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Einsiedeln Monastery

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Das imposante Kloster Einsiedeln / Foto: Caroline Hurschler

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Blick vom Friherrenberg auf Kloster Einsiedeln

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Marstall im Winter - Kloster Einsiedeln

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Einsiedeln Monastery has been cultivating a tradition of hospitality for over 1000 years. Switzerland's most important place of pilgrimage is a magnet for pilgrims on the Way of St. James, culture devotees and tourists alike.

The magnificent abbey, complete with Chapel of Our Lady and Black Madonna, is fascinating. The monks celebrate Vespers at 4.30 p.m., closing with the polyphonic antiphon, Salve Regina. Einsiedeln Monastery is currently home to some 50 monks. The Baroque complex in its present form was built from 1703 onwards after plans by Caspar Moosbrugger.

Cultural heritage: Abbey Library

The Benedictine abbey is not only a place of spirituality, but also of learning. Accessible only on guided tours, the library contains manuscripts and books dating back to the founding of the monastery in 934. Its cultural treasures include an archive containing documents tracing monastic life back to the 10th century and the largest private music library in Switzerland.

Monastery stud and Fountain of Our Lady

You do not have to join a tour to view the abbey – or the monastery stables, Europe's oldest extant stud, where the "Cavalli della Madonna" (horses of the Madonna) are bred. The stables were built in 1764-67.

During your visit, sample the water springing from the Fountain of Our Lady in Klosterplatz: the waters of St. Meinrad have traditionally had healing properties ascribed to them.

Great Hall

The impressive Great Hall, built in the Baroque style, can be visited on an individual basis; it is used for concerts, lectures and conferences.

Monastery shop and DiaVision

The Einsiedeln Monastery shop stocks a wide-ranging assortment of religious items and souvenirs.

The DiaVision is a slide show detailing the life and spirituality of Einsiedeln's monks.

Monastery shop opening hours

Sundays and public holidays
10.45 a.m. – 4.30 p.m.
Monday – Friday
10 a.m. – noon / 1.30 – 5.30 p.m.
Saturday
10 a.m. – 4.30 p.m.

DiaVision presentations

Time
Daily at 2 p.m. in German Monday to Saturday (except public holidays) at 3.15 p.m.
Prices
Individuals: CHF 4.50 Groups of 10 or more: CHF 4 Children (7 – 15): CHF 2.50 Groups by prior arrangement

Guided tours

Tours of the monastery are offered daily (except Sundays and public holidays) at 2 p.m. The Einsiedeln Tourist Office also organises tours of the abbey for groups, as well as of the library which is not open to the public.

Alternatively, visitors are invited to explore the monastery premises at their own pace. The Monks' Trail is an hour-long 'digital paper chase' suitable for visitors aged 14 and over with a smartphone: prior registration with the monastery is required.

On the other hand, to know why there are so many angels in the abbey, choose the Angel Tour: this focuses on the angels in the abbey and can be organised for groups. Guided tours for individual visitors are also offered during the Christmas market and on selected dates.

Way of the Cross

Einsiedeln's Way of the Cross begins in Klosterplatz at its southeasternmost point. Its 12 Stations of the Cross lead to the Meinradsberg and provide an opportunity for contemplation and reflection.

Guided tour

The tour provides insights into the history of the monastery and its monastic life. It includes the abbey and its library: the latter's rich historical collection of documents and books is open only to tour groups. The tour concludes with a slide show detailing life in the monastery.

Details of the tour

Time

Daily 2 - 3.45 p.m. (excluding Sundays and public holidays)

Language

German

Prior reservation

Not required

Meeting place

Einsiedeln Tourist Office, Hauptstrasse 85

Prices

CHF 20 per person / children 6 – 16 CHF 10

 

Location and contact

Kloster Einsiedeln
8840 Einsiedeln
+41 (0)55 418 61 11
klosterkloster-einsiedeln.ch
www.kloster-einsiedeln.ch