Nonnberg Convent is the oldest female convent north of the Alps. It has been in continual existence since it was founded in the year 714 A.D.
In the course of its history, the Abbey was destroyed by fire several times, but it was always rebuilt by the rulers of the city and the church. Today’s building was erected in the early 16th century. The wooden Gothic altar by the sculptor Veit Stoss is especially worth seeing . It is located in the St. John’s Chapel near the gate.
The Abbey on the Nonnberg is significant both for the real Trapp story as well as for the movie. After graduating from college, Maria Augusta von Kutschera took a train to Salzburg to present herself as a candidate for the novitiate of the Benedictine Sisterhood. After serving as a governess outside the abbey she and Baron von Trappmarried in the Abbey Church in 1927.
The Sound of Music scenes shot here include the opening part where nuns go to mass and Maria returns too late. The performance for the song “Maria” was staged in the courtyard of the Abbey. The children came to the Abbey’s gate to ask Maria to return to their home. The escape scene, with the cars parked outside the Abbey gate, was also shot in the original spot.