The Major Restoration of the Abbey from 1978-2000

After the restoration Severe damage to the frescoes due to humidity before the restoration   Under Abbot Dr. Burkhard Ellegast, who led the monastery from 1975 to 2001, a large-scale restoration of the entire abbey with the help of local and federal governments was successfully carried out.

(further restoration photos)

Today, the abbey’s traditional means of income – agriculture and forestry – are no longer enough. A new emphasis has been placed on tourism, which provides most of the necessary income to maintain and restore the monastery.

Three Lower Austrian State Exhibitions
in Melk Abbey


Since 1960 the monastery has repeatedly housed large, well-respected exhibitions (1960 Lower Austrian State Exhibition “Jakob Prandtauer and His Artistic Circle”, 1980 Lower Austrian State Exhibition “Emperor Joseph II and His Times”, 1989/90 abbey anniversary exhibition “900 years Benedictines in Melk”, and 1996 millenium exhibition “Melk Abbey—Spiritual and Cultural Center”). In 2000 there was another Lower Austrian State Exhibition with the title “The Search for a Paradise Lost—European Culture as Reflected in its Monasteries.” Afterwards the abbey museum was completely newly designed in 2001 and presents the history of the abbey with all its ups and downs as well as current life in Melk Abbey using a varied design of the rooms and modern technology such as video presentations and computer animation.