From Roman outpost to trade fair town:
Some interesting facts about Wels that are well worth knowing
Wels is located in Upper Austria and is the eighth largest town in Austria with a population of 60,382 (2016). At the time of the Romans, Ovilava, as it was then called, first flourished as a base and outpost of the Roman Empire. Emperor Hadrian elevated Wels to town status. Under Emperor Caracalla, the some 90-hectare large Ovilava had a city wall built around it, and Emperor Diocletian made it the provincial capital of all Roman chattels north of the Alps. In the Middle Ages, Wels experienced its second great boom under the rule of the Habsburgs. Emperor Maximilian I of Austria kept a hunting castle on Wels Plain and often stayed there after granting the town some privileges. In 1519, Maximilian I died in Wels Castle.
Places of interest in Wels include the castle, the House of Salome Alt and the Leather Tower. Wels Castle was widely extended from 1514 onwards at the behest of Maximilian I. It housed a margarine factory at the beginning of the 20th Century. Today, some of the town museum's exhibitions are held in the castle. The House of Salome Alt is a corner house opposite the town church that is decorated with coat-of-arms and has a magnificent facade. From 1611 until her death in 1633, Alt, the life-companion and lover of Prince-Archbishop of Salzburg, Wolf Dietrich von Raitenau, lived there. The Leather Tower originates from the Leather Gate, which was mentioned for the first time in 1326 and owes its name to the neighboring leathermakers' quarter. Also worth a visit is the Puppet World Museum, where over 150 dolls and exhibits from the life of the doll maker Käthe Kruse are exhibited.
The Wels Fair has its origins in the 14th Century. In addition to the weekly market, there were in former times two annual and two horse markets in Wels, from which the “Glanglmarkt” (a small livestock market) has survived until today. In the 19th Century the first folk festival took place in parts of today's exhibition space. With 4,000 exhibitors, around 100 events a year and more than 460,000 visitors, Wels is Austria's third largest exhibition venue today.
Curious fact: In 1921, the world's first industrial production of compost was taken up in Wels.
The Austrian way of life
Selected restaurants, bars and hotels in Wels
Austria has a lot more to offer than just its famous "Kaiserschmarrn" sugared pancakes with raisins: A lively tavern and coffee house culture characterizes the culinary life of the town in much the same way as its traditional architecture, which contributes to the enjoyable experience. So, if you would like to experience some culinary highlights after a visit in our office we have a few hints for you:
Adria Grill Fish Restaurant
Fish on the table: the Adria Grill Fish Restaurant is part of the boutique Hotel Adria. From calamari to octopus, they cater to every whim.
The Gösserbräu is a paragon of Austrian tavern culture: In 1955, the "Gösser" was a meeting place for celebrities from at home and abroad. Relaxing under chestnut trees in the beer garden, you can taste wonderful delicacies, like "Linsenpfandl" or "Wiener Schnitzel", and enjoy a beer from the tavern's own brewery.
Lovers of Greek specialties can get their money's worth at Restaurant Delphi in Wels. Whether you choose “Kritharaki”, “Mousaka” or “Kleftiko” from the menu, make sure you round your meal off with an Ouzo.
The "Francis" combines French cuisine and a bistro atmosphere with a modern ambience in New York style.
Café, bistro and wine bar in one: this is what makes up the Haas. A combination of coziness, retro-look and modernity invites you to stay.
Traditional three-star hotel in a central location on the town square with a tavern and café. The impressive 18th Century rococo facade also makes it an architectural highlight.
The hotel annexed to the tavern: this 3-star hotel in the center of Wels has 21 rooms and offers a wonderful view of the chestnut trees in the beer garden and Kaiser-Josef-Platz.
Boutique Hotel Adria (close to the train station) – Prime location with beautifully elegant rooms. Not only the fish restaurant, but Hotel Adria also offers the very best in quality: its proximity to the train station means you can reach the most popular spots in Wels in just a few minutes.