Built at the end of the 17th century by the Jesuits, the Alter Dom is the hugest church in baroque style in the city and it is the former cathedral of Linz (up until the 20th century). Although its relatively simple exterior, the church’s inside is considerably warmed up by outstanding pink marble columns, a sophisticatedly carved pulpit, a great deal of statues and a beautifully decorated altar with marble images. Native son Anton Bruckner was the church organist for twelve years, and the annual Bruckner Festival is housed here. Two other composers are honoured at the same time - Mozart, who composed his Linz Symphony (no. 36) at the building now designated as the city tourist office (Hauptplatz 1) and Beethoven, who created part of his Eighth Symphony in Linz.
Linz Castle (Linzer Schloss)
High above the river and only on five minutes walk west of Hauptplatz stands the castle used by Emperor Friedrich III when he and his court resided in Linz (1486-1489). At the turn of the 17th century, Rudolf II erected a new building. A calamitous fire destroyed the south wing in the early 19th century. Today the castle houses the Provincial Museum of Upper Austria, which exhibits range from medieval art to works by the great moderns. There is an extensive arts and crafts department and a folklore collection. Throughout the last few years, the permanent exhibitions have been expanded to include special exhibitions on cultural history.
The finest example of Carolingian architecture in the region, St. Martin’s Church is the most ancient church in Austria, still in its original form. Constructed by Charlemagne during the 700s, it used the ruins of an ancient Roman wall for parts of its foundation. Its interior is decorated with frescoes, several fine examples of baroque art and a 15th-century Gothic choir. Restored in 1948, the church is on ten minutes walk west of Hauptplatz, in a neighborhood filled with commercial buildings. What is more it is directly connected to the Linzer Schloss by a covered passageway. Although it is not open to the public, the church is almost always included as part of the official tours sponsored by the Linz tourist office.
One of the most important historic buildings in Linz, the Landhaus today serves as the headquarters for Upper Austria’s government. The original edifice was built around 1570 with a gracefully arcaded courtyard surrounding a fountain. The complex served as the city’s university during the 1600s and is still celebrated as the site where Johann Kepler, the noted astronomer and mathematician, taught and developed his theories of planetary motion. Within the Landhaus’s labyrinthine confines are the Church of the Minorite Brothers and the richly furnished apartments used by Empress Elisabeth on the night she spent on route from her childhood home in Bavaria to the Hapsburg court in Vienna right before her marriage to Franz Josef in 1854.
The most widely-known day trip from Linz is to Pöstlingberg, five kilometers northwest of the city on the north bank of the Danube. By car one can get there via Rudolfstrasse along the left bank of the river and turning right onto Hagenstrasse; or can take the electric railway.
In Pöstlingberg there is a botanical garden which contains many exotic tropical plants and on the summit terrace you can admire the plenty of blooming flowers in summer. A former defensive tower now houses a cave with a miniature railway, which is the favorite of the children. It is worth visiting the pilgrimage church because of its 18th century carved wood Pietà, but the tourists mostly make the climb in order to admire the magnificent view over the Danube Valley, including the stretched-out Linz below. The splendid panorama spreads all over up to the foothills of the Alps and to the Bohemian Forest in the Czech Republic.
Trinity Column (Dreifaltigkeitssäule)
In the middle of the most beautiful closed square in Austria, called the Main Square, rises the twenty meters high Baroque Trinity Column which construction was completed in 1723. The statue was created by Sebastian Stumpfegger all in white marble, but its design is the work of Antono Beduzzi. On the column there are three inscriptions which announce its dedication to the Holy Trinity by the guilds, the Emperor and the people of Linz and it is created in gratitude for deliverance from the dangers of war, fire and plague, all during the 18th century. The column is protected by the patron saints Sebastian, Florian and Carlo Borromeo.
Museum of the City of Linz (Nordico)
This edifice was constructed between 1607 and 1610 and it served as a town palace for the monastery of Kremsmunster. It is designed according to the style of the Como school by Francesco Silva. It was then enlarged and redesigned from 1673-1675. The celebration hall contains relicts of frescoes by Jakob Antonio Mazza. From 1710 to 1786 the place was used as a seminary for young men from Scandinavia and that is where the name Nordico came from. After that during 1851 it was transformed into residential accommodations and business premises. From 1959-1973 it was given a general renovation and expanded to form the City Museum, offering special exhibits throughout the whole year concentrating on art and cultural history of the city, as well as on "foreign” cultures and demonstration of special and rare fauna and flora.
Over eight hundred animals await you on your visit to the local exotic fauna. There are fluffy animals to cuddle, a selected collection of mammals (llamas, pygmy cows, sheep, goats, etc.) and a wide-range of birds and of course reptiles (crocodiles, iguanas, snakes...). You can always find these creatures in the zoo, which is located half the way up the Pöstlingberg. This travel destination is surely very popular amongst the little ones.
Some other attractions worth exploring include Minoritenkirche (Landhauskirche), Hauptplatz (the marketplace), Rathaus (Town Hall), Brucknerhaus, The Silicon Valley of Mitteleuropa (central Europe) with their famous Ars Electronica festival, The Abbey of St. Florian, Fountain of the Eagle, etc.
Also you may want to visit the Linz Tourist Information and Linz Transportation.