Melk and Durnstein – Day 7

As we travelled down the Danube we had a two stop day. The morning stop was is in Melk with a visit to the Abbey. It was founded in 1089 when the King donated a castle. In the 12th century the school was formed (today they have about 900 students from nearby attending classes there). It was beautiful. Here are a number of shots from the Abby.

The town of Melk is dominated by the Abbey and sports a nice local market with the standard local fare; a fabulous selection of artisinal breads and cheeses, olive oils, produce and trinkets. After lunch as we ventured east through the Wachau valley we saw terrace after terrace of vinyards. They are known for their white wine varietals.

Next we stopped in Durnstein. After wandering/exploring the city for a while, we stopped at the Hotel Schloss Durenstein. We had no idea what any of the wines were like so we threw a dart and tried the Gruner Veitliner from Domaine Wachau. It was quite tasty, almost a sauvignon blanc.

Durnstein is also known for its castle ruins in which Richard the LionHearted was imprisoned after he was captured returning from the Crusades. You can see the castle is at the top of the hill above the Cathedral.

Finally, the town also has more products derived from apricots than you can imagine; jam, chutney, schnapps, likeur, cosmetics, candy, etc.

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