Kirchdorf an der Krems:
Charming Market Town near the Salzkammergut

The town of Kirchdorf an der Krems is a neat city with a bit over 4,000 residents and is situated by the Krems river. It is a gateway into the eastern parts of the Salzkammergut and a county town (Bezirkshauptstadt) of an administrative district. This means that Kirchdorf takes a significant role for the local or regional administration (it got, for example, a regional court), education (schools) and economy. Kirchdorf an der Krems is a good stop-over destination if you are on your way to or from the Almtal or other parts of the Eastern Salzkammergut.

Kirchdorf itself offers nothing genuinely exciting, at least nothing that I would consider to be particularly appealing to international visitors. The town comes with all the obligatory sights: The parish church, a nice market square, a Rathaus city hall; and a rather extensive park. Beyond that, there are a few nicer Gründerzeit houses, some of which are close to what one would call a villa. For a village - and that is essentially what Kirchdorf is - these sights are actually not too bad.

Some History of Kirchdorf an der Krems

A few words on the history of Kirchdorf an der Krems: The oldest written record of a settlement at today′s Kirchdorf dates back to 903. Another document mentions the parish church of Kirchdorf as early as 1083. The area belonged to the Bishop of Bamberg (in today′s Germany), but was under the administration of the monastery of Lambach since the 12th century. In 1111, the name "Chirchdorf" was mentioned in monastic records; a few years later, a new church was opened by the Bishop of Passau (to whose diocese Kirchdorf belonged).

As early as 1283, Kirchdorf held the privilege of organising markets and fairs. This led to a steady development of the settlement - economically, culturally and in terms of population. This was formalised in 1437, when Kirchdorf was granted its own seal by the Bishop of Bamberg. In the early 16th century, a Bruderhof (hospital) was founded. The acquired prosperity of Kirchdorf an der Krems resulted in the re-modelling of today′s Gothic parish church in 1491, the construction of the Rathaus city hall and a new school building.

Attractions near Kirchdorf an der Krems

The market privileges were extended by Emperor Rudolf II in 1584. In the 17th century, Kirchdorf had grown to a town prosperous enough to strive for more independence from Bamberg; however, it was first sold to the monastery of Kremsmünster, then to the one of Schlierbach. Eventually, in 1795, Kirchdorf became an independent city in a nominal federation with Bamberg. The Bruderhof was extended to a proper hospital in 1792. In 1811, the federation with Bamberg ended. In the 19th century, Kirchdorf developed its current role as a local centre; in 1975, it was elevated to the rank of a city.

Attractive day-trip destinations near Kirchdorf an der Krems are mostly found in the Kremstal. The area is very attractive in terms of scenery; note for example Burg Altpernstein, which was built in the 12th century in response to the danger of a Hungarian invasion. Burg Altpernstein is situated on a rock on a hill, 400 metres above the Krems valley. Natural attractions include the Georgenberg (a hill that has been populated since the Neolithic Age), or the Rinnerberger Klamm, a very pretty gorge with a waterfall (hiking boots required).

Back to: "Upper Austria Sightseeing Guide"

Sightseeing by Austrian Province

Bregenz and Vorarlberg - Innsbruck and Tyrol - Salzburg - Salzkammergut - Graz and Styria - Klagenfurt and Carinthia - Wachau and Lower Austria - Vienna - Burgenland

Further Reading

Official Website of Kirchdorf an der Krems

German Wikipedia on Kirchdorf an der Krems

Official Website of Upper Austria