The most beautiful towns in Trentino-Alto Adige

The northern Italian region offers not only breath-taking landscapes but also picturesque villages and interesting towns with fascinating history, art and culture. Read more about the most worth-seeing cities in the region!

Exploring Trentino-Alto Adige's stunning towns

Bolzano and Merano

The capital of South Tyrol is a unique city: as a Tyrolean trading centre, Bolzano has been a mix of German and Italian elements since the Middle Ages. Italian merchants have always been welcomed here, and when Bolzano and South Tyrol came under the Italian administration in 1918, the people also became closer to each other.

Its location is also special: framed by vineyards and with a view of the Adige Valley and the Dolomites with the Schlern, the city lies in the sunny basin at the confluence of the Adige and Eisack rivers. The long, dry summers are even one of the reasons why the people of Bolzano prefer to live high above the city in the cooler Jenesien or Oberbozen.
The “South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology” is necessary on any visit to the city! The museum, built especially for “Ötzi”, shows the prehistory and early history of the region and of course, the Iceman is the focus of the exhibition. It is also worth taking a walk along the central shopping street “Lauben”, which centuries-old houses frame. The popular Waltherplatz square is a popular meeting place for people in the surrounding cafés and restaurants, and the beautiful 14th-century Dominican church houses frescoes by the Giotto school.

North-east of Bolzano is the beautiful spa town of Merano. Even Empress Sissi liked to stay in this beautiful town with its mild climate and almost 300 days of sunshine during the year. There is a Sissi monument in her honour in Merano Park. The three-thousand-metre peaks of the Texel Group protect against rain and wind and thus also ensure year-round survival for Mediterranean plants such as palms, cypresses and laurel.
But Merano offers more than just good weather! In the city, you will find everything a holidaymaker looks for: shopping paradises, museums, theatres, promenades and a colourful nightlife. The surrounding mountain country offers hikes along the idyllic Waalwege, alpine pasture experiences and autumnal Törggelen, mountain bike routes up to 2,500 m and paragliding flights. Those who want to go even higher can dare to climb the high mountains of the Texelgruppe and Ultner Berge.

Brixen and Bruneck

The beautiful town of Brixen in the Eisacktal valley lies northeast of Merano and offers a southern flair. The old bishop’s town is adorned with old townhouses, churches and typical Tyrolean residences and old inns, such as the “Elephanten”. In the background rise the Pfunderer mountains, the Plose ski mountain and the wild peaks of the Geisler group in the Dolomites. In nearby Klausen, the monastery castle of Säben is situated on a rock. It was the predecessor of Brixen as a bishop’s seat. Along the southern slopes, colourful vineyards stretch from Feldthurns, Villanders and Barbian down to the valley floor.

The Cathedral and Cathedral Square, which are well worth seeing, are the ideal starting point for a walk through the town. The Romanesque cathedral was built after the great town fire of 1174 and was extensively modernised in the 18th century. For this reason, it has a predominantly Baroque character today. The landmark of Bressanone is the 72 m high, octagonal “White Tower” of St. Michael’s Church at the old cemetery.
The town of Bruneck is also worth a trip! A cable car ride up to the Kronplatz offers a magnificent view of the beautiful medieval old town. Gates, old townhouses, a castle, museums, churches from Gothic to Baroque, good restaurants, shopping and theatre make the town a popular destination.
Bruneck Castle was built in 1250 at the same time as the town. The impressive castle courtyard with coats of arms of the Brixen prince-bishops, the round tower with spiral staircase and Renaissance and Baroque halls are particularly impressive. In one of the MMM (Messner Mountain Museums) opened by Reinhold Messner, you can learn more about the way of life of the mountain people.

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