List of World Heritage Sites in Austria

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage Sites are places of importance to cultural or natural heritage as described in the UNESCO World Heritage Convention, established in 1972. Cultural heritage consists of monuments (such as architectural works, monumental sculptures, or inscriptions), groups of buildings, and sites (including archaeological sites). Natural features (consisting of physical and biological formations), geological and physiographical formations (including habitats of threatened species of animals and plants), and natural sites which are important from the point of view of science, conservation or natural beauty, are defined as natural heritage. Austria ratified the convention on December 18, 1992, making its historical sites eligible for inclusion on the list.

Sites in Austria were first inscribed on the list at the 20th Session of the World Heritage Committee, held in Mérida, Mexico in 1996. At that session, two sites were added: the Historic Centre of Salzburg, and the Palace and Gardens of Schönbrunn. As of 2021, Austria has 12 sites inscribed on the list and a further 10 on the tentative list. Five World Heritage Sites are shared with other countries: Fertő / Neusiedlersee Cultural Landscape is shared with Hungary; Prehistoric pile dwellings around the Alps with France, Germany, Italy, Slovenia and Switzerland; Ancient and Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe with 17 European countries; the Great Spa Towns of Europe with Belgium, Czechia, Germany, France, Italy, and the United Kingdom; and the Danube Limes with Germany and Slovakia. In 2017, the site Historic Centre of Vienna was inscribed on the list of World Heritage in Danger due to planned new high-rise buildings. All but one of the World Heritage Sites in Austria are of the cultural type.

World Heritage Sites

UNESCO lists sites under ten criteria; each entry must meet at least one of the criteria. Criteria i through vi are cultural, whereas vii through x are natural.

 * Transnational site
 In danger In danger
Site Image Location Year listed UNESCO data Description
Historic Centre of the City of Salzburg Old Town Salzburg across the Salzach river.jpg Salzburg 1996 784; ii, iv, vi (cultural) Salzburg played a crucial role in the interchange between Italian and German cultures, resulting in a flowering of the two cultures and a long-lasting exchange between them, which is visible especially in the Baroque architecture. Salzburg is a prime example of a European ecclesiastical city-state, resulting in many important buildings, both secular and religious, from the Gothic period to the 20th century. The city is also well known for its associations with the arts, especially with the composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
Palace and Gardens of Schönbrunn Schloss Schönbrunn Wien 2014 (Zuschnitt 2).jpg Vienna 1996 786; i, iv (cultural) Schönbrunn was the residence of the Habsburg emperors from the 18th century to 1918. It was built in the Rococo style as a single, unified project. It was designed by the architects Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach and Nicolaus Pacassi and is the site of the world's oldest continuously operating zoo.
Hallstatt–Dachstein / Salzkammergut Cultural Landscape Hallstatt town at the lake Salzkammergut 1997 806; iii, iv (cultural) The mining of salt deposits, exploited since the 2nd millennium BCE, brought prosperity to the region. The town gave name to the Hallstatt culture, the Iron Age society. The region is also known for its mountain ranges and caves, the longest of the latter reaching a length of 81 km (50 mi).
Semmering railway Breitenstein - Semmeringbahn, Viadukt Kalte Rinne.JPG Gloggnitz, Semmering 1998 785; ii, iv (cultural) The Semmering railway was built between 1848 and 1854 and covers 41 km (25 mi) of rugged mountains. This project was undertaken in the early days of railway construction and required a number of innovations. The tunnels, viaducts and other works are still in use today.
City of Graz – Historic Centre and Schloss Eggenberg 16-07-06-Rathaus Graz Turmblick-RR2 0275.jpg Graz 1999 931; ii, iv (cultural) A branch of the Habsburg family lived in Graz for centuries. The Habsburgs and other local nobles beautified and expanded Graz over centuries, leading to a city with grand buildings in a number of styles.
Wachau Cultural Landscape Stift melk 001.jpg Wachau 2000 970; ii, iv (cultural) The Wachau is a 40 km (25 mi) long valley along the Danube river between Melk and Krems. The valley was settled in prehistoric times and has been an important region since then. It is home to a number of historic towns, villages, monasteries, castles and ruins.
Fertő / Neusiedlersee Cultural Landscape* Neusiedler See im Winter.jpg Burgenland 2001 772; v (cultural) The Fertő/Neusiedler Lake area has been occupied by different peoples for eight millennia. The original network of towns and villages dates to the 12th and 13th centuries. Several palaces were constructed in the 18th and 19th centuries. The site is shared with Hungary.
Historic Centre of ViennaIn danger Wien10Hofburg24.JPG Vienna 2001 1033; ii, iv, vi (cultural) Vienna, the capital of the Habsburg Empire, has long been acknowledged to be the musical capital of Europe. The historic centre is rich in architectural ensembles in various styles, including Baroque castles and gardens, as well as the late-19th-century Ringstraße. In 2017, the site was inscribed on the list of World Heritage in Danger due to planned new high-rise buildings.
Prehistoric pile dwellings around the Alps* Mondsee Ost Pfahlbaustation 2.jpg Attersee, Keutschach, Mondsee, Seewalchen am Attersee 2011 1363; iv, v (cultural) The site encompasses the remains of prehistoric pile-dwelling (or stilt house) settlements in and around the Alps built from around 5000 to 500 BCE on the edges of lakes, rivers or wetlands. They contain a wealth of information on life and trade in agrarian Neolithic and Bronze Age cultures in Alpine Europe. There are five sites listed in Austria. The site is shared with France, Germany, Italy, Slovenia, and Switzerland.
Ancient and Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe* Hintergebirge 01.jpg Dürrenstein, Kalkalpen 2017 1133quater; ix (natural) Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians are used to study the spread of the beech tree (Fagus sylvatica) in the Northern Hemisphere across a variety of environments and the environment in the forest. The site was first listed in 2007 in Slovakia and Ukraine. It was extended in 2011, 2017, and 2021 to include forests in a total of 18 countries. Five forests in Austria were listed in 2017, one in Dürrenstein and four in Kalkalpen (pictured).
Frontiers of the Roman Empire – The Danube Limes (Western Segment)* Map of Danubian Limes in Austria Lower Austria, Upper Austria, Vienna 2021 1608rev; ii, iii, iv (cultural) The Danubian Limes, a network of fortifications along the Danube river, protected the borders of the Roman Empire. The Austrian section is 357.5 km (222.1 mi) long and includes sites at 46 locations. The site is shared with Germany and Slovakia.
The Great Spa Towns of Europe* Park entrance in Baden bei Wien Baden bei Wien 2021 1613; ii, iii, iv, vi (cultural) The Great Spa Towns of Europe comprises 11 spa towns in seven European countries where mineral waters were used for healing and therapeutic purposes before the development of industrial medication in the 19th century. The town of Baden bei Wien is listed in Austria.

Tentative list

In addition to sites inscribed on the World Heritage list, member states can maintain a list of tentative sites that they may consider for nomination. Nominations for the World Heritage list are only accepted if the site was previously listed on the tentative list. As of 2021, Austria recorded 10 sites on its tentative list.

 * Transnational site
Site Image Location Year listed UNESCO criteria Description
Abbey of Kremsmünster Kremsmünster Abbey Kremsmünster 1994 i, ii, iii, iv, vi (cultural) The Benedictine abbey was founded in the 8th century, and has since functioned both as a spiritual centre and as an educational institution. It was extensively expanded in the 17th and 18th Centuries in the Baroque style. The abbey houses valuable medieval manuscripts and a collection of art treasures.
Bregenzerwald (Bregenz Forest) Damülser Mittagspitze, 2,095m Vorarlberg 1994 iv, v (cultural) The area has largely maintained its traditional farming structure including the specific types of farmstead buildings, with villages dating to 18th and 19th centuries. Small textile processing workshops bear testimony to early onset of industrial development in the region.
Cathedral of Gurk Damülser Mittagspitze, 2,095m Gurk 1994 i, iii, iv (cultural) The former cathedral church of Gurk, dating back to the 12th century, is one of the most significant examples of Romanesque churches in Austria. Notable features of the church are the "hundred-pillar" crypt, the burial place of the founder, Saint Hemma of Gurk, and a rich collection of frescoes.
Hochosterwitz Castle Hochosterwitz Castle Carinthia 1994 i, iii, iv (cultural) The castle, one of the most imposing medieval castles in Austria, is located on a high rock above a plain. The access to the castle is guarded by 14 fortified gates. Today's structure dates to the 16th century.
Heiligenkreuz Abbey Heiligenkreuz Abbey Heiligenkreuz 1994 i, ii, iii, iv (cultural) Heiligenkreuz abbey is a Cistercian monastery that was founded in the 12th century. The medieval parts of the complex are preserved and still used for original purposes today, while later extensions were built in the Baroque style.
Iron Trail with Erzberg and the old town of Steyr Steyr Upper Austria 2002 i, ii, iii, iv (cultural) The Erzberg region, between the towns of Leoben and Hieflau in Styria, is home to large deposits of iron ore. The open pit mining has transformed the mountainsides, while the area features several facilities connected to iron smelting and trading activities. The old town of Steyr is one of the most significant historic industrial towns in Austria, situated at a confluence of two rivers which both powered the iron industry and provided transportation routes.
Cultural Landscape of "Innsbruck-Nordkette/Karwendel" Innsbruck Tyrol 2002 i, ii, iii, iv (cultural) The city of Innsbruck was founded at the junction of several important trade routes and served as the residence of dukes, kings, and emperors since the Late Middle Ages. Some of the important landmarks include the Goldenes Dachl (Golden Roof) and the Court Church that houses the cenotaph of Maximilian I. The city is located immediately underneath the Nordkette mountains, part of the Karwendel range, which are important for their Alpine pastures and as a tourist destination.
National Park "Hohe Tauern" Grossglockner Carinthia, Salzburg, Tyrol 2003 vii, viii, ix, x (natural) The national park is home to endemic Alpine animal and plant species, while also bearing witness to geomorphological processes shaping the mountains. Part of the park is covered by glaciers. Mountain passes in the area have been important since the 2nd millennium BCE while the Grossglockner High Alpine Road, constructed in the 1930s, is an important pioneering achievement.
Hall in Tyrol – The Mint Hall in Tyrol Hall in Tyrol 2013 i, ii, iv (cultural) The town of Hall was first mentioned in the 13th century. It rose to prominence when the Archduke Sigmund of Tyrol transferred the Tyrolian mint from Meran to Hall in 1477. The mint produced high-quality silver coins, called thalers, and also introduced several technological innovations, such as the roller-press coinage that replaced minting by hammer. The historic centre in late Gothic style, which remained to an extraordinary high extent intact, represents an example of medieval town-planning and urban development.
Großglockner High Alpine Road / Großglockner Hochalpenstraße Grossglockner road Carinthia, Salzburg 2016 i, ii, iv (cultural) The road was built in the 1930s into a pristine mountain landscape to make it accessible to a large public, following the popularisation of tourism in the High Alpine region. It showcases the technical development of high mountain road building and the management of tourism sites in the early 20th century.

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