How hard is it to get to the Abbey on your own and is it worth it or should I just do a tour that includes a boat ride on the river
Dave While it's been several years, we loved it. Day 1 was a bike ride to Krems and a ferry ride back (OBTW - this was the very best ride we've ever taken. Stunning scenery on a gentle path ~ 30 km). Day 2 was market day, a small festival and the Abby. Stunning -the views, the buildings, furnishings. While Vienna and Salzburg were spectacular - Melk was a small jewel.
We visited Melk Abbey in July via a combo ticket sold by the train company....it includes the train from Vienna to Melk, your admission to the Abbey, then a boat ride to Krems followed by the train back to Vienna. We deviated a bit...got off in Durnstein and spent about 2 hours there (LOVED it), then took the bus to Krems and used our ticket for the return train. When we left Vienna (by car) a few days later, we headed to Salzburg via Mauthausen concentration camp. We saw the exit for Melk and could see the Abbey from the road. It would have been very easy to do it that way. If you have the time, though, I would buy the combo ticket and make a day of it...we really enjoyed it.
I agree with Roy's advice , the combo tickets sold by OBB are the best way. You don't want to skip the two hour boat cruise from Melk to Krems .It is delightful . Leave Vienna from Westbahnhof around 9am and you will have plenty of time for this excursion . Cost EU 57 per person and worth every penny . Enjoy it !!
thanks to all for your comments. Sounds like a great day