We went to tour Vienna’s United Nations office (UNOV) with a visiting friend from Japan. The kids did enjoy the many things we saw especially ones that were related to moon and space.
A tour of the United Nations Vienna International Centre provides visitors with the opportunity to explore the international organization’s headquarters and learn about its work in promoting peace, cooperation, and global development. Here’s a general overview of what you can expect on a tour at the United Nations Vienna.
- Booking the Tour: Prior reservation is required to visit the United Nations Vienna. You can book a tour through the official website or by contacting the visitor service. Make sure to check the availability and any specific requirements beforehand.
- Security Check: Upon arrival, you will go through a security check similar to airport procedures. It is advisable to arrive early to allow time for this process. Bring an ID or passport too.
- Welcome and Orientation: Once inside, you will be welcomed by the visitor service staff who will provide an overview of the United Nations and its Vienna office. They may also provide you with an identification badge or pass.
- Guided Tour: A knowledgeable guide will accompany you throughout the tour, taking you to various areas of the United Nations complex. The guide will share information about the organization’s work, its member states, and the significance of the Vienna office.
- Exhibitions: The United Nations Vienna often hosts exhibitions that showcase its various programs and initiatives. You may have the chance to explore these exhibitions, which can provide insights into the organization’s focus areas, such as disarmament, space exploration, human rights, and sustainable development.
- Interactive Displays: Depending on availability, there may be interactive displays or multimedia presentations that provide further information about the United Nations and its activities. These interactive elements enhance the learning experience and allow visitors to engage with the content.
- Gift Shop: At the end of the tour, you may have the opportunity to visit a gift shop where you can find United Nations merchandise, books, and other items related to global issues.
It’s important to note that the specific itinerary and areas accessible during the tour may vary, as the United Nations Vienna is a working office and certain areas may be restricted based on ongoing activities or security considerations.
Most of the time, these are the usual areas you can see:
- Visitor Center: The tour often begins at the Visitor Center, where you can find information about the United Nations and its Vienna office. It may include displays, interactive exhibits, and multimedia presentations that provide an overview of the organization’s work and global issues it addresses.
- Conference Rooms: You will have the chance to visit conference rooms where important meetings and negotiations take place. These rooms are designed to accommodate multilingual discussions and often feature interpretation booths.
- Briefing Room: The Briefing Room is a key area where diplomats and officials gather for briefings and presentations. You may get a glimpse of this room and learn about its significance in facilitating communication and decision-making.
- Plenary Hall: The Plenary Hall is a large meeting room where formal sessions, debates, and voting take place. While access to this area may be restricted during actual sessions, you may have the opportunity to see it from a designated viewing area or through virtual displays.
Art and Sculptures: The United Nations Vienna showcases various artworks and sculptures throughout its premises. These pieces often reflect the organization’s ideals, values, and messages of peace and cooperation. Your tour may include stops at some of these artistic displays.
For the most accurate and up-to-date information about tours, including availability, fees, scheduling, and any special requirements, it is recommended to visit the official website of the United Nations Vienna or contact their visitor service directly.
How to get to the United Nations Headquarters for a tour:
The UN Office in Vienna is located at Wagramer Strasse 5 in the 22nd district.
It is easily accessible by the U1 train station Kaisermühlen – Vienna International Centre. The entrance is at the front of the train platform if you are coming from Stephansplatz and vice-versa.
Coming from U6 station Neue Donau, you can take bus 20B, which will also pass by the Donauturm. This was how I commuted back when I was working at a hort by the UN. This route takes about 12 minutes.
There will be a lot of parking spaces in the area, but it is best to come earlier of your appointment as these slots tend to get full easily.
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