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  • General Information

    Other Name: Lentia, District: Linz, State: Upper Austria, Austria
    Area: 0 -
    Languages Spoken: German
    Long Distance Code: 0732
    Importance: The city is now home to a vibrant music and arts scene that is well-funded by the city and the state of Upper Austria.
    Best Time to Visit: January to March and April
    International Access: Sonnected to all the major cities of Austria.
  • Description

    Linz is the third largest city of Austria and capital of the state of Upper Austria (German: Oberösterreich). It is located in the north centre of Austria, approximately 30 km south of the Czech border, on both sides of the river Danube. The population of the city itself is 189,343 (2007), and 271,000 in the Greater Linz conurbation.
  • Location

    It is located in the north centre of Austria, approximately 30 km south of the Czech border, on both sides of the river Danube.
  • Climate

    Continental Temperate Climate
This museum accurately calls itself "the museum of the future." The place will certainly give you a thrill; a full body flight simulator takes you on a whirlwind "tour" over Upper Austria without leaving the building. The on-site "Airacuda" glides through the water like a fish. This is most definitely a hands-on museum, and you''re entertained with marionettes for the digital age (that is, with no strings attached). Several levels allow you to enjoy a hands-on experience. In the interactive 3-D room on the ground level, you can explore "the outer reaches of space," or so it will seem. The location of the new museum is over the bridge from Hauptplatz.

The largest baroque church in the city and formerly the cathedral of Linz, the Alter Dom was constructed by the Jesuits at the end of the 17th century. You mustn''t judge this church by its relatively simple exterior. The inside warms up considerably with pink marble columns, an intricately carved pulpit, and lots of statues. The high altar is bedecked with marble images. Native son Anton Bruckner was the church organist for 12 years, and the annual Bruckner Festival is centered here. Two other composers are honored at the same time -- Mozart, who composed his Linz Symphony (no. 36) at the building now designated as the city tourist office (Hauptplatz 1), and Beethoven, who composed part of his Eighth Symphony in Linz.
One of the most important historic buildings in Linz, the Landhaus today serves as the headquarters for Upper Austria''s government. The original structure was built around 1570 with a gracefully arcaded courtyard surrounding a fountain. The complex served as the city''s university during the 1600s and is still celebrated as the site where Johannes Kepler, the noted astronomer and mathematician, taught and developed his theories of planetary motion.

Within the Landhaus''s labyrinthine confines are the Church of the Minorite Brothers and the richly furnished apartments used by Empress Elisabeth ("Sissi") on the night she spent en route from her childhood home in Bavaria to the Hapsburg court in Vienna just before her marriage to Franz Josef in 1854.

High above the river and a 5-minute walk west of Hauptplatz stands the castle used by Emperor Friedrich III when he and his court resided in Linz (1486-89). At the turn of the 17th century, Rudolf II erected a new building. A catastrophic fire destroyed the south wing in the early 19th century. Today the castle houses the Provincial Museum of Upper Austria. Its exhibits range from medieval art to works by the great moderns. There''s an extensive arts-and-crafts department and a folklore collection. During the last few years, the permanent exhibitions have been expanded to include special exhibitions on cultural history.

On the border of the Danube River, this gallery is one of the most important repositories of contemporary painting in Linz. Many art lovers drive all the way from Vienna to feast on the array of paintings -- some 1,500 works in all that include pieces from Andy Warhol, Picasso, Chagall, Matisse, and more. Even more enthralling to us is the collection of the paintings and graphic works by Klimt and Schiele. The gallery also owns 850 rare photographs, including the work of Man Ray. The earliest paintings are from the first half of the 19th century, but most of the collection is after 1945 at the end of the war. The museum plans an active program of acquisition, and, of course, there are those bequests that inevitably come in, usually upon the death of a collector. One of the greatest gifts came from a Berlin art dealer, Wolfgang Gurlitt (1888-1965), who managed to amass a stunning collection of 120 important art works. The building itself is one of the finest examples of modern architecture in Linz, a glass-and-concrete structure designed to present art in the best possible light.

The finest example of Carolingian architecture in the region, St. Martin''s Church is the most ancient church in Austria still (more or less) in its original form. Constructed by Charlemagne during the 700s, it used the ruins of an ancient Roman wall for parts of its foundation. Its interior is decorated with frescoes, several fine examples of baroque art, and a 15th-century Gothic choir. Restored in 1948, the church stands a 10-minute walk west of Hauptplatz, in a neighborhood filled with commercial buildings. A covered passageway connects it directly to the Linzer Schloss . Although it''s not open to the public, the church is almost always included as part of the official tours sponsored by the Linz tourist office (tel. 0732/70701777).

Originally built during the 1200s in the early Gothic style, the Church of the Minorite Brothers was for some time the seat of the city''s municipal government until the larger Landhaus was built around it in the late 1500s. The interior was given a baroque overlay in 1758. The building''s masterpiece is the high altar by Bartolomeo Altomonte, depicting the Annunciation. The church also contains three red-marble side altars.