Melk Abbey is one of the most important Baroque buildings and one of the most visited sights in all of Austria.
The Baroque masterpiece of Jakob Prandtauer: set atop a hill of volcanic rock 60 meters above the Danube, with its magnificent abbey church and treasury. Marble hall and one of the biggest abbey libraries in the world. Also worth visiting are the town of Melk itself, which lies at the foot of the abbey, and Renaissance Schallaburg Castle.
In an uninterrupted tradition extending back some 900 years, the monks of the Benedictine Order continue to live here, to work and carry out their mission (23 parishes are affiliated with the abbey); it also boasts a school (with approx. 880 pupils) and a restaurant, while serving as a major cultural and tourist attraction. Since its beginning, therefore, Melk has been one of the land's most important spiritual and religious hubs.
In addition to the imperial chambers, a visit to the abbey should also include the marble hall and library, masterpieces of Baroque décor with famous frescoes by Paul Troger, as well as the Altane balcony with magnificent views of the Danube, and the west façade of the abbey church.
The abbey church is both the conclusion and the highpoint of the tour. Artists such as Jakob Prandtauer, Johann Michael Rottmayr, Paul Troger, Antonio Beduzzi, Lorenzo Mattielli and Peter Widerin, together with many others, have created a massive work of art to glorify God, an undisputed paradigm of the Baroque that is quite beyond compare.
The New Abbey Museum
The imperial chambers currently house Austria's most modern abbey museum. The exhibition's theme is: "Journeying from yesterday to today – Melk Abbey, then and now".