Row Tharpe

Row Tharpe

Published: 19 Sep 2023


The St. Florian Monastery is a magnificent landmark that showcases the grandeur of religious architecture and rich history. Located in Upper Austria, this extraordinary monastery has captivated the hearts and minds of visitors from around the world. With its stunning Baroque-style design, elaborate frescoes, and intricate detail, the St. Florian Monastery stands as a testament to human creativity and devotion.

In this article, we will delve into 18 extraordinary facts about the St. Florian Monastery, shedding light on its fascinating history, architectural marvels, and cultural significance. From its founding by the renowned Augustine Canons to its role as a center for music and education, this article will explore the many facets of this remarkable landmark.

Table of Contents

The Oldest Monastic Complex in Upper Austria

St. Florian Monastery holds the distinction of being the oldest monastic complex in Upper Austria, with a rich history dating back over a thousand years. It was founded in the 9th century by Saint Florian, a Roman military officer who was martyred during the Diocletianic Persecution.

A Marvel of Baroque Architecture

This magnificent monastery is a true marvel of Baroque architecture. Its grand facade features ornate sculptures, intricate detailing, and stunning frescoes that showcase the artistic mastery of the time. The interior is equally impressive, with beautifully adorned chapels, grand halls, and a captivating library housing rare manuscripts.

Home to a Hidden Underground Tunnel

Beneath the monastery lies a secret underground tunnel that stretches for nearly a kilometer. This hidden passage was used in the past as an escape route during times of danger and persecution. Today, visitors can explore a portion of the tunnel and learn about the monastery’s intriguing past.

A Haven for World-Class Music

St. Florian Monastery has a strong connection to music and has been a haven for world-class musicians throughout history. The renowned composer Anton Bruckner served as the monastery’s organist from 1855 until his death in His melodies still resonate through the halls during regular organ concerts and performances held at the monastery.

The Final Resting Place of Anton Bruckner

The monastery’s crypt is the final resting place of Anton Bruckner. This acclaimed composer was laid to rest in a tomb adorned with a bust of his likeness. Visitors can pay their respects to this musical genius and explore the crypt, which also houses the remains of other esteemed figures associated with the monastery.

A Tour of the Library

The library at St. Florian Monastery is a true treasure trove for bibliophiles. It houses an extensive collection of over 150,000 books, including rare manuscripts and ancient texts. The ornate ceiling frescoes and beautifully crafted wooden bookshelves create an ambiance of intellectual richness and historic significance.

The Miraculous Bruckner Organ

The monastery’s stunning Bruckner Organ is considered one of the most extraordinary pipe organs in the world. Built by renowned organ builder Franz Xaver Krismann, this magnificent instrument boasts 7,343 pipes and fills the spacious church with awe-inspiring music during special organ recitals and religious services.

The Majestic Marble Hall

One of the highlights of St. Florian Monastery is the majestic Marble Hall. This grand space with its opulent decorations and exquisite ceiling frescoes is the perfect venue for concerts, exhibitions, and other cultural events. The acoustics of the hall enhance the musical performances and create a truly unforgettable experience for attendees.

A Collection of Priceless Artifacts

The monastery is home to a vast collection of priceless artifacts, including religious artworks, intricate sculptures, and historical objects. Each piece tells a story and offers a glimpse into the rich cultural heritage of the region. Visitors can admire these treasures as they wander through the monastery’s museum and galleries.

The Historic Pilgrimage Church

The Pilgrimage Church of St. Florian, located within the monastery grounds, is a place of deep spiritual significance. With its magnificent architecture and sacred atmosphere, it draws pilgrims from all over the world to seek solace and inspiration. The church’s altar, adorned with intricate carvings, is a sight to behold.

An Oasis of Serenity

Surrounded by lush greenery and picturesque landscapes, St. Florian Monastery is an oasis of serenity and tranquility. The peaceful gardens and courtyards offer a soothing escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Visitors can take leisurely walks, meditate in peaceful corners, and soak in the peaceful ambiance.

Fascinating Architectural Details

Every corner of St. Florian Monastery is filled with fascinating architectural details that showcase the artistic genius of the past. From intricate stuccoworks and marble sculptures to decorative elements on columns and facades, these details captivate the eye and transport visitors to a bygone era.

The Magnificent St. Florian Basilica

The St. Florian Basilica, the centerpiece of the monastery, is a magnificent architectural masterpiece. Its grand dome, towering spires, and intricate stained glass windows are awe-inspiring. The basilica houses stunning altars, religious artifacts, and historical tombs, creating a sacred space that ignites a sense of reverence.

A Place of Film and Television Shoots

St. Florian Monastery’s breathtaking beauty has attracted numerous film and television productions over the years. Its grandeur and historical ambiance have made it a popular location for period dramas, documentaries, and other productions. Visitors may even recognize the monastery from their favorite movies and shows.

Preserving Centuries of History

St. Florian Monastery serves as a guardian of centuries of history and cultural heritage. Its dedicated team of historians, conservators, and experts work tirelessly to preserve and protect the monastery’s artifacts, architecture, and archives. Their efforts ensure that future generations can continue to appreciate and learn from this remarkable place.

The Legend of Saint Florian

The monastery owes its name to Saint Florian, the Roman military officer who suffered martyrdom for his Christian beliefs. The legend of Saint Florian is renowned for his selfless acts of courage and his protection against the perils of fire. The monastery pays homage to this legendary figure and continues to honor his memory through its name and history.

A Pilgrimage Destination

St. Florian Monastery is not only a place of spiritual solace but also a popular pilgrimage destination. Pilgrims from far and wide come to pay their respects to Saint Florian and seek blessings. The monastery provides a nurturing environment for introspection, prayer, and spiritual renewal for all those who embark on this sacred journey.

Contributing to the Cultural Fabric of Upper Austria

St. Florian Monastery has long been an integral part of the cultural fabric of Upper Austria. Its influence extends beyond its religious significance, as it actively contributes to the region’s cultural, artistic, and educational endeavors. Through music concerts, exhibitions, and other cultural events, it enriches the lives of both locals and visitors alike.

With its rich history, stunning architecture, and cultural significance, St. Florian Monastery stands as a testament to the enduring power of human creativity and spirituality. It continues to inspire awe and captivate the hearts of all who have the privilege to visit this extraordinary place.


St. Florian Monastery is truly a remarkable landmark with a rich history and fascinating features. From its stunning Baroque architecture to its historical significance, there is no shortage of extraordinary facts about this renowned monastery.

Visiting St. Florian Monastery provides a unique opportunity to immerse oneself in the cultural and spiritual heritage of Austria. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, an architecture lover, or simply seeking a peaceful retreat, this monastery offers something for everyone.

So, the next time you find yourself in Austria, make sure to add St. Florian Monastery to your list of must-visit landmarks. Prepare to be amazed by its beauty, enchanted by its stories, and inspired by its spiritual ambience. St. Florian Monastery is a true gem that should not be missed.


1. When was St. Florian Monastery built?

The construction of St. Florian Monastery began in the 11th century and continued through the Baroque period, resulting in its magnificent architectural style.

2. Is St. Florian Monastery open to the public?

Yes, St. Florian Monastery is open to the public. Visitors can explore the monastery’s museum, admire the stunning church interior, and enjoy the peaceful atmosphere of the grounds.

3. Does St. Florian Monastery offer guided tours?

Yes, guided tours are available for visitors who want to delve deeper into the history and significance of St. Florian Monastery. These tours provide expert insights and a more comprehensive understanding of the landmark.

4. Are there any events or concerts held at the monastery?

Yes, St. Florian Monastery is renowned for hosting various cultural events and concerts throughout the year. These events showcase the stunning acoustics of the church and offer a unique experience for visitors.

5. Can I attend a religious service at St. Florian Monastery?

Yes, visitors are welcome to attend religious services at St. Florian Monastery. The monastery serves as an active place of worship for the Augustinian Canons and provides a tranquil setting for spiritual reflection.