The main tourist attractions of the province of Bolzano in northern Italy are not necessarily in the cities. The landscape is dotted with, often very well preserved, ancient castles and old farmsteads. Moreover, the mountainous area is very popular for skiing in the winter and hiking during the summer holidays.
Main tourist attractions Province of Bolzano
Bolzano is the capital of Alto Adige, officially known as the province of Bolzano. The central point of the town is the Piazza Walther, named after a 13th century local horn playing troubadour called Walther von der Vogelweide, whose statue occupies the middle of the square. It is also the location of the Gothic Cathedral with its elaborate spire. One of the attractions inside this church is the so-called “wine door”, carved with figures working among the vines. The arcaded Via dei Portici leads to the Museo Civico and its collection of historical clothing, furniture and more. The Via dei Portici, which starts at the Piazza delle Erbe, is also the street where the local market is held. The neighbourhood north of the Piazza Walther is the most interesting part of the old town. The 5,000 year old “Iceman” is the biggest attraction of the Archaeological Museum. The Chiesa dei Domenicani has a frescoed cloister and an interior with 14th century wall paintings themed the “Triumph of Death”.
The Piazza del Duomo is located right in the medieval centre of Bressanone. The cathedral itself was reconstructed in the 18th century, but its 12th century cloister with its 15th century frescoes is still intact. The Palazzo Vescovile (“Bishop’s Palace”) is now the seat of the Museo Diocesano. The highlight of this museum is its Museo dei Presepi, or “Museum of Nativity Scenes”. The rest of its collection is mainly taken up by medieval works of art.
Brunico lies at the foot of a medieval castle. Its 14th century fortifications include a network of narrow streets. The Saint Ursula Church, close to the gate of the same name, contains some 15th century altar reliefs depicting the Nativity. A visit to the folkloristic Museo Etnografico di Teodone includes a visit to a 16th century farmhouse. Its collection consists of traditional costumes and displays of the agricultural living conditions in the past.
Glorenza has one of the most beautiful medieval town centres in the area.
Malles Venosta (Mals)
The main attraction of Malles Venosta itself is the 9th century San Benedetto Church, one of several Gothic churches in this small town. In the small village Burgusio you can visit the Abbazia di Monte Maria, a 12th century convent. It was enlarged in the 18th and 19th centuries, but the crypt still contains the original 12th century frescoes.
Merano is a popular spa town. The Kurhaus in the main street Corso Libertà was built in 1914 and is now a concert hall. The Castello Principesco was constructed in the 15th century. It still has the original furniture from when the Habsburg Archduke Sigismund reigned over the area. The winter walk follows the north bank and the summer walk the south bank of the river Passirio, which is lined with gardens, and meanders through the town centre. The Ponte Romano over this bridge, as the name indicates, was built in Roman times, while the Ponte Passirio stems from the Middle Ages. The Castel Trauttmansdorff is also called Castel Neuberg has a botanical garden and a tourist museum (Touriseum).
Ortisei (Sankt Ulrich)
Ortisei is a main town in the Val Gardena area and is especially famous for its wood carving. The Museo della Val Gardena has both a section dedicated to this craft and an archaeological section.The most interesting church is the Saint Ulrich church. From Ortisei there are cable cars to the Alpe di Siusi and to the Monte Seceda, a 2,500 meter high starting point for mountain walks. The Alpe di Siusi area is characterized by onion-shaped church domes.
Rio di Pusteria (Muhlbach)
The east side of Rio di Pusteria is protected by a 16th century fortified barrier. Travellers from the Görz district were supposed top pay customs here when entering Tyrol.
The main attraction of the Castello di Rodengo is famous because of its frescoes showing scenes from Hartmann van Aue‘s verse romance “Iwein”, probably written in 1203. There are battle scenes, courtly episodes and also a “Last Supper”.
The Castel Coira is the most interesting attraction in Sluderno. This castle can boast an interesting collection of weapons and armour.
The Castel Tirolo and is museum of Tyrolean history form the main attraction of this town.
De Abdij van Novacella bevindt zich in de gelijknamige deelgemeente van Varna. Dit klooster, en de van muurschilderingen voorziene kloostergang, worden door stevige verdedigingsmuren beschermd.
The castle of Velturno is where the rulers of Bressanone spent their summer holidays. The rooms of the castle are adorned with various frescoes.
Vipiteno is surrounded by a number of valleys that are rich in minerals. The main street is the Via Città Nuova and the main building in this street is the Palazzo Comunale. This town hall contain a collection of Renaissance sculpture and paintings. The Torre dei Dodici (“Tower of the 12th”) is considered to be the symbol of the town. The 15th century Bavarian sculptor Hans Multscher came to Vipiteno in 1456, in order to carve the parish church altar, and now has a whole museum dedicated to himself.