The Scoop: The Natural History Museum Vienna has been a hub of learning since it opened its doors in 1889. The museum houses over 30 million objects, including dinosaur fossils and meteorites, in its 39 exhibition halls, and it hosts special events, educational programs, and guided tours, so there is always something new to see and do here. Couples can spend many happy hours exploring the Natural History Museum Vienna’s permanent and rotating exhibits and come away with a greater appreciation for the natural world.
On August 10, 1889, Emperor Franz Joseph I opened the Natural History Museum Vienna, a scientific research institution dedicated to exploration, knowledge, and cultural heritage.
The museum began as a place to house Austria’s royal scientific collections, which included fossils, minerals, and precious stones, and it eventually grew into a public archive showcasing the mysteries and wonders of the natural world.
Today, the Natural History Museum Vienna has 39 exhibition rooms and houses over 30 million objects.
“For the general public, it is a museum that offers a wide range of exhibition objects from bioscience, human science, earth science, and space,” said Magdalena Reuss, Press Officer for the museum. “It is a place for everyone to learn and discover a lot about nature and its history.”
The Natural History Museum Vienna has a natural appeal to couples and families looking for something to do in the city. It’s affordable, it’s engaging, and it’s brimming with interesting facts and marvels from across history.
The museum itself is an architectural triumph that took 10 years to build. Standing opposite the Museum of Fine Arts, this landmark building incorporates a number of ancient styles and symbols, including a domed roof with a bronze statue of the Greek sun god Helios. The interior features classic decor and wall paintings by renowned 19th-century Austrian landscape painters
The Natural History Museum Vienna has countless stories to tell and knowledge to share with its visitors. Such an expansive and one-of-a-kind space can provide a romantic backdrop for couples exploring Vienna’s cultural scene together. When asked what makes NHM Vienna a fantastic date spot, the team answered, “Because it’s great and full of knowledge!”
Welcoming Over 800,000 Visitors Per Year
The Natural History Museum Vienna is open to couples, children, families, school groups, tourists, and everyone in between. The exhibits saw over 800,000 visitors in 2019, and some of them traveled from other countries to get a look at the minerals, meteorites, animals, and fossils on display here.
The museum’s 39 exhibition rooms cover 8,460 square meters and have over 100,000 objects on display — and over 30 million specimens available to the scientific community.
The permanent exhibitions take visitors through the natural history of the Earth, starting with an impressive display of minerals and precious stones and finishing with a look at the stars in the planetarium. The displays also include anthropological artifacts gathered from the region over the centuries.
Over 300 staff members tend to the museum’s collection and offer information and insights to visitors. Whether they’re librarians, technicians, or event managers, the team is passionate about making history come alive for people and upholding the legacy of Austria’s world-class artists and scientists.
The Natural History Museum Vienna employs over 60 scientists who conduct national and international research projects on the composition of the Earth, the origin of the universe, the evolution of life, the prehistory of man, and other natural phenomena.
As the NHM Vienna continues to gain more knowledge and artifacts, it will continue to share its findings and marvels with the general public, making special exhibitions and events that spark curiosity and answer some of the deepest questions of existence.
Couples Can Explore Rotating Exhibits & Special Events
Many people visit the Natural History Museum Vienna to explore its world-famed exhibitions. For instance, the collections of the Department of Mineralogy and Petrography on the Mezzanine get a lot of foot traffic throughout the day. People marvel at the emeralds, platinum nuggets, and diamonds in the collection, and they can also view an opal from Czaerwienica that’s the largest of its kind.
From the Ice Age Collection to the Meteorite Collection, NHM Vienna has several permanent exhibitions that attract attention. However, its rotating exhibits can also get people excited about making a trip to the museum.
Currently, NHM Vienna is honoring the 50th anniversary of the moon landing with a special exhibition called, “Our Moon. Longing, Art, and Science.” From artwork to film screenings, the exhibit highlights the moon landing and space travel in general, and its displays also recognize the important role the Moon plays in life on Earth. This special exhibit will run until June 2020.
Couples can always book an adult tour to make their visit especially entertaining and educational. Every Wednesday, the museum hosts a guided tour called Above The Rooftops of Vienna, which includes a dinner in the Dome Hall and a visit to the museum’s rooftop for views of Vienna’s city center. It’s safe to say it’s a pretty romantic evening.
Night at the Museum events are also popular among couples looking to see the museum in a new light. The overnight event includes a live show, music, and gala dinner, and then visitors bunk down in the Dinosaur Hall in sleeping bags until breakfast is served in the café in the Dome Hall.
The Natural History Museum Vienna has a remarkably diverse calendar that includes expert lectures, monthly programs, virtual exhibitions, behind-the-scenes tours, hands-on workshops, and special dinners. The museum has also hosted wedding parties and receptions in its remarkable spaces.
On Valentine’s Day, the museum staff intends to crank up the romance by offering guided tours with cocktails. This is a lovely date idea for couples who want to do something a little different and make memories at the Natural History Museum.
“It’s nice to just visit the museum. You can spend an awesome day here and discover a lot,” Magdalena said. “For a more intense experience, there are additional programs like guided tours, Valentine’s specials, sleepovers and dinners at the museum, night tours, and more.”
Fostering Thoughtful Conversations & Memorable Dates
It’s easy to linger in the Natural History Museum Vienna for hours, and the exhibits can appeal to both adults and children. Many families visit the museum on the weekends, and it offers a quiet escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. Even locals who have been here many times before say they still discover something new on their return visits.
“So many memories of this place as a kid,” said Dolly R. in a TripAdvisor review. “Went recently with my boyfriend, and it’s still as amazing as when I was 8. Definitely a place for the entire family.”
Another reviewer named Alice Walker said she and her family were at the NHM Vienna for hours, and they still only covered one floor’s worth of exhibits. “The quality of the exhibits was spectacular,” Alice said. “The fossils in particular were very impressive and both my husband and I are geologists.”
“My girlfriend and I came on a rainy day, but I would recommend this museum no matter what the weather,” said Simon. “We thoroughly enjoyed learning new things in exciting new ways!”
The Natural History Museum Vienna has a broad range of exhibits — from minerals to dinosaur skeletons to cultural artifacts — so it can appeal to people with different interests and backgrounds. You don’t have to be a history major or a trained geologist to appreciate the scale of the museum and the thoughtfulness of its displays.
Rima F. called NHM Vienna “truly the best natural history museum in the world,” in a Yelp review. “It is incredible because of the upgrading of many exhibits,” Rima said. “[The museum] brilliantly combines the old and the new.”
Alex M. said on Yelp that NHM Vienna was her husband’s favorite part of their trip to Austria. The couple enjoyed seeing everything from the mineral specimens to the planetarium. “Do yourself a favor and go first thing in the morning and race through to see everything without people. Then do the whole thing a second time more slowly,” Alex suggested.
The Natural History Museum Vienna makes an impression on everyone who stops by, and it gives them plenty to talk about as they wander from a room full of taxidermy animals to a display of meteorites dating back hundreds of years.
NHM Vienna Has a New Wonder Around Every Corner
In the last century, the Natural History Museum Vienna has evolved from a royal passion project to a popular public destination. From school trips to sightseeing stops, the museum sees all kinds of people, and it can even serve as a low-key date spot for couples with an intellectual streak and a couple hours to kill.
People of all ages have enjoyed strolling from one exhibit to another and seeing the world from a different perspective. The Natural History Museum Vienna has many impressive features to capture attention and create excitement.
As far as date activities go, NHM Vienna can offer a roomful of conversation starters and a calendar of events that spark joy, wonder, and romance every day.
“The museum has a wonderful historic architecture and ambiance, and offers the opportunity to spend a whole day or more here discovering the beauty of nature,” Magdalena said. “We love to see visitors who are delighted by their visit and leave the museum with more knowledge and enthusiasm.”