Explore a different destination UNESCO World Heritage Site Wachau Cultural Landscape, Austria






Wachau is a valley in Austria carved by the Danube River. It is located between the towns of Melk and Krems, covering an area of about 30 km. Wachau has been inhabited since prehistoric times. There are several lovely towns in this area including Melk, Krems (in full, Krems an der Donau) and Dürnstein.

Photos of Wachau Cultural Landscape

Ruins of Durnstein Castle, where King Richard was held captive by Duke Leopold
Ruins of Durnstein Castle, where King Richard was held captive by Duke Leopold
Author: Airin (Creative Commons Attribution 1.0)

Dürnstein Church
Dürnstein Church
Author: Jimmy Harris (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

Steiner Tör, Krems an der Donau
Dürnstein Church
Author: Alexxx86 (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0)

Krems an der Donau
Dürnstein Church
Author: Denis Barthel (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0)

Melk, with its Gothic parish church
Dürnstein Church
Author: Georges Jansoone (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0)

What to See in Wachau Cultural Landscape

The landscape of Wachau is characterised by the Danube river and the vineyards on either sides. Some of the towns in Wachau worth visiting are:
  • Dürnstein was where Richard the Lion Heart of England was held captive by Duke Leopold V shortly before Christmas 1192. It is a small town on the Danube River, and is one of the most visited.
  • Melk is one of the main towns in the Wachau region. It was first mentioned in 831 AD. The sights and to-do's in Melk includes visiting its baroque Benedictine monastery, called Stift Melk; visiting the Forsthaus, which contains the city archives and tourist office, and a walk around the town.
  • Krems an der Donau is the biggest city in the Wochau region. A walk through the Old Town is one of the activities for tourists. Among the sights is the Steiner Tor, the medieval gate built in 1480.

World Heritage Site Inscription Details

Location: N 48 21 52 E 15 26 03
Inscription Year: 2000
Type of Site: Cultural
Inscription Criteria: II, IV

Location

Wachau is about 70 km to the west to Vienna.

Location Map


View Wachau Cultural Landscape in a larger map

Getting there

There are regular train services from Vienna to the towns of Melk and Krems in Wachau. By car, you can take the West-Autobahn (A1 / E60) to Melk. Alternatively, you can take the Donauufer-Autobahn (E59) to Stockerau, and continue on the Stockerauer-Schnellstraße (S5) to Krems and to Dürnstein.

Book Hotel Rooms in Austria and Worldwide

Click here also for a full list of hotels in Austria or hotels worldwide. If you prefer budget accommodation in hostels, guesthouses or inns, check out hostels worldwide for budget accommodation providers with online booking.


Local Tours of Austria

Here are some local tours of Austria that you may want to include to your itinerary. These tours are arranged by Viator, one of the most reputable tour agencies in the market.

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