Guide to Spanish Riding School: Performance, Tickets & History

Spanische Hofreitschule

The traditional Spanish Riding School l invites you to witness the timeless riding skills of the Haute Ecole, presented by the world-famous dancing Lipizzaner horses.

A visit to the Spanish Riding School, one of Vienna's must-see sights, is an absolute must for every visitor to the city.

In this comprehensive guide to the Spanish Riding School, you will discover everything there is to know about this iconic attraction. We'll cover how to get there, popular ticket options, and guided tours.

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Ticket Options for the Spanish Riding School

With numerous websites offering tickets for the Spanish Riding School, it can be difficult to choose the right tickets. That's why we've taken the initiative to compare all the available options for you.

Below, you'll find a curated list of the most popular tickets for the Spanish Riding School, including the cheapest options. Simply click on your preferred choice to purchase your tickets.

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What Can I Do at the Spanish Riding School?

Wie komme ich zur Spanischen Hofreitschule

In the Spanish Riding School, you can experience the magic and elegance of bygone times in the baroque atmosphere of the Hofburg Palace.

As the only institution in the world, the Spanish Riding School preserves the old horsemanship tradition by devoting itself to the classic training and dressage of the elegant Lipizzaner horses, the oldest breed of horse in Europe, for over 450 years. For this reason, the horsemanship of the Spanish Riding School has been part of the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage since 2015.

Be enchanted by the unique performances at the Spanish Riding School. During a visit to the "morning work", the daily morning training of the Lipizzaners, you can see the dancing horses train to classical music.

A breathtaking equestrian spectacle is presented at the evening performances, which are extremely popular. This is presented in the sensational, baroque winter riding school, the most beautiful riding hall in the world, accompanied by classical Viennese music.

As part of a guided tour, such as the Architectural Tour, those interested can gain an exclusive insight into the history, tradition and architecture of the Spanish Riding School.

How Do I Get to the Spanish Riding School?

The Spanish Riding School is located in the Vienna Imperial Palace in the heart of the city. The easiest way to reach it on foot is via Michaelerplatz or Heldenplatz.

For the most convenient public transportation options to reach the Spanish Riding School, consider the following:

  • By Subway (U-Bahn):
    Lines U1 and U3 to Stephansplatz and 5 minutes walk
    Line U3: to Herrengasse and 3 minutes on foot
    Line U4 to Karlsplatz and 11 minutes on foot
  • By Tram:
    Lines 1, 2, 71 and D to stations Oper/Karlsplatz, Burgring or Ring/Volkstheater and 8 minutes on foot
    Line 62 to Karlsplatz and 9 minutes on foo
  • By Bus:
    Lines 1A and 2A to Michaelerplatz or Habsburgergasse and 1 minute on foot


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The most popular and best-selling tickets for Vienna on GetYourGuide, Headout & Tiqets

Planning to stay a bit longer in Vienna and explore more of the Austrian capital? We have compiled a list of the most sought-after tickets according to the popular ticket portals GetYourGuide, Headout and Tiqets. Simply click on the description of the ticket that interests you to secure your favorites.

History of the Spanish Riding School

The tradition of the Spanish Riding School goes back to the 16th century, when an open riding and tournament arena was built on today's Josefplatz, near the Hofburg Imperial Palace. This Spanish Riding Stable was officially mentioned in 1565, making the Spanish Riding School the oldest classical riding school in the world.

From 1565 to 1569, during the reign of Ferdinand I, the stable castle was built by converting a residence intended for Ferdinand I into stables. From then on, these housed the personal horses of the HabsburgsToday, the Riding School is one of the most visited sights in Vienna.

Lipizzaner Horses

The breeding of Andalusian horses began under Archduke Charles II. For this purpose he had them build a stud farm in Lipica, today's Slovenia, in 1580. In the centuries that followed, the Habsburg kings devoted themselves to breeding a breed that met the requirements of the classical ideal of horsemanship. The best of them were sent to the Hofburg Imperial PalaceThe name of the Lipizzaner horses was later derived from this Lipica stud farm.

New Riding Arena

After the riding arena was severely damaged during the second Turkish siege of Vienna, Emperor Charles IV had a winter riding school built in the Michael Wing of the Hofburg Palace from 1729 to 1735. The magnificent winter riding school, which is now considered a baroque jewel, was designed by Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach and built by his son Emanuel Fischer von Erlach.

Since then, almost exclusively the breeding horses from the Lipica court stud farm have been used at the court riding school.

Best City Pass for Vienna

Traveler's Tip: City Passes for Vienna

Vienna offers several appealing city passes for travelers that can help you save money and time. We highly recommend purchasing one of these cards.

To learn more about the popular tourist cards, including prices and included activities, check out our article "Best City Pass for Vienna: Compare Prices & Included Activities"Alternatively, you can easily compare and purchase the card of your choice by clicking on one of the buttons below the following brief descriptions.

1. Vienna City Card

The Vienna City Card is available for 24, 48, or 72 hours, providing discounts at 200 attractions, museums, restaurants, theaters, and stores. Additionally, it offers unlimited and free use of public transportation.

2. Vienna Pass

The Vienna Pass is available for 1, 2, 3, or 6 days and grants you free admission to over 60 attractions in Vienna. It often allows you to skip the queues.

3. Vienna Flexi Pass

The Vienna Flexi Pass allows you to choose your favorite 2 to 5 attractions from a selection of over 40 options. You can visit them for free and, if available, enjoy fast-track admission.

4. Go City Explorer Pass

The Go City Explorer Pass enables you to choose your favorite 2 to 7 attractions from over 40 options in Vienna. You can visit them for free and, if available, enjoy fast-track admission.

Address & Map

Address: Michaelerplatz 1 (visitor center), 1010 Vienna

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