Cultural highlights are no rarity on Lake Constance. Three such sites are even on the UNESCO World Heritage list. The Monastic Island of Reichenau and the abbey district in St.Gallen only thirty miles away are both seen as hotbeds of European civilisation. In addition to the Monastic Island of Reichenau and the abbey district, you should also take in the Campus Galli in Meßkirch. Here you can experience at first hand how the world-famous monastery plan drawn up on Reichenau Island and archived in the abbey library in St.Gallen is being built without machines or modern tools. In 2011, the pile dwellings around the Alps were also included on the list of World Heritage sites. Many such prehistoric sites are scattered around Lake Constance and Upper Swabia. Marvel at the reconstructed pile dwellings in the Unteruhldingen open-air museum and examine other finds among the prehistoric pile dwellings in the Federsee Museum in Bad Buchau.
1. St.Gallen abbey district/abbey library, Switzerland
Built in 1755, the abbey library is one of the largest and oldest abbey libraries in the world. Some 150,000 tomes are kept in the stunning rococo hall with its gently curving wooden galleries and rich moulding, including the world famous monastery plan drawn up on Reichenau Island.
Experience time: 2 hours
2. Monastic Island of Reichenau, Germany
The three Romanesque churches on the island are a perfect example of Early Medieval architecture in Central Europe. The meticulously restored murals emphasise Reichenau’s role as an “artistic centre of considerable significance for European art history of the 10th and 11th centuries”.
Experience time: 2-4 hours
3. Lake Dwelling Museum, Unteruhldingen, Germany
The oldest open-air stone-age museum in Europe. You will be enthralled by the 23 reconstructed pile dwellings from the Stone Age and Bronze Age, the new ARCHAEORAMA, a multimedia show, the Stone Age circuit for families and the special exhibition with original pile dwelling finds.
Experience time: 1-2 hours
4. Campus Galli, Meßkirch, Germany
More than 1,200 years ago, monks on Reichenau Island drew up the perfect plan for a monastery. This plan can still be found in the abbey library in St.Gallen. Day by day since 2013, the world-famous plan has gradually been becoming a reality in Meßkirch without machines or modern tools.
Experience time: 2 - 3 hours
5. Federsee Museum, Bad Buchau, Germany
No fewer than 4 “prehistoric pile dwellings” (World Heritage site) are located directly on Lake Federsee. With its important archaeological objects and twelve Stone and Bronze Age houses on the open-air site, the nearby Federsee Museum provides the opportunity to learn more about prehistoric living conditions.
Experience time: 2 hours
Overnight stays: 2-3
Travel information: The transfer between the different stages can be undertaken with your own car/coach or by public transport (rail, bus and in places boat).