Located in southern Austria west of Vienna, the Wachau Valley is one of the country’s most popular tourist destinations. Nestled between the towns of Krems and Melk, you will find a beautiful 30km stretch along the banks of the river Danube. It is well known for its rolling hills, vineyards, quaint villages, impressive castle fortresses and other historic buildings. www.travelrows.com
Wachau Valley on the map and its reviews:
The valley has been listed by UNESCO for its cultural landscape, which showcases how people have shaped the landscape and lived harmoniously with it over time. Its long historical evolution has survived to an impressive degree.
While there are many fascinating and beautiful places to see here, here are five of the sights and attractions of the Wachau Valley that you should be sure not to miss when cruising Danube on a ship:
Melk’s major attraction is this Benedictine Abbey, which stands on a rocky outcrop overlooking the Danube river. The abbey dates from the 11th century and is a notable example of Baroque architecture. It contains a number of tombs including those of some members of Austria’s first royal family.
This castle’s origins stretch back into the 12th Century. It is found below Melk on the right back of the Danube. It is believed that the 12th Century castle may have been built on the site of an earlier Roman fortress.
Another of the amazing castles along this stretch of the river, Aggstein castle ruins are undoubtedly one of the valley’s most popular attractions. The 12th Century ruins stand atop a rocky outcrop with excellent river views, and a climb to the castle will be rewarded not only by the views but also by the promise of delicious food served in a restaurant that you will find here.
This charming little town is the perfect place to break your journey through the Wacchau valley. The town’s quaint streets are an ideal place for a stroll, and there are a number of historic buildings and monuments here, including a ruined castle and an old monastery.
This is another historic, mountaintop abbey. This Benedictine monastery was founded in 1086 but rebuilt in the 18th Century. Here, you can see a magnificent library with an impressive collection of books and manuscripts, as well as ceiling frescoes, a tapestry room and the ornate interior of the Abbey church.
There is, of course, plenty more to see and do. So consider spending more than a day here to really appreciate all that it has to offer. We highly recommend that you leave your car behind and take some time to enjoy a hike or a cycle through this beautiful cultural landscape.
Contact us for help with choosing and booking Danube river cruises and shore excursions.