Travel Guide Europe Austria Styria Graz

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Introduction

Graz is the capital of Styria (Steiermark) and the second largest city of Austria. It is alsü the second biggest University town in Austia.

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Sights and Activities

  • The Kunsthaus Graz.
  • The Joanneum.
  • The Schloss Eggenberg.
  • The Clock Tower (Uhrturm) - on the top of the Schloßberg.
  • The old town with the Baroque Mausoleum of Emperor Ferdinand II, with impressive interior decor Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach the next to the Cathedral of Graz and the Glockenspiel (chimes) which comes to life with song and rotating dance figures every day at 11:00, 15:00 and 18:00.

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Getting There

By Plane

Graz Airport (GRZ IATA), (Flughafen Graz Thalerhof) is a relatively minor regional airport around 9 km south of the city centre. Scheduled flights operate to Graz from Amsterdam Schiphol, Berlin, Birmingham, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt Airport, Istanbul, Munich Airport, Stuttgart, Vienna Schwechat and Zurich, connecting to intercontinental hubs of Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines, KLM, Turkish Airlines and Etihad Airways, while in the summer there are charters to many holiday destinations around the Mediterranean.

To the Flughafen Graz (airport) you can get by bus 630 and 631 from the centre, the S-Bahn (S7) station is in 300 metres distance from the airport.

By Train

Check the website of ÖBB (Österreiche Bundesbahn) for information and timetables. Hourly trains (Railjet) to Vienna , als trains to Salzburg, Linz, Zagreb. There are also less frequent services to Slovenia and Hungary. To reach the old town, take tram line 1, 3, 6 or 7, or simply walk down Annenstraße for about 20 minutes and cross the bridge. You can obtain a map from the Tourist Information in the Hauptbahnhof.

It is worth noting that the direct services from Vienna to Graz pass through the Semmering Railway, a rail line listed in the UNESCO World Heritage due to its unique construction involving 14 tunnels and 16 viaducts. Keep your eyes open! From Vienna to Graz, sit on the left; from Graz to Vienna, sit on the right.

By Car

The A9, runs north-south through Graz, mostly via the 6 mi Plabutsch tunnel. The A2, just south of the city, runs east-west. Vienna (Wien) is 127 mi up the A2 to the east. A just as fast but much more scenic alternative route to Vienna is via Bruck/Mur taking the S6. (Beware that there are lots of tunnels on the S6.) Some might also find the 5 mi (single carriageway) Gleinalm (Toll) tunnel on the A9, 15 miles to the north of Graz, unnerving. Toll charge: Gleinalm Tunnel: cars and motorhomes up to 3.5 t: €7.95 | with caravans/trailers: €9.95 | Motorhomes over 3.5 t: €11.50. It is possible to avoid the tunnel by travelling on the rather longer route via Bruck an der Mur.

By Bus

Flixbus has buses to Vienna, Salzburg, Hungary, Venice, Zagreb.

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Getting Around

By Car

If you can avoid it, just avoid it. Graz has areas with an inscrutable one-way system which makes it easy to get lost. Parking space in central areas are rare and subject to a fee from Monday to Friday (9.00am to 8.00pm, in front of Hauptbahnhof to 9PM) and on Saturday from 9AM to 1PM. Tickets can be bought from ticket machines placed in every street. A ticket for half an hour costs €0.60 ("blue zones", "green zones" are a bit cheaper). The maximum parking duration in blue zones is three hours and in green zones one day. Be aware that there are a lot of 'ticket-police' around so don't even try to park without a valid ticket (Fine € 25). There are a number of underground car parks in the city centre for example under the Karmeliterplatz which is called Pfauengarten Parkgarage which is open 24h a day. A ticket for one hour costs €2, a 24h ticket costs €12, other are as much as €4 per hour.

Taxis are available 24 h a day. You can hail one on the street, go to a taxi rank or simply order one by phone. The taxi ranks with the best chances of getting a taxi day or night are "Hauptplatz" (Right side of City Hall) or "Hauptbahnhof". There is a base rate of €3-4 for all rides. Avoid taxis in the early morning and early evening when traffic congestion can make a taxi ride very expensive. A ten-minute taxi ride usually costs about €10. Taxis can be booked at the same price as on the street by calling 0316-878, 0316-889, 0316-222, 0316-2801.

By Public Transport

Graz has a extensive tram and bus network.

All tram tickets can be bought inside the tram. Graz has an excellent tram service running through the Jakominiplatz where the different routes meet and you can change trams. You can also buy tickets at the tobacco kiosk (Tabak) located in the center of the square. If you buy tickets from the kiosk, make sure you punch your ticket inside the tram (If you get caught without a valid/punched ticket you will have to pay a fine of €60; if you buy it inside the tram, it is already validated).

Ticket prices: You can buy hourly (€2.30), daily (€5.00), 3 day tourist (€12.00), 10 strip (€20.00), weekly, or monthly tickets (coins, credit cards, debit cards all work at the vending machine in the tram). They are valid on all modes of public transport throughout Zone 101 (Graz plus immediate surroundings including the airport!).

Trams running through the old city (Altstadt) are free, usually one to two stops in all directions from Hauptplatz (Main Square) and Jakominiplatz.

Graz also has an excellent city bus network taking in the parts of Graz not serviced by trams. Many buses go through Jakominiplatz, Hauptbahnhof and Geidorfplatz. The tickets are the same as for the tram. Be sure to get yourself a map (at Jakominiplatz) of the network if you plan to use it frequently.

Ticket prices: Single ticket (available from the driver) € 2.10 (valid for one hour), day ticket (available from the driver), € 4.70 (valid for 24 h), weekly ticket € 12.70, available from the Office of Transportation at the Jakominiplatz and a 10-single-ride ticket (valid for 10 single rides) €19.20 available at most of the tobacco kiosk (Tabak).

Keep in mind that bus and tram services operate from 5AM to midnight during the week. Trams usually stop around 23:30 from Jakominiplatz in all directions. Nightbuses operate only on Fridays and Saturdays and before public holidays. They leave from Jakominiplatz in all directions at 00:30, 01:30 and 02:30.

By Foot

The old town of Graz is easily explored on foot and is reachable with a 20-minute walk from the main train station. Stop at the Tourist Information at the train station, or any hotel lobby that you come across to pick up a brochure on attractions in Graz. This brochure also contains a map with most of the sights marked, as well as recommended self-guided walking routes through the town.

By Bike

Graz is a city of cyclists, featuring an excellent network of cyclepaths. Due to this using a bike to get around (at least the central areas of Graz) is one of the best choices. It also helps that it does not rain a lot in Graz. Bikes may be rented, although if you are staying a bit longer buying a used one (and maybe reselling it) from one of the many bike stores may be cheaper (get one of the great restored vintage bicycles from Rebikel, Keplerstraße 55). Bike theft is a common problem in Graz, so take care that your bike is properly locked (if possible against a bar) when you are not using it. Also, if you are inexperienced bicycling around trams, take extra caution (especially noting that getting your wheel stuck in a tram rail could knock you down, with trams potentially coming right behind and beside you!). Counter-flow cycling (cycling in the "wrong" direction of a one-way street) is allowed almost everywhere in Graz - watch out for "one-way street"-signs with a small additional "ausgenommen Radfahrer" ("except cyclists") sign.

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Eat

All restaurants have cheap lunch deals ("Mittagsmenü") (12-3PM) or a dish of the day ("Tagesempfehlung") that are usually very good, fresh and have the best value. There are a lot of Döner Kebab sellers in Graz, good ones are on Jakominiplatz (Kapadokia), Dietrichsteinplatz (Pamukale), Hauptplatz (Euro-Kepap). A Kebap costs you about €2.70-2.90. The supermarket in the Hauptbahnhof is the only major one open on Sunday. There are various Turkish markets around town, but their selection is limited. Sausages with mustard, ketchup and/or horseradish are best at the sausage-stand at Franziskanerplatz. Try "Krainer" or "Käsekrainer", which are very popular sausages in Styria.

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Drink

Due to its importance as a university city, Graz has a vibrant night life. Bars are concentrated around the old town as well as the Karl-Franzens-University to the west of the old town. The old town has a mixed audience while the bars around university are mostly attended by students. In the old town you'll also find a few Irish pubs. Whereas the most Irish of them is O'Carolan's right next to the main square (Hauptplatz) others include Flann O'Briens and Molly Malone's. The Office is a very laidback and unique new addition to the Irish/British pub scene in Graz. The Office features regular live music and jam sessions, as well as the odd bit of Karaoke, and darts (steel - you know, the real ones from England) every Sunday.

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Sleep

View our map of accommodation in Graz or use the form below to search for availability (Travellerspoint receives a commission for bookings made through the form)

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Keep Connected

Internet

Internet cafes are common in bigger cities. Hotels in cities do normally have internet terminals, more expensive hotels provide internet access directly in the rooms. There are many free WiFi Hotspots and quite a few restaurants, cafes and other places offers free wifie. McDonald's has free Wifi, as does Starbucks. Note that some places might charge a fee or includes just limited amounts of time. Be sure that your smartphone is not roaming data, as this will mean a huge bill, especially if you are from outside the EU.

Phone

See also International Telephone Calls

The general emergency number is 112.The country calling code to Austria is: 43. To make an international call from Austria, the code is: 00.

Austria has a perfect GSM and 3G (UMTS) network coverage of nearly 100%. If you bring your own cell phone with you assure yourself that it operates on 900 MHz / 1800 MHz (GSM) or 2100Mhz (3G WCDMA). There are cell phones that operate at 1900 MHz (e.g. networks in the United States) which are not supported in Austria. If you plan a longer visit in Austria it might be useful to buy a new mobile with a prepaid card from a local cell phone network provider. Be aware that some remote areas (especially mountainous areas) do not have network coverage yet, though this rather the exception than the rule.Austria has a large number of cell network providers including A1, T-Mobile, Drei, Telering, Bob, Hot and Yesss. Bob, and Yesss have the lowest prices. Prepaid card costs €15 including 100 minutes talking time.

Post

For more information, it is best to check the Austrian Postal Service. They have more information about posting letters, postcards and packages to places both in Austria and to other countries in Europe and intercontinental destinations. The standard price for sending domestic letters/postcards is €0.55. Within Europe the price is €0.65, other places in the world are €0.90 to €1.40 for standard letters and postcards. Post offices typically are open between 8:00am and 6:00pm Monday to Friday, though the main ones are sometimes open a few hours longer and on Saturdays (sometimes only mornings) as well. If you want to send parcels internationally, you might consider using an international company like DHL, TNT, UPS or FedEx, as they offer fast and reliable services at relatively affordable rates.

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Quick Facts

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Coordinates
  • Latitude: 47.0679158
  • Longitude: 15.4417229

Accommodation in Graz

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This is version 27. Last edited at 8:21 on May 28, 18 by Utrecht. 12 articles link to this page.

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