The history of the city can be traced back to the 9th century – and you can see that: The old town centre on the island appears contemplative and picturesque. But at the same time Lindau has a cheerful, mediterranean and fresh appearance. The lake, the mountains, the meadows, the expanse: Lindau offers space to breathe and feel free. Just as water and land unite here, old and new merge into something unique that is worth discovering. Would you like to join us on a short journey through time?
Island where linden trees grow
A monk from St. Gallen laid the foundation stone for the name of the town of Lindau: in 882 he issued a document about “the island on which linden trees grow”.
At that time there were only a few buildings on the island in the eastern part of Lake Constance: Only a few fishermen’s houses and a women´s convent, which was donated by a count around 810 in gratitude for his rescue from distress at sea, stood here.
The Catholic parish church “Münster Unserer Lieben Frau”, which still exists today, is one of the last remains of this old convent.
The history of Lindau's market
Since the Middle Ages, the only way to buy fresh vegetables, wine or hemp (important for shipbuilding) was to go to the markets, which were often the hub of a town. Still in 1079 the local market on the mainland was located in Aeschach. It was only due to the constant conflicts between princes and church representatives that the market was moved to the island of Lindau, where it was better protected.
After that it still took almost 200 years before King Rudolf I proclaimed Lindau an imperial city in 1275. Lindau maintained this status for over 700 years – it was only through Napoleon that the city lost its privileges and was handed over to Austria by the prince.
In 1805/1806 Lindau together with the whole region of Vorarlberg was handed over to the Bavarian king. As a result, there were years of unrest which did not end until 1809.
Connection to the big wide world
The 19th century was characterised by the industrialisation: Lindau was first connected to the Lake Constance shipping network, later to the railway. The city’s landmarks – the Bavarian Lion and the New Lighthouse in the Lindau harbour entrance – also date from this period.
The city of Lindau has existed in its present form since 1 February 1922: At that time the communities of Aeschach, Hoyren and Reutin were incorporated, later Reitnau was added. Today about 27,300 people live in Lindau, about 2,600 of which live on the island with its historic town centre.