If you search for this museum located outside the Centrum of Vienna at the Arsenal, about 1 Km south of the Belvedere Palace-Museum, you better use the local name "Heeresgeschichtliches Museum" or just "Arsenal". Unfortunately there is no public transport stop at the museum what may explain that there are not many tourists.
"Heer" means Army (Land Forces) in German and Geschichte = history but the HGM is more than just a military museum showing weapons. It is quite interesting for the visitor who wants to learn something about the history of Austria over the last four centuries.
The visit starts with the upper floor with the terrible Thirty Years' War (1618–1648), the war against the Ottomans with the relief battle of Vienna in 1683 and Prince Eugene of Savoy.
Follow the reigns of Emperor Karl VI., Maria Theresa and Joseph II in the 18th c. c. and the wars against France called the Napoleonic Wars.
Then going down to the ground floor we arrive at Emperor and King (Kaiser und Köning or K & K) Franz Joseph I of the multi-ethnic state Austria-Hungary and the husband of the well known Sisi.
Much more important for Europe than Sisi was the assassination in Sarajevo in 1914 of his nephew Franz Ferdinand leading to World War I and its 15 million deaths!
Three objects dominate this hall: The automobile, in which the heir to the throne Francis Ferdinand and his spouse were shot to death, the blood-soaked uniform jacket of the Archduke, and the chaise longue on which he died.
It is the paradox of the touristic Vienna: a lot of fuss and visitors for Sisi at the Hofburg and so few visitors for the Sarajevo room at the HGM.
Two halls are dedicated to WW I and are followed by one hall dedicated to the Anschluss of Austria by Nazi Germany and WW II.
Outside there is a tank collection (have you ever seen the famous Soviet T34?) and an important gun collection.
The architecture of the museum is interesting with the much decorated hall and staircase.
Open: Every day from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Closing days: 1 January, Easter Sunday, 1 May, 1 November, 25 and 31 December.
Regular Fee (2013): € 5,10
Reduced Fee: € 3,30 Students, handicapped persons, Senior Citizens
Free admission on each first Sunday of the month.
Visitors until the age of nineteen have free admission.
Photo-Permission: € 1,50 (I never paid!).
To get there take the Underground/subway U1 to Station Südtirolerplatz. There is a bus the 69A that stops at 300 m (Arsenal stop) of the HGM. There are also tram lines 18, D, O on the Gürtel at 400 m of the museum. Don't forget your umbrella if it rains.
Like the Arsenal, Rossauer Kaserne (Rossauer Barracks) was built following the revolts of 1848 to protect the inner city from the workers who lived in the suburbs. The revolution of 1848 took place in the whole of Habsburg Empire and had a nationalist character.
This very huge and monumental red-brick building was built as the Crown Prince Rudolf Barracks and in its heyday it could quarter 2.400 soldiers and nearly 400 horses. It was built from 1854-1857.
Today the Rossauer Kaserne is the seat of the Ministry of National Defense and Sports.
This is an often-overlooked but very interesting museum for any history buff: It features arms, armour and weaponry from the Middle Ages till today. Especially worthwhile: The collection from the Turkish Wars, culminating in the 1683 siege of Vienna, and the exhibtion around the one and only sea battle Austria ever waged when it still had access to the Adriatic Sea, the battle of Lissa.
The Military History museum seems to be one of Vienna's lesser knows attractions, but it really is extremely interesting and worth the visit, as well as being Vienna?s oldest museum!
There are exhibitions from the Thirty years war where you can see suits of armour and weapons, and a room for Prince Eugene of Savoy, another with relics from the French wars and 1st World War to name but a few!
Daily except Friday
9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Adults: 5,10 Euros
Students, pensioners, handicapped people: 3,30 Euros
Free for children up to the age of 10
This is a great place to learn more about the military history of Vienna, and to see some very interesting weapons, paintings and flags, amongst other things!
One of the most fascinating exhibits at the Military History Museum is the one associated with the ill-fated Archduke Franz Ferdinand, he who was assinated on June 28,1914, and whose death provoked the crisis which unleased World War I. The Museum has the limousine in the Archduke and his wife (Sophie Chotek) were riding when they were gunned down by the Bosnian Serb nationalist Gavrilo Princep. They also have the uniform - still bloodstained - which Franz Ferdinand was wearing when he was shot.