Read Reviews and Book Your Perfect Trip

unconventional, charming, has a good revolutionary spirit & is a lot of fun too. I absolutely loved it.’

‘Über 2 Stunden wurden wir alle gefesselt vom rhetorischen Wissens-Feuerwerk von E. Eine super Erfahrung, habe noch nie eine so leidenschaftliche Städtetour erleben dürfen, danke.

‘Eugene conveys a deep knowledge of, and affection for, Vienna.’

Eugene Quinn versteht es einfach uns die ganz andere Seite von Wien zu zeigen und es unterhaltsam, witzig und lehrreich zugleich zu präsentieren.’

‘The Vienna Ugly Tour is a beautiful tour of ugly buildings...cool, funny, refreshing.

Grandioser, lustiger Tour-Guide, wirklich spannende Tour- auch für alle, die schon länger in Wien leben, gibt es immer neue Hässlichkeiten zu entdecken.’

Unique…. concerned with ideas as much as images...

‘Es ist erfrischend durch einen Nicht-Wiener zu hören und sichtbar gemacht zu bekommen, was man vielleicht hätte nicht errichten müssen.’

‘More connections to this city's inner life than any other tour could offer - a must!’

‘Zu jedem Haus gibt es eine interessante Geschichte und immer wieder wird zwischendurch abgestimmt, wie die Gruppe die "hässlichen" Gebäude wahrnimmt.’

‘...learned a lot about Vienna now (& architecture in general) which I hadn't learned from the more typical tours - specially given the price which is a bargain.’

Hilariously ugly buildings... charming with a British/Austrian black sense of humor.’

'Very ugly indeed. I live in Vienna and afterwards was recognizing more details in the streets.’

‘...challenges your classic picture of the city. I joined a midnight (!) edition, which gave the whole tour a special adventurous atmosphere.’

Walk with us!

Future dates:

*4nov AUF DEUTSCH! (only in German)