For all those seeking the extraordinary.
The Garsten Advent is one of the country’s oldest and most beautiful Advent markets, keeping alive authentic regional traditions. Local handicrafts, high-quality exhibitions and the festive atmosphere in the “Platzl” Square in front of the baroque abbey church make the market a popular meeting place for young and old alike. The stalls offer delightful regional delicacies and exquisite gifts. Nailsmiths, metalsmiths and carpenters demonstrate their age-old crafts.
In the elementary school, 55 exhibitors display their arts and crafts. A special exhibition, organized by the Ennsmuseum Kastenreith in cooperation with the Dambach nailsmiths, presents “Raftsmen and Nailsmiths”. In the Raiffeisen bank, the exhibition “The Rein Abbey and its Abbey Shop” and the chocolate manufactory of world champion chocolatier Johannes Bachhalm inform visitors about their products and the art of chocolate making.
The photo exhibition in the “Neue Mittelschule” shows photographic art at its best. The Lederhilger House is home to the exhibition “Pictures & Jewellery” as well as the Galeriecafè run by the Goldhauben women’s group.
Select fringe events such as a pastoral play, musical presentations, bugle players on top of the tower and organ concerts in the restored former abbey church create an enchanting Christmas atmosphere and are sure to awaken the Christmas spirit. A special highlight will be the concert by the “Florianer Sängerknaben” boys’ choir in the abbey church.
The historic post carriage delivers Christmas mail to Christkindl. A vintage post bus carries visitors to Christkindl and Steyr.
Garsten nativity scene tradition
The “Nativity Scenes in the Prelature” exhibition focuses on nailsmith crèches - typical box crèches built by Garsten nailsmiths after 1800 featuring half-relief baked clay “Loahmmandel” figurines made using old Steyr moulds. From Garsten, the nativity scene building tradition spread around the Ennstal and Steyrtal Valleys (Ennstal box crèches). Today, the art of making box crèches and other nativity scenes is still taught in special courses.
Another attraction exhibited in the baroque rooms of the former abbey prelature focuses on nativity scenes with movable figurines, in particular the large mechanical nativity scene featuring 25 movable scenes, as well as the most beautiful crèches made in the courses of the Garsten nativity scene school.
In the village, 49 artistically painted life-size wood figures recalling the old “Loahmmandel” figurines point the way to the nativity scene. The Abbey Museum is home to the famous “Buchsbaum” nativity scene by Marian Rittinger (1705), one of Austria’s most expressive baroque sculptures.
Bürgerservice der Marktgemeine Garsten
A-4451 Garsten, Am Platzl 9
Tel. +43 (0) 7252 53307, email@example.com