Pilgrimage city Mariazell

The Mariazeller Land Region - Rich in Summer Delights

Your local contact

City of Mariazell

Pater Hermann Geist Platz 1, 8630 Mariazell

Tel.: +43 3882 2244

E-Mail: office (at) mariazell.gv.at

www.mariazell.gv.at

The heart of the town is the shrine of Mariazell and its magnificent basilica, an attraction for both pilgrims and visitors for centuries. Generations upon generations have left their marks here, as can be seen in the many treasure chambers, votive pictures and offerings left by pilgrims throughout the years.  The Statue of Grace, Magna Mater Austriae (Magna Hungarorum Domina, Mater Gentium Slavorum) serves as a symbol of the journey for many of the people who visit Mariazell, often helping them to find their own personal aim in life. 

In the summer months the Mariazeller Land Region offers a lot of recreational activities in addition to leisurely hikes and climbing tours:

  • Explore the mountain Bürgeralpe Mariazell with its aerial cableway, the lumberjack adventure park Holzknechtland & Biberwasser, the WakeAlps water ski lift and several BikeAlps mountain bike trails
  • Visit the town of Mitterbach with its chairlift, mountain go-carting track, climbing playground and summit hiking path
  • Experience the natural wonders of Lake Erlauf for swimming, diving and boating
  • Enjoy art, culture & culinary delights in the treasure chamber at the basilica, at the museum of local history in Mariazell, on a journey with the museum tramway; experience the gingerbread bakery erLEBZELTEREI Pirker, the production of the famous Magenlikör digestif and the workshop of Pantherstrick Arzberger as well as visiting the pharmacy Apotheke Zur Gnadenmutter

During the Mariazell Advent season, Austria's largest traditional advent market offers a wide range of arts & crafts, regional delicacies and countless concerts and attractions for the whole family to help get you into the holiday spirit. 

Throughout the winter, one of the most modern lift systems carries visitors to the perfectly prepared slopes of the mountain Bürgeralpe, and to the toboggan run and the snow park at the Gemeindealpe mountain.

Shrine Mariazell

Pilgrims seek out the wooden Madonna with child named „Magna Mater Austria“, which is housed in the imposing Basilica of Mariazell. The statue has a height of about 50 cm and is dressed in beautifully worked dresses, except on two occasions: september the 8th (Nativity of Mary) and december 21st (Foundation of the monastery).

 

Pilgrimage history

According to legend, monk Magnus was sent by his abbot to a valley named “Zellertal”. He brought with him a Madonna that he had carved himself. As a huge rock was in his way he called upon Mother Marys help. As this was granted he placed the Madonna on a wooden stump, which is still part of today’s altar.

 

Special pilgrimage days

One speicality in Mariazell are the pilgrimages of special interest groups e.g. from Croatia, from the Farmers' Union, the Austrian police, the rural youth organizations, the Red Cross and many others. May devotions, Feast of the Assumption on August 15th with herbal benedictions, events in the Advent season, Patronal feast day on September 8th as well as the Foundation Day on December 21st are further important pilgrimage days.

 

Advent Season in Mariazell

At the heart of Austria's largest traditional Advent Market is a yearning for old-fashioned traditions, arts & crafts and regional delicacies. A living nativity scene, a post office for Christmas letters in a life-size gingerbread house and handicrafts just for kids make the visit special. Grand concerts and humble devotional services, song recitals and readings are just part of the evening programs offered.

Popes visiting Mariazell

1983: Pope John Paul II

2007: Pope Benedict XVI

Top 10 events

Where to go

  1. Mariazeller Advent Market, www.mariazeller-advent.at
  2. Mariazeller Bergwelle concerts, www.bergwelle.at
  3. May devotions
  4. Corpus Christi procession
  5. Easter festivities
  6. Foundation Day on December 21st
  7. Patronal feast day on September 8th
  8. Feast of the Assumption on August 15th with herbal benedictions
  9. Consecration of cars, blessing of religious objects
  10. Procession of lights
Top 5 sights in Mariazell

What to visit

  1. Basilica Mariazell, www.basilika-mariazell.at
  2. Gingerbread bakery, candle manufacturer and schnapps distillery Pirker, www.lebkuchen-pirker.at
  3. Liqueur maker and Pantherstrick workshop Caj. Arzberger, www.arzberger.co.at
  4. Pharmacy Apotheke Zur Gnadenmutter, www.zurgnadenmutter.at
  5. Mariazeller Bürgeralpe mountain, www.buergeralpe.at
Top 5 Excursions from Mariazell

Up to 2 hours driving time

  1. The Ötscher Hollers, Austria's Grand Canyon, www.naturpark-oetscher.at
  2. Billabong Gorge Wasserlochklamm Palfau, www.wasserloch.at
  3. Camel Theater & White Zoo in Kernhof, www.kameltheater.at
  4. Excursions to Graz
  5. Kaiserhof glassmaking workshop in Neuberg, www.kaiserhof-glas.at and the Southern Railway Museum Südbahnmuseum in Mürzzuschlag, www.suedbahnmuseum.at
Travelling to Mariazell

The most important connections

Getting here by plane

GRAZ AIRPORT 130 km

From Graz, continue by train to Bruck an der Mur, change there to the bus going to Mariazell

VIENNA AIRPORT

From Vienna continue by train to St. Pölten, change to the Mariazellerbahn railroad towards St. Sebastian, taking a taxi or bus from the station to Mariazell