The Alm Canal (Almkanal) - a medieval water supply system of Salzburg

In the Middle Ages, the urban population faced an acute shortage of clean water. Typically, the wealthy preferred fermented drinks like beer and wine while only the poor consumed fresh water.

Top Tours - Alm canal spider - The medieval water supply of Salzburg.

The people's prosperity increased as more wells were found in the cities, because fires were extinguished faster, streets were cleaned of sewage, city gardens were irrigated, and mills worked.

Salzburg's Christian history supposedly began in the 7th century when St. Peter's Monastery was established on the ruins of the Roman city of Juvavum. The monastery was built at a safe distance from the river, which regularly flooded the valley. However, the largest landlord in Salzburg has been facing water shortages over time. In the 12th century, St. Peter's Abbey initiated the laying of the first water supply, when several channels were diverted from the Alps toward Salzburg.

 In 1138, a 500-meter tunnel was carved through Mönchsberg mountain to bring water to the town, which still functions today. Every year in September, the canal closes for cleaning. After that, group tours of the medieval tunnels of the Alm Canal are offered for two weeks.

 Would you be interested in learning about the historical background of the water supply in Salzburg? How has the process of purifying water evolved from ancient Rome to modern times? Ask for a tour that includes a visit to the Salzburg Waterworks Museum. If you come in September, you can also visit the ancient tunnels of the Alm Canal.


We use cookies

We use cookies on our website. Some of them are essential for the operation of the site, while others help us to improve this site and the user experience (tracking cookies). You can decide for yourself whether you want to allow cookies or not. Please note that if you reject them, you may not be able to use all the functionalities of the site.