Karlskirche - St Charles Church, Vienna

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Vienna's famous baroque church

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  • the column
    the column
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  • Karlskirche
    Karlskirche
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  • Karlskirche
    Karlskirche
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  • zrim's Profile Photo

    Ride to the top of Karlskirche

    by zrim Written May 15, 2005

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    a portion of the dome at Karlskirche

    An elevator will take you up most of the 72 meters for an upclose view of the Karlskirche dome. These celestial scenes were painted by Johann Michael Rottmayr. I was scared just walking up the steps once I got off the elevator--I cannot imagine what it was like painting the dome on rickety scaffolding back in the 1700s.

    Once you are at the top of the dome, you can look out the windows at sprawling Vienna--unfortunately the windows are covered by mesh, so the opportunity for quality photography is lackluster at best.

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    The Karlskirche.

    by margaretvn Updated Apr 2, 2005

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    Karlskirche

    Emperor Karl IV vowed, in 1713 a plague epidemic, that as soon as the city was free from its plight he would build a church. He would dedicate it to St. Charles Borromeo - a former Archbishop of Milan and a patron of the plague. In 1714 he announced a competition to design the church and this was won by the archtitect Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach. The resulting church is a richly ornate Baroque masterpiece.

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  • The Serene Karlskirche

    by KituAdventures Written Jan 8, 2005

    A must for anyone interested in architecture, the stunning Karlskirche mixes Austrian baroque and Oriental elements together. The central dome is classic, but the side pavillions resemble Chinese temples, the lanterns appear like a hybrid of the Trajan Column and a minaret. Inside, an elevator takes you to the top of the dome to admire the airy frescos.

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    Detail of Karlskirche

    by TexasDave Updated Nov 5, 2004

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    Center of High Altar, Karlskirche

    An impressive detail overlooked by many, with so much ornate "baroqueness". In the very center of the high altar there appears the "tetragrammaton", or YHWH, which is how God's name, Jehovah, was written in ancient Hebrew.

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  • Karlskirche

    by grkboiler Written Nov 4, 2004
    Karlskirche

    Karlskirche is my favorite church in Vienna. This church was built in the early 18th century and took 25 years to complete. It was commissioned by Emperor Karl VI after a plague ravished the city of Vienna in 1713. He vowed to build a church dedicated to St. Charles Borromeo, a patron saint of the plague, when the plague ended.

    The Baroque building incorporates architecture of Greece and Rome. The columns out front are modeled after Trajan's Column in Rome and depict scenes of St. Charles Borromeo's life. The two angels at the entrance represent the Old and New Testaments (left to right).

    Also pay special attention to the frescoes in the dome and the pulpit. The High Altar is another thing not to miss.

    Hours are 7:30 AM - 7 PM Monday through Friday, 8:30 AM - 7 PM Saturday, and 9 AM - 7 PM Sunday.

    See my travelogue for more pics.

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    Karlskirche

    by Polly74 Written Aug 25, 2004

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    Karlskirche

    Karlskirche, begun in 1715, in Vienna, is dedicated to Carlo Borromeo, the Italian cardinal and saint of the Counter Reformation. What is most extraordinary about this structure is the successful coherence of its design despite a seemingly irreconcilable eclecticism. In front of a longitudinally placed oval nave stands an unusually wide facade composed of a bizarre combination of elements. A Corinthian hexastyle temple portico on top of a stepped podium, archaeological in its fidelity to Roman temple fronts, represents the entrance to the church.

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    St Charles Church

    by William1982 Written Aug 13, 2004

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    St Charles Church

    The church of St Charles is absolutely stunning, and was designed in the Baroque style. The dome measures 72metres, the columns either side rise to 47metres. Inside the church is fantastic artwork on the celings including the fresco Arrival in heaven of Saint Charles.

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  • PetraG's Profile Photo

    Karlskirche - Vienna's famous baroq church

    by PetraG Written Jun 15, 2004

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    The building of Karlskirche was started in 1715 following plans of one of the most famous Austrian Baroque architects, Johann Fischer von Erlach. The church is spectacular. It is the biggest cathedral in Baroque style north of the Alps.

    Initially, the church was build to honor the vows of Emperor Karl VI. given in the time of a severe plague epidemic. It was dedicated to saint Karl Borromeo.

    An unusually wide front is composed of a number of contrasting elements which surprisingly add up to a unique and harmonic overall image. Two colums with an allegoric representation of the life of saint Borromeo are reminiscent of Italian Renaissance Trajan colum. They frame the main portal which resembles a Greek temple. The oval nave of the church is topped by an eye-catching dome (72 m high) spectacularly painted at the inside.

    The church is situated at one of Vienna's central nodes, spacious 'Karlsplatz'. The area in front of Karlskirche was redesigned in the 1970s by one of the most important sculptors of the 20th century: Henry Moore. His artwork 'Hill Arches' adornes an oval water basin which reflects the church building.

    If you take the tube (U4 or U2) you can admire one of Otto Wagner's art deco tube stations. Secession museum is another famous sights closeby where Karslplatz meets Naschmarkt!

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    A plague upon you

    by iandsmith Updated May 15, 2004

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    Refreshed fresco

    It is timely here to remember why this church was built. In the 1713 plague over 10,000 people died and it was the second one in 20 years.
    Charles VI thus dedicated this church to the town being rid of the plague, an act Charles Borromeo was given much credit for.
    Allegorical paintings such as Faith, Hope and Charity are thus well in tune with the sentiments behind this building.

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    The altar

    by iandsmith Written May 14, 2004

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    A small miracle

    It's a miracle (right place for that type of thing I guess) that this shot came out at all. Upon a sudden inspiration while going down on the lift I grasped my camera, took aim and blazed away, full well realizing that this shot would be almost impossible to duplicate in another couple of months when the work is finished.
    It clearly shows the altar that features the Holy Trinity above St. Charles Borromeo, a bright feature in the otherwise subdued light of a church interior.

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    An opportunity

    by iandsmith Written May 14, 2004

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    Splendour on the walls

    .............for there, just a short lift ride up the centre of the dome, was access to the Rottmayer allegorical works currently undergoing restoration. The scaffold-supported walkways allowed you to get up close and personal with the frescoes and, surprise, surprise, you could use your tripod! This God-sent opportunity to a heathen like me was not to be missed.

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  • iandsmith's Profile Photo

    Karlskirche

    by iandsmith Written May 14, 2004

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    Not only good from the outside

    Though not the largest church in Europe by a long stretch, it is a bit of a photographer's delight. The outside lends itself to imagination and, talk about lucky, when I got inside restoration was under way................

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  • Jmill42's Profile Photo

    Karlskirche

    by Jmill42 Written Mar 17, 2004

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    Karlskirche

    During the Black Plague, emperor Carl VI chose to build this massive church in honor of Borromäus, the plague's patron saint. Fischer von Erlach, the best of the time, designed this Barque church and in 1714, building began.

    The alter is really cool when the sunlight comes through, illuminating the frescos of the dome and everything in general. Outside there was a nice pond. Definitely worth the trek over.

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  • cruisingbug's Profile Photo

    Karlskirche at Night

    by cruisingbug Updated Jan 17, 2004
    Karlskirche, Vienna

    Designed by Fischer von Erlach, Karlskirche is beautiful no matter what time of day you go. As a group of college students, we felt very safe in this area at night (in 1991). There was a nice coffee shop nearby - unfortunately I don't have a record of the name.

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  • aliante1981's Profile Photo

    St. Karl Kirche

    by aliante1981 Written Jan 6, 2004

    After Vienna was hit by a devastating epidemic, Emperor Charles VI ordered the construction of a church, dedicated to St. Charles Borromeo (an Italian saint canonized for his work during an epidemic). This church was constructed from during the year span from1716 to 1739. The works were begun by JB Fischer von Erlach, and were continued by his son Joseph Emanuel von Erlach. Now this church, with its impressive dome, looks like many buildings of Vienna do - white (or ivory) walls with green roof and dome - that’s the predominant style in the Austrian capital. Note the frescoes inside and a sculpture by Henry Moore outside.

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