Crowned with a palatial octagonal dome, Kunsthistorisches Museum is one of the finest and most important museum buildings constructed in Europe during the 19th century. It’s sandstone façade, marble, stucco, and gold-leaf adornments were commissioned by Emperor Franz Joseph I as part of his expansion of Vienna in 1858.
Architectural considerations aside, the museum is also one of the most significant collections of Egyptian and Near Eastern art, Greek and Roman antiquities, rare coins, and sculpture and decorative art, as well as paintings by Pieter Bruegel the Elder, Vermeer, Rembrandt, Raphael, Caravaggio, Velázquez and many others.
On Thursdays, the museum sets out an ample buffet in the cupola rotunda, and hours are extended to allow visitors (and diners) to imbibe and explore well into the evening. The cost of $68 includes admission, while drinks, on the other hand, are extra.
The museum is open Tuesday-Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Admission ranges from $12-$17, and kids and students are free. English language-accessible guided tours and audio tours are available.