Gmund, Austria Tourist Attractions
The little town of Gmünd (507m/1,663ft; pop. 7,000) is beautifully situated in the lower valley of the Lieser, at the mouth of the charming Malta valley, on the busy road from the Katschberg pass to the Millstätter See and the Drau valley. It is both a staging point on the way from Salzburg to Carinthia and a good base from which to explore the Nock district.Gmünd was founded about 1240 by Archbishop Eberhard II of Salzburg, and received its municipal charter in 1346. In 1480 the Hungarian King Matthias Corvinus took possession of the town, and in 1502 it was mortgaged to the Archbishop of Salzburg by Emperor Maximilian I. After a long time under the control of Baron Georg von Khevenhüller it was sold in the 17th century by Count von Raitenau to Count Christoph Lodron. The feudal system of control was lifted in 1848.The Old Town is still surrounded by a circuit of 16th century walls, with four gates. Some medieval stocks are still to be seen near the Upper Gate.
The massive Altes Schloss, now largely in ruins, dates from the 13th-17th century. The tall tower is Romanesque, and the western part of the building has been modeled in Renaissance style.
The Neues Schloss in the Gmünd main square, a much plainer building than the nearby Altes Schloss reflecting the Salzburg influence, dates from 1651-54; note the Baroque stone lions.
Parish Church of Maria Himmelfahrt
The Late Gothic parish church of Maria Himmelfahrt (the Assumption) in Gmünd, a triple-naved hall church, has a fine choir with ribbed vaults (1339) and a Baroque high altar of 1730. On the high altar is an impressive painting of the Assumption of Our Lady. The Gothic charnel house contains 14th C. frescos.
Porsche Car Museum
The Porsche works were in Gmünd from 1944-50, and there is a monument to Ferdinand Porsche in the park. In 1982 a private Porsche Car Museum was set up; it covers Porsche cars from the very first to the latest sports models (archive room with video films and slide show; open daily).Nearly 30 vehicles are on display in the museum.
Glass Making Museum
In the Stadtplatz in Gmünd stands the Glassworking and Stoneworking Museum, devoted to the arts of glass manufacture and stone carving, which have a long tradition in this region.
Southeast of Gmünd lies the Nock district, a mixture of saddles, valleys and lakes, much frequented by climbers and winter sports enthusiasts. From the top of Tschiernock (2,088m/6,850ft; four hours from Gmünd) there are extensive views.
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