Old treasures – new works

The world’s largest monastic library

If you’ve not yet seen this late baroque synthesis of the arts, then you should include it on your trip along the River Enns Cycle Trail: Admont Benedictine Abbey in the Gesäuse region has an extraordinary monastic library and is also home to a Museum of Contemporary Art, a Museum of the Fine Arts and a Natural History Museum.

Old treasures, new works – a visit to Admont Abbey promises both of these unique aspects. In the cosmos of the Abbey Library there are around 70,000 volumes. The entire stock of books comprises about 200,000 volumes. The 1,400 manuscripts are particularly treasured. And did you know that the library has secret doors? They are hard to find as their imitation of the surrounding bookspines is deceptively realistic. This preserves the homogeneous look of the space.

You’ll only find them if you look. The hidden doors will be revealed to you on individual guided tours of the library. In addition to this cultural heritage, the abbey also offers a colourful and diverse collection of contemporary art. As well as Styrian artists such as Erwin Wurm and Werner Reiterer, there are around 170 predominantly Austrian artists.

Around the abbey are peaceful outdoor areas including an idyllic pond and a herb garden, which was created in 1998. Anyone interested in medieval writings can go on search for traces of literature around the abbey. The Literature Trail focuses on the Admonter Bartholomäusaus, a classic of German-language medical literature from the fifteenth century.

Author: Julia Einfalt