Graz Highlights

Five highlights that you’ll only find in Graz – our favourites for your next city break

Salzburg or Vienna are definitely Austria’s classic destinations – but have you ever visited Graz? Away from the Vienna Prater and Salzburg Palace, Graz is an enticing breath of fresh air brimming with unconventional ideas. The capital of Styria boasts fascinating architecture for fans of remarkable buildings to enjoy – in every sense of the word! We think that Graz is always worth a visit.

City landmark: Graz Clock Tower

Clocks work a little differently in Graz, as can be seen high above the city’s rooftops, where the Graz Clock Tower has graced the Schlossberg fortress since the 16th century. With its medieval core dating back to the 13th century, it is one of the oldest buildings among the Graz fortifications. When you look at the dial, you immediately notice that the hour and minute hands are reversed. Because the large hour hand that is visible throughout the city was only joined by a second, inner minute hand at a later date, which was much smaller. The hour hand often confuses people – resulting in reassuring glances at their own watches. 
The view from this Graz landmark is also worth a visit: once you have climbed the 260 steps to the Clock Tower, you can enjoy a panoramic outlook over the Styrian capital. The people of Graz often come here to walk and enjoy the view.

Murinsel: island, shell or ship?

What the people of Graz think of as an island probably bears no resemblance to the generally accepted image. Just a stone’s throw away from Kunsthaus Graz, Murinsel leads to the edge of Graz Old Town. The half-concealed, twisted centre of this extravagant steel structure by New York artist, Vito Acconci, is reminiscent of a shell – but actually combines a jetty and a ship. Murinsel has been permanently anchored in the city’s river since 2003 and isn’t just a floating bridge between the Old Town and Lendkai; you can also enjoy listening to the babbling Mur river in its café or attend a variety of cultural events in the arena. The Murinsel shop stocks regional Styrian delicacies and unusual souvenirs by Graz designers.


Schlossbergrutsche: The Slide

Record-breaking and well hidden: the world’s longest indoor slide winds its way through Graz’s Schlossberg. It’s a thrilling and above all unique way of returning to the city after reaching Graz Burg. At over 170 metres long, The Slide leads directly into the depths of the Schlossberg caves. For those who dare, you can quickly reach speeds of up to 30 km/h – and will re-emerge at the foot of the Schlossberg after around 40 seconds.

Boeing B-727 aircraft restaurant

In Graz, it’s not just at the airport where you can get a glimpse of aircraft. Two disused jets have found a new home in the north of the city – where they have landed on the roof of Nova Park at an altitude of 22 meters. They not only look spectacular from the outside, but really make visitors take off. Check-in is preferred: onboard is the Boeing B-727 aircraft restaurant, where you can enjoy high-altitude flights without any turbulence.
This culinary world tour takes guests to a different destination every month and features regional cuisine from South America to Asia. Austrian classics are also on the menu for those who want to try delicacies closer to home.



Kunsthaus Graz: the friendly alien

The future is just around the corner in Graz. A friendly alien has landed in the heart of Graz city centre. Those visiting the building, which appears to be from another world, will find alternating contemporary art exhibitions from Kunsthaus Graz inside. The building’s unusual blob architecture by Peter Cook and Colin Fournier is a (not so) covert attraction in itself, however, inspiring the people of Graz to come up with new nicknames: Blue Bubble, Baby Hippo, Sea Snail and Porcupine.
Another highlight is the BIX media façade with almost 950 built-in fluorescent tubes. After sunset, it displays digital art projections into the urban environment and communicates with the surrounding buildings through gentle flashes of light.