Nudism is allowed at the southeast end of Donauinsel (Danube Island), a long, narrow island in central Vienna, between the Danube river and the parallel excavated channel Neue Donau. Clothing optional sunbathing is allowed on both sides of the Neue Donau. On summer days, up to 190,000 visitors come to Danube Island.
Donauinsel FKK Nude Beach
The largest clothing-optional beach in Austria is right on the shores of the Danube River.
The area where you can remove your clothing begins from Steinspornbrücke, a bike and footbridge, and ends at the southeast end of Donauinsel.
FKK is written on the roads to guide you to the right spot. "FKK" (pronounced 'eff-ka-ka') printed on a sign or stenciled on a wall or sidewalk indicates freikörperkultur or nudist area. The area directly across from the marker on the Donauinsel is also designated as a gay beach on many maps. The beach is free; there is no nudist club on this site.
When you want to take a break from sunbathing, there are some restaurants on the dam where it is acceptable to dine nude. Some days, there is also a vendor who drives around selling ice cream and beverages.
Getting to FKK Beach
The Danube Island is an urban retreat. The island is known as a great place for a flat run or to reconnect with nature and forget the stresses of city life. You can access the island and the nude beach via car, bus or bike:
- By Car: Drive down the Kaisermühlendamm (A22). If you are coming from the Südosttangente and cross the Danube River, take the exit for Olhafen Lobau and follow the road until you see a large oil refinery on the left-hand side. As you spot railway cars on the left side, look for parking spots over the next 2-3 kilometers. Leaving your car, walk up the dam on the right side of the road and down to the water. The water is crossable by two bridges and a swimming bridge. Parking can be challenging on weekends after 9 a.m. or after 11 a.m. on sunny days during the week.
- By Bus: Line 91A will take you to Station Roter Hiasl.
- By Bike: Donauinsel has many bike paths.
Vienna and Its Attitude Toward Nudity
Vienna, often envisioned as a staid and formal city, has a history of nudity and not just in art. When Austria's Leopold museum mounted an exhibition entitled "Nude Men from 1800 to Today," demand grew for the idea of visiting the exhibition in the altogether. A day was set aside for nude visits. The exhibition was one of the most successful at the Leopold Museum with more than 100,000 visitors.
Vienna is very open to nudity. In fact, visitors to Austria will soon find that nudity is viewed as normal when it comes to swimming and sunbathing. The local public swimming pool will often set aside "nude nights" and family nude swims.
Austria has clothing optional, camping, beaches, and hotels that accommodate nudity. The naturist lodgings are usually adult-only. Beaches sometimes welcome families.
The Hilton Vienna Danube Waterfront is to the north and across the river from the FKK beach. It was rebuilt from a 1913 Warehouse and converted to a modern hotel with a fitness center, hot tub, restaurant and bar.