History of Krems

Krems is one of the oldest residences on the Danube. A document dating back to 995 has survived, which mentions a castle called "Chremisa". This makes Krems the oldest city in Lower Austria.

The area was already populated in the Paleolithic Age, as evidenced by the “Venus vom Galgenberg” (more than 32,000 year old statuette of a women). The original of the dainty figure is presented in the Natural History Museum together with Venus von Willendorf, who, incidentally, is a few thousand years younger. A copy of this awaits visitors in the museumkrems.

After the Romans, the Germanic Rugians settled in Stein around 48 AD. The Romans, who had always had a taste for fine things, cultivated viticulture around Krems.

Krems-Stein was the most important hub between shipping and land transport, more important than Vienna in fact. Krems and Stein have formed a city community since the 13th century. The farms, churches and town houses were built and designed by the best builders in the country. Many artists and artisans have moved to the prosperous Danube city since the Middle Ages. Education was a central concern of commercial citizens, where they successfully tried to provide their sons and daughters with a solid school education and soon opened up access to university education. Krems became a thriving commercial, cultural and educational city. This development continues to this day. Krems is also a flourishing economic, cultural, educational university town in the 21st century and of course a European wine town in the Kremstal at the gateway to the Wachau..

With good reason, UNESCO included the old towns of Krems and Stein when it included the Wachau along with the Göttweig and Melk monasteries in its list of World Heritage sites worth protecting in 2000.


  • 30,000 BC The first settlement on the Wachtberg
  • 860 first documented mention of Hollenburg
  • 995 first mention of Krems
  • 1072 first mention of Stein
  • 1130 - 1190 first Babenberg mint in Austria
  • 1196 first city judge
  • 1305 City law for Krems and Stein documented
  • 1447 documented guild of St. Paul
  • 1463 today's coat of arms of Friedrich III.
  • 1645 - 1648 occupation by Sweden in the Thirty Year' War
  • 1826 Ludwig van Beethoven's stay in Gneixendorf
  • 1850 foundation of the tobacco factory
  • 1872 connection to the railway network
  • 1888 Start of construction of the protective dam
  • 1940 Establishment of a prisoner of war camp in Gneixendorf
  • 1945 massacre in Stein
  • 1988 discovery of the "Fanny vom Galgenberg" (32,000 year old statuette)
  • 1995 Completion of the Stein flood protection project
  • 1995 Opening of the Danube University, Kunsthalle
  • 2000 elevation of the old towns to world cultural heritage
  • 2005 Opening of the Krems campus