Wieselburg in Lower Austria:
Between Beer & Historic Architecture
Wieselburg is a town in the Mostviertel area of Lower Austria and has approximately 4,000 residents. Wieselburg is shaped by the merging of two rivers, the Große Erlauf and the Kleine Erflauf. Nationally, Wieselburg is well-known for its brewery. I can warmly recommend its products, of the main-stream breweries in Austria, I think that "Wieselburger" is among the country′s best beers. Beyond beer, Wieselburg has several historic buildings that are worth a closer look. Don′t expect too much, but over-all, the town is a nice little place that justifies serving as a stop-over destination with a quick look around.
Note for example the "Wieselburg Octogon" ("Wieselburger Oktogon") at the parish church. There is a town museum, situated in a local castle that dates back to the 13th century. The museum focuses on ancient and early history. Note also the Schlosspark or Castle′s Park with old sculptures. These statues are allegories and named after important rivers of Upper and Lower Austria. The Fachhochschule of Wiener Neustadt, a polytechnic university, maintains a campus in Wieselburg. It can be found in a modern wooden building on the outskirts of the town. Apart from this campus, there are also several schools in Wieselburg, making it the educational centre for the area.
Beyond Beer: Agriculture & Real Culture in Wieselburg
Austrians with an interest in agriculture often know Wieselburg for its agricultural fair. The "Wieselburger Inter-Agrar" is one of the biggest of its kind in Austria, is organised annually ever since 1928 and comes in combination with a fun fair. 550 exhibiting companies draw some 300,000 visitors in the end of June. Wieselburg also has a school for agricultural studies, called "Francisco Josephinum Wieselburg".
Finally, a few words on the history of Wieselburg: During antiquity, the area of modern Wieselburg was part of the Roman Empire′s province of Noricum. Later, it was populated by Slavonic, then Bavarian settlers and went through a turbulent couple of centuries in the early middle ages. With the creation of the Duchy of Austria in 976, Wieselburg was at the centre of the two heartlands Upper and Lower Austria (then as part of Lower Austria). For its strategic location, a castle with a walled church was built right after 976, which later seeded the development of the medieval town. The castle secured the merging of the two rivers - the term "Zwiselburg" referred to "castle at the merging of the two rivers".
The history of Wieselburg remained rather colourful throughout the ages, with various armies looting the area until the Habsburg′s consolidation of power around 1700 finally brought a period of peace, interrupted only by the Napoleonic Wars. In 1848, Wieselburg became an independent municipality. In 1976, it was elevated to the rank of a city (Stadt). Today, Wieselburg and its surroundings are - like most of the Mostviertel - generally considered to be a prosperous, but very rural stretch of Austrian land.