Salzburg Cathedral dominates the historical centre of the city with its prominent, two-towered facade and mighty structure. The baroque sites that surround it form a unique stage used for festivals and recognised by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.
Today’s cathedral had two medieval predecessors, the remains of which can be viewed in the crypt. The first cathedral was consecrated by St Vergilius in 774. The building was expanded under Archbishop Hartwik (991-1023). Archbishop Konrad I (1106-1147) added two west towers.
In 1167, the cathedral, which was still primarily Carolingian, burned down. Archbishop Konrad III (1177-1183) then had a vast Romanesque basilica with five towers built that was 110m long and which was similar in appearance to the cathedrals in Mainz and Worms. After a fire, it too was demolished in 1598.
The cornerstone of the existing baroque cathedral was laid in 1614. In 1628, the cathedral was consecrated by Archbishop Paris Lodron. About forty years later, the towers and surrounding squares were completed.
The baroque building has impressive clear-cut forms, unique decor and a bright facade made of local marble. The architect, Santino Solari, came from Italy. He created the most important church edifice of his time north of the Alps and influenced the architecture throughout Austria and southern Germany.
To the cathedral destroyed in 1944