Austrian World Heritage Sites

UNESCO WelterbeAustria ratified the PDF Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage in December 1992. Austria has ten inscriptions on the UNESCO World Heritage List:


Historic Centre of the City of Salzburg (1996)


Salzburg, with its dramatic townscape and historically significant urban fabric, together with its proliferation of prominent ecclesiastical and secular buildings from across the ages, is a salient example of an European ecclesiastical city-state. As a meeting point of cultures and arts from northern and southern Europe, Salzburg is primarily associated with music and the well-known Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

Palace and Gardens of Schönbrunn (1996)


The castle is a symbol of the power and influence of the House of Habsburg in European history. Together with the park, the ensemble is an excellent example of the princely baroque residences, and a great work of art.

Hallstatt-Dachstein / Salzkammergut Cultural Landscape (1997)


This alpine region is an outstanding example of a natural landscape of great beauty and scientific interest. The history of Hallstatt and this region can be traced back to the salt-economy and through its connection with culture and nature.

Semmering Railway (1998)


The Semmering Railway represents a notable technological solution to a major physical problem in the construction of early railways, thereby creating a new form of cultural landscape. The Semmering Railway was built between 1848 and 1854 with a length of 41 kilometres.

City of Graz – Historic Centre and Schloss Eggenberg (1999 and 2010) (1999)


The historic centre of the city of Graz reflects artistic and architectural movements originating from the Germanic region, the Balkans, and the Mediterranean, for which it served as a crossroad for centuries. The urban complex, along with Schloss Eggenberg, built shortly after 1625, is an exceptional example of a harmonious integration of architectural styles from successive periods. The urban physiognomy faithfully tells the story of its historic development.

Wachau Cultural Landscape (2000)


Wachau is an outstanding example of a river landscape bordered by mountains in which material evidence of its long historical evolution has survived to a remarkable degree. The architecture, the human settlements, and the agricultural use of the land in Wachau vividly illustrate a fundamentally medieval landscape which has evolved organically and harmoniously over time.

Historic Centre of Vienna (2001)

Vienna City

Three key periods of European cultural and political development – the Middle Ages, the Baroque period, and the Gründerzeit, the era of industrialization – are exceptionally well illustrated by the urban and architectural heritage of the Historic Centre of Vienna. Since the 16th century Vienna has been universally acknowledged to be the musical capital of Europe.

Fertö-Neusiedler See Cultural Landscape, jointly with Hungary (2001)

Neusiedler See

Fertö/Neusiedler See has been the meeting place of different cultures for eight thousand years. Its varied landscape bears witness to this intercultural development process. The outstanding rural architecture around the lake and many palaces from the 18th and 19th century are a part of the significant prominence.

Prehistoric Pile Dwellings around the Alps (2011)

Prehistoric Pile Dwellings

This serial property of 111 small individual sites (five of them located in Upper Austria at Attersee and Mondsee and in Carinthia at Keutschacher See) encompasses the remains of prehistoric pile-dwelling settlements in and around the Alps. They were built from around 5000 to 500 B.C. on the edges of lakes, rivers or wetlands. Nowadays the remains of these buildings and the findings from the surrounding areas provide insight into life during prehistoric times in the Neolithic and Bronze Age in Alpine Europe.

Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe (2017)

Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe

This transboundary World Heritage site stretches over 12 countries and includes 78 components. Five components are found in Austria, four of which are clustered within the Kalkalpen National Park. The Dürrenstein component is formally designated wilderness, a rare designation for Europe. Since the end of the last Ice Age, European beech spread from a few isolated refuges in the Alps, Carpathians, Mediterranean and Pyrenees over a short period of a few thousand years in a process that is still ongoing. Human intervention, however, has dramatically reduced the coverage of beech forests and today only small forest remnants remain with primeval and old growth characteristics.

Since 2004, the Austrian Commission for UNESCO has been encouraging cooperation between the Austrian World Heritage sites by organizing annual meetings.

World heritage education is a major factor in implementing the World Heritage Convention, as it fosters awareness of our joint responsibility for such sites and their long-term preservation.