Posted by: travelrat | June 12, 2018


Durnstein 1

Dürnstein: 30th March 2018

There wasn’t an organised tour of Dürnstein; there really didn’t need to be one in such a small place. They just gave us a map with a suggested route printed on it. We used it as a guideline, and just wandered around. It’s a village of only 900 souls, most of whom work in the vineyards which surround the village.  It stands in the Wachau valley, an area noted for its spectacular scenery, and its extensive vineyards. It’s rather reminiscent of the Mosel Valley, where every surface that isn’t occupied by a building, or absolutely vertical is covered in grape vines … almost.

Many of the vines are ‘adopted’ by local children, most of whom do work experience in the vineyards. And, eventually, a lot of them work full-time there.

Dominating all is the ruined castle where Richard the Lionheart was imprisoned in 1192. His brother, John, was at home, trying to raise the ransom money … allegedly, he was trousering most of it, but was famously thwarted by Robin Hood. (Most films and pantomimes tell of Richard returning victorious, to catch Wicked Prince John and the dastardly Sheriff of Nottingham with their fingers in the till … but that’s another story!)

We didn’t go up to the castle, though; I suspect we’ll see many more castles on this trip. A walk around the village doesn’t take long at all, and there’s plenty of time for a stroll along the river bank, just watching the boats go by.

Durnstein 3



  1. You make it sound an interesting place, although small.

    • ‘Small, but beautifully formed’ is the way I’d put it. I could happily have spent much longer there. just looking around.

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