The free town of Rust is located in Northern Burgenland in the Neusiedler See region. It is known as a wine-growing region and the "city of storks". Rust was granted town charter as early as 1681, which makes it the smallest administrative district in Austria. The old town of Rust was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2001 together with the Neusiedler See region.



Lido with boat rental, surf courses, etc.
Cycling, the route around Lake Neusiedl leads through the village
The city has an observation tower to the south on the shores of Lake Neusiedl, especially for the storks that reside in the vicinity.
Family park leisure park with numerous attractions (roller coaster etc.) in the neighboring town of St. Margarethen.



In pre-Christian times, the area was part of the Celtic Kingdom of Noricum and belonged to the area around the Celtic hill settlement Burg on the Schwarzenbacher Burgberg.

Later, under the Romans, today's Rust was in the province of Pannonia.

Rust is first mentioned in a document in 1317 as Ceel (Hungarian szil, elm, rüster ‘) in a deed of gift from the Hungarian King Charles Robert I of Anjou-Naples for his follower Desiderius Hedevary as possessio Ceel vocatum circa stagnum Ferthew. The German place name Rust corresponds to the Hungarian place name Szil. The current Hungarian place name Ruszt was later taken from the German Rust.

Around 1470, Rust was granted market rights and since 1524 the Rusters have had the right, as evidenced by Queen Maria of Hungary, to burn a crowned "R" into their barrels as a trademark. This "R" is still used today as a quality mark in the cork brandy of bottled wines. From the 1520s, Rust came under Protestant influence from the nearby Ödenburg, where a Franciscan preached Lutheran in 1522. Towards the end of the 16th century, Rust confessed almost completely to the Protestant faith and experienced a political-economic as well as a spiritual-religious awakening. Belonging to the Hungarian Altenburg manor, the evangelical community faced counter-Reformation forces. Nevertheless, in 1647 the state parliament allowed the construction of a Protestant church (today's Roman Catholic parish church), a rectory and a Protestant school. The congregation experienced a heyday among Protestant pastors and teachers until, from 1674, the partly violent Counter-Reformation resulted in a century without its own church and preacher. House fathers ensured the passing on of the Evangelical faith with house devotions and Bible reading, while at the same time the service of the Catholic pastor was used for the casualia.

The city was first fortified with walls and ditches in 1512, but Rust was destroyed in 1529 and 1532 during the Turkish War. In 1614 a circular wall was built as a second city fortification, which is still largely preserved today.

In 1649 Rust bought itself free from subordination to the rulership, and the city paid 60,000 gold guilders and 500 buckets of the best wine to the Habsburgs: almost 30,000 liters of Ruster Ausbruch of the Furmint variety. On December 3, 1681, Rust received the title of Royal Free City (Reichstag in Ödenburg) from King Leopold I - in exchange for an amount raised largely by the Protestant population, which the Protestant church initially did not bring back.

In 1918 there was the (unrealized) plan to build a standard-gauge railway from the station of the Raab-Oedenburg-Ebenfurter Railway in Sopron (Ödenburg) via Mörbisch am See to Rust.

Rust, which belonged to the Kingdom of Hungary until 1921 and then to the Republic of Austria, exercises its self-government through its own town charter. Since Rust was already a (Hungarian) free town before Burgenland was annexed to Austria, it was treated as a statutory town after 1921 and has since been the smallest administrative district in Austria.

Mentioned for the first time in 1931, the local branch of the National Socialist German Workers' Party was founded in 1932: In the referendum on the annexation of Austria in March 1938, 862 yes votes and 1 no vote were cast on a plaque for (allegedly) 100% yes -Votes are not mentioned. Three Jewish families were expropriated, partly expelled, partly murdered in camps. Roma and Romnija were discriminated against, taken to camps and murdered. Four people with disabilities were murdered as part of the National Socialist euthanasia program. In the Second World War there were 113 killed or missing. The Red Army ended the National Socialist tyranny on April 2, 1945. After the war, officials of the NSDAP and the police were sentenced to prison terms in denazification trials.

In 2019, Rust was awarded the honorary title of “Reformation City of Europe” by the Community of Evangelical Churches in Europe.


Getting there

By plane
The closest airports are the international airport Vienna-Schwechat and the airport Milana Rastislava Štefánika in Bratislava, both of which can be reached in one hour (depending on traffic conditions).

With public transport
Rust is approached by buses from Eisenstadt several times an hour. Eisenstadt itself can be reached by train (from Wulkaprodersdorf or Neusiedl connection from Vienna) or by regional buses from Vienna Central Station. The nearest train station is Schützen am Gebirge on the Wulkaprodersdorf-Neusiedl railway line. It is also advisable to travel by bike if you take your bike on the train from Sopron or Neusiedl.

By road
Coming from Vienna, the route takes you via the A2 and A3 to the Eisenstadt junction, where you change to the S31 ri. Eisenstadt. At the Eisenstadt-Mitte exit, change to the B51, which leads directly to Rust.

From Sopron take the 84 to the border and continue on the B16. At the Siegendorf roundabout, turn right ri. Saint Margareten exits. When you have reached this town, turn right again onto the B51.

The border crossing near Mörbisch south of Rust is only open to bicycles and pedestrians.