The Benedictine Abbey of Ottobeuren is also known as “the Swabian Escorial” and is part of the diocese of Augsburg. The abbey was founded in 764 by Silach, a German nobleman, and dedicated to St. Alexander of Rome and St. Theodor of Sitten. The splendid Baroque abbey complex together with its church, one of the major works of the European Baroque, reflect the economic significance of the abbey.
The late Baroque basilica was built in 1737–1766 by Simpert Kraemer (until 1748) and Johann Michael Fischer and adorned with dome and ceiling frescoes and altar pictures by the cousins Johann Jakob and Franz Anton Zeiller from the Tyrol, stucco figures by Johann Joseph Christian, and stucco work by Johann Michael Feuchtmayer the younger. It is dedicated to St. Alexander and St. Theodor.
The choir stalls are one of the finest examples of Southern German Baroque style. The focal point of the church is a Romanesque crucifix (around 1220).
Some of the Baroque abbey buildings can be accessed as part of the abbey museum. Classical concerts are held in the abbey church and in the prestigious Kaisersaal as part of the Ottobeurer concert series, sometimes featuring world-famous conductors. The abbey library, which dates back to the time when the abbey was founded, is an important part of the overall artistry of the abbey architecture, featuring magnificent ceiling paintings by Elias Zobel, stucco ceilings by Johann Baptist Zimmermann and Baroque interior design.
On Saturday afternoons at 4:00 pm an organ concert is held in the basilica, featuring the famous Riepp organ and the large organ known as the Marienorgel.
- Basilica: 9:00 am to sunset, 8:30 pm at the latest
Restricted visiting options: Thursday 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
- Museum: 2 April to All Saints Day, daily 10:00 am to 12:00 pm and 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm.
Restricted opening times throughout the rest of the year
General church tour
- Every Saturday from April to October (except Easter Saturday) at 2:00 pm