Kloster Engelberg Benedictine Monastery tour – Engelberg, Switzerland
One of the main establishments on Engelberg is the Kloster Engelberg Benedictine Monastery. Built in 1120, this over 900 year old building plays a large part in Engelberg’s history.
A few times a week, the monastery opens to the public for a guided tour at 4PM from one of the monks. We thought this would be a great opportunity to learn more and see beyond the beautiful church. We purchased tickets online and made our way to the monastery entrance.
There was a surprising number of people waiting for the tour – the group ended up totaling ten people. Our guide greeted us and took note of our tickets. The tour was in German – I had read that if the majority of the group does not speak German they may accommodate the tour in English. However, our group was almost entirely German speaking. Luckily, the monk had a handout with the tour in English that we were able to use to follow along.
We visited several areas in the monastery and in the church. We started in the Guest Refractory where meals are served to visitors who visit the monastery and the room is decorated with portraits of prominent abbots. The Room of the Virtues is a gorgeous room filled with inlaid wood depicting Benedictine virtues. Brother Columban Louis is responsible for all the work that was done over 10 years and the details are truly unbelievable how this was all done with wood. The Baroque Hall houses conferences and meetings. Here there are several giant paintings that depict the journey of the Benedictine Monks to Engelberg. The Exhibition Room is the library and there are several display cases of items that date back to the start of this monastery.
The tour also included the church itself. We were blown away by the scale of the church – it was extremely large for such a small town. The features were beautiful with a white base, gold accents, and beautiful paintings throughout. It is also home to the largest organs in Switzerland and fifth largest in Europe.
The tour lasted about an hour and was very informative – even with it being in German! The history in these buildings is the foundation of Engelberg. I think this is definitely worth it and something fun to fill the time before you head to dinner. Enjoy all the wonderful photos of the church and monastery.