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Kirchturm vom überfluteten Alt-Graun im Reschensee, Bild: w.deframe / shutterstock

5 particularly beautiful destinations in South Tyrol

“We should spend our holidays in South Tyrol.” This, or something similar, is probably how quite a few holiday conversations begin at the table at home. And it quickly becomes clear: South Tyrol is not South Tyrol and the possibilities to spend your holidays there are incredibly diverse. So many areas and towns attract travellers that the decision is anything but easy. Especially since there is hardly an “eyesore” in the region. To make the decision a little easier, this article suggests five destinations that are always a good idea.

1. Lake Caldaro: Bathing fun for the whole family

Especially in summer, Lake Caldaro can already be described as a paradise for water lovers. Lake Caldaro is one of the largest lakes in South Tyrol and is also one of the warmest lakes in the entire Alpine region. The water reaches up to 28 degrees in the summer months and the bathing season runs from May to late September. What else speaks for this goal?

  • Lidos – five large lidos extend along the lakeshore. From there, they also go into the water. The pools offer all kinds of other attractions, such as surfing and sailing schools, pedal boat rentals and children’s playgrounds.
  • Villages – Caldaro and Termeno are particularly well-known. The villages are located directly on the lake or nestle on its shore. The accommodations and other attractions are also located there.
  • Accommodation – from hotels to guesthouses to campsites, everything is there. Even luxury resorts are located on the lakeshore. The best example: this hotel right on Lake Caldaro with a pool and everything you need for a pampering holiday.

One of the great advantages of this holiday destination is the location itself. The lake is located just under 15 kilometres from Bolzano and offers the ideal starting point for hikes. In addition, it attracts holidaymakers all year round.

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2. Merano and environs: Many excursion destinations and special flair

Trauttmannsdorf Castle
Trauttmannsdorf Castle, Image: Simone Crespiatico / shutterstock

The Merano region is frightened from Merano north to South Tyrol. Many smaller villages invite you to linger or to stay longer. Merano itself offers almost the ideal mixture of a romantic-historic old town and modern flair. Furthermore:

  • Spa town – Merano is a spa town known for its thermal baths. One of the most famous baths is located directly at Merano Castle, right next to the botanical gardens.
  • Excursions – from Merano you can explore the entire Merano region. Like the whole of South Tyrol, this region also lures you out into the open air and appeals particularly to active holidaymakers. Hiking, walking, cycling, climbing or even a trip with the Flying Fox are possible.
  • A year-round highlight – Merano and the Merano region are holiday destinations for the whole year. In winter, winter sports are of course the top priority.

Culturally, Merano and Environs offers further advantages. Many hikes take up cultural references and are therefore declared as themed hikes. Art and culture can be admired at virtually every step.

3. Bolzano: Food culture and many sights

Bolzano Vineyards
Vineyards in the Bolzano region, Image: StevanZZ / shutterstock

The capital of South Tyrol boasts Mediterranean flair and climate. In fact, the alleys are partly lined with palm trees. Bolzano is particularly suitable for a city trip, but the destination is also ideal as a starting point for excursions in southern South Tyrol:

  • Location – Bolzano is located about 15 kilometres from Lake Caldaro and 25 kilometres from Merano. The location explains why Bolzano is a suitable starting point for excursions.
  • Attractions – Museums, palaces, castles and churches – Bolzano has a lot to offer. Despite the relatively small size of the city, the number of churches is high. The Franciscan church and the monastery are always worth a visit.

4. Val Venosta: Famous reservoir and historical sites

The Vinschgau Valley connects to the Merano region and reaches up to the Reschen Pass. The church tower, which stands in the middle of a lake, is particularly well-known. The region is characterized by gentle valleys and rugged mountains. Some highlights:

  • Glorenza – it is the smallest town in the Southern Alps. It is considered a surprising and medieval jewel, because the ring wall with city towers and Diagon Alleys has been preserved to this day.
  • Martell – if you stop for the strawberry festival, you can taste the famous mountain strawberries directly. The municipality consists of summit parts and low villages.
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Near Martell is the Plima Gorge, which today offers a family-friendly trail.

5. Val Passiria: Nature in its most beautiful way

The Passeier Valley also stands out for its nature. Nature reserves line it, as well as the many hiking trails for inexperienced and experienced hikers. The Passeier Valley is a holiday destination for the whole year. While hikes and excursions up to the peaks dominate in summer, the ski resorts await in winter.

  • Slopes – The slopes open at the beginning of December and remain open until Easter.
  • Ski resorts – two ski resorts are available to holidaymakers. Pfelders is particularly appreciated for its snow reliability and offers fun for beginners and professionals. 18 kilometres of slopes are available. In Racines-Giovo there are 25 kilometres of slopes and a fun park.

Of course, the cross-country ski slopes and toboggan runs are not missing. When the snow has melted, the slopes are transformed into hiking routes on which hikers and climbers can climb to the peaks.

Decide with peace of mind: South Tyrol is worth more than just a trip

It is not easy to decide on a destination in South Tyrol. Therefore, holidaymakers should think about what is particularly important to them and how they would like to spend their holiday as much as possible. Do you want to go out into nature or are longer stays in thermal baths desired? Are children also travelling with you? South Tyrol is extremely family-friendly, but it is advisable to rely on family hotels when looking for accommodation. They not only offer playgrounds, but often childcare so that parents can spend a day alone.

Conclusion – From traveler to South Tyrol fan

Sometimes a large selection makes the choice difficult. This wisdom certainly applies to South Tyrol, because there is no place that is not suitable for a holiday. The Caldaro region is ideal for water lovers, the Passeier Valley for hikers and skiers, the Merano region combines all this with culture, cities and proximity to larger towns. Good accommodation, on the other hand, is provided everywhere.