At MyTravelStudio we often use the word beautiful to describe places, experiences, people or even food and drinks. A place that comes to mind right now is this rather small country called Austria. I have so many nice stories about this place that I could tell one every day. One of them happened recently, when we decided to have this romantic escape in Vienna. We rented a car and this is how we got to be in Melk, must see place in Austria.
When you want to enjoy a road trip, the temptation is to avoid highways and this is exactly what we have done. We left the hotel in Vienna and drove for about three hours. The Landscape in august has such beautiful colors and the sun enlightens everything. We made lots of pit stops to admire hills and small villages until we arrived in Melk, a small town in Lower Austria, along Danube.
Spending a Sunday afternoon in Melk turned out to be a fantastic idea, with a bit of history in a small town, nice traditional food and welcoming people. Melk is famous if you take a look in the history pages and this small area has such a great deal of architectural variety from many centuries.
We saw this small castle first, up on the hill, just across the river from Melk and we said let’s just see what it is all about. This is how we learned about the history of tractors. I never imagined that I would be interested in these kind of things but the lesson was nice and we got to see a variety of tractors, from the first ones ever to newer and more sophisticated ones. A nice middle-aged man was welcoming the tourists and in one of the castles rooms he presented this short documentary about the place. Beautiful thing is that locals decided to access some grants to renovate and they just transformed this old ruin into a touristic attraction.
We left the castle with the lesson about the tractors and the Marshall plan learned. Down the hill, just across Danube, about many centuries ago, they built a settlement called Melk. The name wasn’t exactly this at first and it actually become famous because of an Abbey that is among the world’s most famous monastic sites.
Melk Abbey was founded in 1089, when Leopold II decided to give one of his castles to the Benedictine monks. A school was founded there; in the 12th century and the fact is that the library become world renowned because of its collection of manuscripts. Interesting thing is that because of its academic stature, Melk was the only one managing to escape dissolution under the emperor Joseph II.
Visiting Melk Abbey takes some time and for actually seeing the inside you need to be there early, because they close the doors at 6 pm. Even so we got to see some interiors and the nice garden. It is impressive and you will leave with the though that they spent some money for arranging the place. I mean that we talk about luxury here.
Melk is not only about the Abbey today, it is also about nice houses and streets, a beautiful square that attracts many tourists from all over the world and good traditional food. We picked this terrace called Madar Pub and ordered this “gemusestrudel” and the famous “suppe”. The lunch was not over without a nice desert. My choice, that turned out to be so inspired is called “joghurtbecher”. That is fresh fruits, home made ice cream and yogurt. I loved that desert! It is so good I still have the taste very fresh in my memory.
After such an extraordinary lunch somewhere in Lower Austria, some history lessons and sight seeing we were ready to return to Vienna. The romantic escape in Vienna will be another subject to talk about. So you are really welcome in case you like stories and want some ideas for your traveling.